Staying trim, kicking the erotic muse and insouciance: NYR1 – the first in a series of resolutions for 2013.

Malachi's resolutions for 2013

My first new year resolution to renew and reaffirm for a third year in a row my determination to retain and preserve the trim figure I achieved through moderating my intake of chocolate, mostly.

Three years ago I was 25% heavier than I am now. I had a tummy that was about the size and weight of a packed rucksack worn the wrong way round and low. For years I had accepted this as the normal consequence of maturity and even trusted that I was portly and more impressive on account of my fuller face and robust frontage.

Other men as readily accommodate themselves to a parcel of lard that sits on the lap like a box when they sit down. Women fatten around the buttocks and thighs; men acquire a ledge half way up the rib cage which they could rest a dinner plate on. And they have their ways of disguising this as normal -ish.

But get rid of it and you discover some of the pleasures that you forgot, like kissing during intercourse.

Fat people move further back from each other. Their mid sections become a fulcrum around which they can seesaw their heads closer and their loins further apart, or the other way round. If you are slim, imagine making love with a football between you and your partner. You can manage the interlocking below at right angles to each other, which is nice in its way, as an option to be explored perhaps, but a limitation at best. And all that buffeting that should be translating into vigour and engagement tends to get muted by the wadges of fat and to work back against the diaphragm and deprive you of puff when you could be making best use of it.

So, I’m staying trim and enjoying life. That’s resolution number one.

Resolution number two is rethink erotica. Something may be going wrong. When I link a piece from the ER to my Facebook page the comment level drops. I do get the odd sneer and the occasional comment but the wider response is silence. I’m embarrassing my ‘friends’. They don’t expect me to be publishing observations about pair bonding and copulation and don’t know what to say about it. So maybe I should resolve to work on a different tack, embedding my erotica in polemical articles about Irish politics, perhaps deploying erotically charged images as metaphors for the political strategies of contending movements.

What seems not to work is the approach that says, Hey, I had an amazing shag and I’d like to tell you about it.

My third resolution is not to worry to much about either of these things. Really, resolution is too strong a word. I don’t get happier by resolving to change and then committing myself to working on myself. I find I get happier by easing up on myself rather than applying discipline or fretting about the future.

So I resolve not to resolve.

But hopefully, this time next year, I will still be on the trimmer side of tubby and writing for pleasure.

A happy and horny new year to you all.

Malachi O’Doherty’s book On My Own Two Wheels is published by Blackstaff Press £8.99.