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jonathan carroll   New Year's Resolutions  
 
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  Let's face it, New Year's resolutions are venomous things. You make them, you break them, you feel lousy, you forget them. But if your bent is masochism and you insist, I recommend reasonable things that are not hard to accomplish: I resolve not to drink furniture polish. I resolve to give away all my patent leather. I resolve to pet as many dogs this year as will permit me.

I once resolved to give up cigarettes but then realized they were one of my oldest friends and as one grows older, we need all the friends we can get so forget that. Likewise drinking. I have never liked to drink so I don't, but I have refused to give it up on repeated occasions for a New Year's resolution because how do I know -- one day it might come in handy and then where would I be? You have to be careful about these things -- life is long and pleasure is short and too often life wins.

If a gun were pointed at my head and the man in the black cape announced "Resolve or die!" I would grudgingly say, "This year I will try to be kinder, more patient and as generous as a baby with a cookie."

The problem with resolutions is most of us know ourselves pretty well and know if we ain't doing it now, we probably won't start on January 1st. Best of all I guess is to start in immediately but make no promises to yourself or anyone else. Certainly not out loud. We can make lists and resolutions all day long but the doing is what matters and that can start any day.
 
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Copyright © 1997 Jonathan Carroll.