Inspired by this release from the Royal Statistical Society I thought I would evaluate 2019 using numbers as well. It being a year ending in ‘9’, and most of my recent difficult years being 1989, 1999 and 2009 (not to mention a certain election in 1979), I wasn’t expecting much which is pretty much how things worked out.

47: the number of job applications made

Actually, that’s a slight fib. The truth is that I have no true idea of the number of applications; partly because I lost count, partly because some of them were made on my behalf by recruiters. Some were made through recruiters who never replied. But of that 47-ish:

  • 15 resulted in interviews
  • One of which resulted in a job, for six weeks – and for which I had previously been discounted (it pays to be permanently available at short notice).
  • One of which was in London, for 30 minutes, for a role based five minutes’ walk away from my flat in Leeds.
  • Three of which (one, certainly; I’m still not sure about the other two because while I was offered feedback none arrived) I utterly loused up by leaving all my knowledge outside the interview room. Nerves. The more I want it the worse I get.

10: the number of times I entered a hotel

Bizarrely, one of those was for an interview – in the hotel lobby, of course.

Six times I walked into a hotel room. Five of them were my own.

The other one was not as exciting as I might have made that sound… but equally I don’t feel the need to elaborate further. Forget I ever mentioned it.

60.5%: the amount I am central & south Asian

Yes! I took the 23andme DNA test.

As a result of which I’ve made three new familial connections going back to my great-great-great grandparents. None of them appear to be landed or loaded, ho hum.

The numbers get finessed as the dataset increases, so that I am now more British & Irish (5.4%) than Spanish & Portuguese (4%), which is a reversal on the original result.

The 2.5% unassigned DNA confused me for ages… then I remembered I’m hung like a horse, so that would probably account for it. Stop laughing.

51: my HbA1c figure

That means I’m now a Type II diabetic.

That also means lots of visits to the surgery; I think I had five in the last quarter, one of which included a free flu jab (I’ve never felt the need for one before). Also, one of those eye tests where they give you drops and then photograph your eyeballs. Real ‘Eye of Sauron’ stuff.

After three months of daily salad, much-reduced bread, pasta and rice intake, giving up chocolate and other ‘bad’ sugars, my HbA1c… went UP. To 57. That’s a 20% increase on last year! If it had hit 60 they’d have put me on tablets. I’m already on tablets – statins, as the Type II diagnosis means I’m now at a higher risk of high cholesterol (irrespective of my actual cholesterol level, which was on the way down).

My weight, sadly, has stayed a constant 80kg (±3%). Something to aim for next year… can I get it down to below 75kg?

15: trips to That London

Four for iprovision, four for CIPR Council, four for Professional Membership & Development Committee (RIP), one Association of Charitable Organisation AGM, one Chairs Meeting, one pointless interview. Managed to combine Excellence with one iprovison and the Fellows Lunch with one Council.

There’s only so much travelling I want to do, although I did have two consecutive meetings in London, which was different as I did them both as day trips. Two events involved visits to parts of the House of Lords.

I’ll be honest… I’m always quite happy to be leaving London after half a day there for whatever reason.

1: houses sold

We sold mum’s house. British Heart Foundation got most of the contents over a nine-month period, but I wish we’d got the first removal crew from last December in for the final shift in August. The second lot, not so good.

My flat now has two planters on the balcony, a reel-to-reel tape recorder (and tapes), two slide projectors and a 35-litre container of slides, negatives and prints. And a large coffee table. And a large fan. This is how it starts.

3: attempts to go on holiday

I rather fancied a long weekend in Brussels again and, as my birthday would fall nine days before we were first going to leave the European Union (ugh), that seemed a good a time as any. If only I’d had a job to pay for it… The second attempt was around mid-summer. I now had a job but was being paid by the day so couldn’t work yet another day off.

Then when I did have the money it was far too late to book something in time for the weekend at the end of September when I was already in London, thus making the hop over via Eurostar a bit easier. So I didn’t bother.

Something else to work into next year’s plans.

Looking forward?

There are other numbers I could throw in, such as this year seeing my 11th Yorkshire & Lincolnshire Pride Awards Dinner in a row; and the tenth time in a row I’ve been on-stage to present an award (and the third time in a row to draw or announce the raffle, of which the less said the better). And only the one death, which was nice. Updated the site theme once, fiddled about with it countless times.

Next year there will be four fewer trips to London, now that PDMC has been knocked on the head. But then, I’m a British Library Member, so that makes it harder to take up the four free exhibition tickets I receive. I’m sure I’ll manage 😉

And, in an effort to be optimistic, I’ve potentially got two first and two second interviews to be lined up in the first fortnight in January. Best dig out my hypnotism watch and stand in front of a mirror…

As for 2020… I recall 1990 and 2000 being years of change, on the job and relationship fronts respectively. Perhaps 2020 will be as well? Hopefully for the better. Happy New Year, Dear Reader!