As some of you know, I abandoned the nuisance ritual of making New Year’s resolutions a few years ago because 1) I had a penchant for breaking many of them rather quickly; and 2) by sundown on the first day of the fresh year I realized I really didn’t give a rip about whether or not most of them came to fruition, so the list was tossed into the trash can. This has proven to be a viable stress reduction technique.
But this year a high school classmate coerced me into resuming the year-end ritual by offering to share his resolution accomplishment progress and success if I’d share mine with him. He felt that such a motivational strategy would keep us moving toward accomplishment of our important resolutions.
Initially, I refused his offer by reaffirming my premise of stress reduction. He quickly ramped up the arrangement by suggesting a minor $10 wager with the winner being the one who completed the greatest number of his resolutions prior to Dec. 31.
Our declarations wouldn’t be discussed beforehand; we’d exchange lists on the afternoon of Jan. 1 via email. I accepted his offer. Obviously, his memory was failing as he must have forgotten my assiduously serious personality in high school. Here’s my list of 10 resolutions for 2010.
1) Spend a large portion of the day using my computer, and then call my tech pal who routinely repairs my hardware/software screw ups;
2) Instill procrastination as an integral part of my life starting sometime soon, but almost assuredly before the end of the New Year;
3) Jettison my long-standing superstitions and scour the Internet for rare ones to replace them;
4) Begin using a dummy Bluetooth headset and talk to myself whenever I’m in public;
5) Wear sandals and white socks as often as possible just to get that look of “Why?!” from strangers;
6) Never vote for more than 10 percent of incumbent politicians during any election regardless of what level of bureaucracy the election involves;
7) Avoid airports. Special exceptions would be trips involving getting somewhere quickly because of an emergency situation, a short-fused opportunity for a once-in-a-lifetime winning cal to a local radio station, or from entering another contest presumed to be legitimate. Any free offer associated with a time share is automatically excluded;
8) Become even more reclusive waiting for opportunity to knock, ring the doorbell, arrive in a Special Delivery postal mail package, or appear as an e-mail;
9) Discontinue all medications having a list of more than 50 potential side effects, and especially those causing memory lapses that might be worse than the ones I’ve been experiencing for years;
10) Don’t be the first customer at a new restaurant, never go out to eat when feeling hungry and thirsty, and always have a discount coupon in hand;
11) Revert to semi-vegetarianism by eating leaner cuts of beef, and no breaded/fried chicken and fish–baked or broiled only;
12) Make napping a routine part of my day;
13) Make a monthly call to an offshore technology support center just to sustain my comprehension of English when delivered in a variety of foreign dialects and over a poor phone connection;
14) Purchase something at one of the deep discount stores that I don’t need, will open but not use, and then reseal and send as a “re-gifting” payback to one of my friends;
15) Persuade my friend who initiated this stupid challenge to forfeit and send me the $10 before the end of the new year.
With my refined capacity for accomplishing lots with effort, that crisp 10-dollar bill is practically in the mail.
Have a safe and Happy New Year, and may all of your resolutions come to fruition.