Ace has kindly posted pictures of the great York get-together of 2001 on Facebook, and it provokes many thoughts within my brain. Firstly, that I would probably die if I tried to spend three solid days drinking so much booze now, at my age. Secondly, that I really didn't look good back then. Especially when wearing that polka-dot shirt that I thought was cool, but even allowing for that, there's no escaping the fact that that was during the period of my life when I didn't realise I was bald.
This may take some explaining. I knew I was baldING, and had been for years, but my mental image of myself was of someone with a reasonably nice head of hair still, whose receding hairline wouldn't really be noticed by the casual observer, especially if I was wearing my hat. It wasn't until late 2002/early 2003 that I thought to myself on looking in the mirror "Wow, I'm really properly bald! When did that happen?"
So looking at those pictures and seeing myself properly slap-headed in 2001 is a bit of a shock. It really brings home the depths of self-delusion I was under in those days. Hey, I was 24, and such reckless youths are allowed a bit of self-delusion, right? Plus that was during my particularly fat phase, and when I wore big round glasses that I thought made me look eccentric and cool... I'm quite grotesquely nerdy-looking in those pictures, as opposed to the "ultimate nerd who all the other nerds look up to" style that I totally pull off nowadays.
It's probably a good thing that I'm so happy with my appearance now. How many other people can look back on their early-twenties selves and say "Yep, I look a whole lot better now!"
Anyway, I'm going to Cambridge on Saturday for the othello regional! I thought I might have to give it a miss, because I'm really seriously having to avoid spending money at the moment, but advance train tickets sucked me in with their enticing cheapness, and I'll be there and back for £18... plus £10 entry fee for the competition, plus the price of a good pub lunch in one of those expensive Cambridge pubs, plus other ancillary expenditure, but the point is that you're not supposed to add these things up, and anyway, it's still a cheap day out with good company!