Tuesday, January 01, 2019

A Slow Start

What a dull start to the new year.  I don't just mean the largely overcast weather.  Everything has just been flat and dull.  The usual New Year's Day football schedule was reduced to just three Premier League matches, TV 'events' have been limited to an episode of Doctor Who (which was, I'll concede, somewhat better than the preceding series, but that isn't saying much) and the first of four new episodes of Luther, (a series which so badly wants to be a giallo movie, but falls short of the requsite style and truly crazy plotting).  Even the web has been dead all day, with next to no updates on social media and no new posting on the forums (or should that be fora?) that I follow.  Surely everybody can't be hungover?  I mean, despite being New Year's Eve, everywhere seemed to shut early yesterday, limiting the opportunities for seasonal binge drinking. I'm sure that New Year used to be a bigger deal than this - deep in the recesses of my memory I seem to recall the TV companies making an effort with their schedules and events going on to mark the New Year.  But apparently not anymore.  It seems to have fallen victim to the modern desire to pack away the Christmas season as quickly after Boxing Day as possible.  Indeed, this year, retailers seemed more eager than ever to sweep away all trace of Christmas: the seasonal goods started disappearing from the shelves on Christmas Eve in some shops and had all but gone by yesterday.  Large parts of the local Christmas market, (which is meant to be in situ until Twelfth Night) have already packed up and gone home.

Of course, according to the media, UK shops have seen disappointing Christmas sales, so obviously want to move on as quickly as possible, to find some other angle to try and get us to spend money.  As ever, the explanation for the troubles of the High Street all centre upon the increased popularity of online shopping.  But that seems far too simplistic.  IN the UK, at least, I'm sure that the presents problems have more to do with the uncertainties surrounding Brexit.  With the spectre of a No Deal Brexit and the possible economic chaos still looming over the country, people are simply not spending money.  While there's been a lot of talk of people buying and hoarding supplies in their 'Brexit Bunkers', the fact of the matter is that money is easier to hoard than tinned goods and medical supplies.  Until we have a clearer idea of what shape the economy is going to be in post-Brexit, people are going to be reluctant to spend their cash.  On anything.  So, Britain's shops could have a long wait for sales to pick up.  Not that I did anything to help today: I emerged only to buy a newspaper, spending the rest of the day either in bed or on the sofa.  And why not?  There was nothing else going on anywhere, after all.

Labels: ,


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home