2019: My Highlights
So, the end of the year is upon us. A full 365 days of 2019. Quite a lot isn’t it? Far too many, some would argue.
Nonetheless, I have managed to cobble together some highlights for you to enjoy. Because in this time of uncertainty, we cling to our traditions. No matter how pointless or illogical. Don’t think about it, just let it happen.
In keeping with tradition, and basic mathematics, therefore – here is a list of my 19 highlights for 2019. I have chosen the number 19 because the only non-trivial normal magic hexagon contains 19 hexagons, and it is the maximum number of fourth powers needed to sum up to any natural number.
Let’s get on with it, shall we?
I Became a Worship Director. After a couple of years as a self-styled Worship Gardener, I took on full responsibility for the worship team at church. To start on a serious note, this was a genuine goal of mine for so much of my youth. So, it’s nice to tick that off.
Next year: I will move on from simply directing worship, and I will start to direct major Hollywood blockbusters – specialising in those ones where the main characters are talking animals with weird CGI on their mouths.
I turned 29. Ok, this is getting serious now. Every year, the number gets one bigger. And it doesn’t appear to be stopping. 29 is the tenth prime number – it’s a Lucas prime, an Einstein prime, a Pell prime and a tetranacci number. Real stuff.
Next year: [REDACTED]
I bought a new guitar. My first new guitar since 2011. It’s a Fender Jaguar. It has two coil blending humbuckers. It is Olympic White and it is beautiful.
Next year: I will buy a new amp
I watched Avengers: Endgame. Basically the whole of the decade was leading up to this moment. It was inevitable that it would make it into my year highlights. If you want to hear my thoughts on the movie, click here.
Next year: I’ve watched for long enough. Next year is the year I become part of the saga and finally win my role as the next Marvel super villain.
I bought a house. Well, we bought a house. Me and Emily. My wife and I. Homeowners. Every month a mortgage payment comes out of our account. And no-one can tell me off if I make a hole in the wall by throwing a knife through a defaced poster of Robert Pattinson. Apart from Emily. And believe me, she will. It’s not all good news though – when the boiler breaks, it turns out that we have to pay for it to be fixed. Bummer.
Next year: It’s important to have realistic goals. Even buying a house felt pretty unrealistic, so let’s temper our expectations shall we? Next year I’ll buy a Twix.
We celebrated one year of Marriage. Again, Emily and I did this one together. 365 days of being husband and wife. It’s been fun. Apart from the one time I told her we had to leave and that she could go to the toilet once we got there. That didn’t go down well.
Next year: We’ve had a debrief and decided we’re gonna go for at least one more year.
I acquired a drill. Another step along the road to becoming a fully functional adult male. I have used it to put up a TV mount and to drill an extra hole in a cabinet that I’d put together incorrectly.
Next year: I will get a second drill, and then stand on the roof of the porch holding and revving both, whilst laughing maniacally during a thunderstorm.
I started releasing music with Homegrown Worship. Two songs so far. Which is a 100% increase on the year before. It’s been great to be involved and to have been so encouraged. And I’ve loved to have some more songs out there. Thanks to Andy Baker, Nick Law and everyone else at Homegrown Worship. If you haven’t heard any of the songs, follow me on Spotify here.
Next year: I’ll release some more music. Watch this space.
We got a Nord at Church. Finally. Our prayers were answered. The Nord giveth, and it has not taken away. Nord let your glory fall. Nord you are good and your organs endureth forever.
Next year: I will paint all of the instruments in the church red, in its honour.
Divock Origi. Liverpool won the Champions League. Your team did not. Unless you also support Liverpool.
Next year: With all the caution of a Liverpool supporter of 20 years, let’s just wait and see shall we?
I tried to lead worship as an entire room of young people chanted the lead guitarist’s name. Every worship leader dreams of one day having to ask ‘is this blasphemy?’ over the microphone.
Next year: I will see a bassist crowd surf. I believe it could happen. Until the crowd realises it’s the bassist.
I came 8th in the UK Christian Chart. With my first Homegrown Worship single, Dancing Shoes. It’s a banger. The most exciting thing about this was that I was able to use this video to announce it.
Next year: Let’s aim for 7th. Though there are no funny Simpsons references to announce that with.
I saw Paul Gascoigne in a car park. I didn’t talk to him. But this a real step up from the last time, when I saw his hand from behind the dugout when Yeovil Town played Everton in a friendly at Huish Park two decades ago.
Next year: I will stalk all of the stars of England’s Euro 96 team. I’m coming for Darren Anderton next.
I started riding a bike again. For the first time since I was 11 (apart from briefly in Italy last year). I decided that it was something that I should be able to do. So I’m trying to do it. I haven’t fallen off yet, but sometimes it’s difficult to go round corners. And roads still terrify me.
Next year: I will ride to work. At least once.
I started going to the gym. Now I’ve tried to be careful with this. I don’t want to be one of those people who announces every time they’re at the gym. It’s also a shame to be the person who announces they’ve been going to the gym and everyone’s like ‘I really couldn’t tell’.
Next year: I’ll work out what you’re supposed to do once you get to the gym.
I rediscovered Worms. While away for our annual Thanksgiving weekend, Worms came back into my life. Super Sheep. Concrete Donkey. Holy Hand Grenade. Glorious.
Next Year: I’m going to be playing Worms all year. Download Worms 3 on your mobile device (it costs £4.99 but it’s worth it) and challenge me to a game.
I released this Magnum Opus. Mariah Carey and Star Wars. How come no-one thought of it before? I can’t help but feel my entire video career has led up to this point. I first got the idea over 3 years ago. And seeing it come to life and touch so many lives has been truly humbling. That something so extraordinarily unnecessary can come to exist is either a damning indictment of the world we have created, or a sign that everything is going to be ok.
Next Year: I will combine all of the great Christmas songs with battles from famous franchises. Chris Rea and Game of Thrones. Wizzard and Lord of the Rings. Slade and the MCU. Cliff Richard and Family Guy, when Peter and the giant chicken fight.
I voted. And actually, in my constituency, my candidate won. I’m going to take that as a victory. A very small victory.
Next year: I’ve tried voting. Doesn’t seem to work. Now I’m going to move on to civil disobedience. I will not be waiting until the green man tells me I can walk at traffic lights.
I witnessed the end of the Skywalker Saga. I enjoyed it. I’ve got a lot more thoughts than that. I considered writing something about it. But if there’s one thing the internet doesn’t need more of, it’s opinions from white men. About Star Wars.
Next year: I will continue to resist the temptation to start a podcast.