You have to feel for 2013, destined to live in the overbearing shadow of 2012 with its fancy London Olympics and Queen’s Jubilee. But 2013 isn’t daft. Instead of trying to compete with all that celebration stuff, this year has decided to play it cool, take a step back and have long look at where we are.
You’ll be able to see 40 miles around London when The Shard opens its public platform on 1 February and then on 7 February, the British Museum starts its Ice Age art exhibition, which takes us back to the start of the ‘modern mind’.
Looking at the View, starting 12 February at Tate Britain, looks at the way artists, from JMW Turner to Tracey Emin, have represented the British landscape over the years and then David Bowie pops up from the undergrowth for a retrospective at the V&A from 23 March.
After Bowie has delved back into the 1970s, Yoko Ono evokes the 1960s as she creates this year’s Meltdown festival in June. Also in retro-rock mode, Roger Walters out of Pink Floyd brings The Wall to Wembley stadium on 14 September.
If all that memory dredging proves too much, this year it will be easier to get out of town, thanks to the removal, on 29 April, of those annoying rules on taking bottles of liquid through security at airports and, in December, the launch of a high-speed rail link to Frankfurt.
Head for Germany at that time, though, and you’ll miss the world championship darts at Ally Pally, where Phil Taylor has won every year since the dawn of time. They should probably call The Shard the Arrow of Power in his honour.