It’s enough to make you weep

According to new research, women spend an average of 16 months in their lifetime crying – it's such a waste of time, it makes you weep.

It used to take a lot to make me cry, but now I can be moved to tears by hearing that special sad music they put on the end of EastEnders if Pat Butcher dies or Zainab leaves, or something equally saccharine (Julia's Theme, as it is known in the trade). I'm getting soft in my old age.

Tears in the office, however, are a different matter. I think you might have to take my leg off without anaesthetic before I'd blub openly in front of my colleagues – when they finally wheel me out on my last day, I'm definitely insisting on Julia's Theme being played so I can break the rule of a lifetime and show some emotion.

The bizarre research maintains that after the age of 19, women weep for an average of two hours and 14 minutes a week. A WEEK.

Have they got nothing better to do? I don't even think I managed that level of professional crying when I was a hormonal teen convinced the world was conspiring against me and no man I've ever been romantically attached to has ever been stupid enough to be forced into line with a few tears. Damn them. Interested to see what the rest of my life holds in store, I discovered other research which reveals how much time is spent in other pursuits: it makes depressing reading. Women spend two years feeling bored, one year deciding what to wear, 115 days laughing, three years washing our clothes, 11 and a half years working, 136 days applying make-up, 27 days waiting for trains, seven years trying to go to sleep, 20 weeks on-hold listening to musak, a year off sick, 11 years in front of the television, five years on the internet, five and half years cleaning, four and a half years eating and 26 years sleeping. By my reckoning, that's 78 years accounted for without even trying to factor in the time you spend doing everything else – and seeing as the average life-expectancy of a woman is only 79.9 years, you've only got 1.9 years to play with.

Of course you're going to spending 453 days of that 1.9 years crying, leaving you with a grand total of 213 days when you can go 'off list'.

I'm compiling a list of what I'm going to spend those 213 days doing. It has already taken me a day, so I've made the difficult decision to stop cleaning in order to buy me some more time. One must make sacrifices.