Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Perhaps You Could Never Go Far Wrong in Imagining Alan Shearer by Your Side

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Perhaps You Could Never Go Far Wrong in Imagining Alan Shearer by Your Side

Article excerpt

Byline: KATE FOX

I KNEW I was finding Christmas a bit stressful when the lady at the bar asked, "Can I take your coat?" and I snapped, "It's a Coatigan". For those of you wondering, a Coatigan is a cross between a coat and a cardigan, I'd just been given it for Christmas and I wanted to keep it on in case I got cold.

It's not the only clothing hybrid I own, I also rejoice in some Treggings from Marks and Sparks. They're a cross between trousers and leggings and are very forgiving of the effects of 84 Quality Streets.

I'm particularly looking forward to the invention of the Shock - an all in one comfy shoe-sock - and the Leolava - a cross between a leotard and a balaclava - for those days when you want to rob a bank and practise ballet at the same time.

Anyway, I digress, it wasn't like me to display irritation with bar workers. I was suffering stress. (Not to be confused with the Stress, a handy conjunction of stockings and a dress which will be on your shelves in 2013). I told my Buddhist friend and she suggested that I think of somebody I admire and imagine they are with me and then I will be inspired to act as they would.

I thought straight away of Aung San Suu Kyi, the Burmese peace activist who I'd recently been asked to write a poem about.

"I'm going to become like her," I intoned and my husband said, "What, you're not going to leave the house for eight years?" which sounded like quite an appealing idea.

But it began working straight away. I imagined her serene, ageless face and how she would say wise things about the eight-fold path and the importance of non-violence, and managed to play an entire game of Scrabble without wanting to shove the letter X up any dark holes.

I genuinely did start to feel more relaxed and open to the people around me, and less resentful of the fact that I wasn't just sitting in one place for six hours reading the Bunty annual (I think I'd been suffering a temporary resentment caused by the tendency of Christmas to make us revert to our child state). …

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