Rachel Dugan: 'Less 'new me' and more just an upgrade'

After years of blocking out the ‘new year, new you’ brigade’s hectoring, I finally decided to tune in and have morphed into a walking, talking, Kale-munching cliché.

For a start, I’ve embarked on a January so dry it should come with its own climate-change warning. I have also dragged myself back to the gym three mornings a week, and have made the first tentative steps towards rebooting my running regime.

And after mainlining tidying guru Marie Kondo’s new Netflix show last weekend, I now find myself knee-deep in ‘stuff’, wading through the flotsam and jetsam of my life in a bid to find some kind of inner zen.

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But as I power-walk to the office each morning, mournfully watching the steamed-up bus trundle by and listening to Allen Carr’s dulcet tones extolling the virtues of my cigarette-free future, I can’t shake the feeling I’m a little late to the booze-free party.

It feels like most people have decided that in 2019, rather than opt for a strict new regime in the pursuit of a betterment, it’s all about comfort and self-care? It’s January, after all, a month defined mainly by its bleakness and the fact it’s not Christmas any more – why would we want to put ourselves through any more hardship, the argument goes.

But it’s too late for me. I am well on my way to an upgraded version of myself and none of you naysayers can derail me.

But I’m happy for you to try. Let’s discuss it – perhaps over a glass of red wine?

Peter Pan or sexist pig? It feels like a 50-50 call

We all know that in this age of social media, public figures have to be careful what they send out into the ether. Publicity is no longer a one-way street.

No doubt aware of this is French author Yann Moix, who last week sparked the ire of women globally when he told a magazine that “at 50 I am incapable of loving a woman of 50. I find that too old”.

Yann was supposed to be promoting a new book but ended up creating a social media storm that had the presumably not unwelcome by-product of a shedload of free publicity.

Clearly having learned little from the debacle (or perhaps a lot, depending on your level of cynicism), Yann decided to give another interview, this time bemoaning the reaction to his ill-judged admission.

“I would like 50-year-old women to stop sending me photos of their bottoms and breasts,” he told ‘The Times’ newspaper.

But Yann wasn’t in the mood for apologising, opting instead to put his remarks in context.

Apparently, his lack of interest in ladies of a certain age is down to inability to grow up and accept his age.

I guess it’s easier to be called Peter Pan than a sexist pig.

Food in nude fails to get enough bums on seats

For those of you who had yet to secure a seat at Paris restaurant O’naturel, I have some bad news – the naked eatery this week shut its doors after 15 months in business.

In fairness, 15 months isn’t a bad run, considering most new restaurants struggle to make it past the first year. In fact, I’m surprised it managed to keep its doors open so long.

I’m all about dressing down for dinner, but having nothing more than a napkin to cover your nether regions sounds about as appealing as, well, a third-degree burn in a particularly sensitive spot.

In the end, however, the nudist owners just couldn’t attract enough customers.

In the restaurant business, I guess it’s all about bums on seats.

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