Well, now the world did not end on Dec. 21. We’re all still here, eating, drinking and being merry. And since life as we know it is continuing, everybody and their mother is now making New Year’s Resolutions. Maybe you were hoping the Mayans would spare you this. Stick around for the next popular gloom-and-doom prophecy. Meanwhile, join the slap-happy, resolution-making crowd.
According to www.statisticbrain.com, 45 percent of Americans engage in this delusional exercise on or about Dec. 31, when the gravitational pull of the moon is at its zenith. After all, it would be socially awkward not to. What do you say at the New Year’s Eve party, as you lounge against the balcony with champagne in hand, when everyone goes around the room sharing their goals? What, you have no goals? Well, then surely your unexamined life is not worth living. We’re chucking you over the railing, loser. Next.
Hey, don’t get me wrong: I make goals and lists all day long. I’ve got big ones for 2013. I am a To-do-List junkie. It’s just that the usual suspects always show up every year and like the Emperor’s new clothes nobody has the guts to tell it like it is. We all know those resolutions are shamelessly naked promises, and yet we fawn over them as if they were regal robes of royalty (please indulge my Hispanic propensity to roll my Rs.)
I am feeling a little gutsy today. Let’s look at these guilt-inducers of old.
What’s with the juxtaposition of this goal to the holidays? It’s really kind of cruel of society to expect one to lose 10 pounds when said society is the guilty enabler that made those love handles possible. In fact, it was even encouraged: the family get-together, the church party, the neighbors dropping off cookies and chocolates. Of course, you are Petunia Pig: you just finished a season full of brie, tamales and baklava. If you really wanted to lose weight, you would have lain off the dessert bar at the company Christmas party. However, you would then run the risk of appearing anti-social. It’s an unfair position to be put in.
Have you ever walked through a ladies department store and notice the lingerie section is right next to maternity? What’s up with that? Maybe it’s just the natural progression of things. If you sashay through all those intimate undergarments and actually buy something, you will most certainly be back in a few months to get the spandex maternity jeans. You can’t be held responsible for what happens once you take that red bustier home.
If you really want to avoid the maternity section in April, don’t’ walk through the lingerie in January. Likewise, if you don’t’ want to gain weight, don’t attend holiday parties. Stay home and watch documentaries of irrigation methods in Zimbabwe. Like that’s going to happen. So, let’s just do ourselves a favor: quit pretending we are going to lose those 10 pounds and stop feeling guilty about it. Put down the Sunday newspaper ad for the Stairmaster at Sports Authority. You’re not fooling anybody. Puh-leez! Now pass me the baklava while I adjust my white lacy unmentionable.
Get organized and manage my time better
How quaint that you think I actually have time to manage. My time is not my own. It belongs to the kids, my spouse, my job, my dog, and the cruel task master also known as laundry. The only organizing I do is to try to rein my chaotic thoughts into a semblance of normalcy before I plunge off the deep end. Really, this resolution takes the cake (or did it go to my thighs as an extra pound)?
Last year I did organize the utensil drawer: knives in the straight slot, forks in the fork-shaped slot, spoons in the round slot. It was a thing of beauty to behold. At least until the kids “helped” by emptying out the dishwasher. I have discovered a better way to organize: plastic. As soon as we are done, those utensils go right into the round file and stay put!
People who are actually organized and managing their time don’t waste their time making this resolution. It’s for the rest of us who are stubbornly clinging to the notion that “This year is the year I will clean out the garage! This year. I mean it. 2013. Watch out, you old VHS tapes. It’s my time, baby.”
Enjoy life to the fullest
Why does life always have to be enjoyed to the fullest? If you enjoy it to the quarter, isn’t that good enough? I mean, you have still derived some pleasure and in a world full of sorrow and suffering that should be more than enough. Enjoying life to the fullest would be selfish and self-centered. Plus, have you ever met one of those people who have actually achieved this Pollyanna goal? Happy and smiling no matter what because, after all, they are enjoying life to the fullest. They just irritate those of us who are trudging along on our quarter ration.
People are constantly making this goal, but I have yet to see a headstone that reads, “Here lies Harry Silverton, who resolved on New Year’s Eve 1932 to enjoy life to the fullest. And did.”
Help others with their dream
Why is it up to me to help others with their dream when I am stuck in my nightmare? Aren’t they obligated to help me? Really, if they are so put together that they have time to dream, then shouldn’t they be reaching out to the less fortunate who are trapped in one of those nightmare when you want to scream and no sound comes out and you are being chased by a large amorphous creature that reminds you of an old boyfriend? Not that I speak from experience. Just saying.
Spend more time with family
I am not sure what kind of person makes this resolution, but it certainly isn’t a mom. After two weeks Christmas vacation at home with the little darlings, more time can only mean one thing: there will soon be a dead body and some CSI types asking pointed questions. The truly loving thing to do is get the little nippers back to school as soon as the bell rings so they can live to see their graduation. We can spend more time on Facebook where its’ safe.
Improve my mind
What does this really mean? Should I read classical literature and discuss the subtle nuances of the protagonist versus the antagonist versus the deuteragonist? Perhaps I should attend art house films and watch Europeans with accents pour their angst on the screen? Or should I recite Shakespeare and discuss the iambic pentameter and the literary foil? This will not improve my mind. This will drive the minds of those around me to insanity. Better to read People magazine and challenge my intellect by asking, “What in the world were those Kardashians thinking?”
Since I have never smoked, this is not a problem for me. But I feel very sorry for those who do aspire to this lofty goal. Not only do they have to quit smoking regular cigarettes, but now that pot is legal they are double doomed. Really, the only solution is to keep raising the taxes on cigarettes until the habit becomes a financial hardship and they are forced to resort to a life of crime. That will give them another resolution for next year: quit robbing banks which everybody knows is easier than kicking nicotine.
What are your resolutions? Have mastered these or any others? Please share!