Dear Diary, nothing much happened

DIARY keeping was easier when you were a child. You could pen fantastic stories of dragons and pirates, make up stirring tales of Hamilton Academical winning the European Cup or - if you were a little older - make serious notes as to how to seduce Brenda Bright from the upper fourth. All it took was a diary, a Biro from Aunt Edith, and a little imagination.

Nowadays chronicling real live happenings tends to be less interesting. Car companies (for they are the worst culprits) send out dozens of diaries towards the end of December.

These contain such irrelevant information as where to find the nearest Bentley dealer should you require to have your brow mopped, or detailed instructions as to the correct method of de-icing windscreens.

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Should the manufacturer have won something in motorsport over the past 12 months, you get 100 extra pages of grinning fools, covered in advertisements, brandishing trophies and leering at skimpily dressed ladies somewhere in Europe.

Now I would be delighted to go to that somewhere in Europe and do some leering of my own, but having to look at that young Spanish gent with no neck who won the Roundy Round Championship for Renault and then promptly signalled his gratitude by signing for McLaren is not on.

He gets oodles of dosh, just for sitting in a car every fortnight during the summer. Why should he get leering rights over more deserving characters, such as myself or The Boy? Personally I would wait until such time as he was sans Daks and then unleash the toros.

I will not pencil "attend Renault launch on Thursday" in any of my new diaries either. They can find lesser scribblers to pen fawning words about their 2006 range of Megane seat coverings or how superior the Clio's windscreen wiping arc is to that of its opposition.

In truth I am growing tired of all forms of industrial sycophancy and would much rather put together a learned piece on how Ford and GM will manage to stumble through another year of falling sales before having to file for Chapter 11 protection from bankruptcy. Nothing to do with my Le Mans refreshments bill, either. Had they hired me years ago they wouldn't be in this mess now.

Come to think of it, they wouldn't be here at all and we would be cheerfully tootling round in Ying Tong Fiestas and Little Red Book Vectras, but now it will be another decade before we get a free blue boiler suit with every new car.

I wouldn't make any notes of my prediction in your diary however, not unless you have one of these Filofax thingys with thousands of pages. The diaries you get from car companies only last for a year as some don't expect to be around for much longer than that.

So if you are currently infesting one of these dreadful new colleges, masquerading as a media student and staring at 365 blank pages, I shall reluctantly tell you how to have that first Channel 4 series commissioned.

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Simply make a note to visit every car and ancillary products factory in the UK, recording the activities going on therein on video, (and don't throw out anything of an Ahem! nature you stumble across behind the bicycle shed, you can make a separate series of such footage), and then tuck it all away in a fireproof safe. Make a note in your diary - it will have to be a Filofax - to piece everything together in 2025, add a sombre music track and voila - you have instantly become Britain's leading authority on automotive archaeology.

There will be invitations to be interviewed by the successors of Richard and Judy, a leading role in Strictly Come Dancing clad in shiny pumps and a dashing red suit, two weeks with Miss Goodbody eating grubs in an Australian rainforest and no doubt a knighthood from a grateful King Charles of the potty plants.

In other words you will be on a major earner and every subsequent Christmas you can churn out a fitness DVD and advertise fairy lights.

I thought of doing just this in the days when I was very poor and had to make my way around the local soup kitchens on a BSA motorcycle. Wouldn't it be a great wheeze, I thought, to visit all of the UK's leading bike manufacturers and ...? But then I forgot, because in those days nobody sent me diaries at Christmas.

I wasn't alone. Nobody, it seems, keeps meaningful diaries except politicians and these are always offered for publication.

However, skip through any or all of them and you will discover some surprising things about our leaders. They never watch television, never come last in the karaoke competition down at the Ferret and Trousers, never conduct extra-marital Zimbabwean discussions, never personally hatch plots to overthrow their immediate superiors - and never tell lies. The liars.

In other words they have never quite moved on from fantasising about Hamilton Academical and Miss Brenda Bright.

Neither have I, come to think of it ...