Satire Non-Fiction posted January 5, 2012

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You Say You Want a Resolution

by another jim

Like millions of others of my species, I awoke on the first day of January drenched in optimism and eager to embrace 2012. I was clearly ready to tackle the improbable, accomplish the impossible, and—

Wait a minute. That wasn't me. That was my next-door neighbor, Lou Ann, still drunk as a skunk from some holiday party she'd attended the night before. And really, what the hell did she know? She woke up next to someone else's husband, for God's sake—a sure way to skew your vision of what the New Year has in store for you.

Actually, I woke up that morning drenched in sweat, fresh from a dream (nightmare?) where I was being chased by an angry band of blond wives of Republican presidential candidates. They were carrying these signs that read, "We Are the 1%" and "Ask Me About My Christian Values" and "Let's Put the 'White' Back in 'White House.'" It was horrible! I remember saying to myself, "This is horrible!" I hadn't been that frightened since watching Rob Kardashian on Dancing with the Stars and thinking, you know, this dork could actually win this thing.

My brain simply could not shake off the terror of being pursued by a half-dozen life-sized retro-haired Barbie Dolls with sticks up their butts and Botox running through their veins. So no, I didn't climb out of bed in the best of spirits that day. Compounding my misery was the knowledge that with every New Year's Day comes that inevitable list of inane New Year's resolutions. You know what I'm talking about: I will read more books this year. I will finish my first novel by June. I will stop peeping into my neighbor's bedroom window with binoculars. Blah. Blah. Blah.

We always seem to set these ridiculous goals for ourselves, don't we? Things like shedding some astronomical number of pounds, or seeing every movie that's been nominated this year for an Academy Award, or trading in that gas guzzler and buying an Italian motor scooter. Sure, we all make those kinds of promises to ourselves—unless you're Amish, because they don't use bathroom scales, they don't watch movies, and they don't drive cars or motor scooters...although their buggies are pretty economical, I'll wager.

Anyway, this year I've decided to try something a little different, because I'm sick to death of trying to achieve some silly goals that accomplish nothing of substance. Don't get me wrong: I have nothing against achieving things; in fact, I'll admit it's my continual failure to achieve anything that's got me so worked up. So unlike in previous years, when my goals were lofty but unrealistic, my list of so-called resolutions for 2012 will be a little less lofty but utterly attainable—much like those dumbed-down standardized tests that our kids take at school. (Which of our Presidents is memorialized by the Washington Monument? Seriously?)

With those thoughts in mind, then, here's my new and improved—and might I add achievable—list of New Year's resolutions:

1. Lose one pound of body weight for every two pounds gained.

2. Stop being such a cheapskate. Double the amount I put in the collection basket at church.

3. Stop being such a self-righteous holy roller. Reduce my church attendance by one-half.

4. Don't let little things the wife does annoy me.

5. Learn to distinguish poison mushrooms from non-poisonous varieties.

6. Try out some new recipes, e.g., a nice mushroom soufflé.

7. Follow boss's lead and work harder, not smarter. (He makes it look easy...but that's why he's the boss, right?)

8. Cut back on alcohol consumption, dammit! And while I'm at it, quit smoking, dammit!

9. Learn some new swear words, dammit!

10. Run with scissors. Make sure they're pointed away from me and toward someone I don't like.

11. Remember the poor in my prayers by thanking God for all the money I've got.

12. Aspire to become part of the 1%!

13. Look into registering as a Republican this year. Or a Conservative. Or both.

14. Exercise more. Start by walking, not driving to the corner pub.

15. Travel more (see above).

16. Get in the spirit, dammit, and start Christmas shopping earlier this year.

17. Buy Easter Peeps, fireworks, and Halloween candy at pre-Christmas sales and give as gifts while listening to carols on the radio during Thanksgiving dinner in August.

18. Spend a lot more time on FanStory.

19. Find a decent divorce lawyer.

20. Finish numbering the pages of my novel. I can always fill up the pages with words next year.

And although it's not on my list, I intend to trade in my cheap binoculars for a world-class telescope.

Happy New Year!


All in good fun! And if I can convince my lovely wife of that, she just might let me back in the house...
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