Not-So New Year’s Resolutions (Actually More Like Suggestions)

New Year’s resolutions are destined to never be accomplished. It’s the contrived nature of the whole thing. “Let us begin doing the things we failed to do last year starting on this arbitrary day invented by our civilization. Yippee-ki-yay, mofos. We can do it!”

Happy Belated New Years

Yes, the idea of getting things done, trying new things, becoming a new you – they’re all made with good intentions (unless you’re a mentally unbalanced individual with plans to beat your own serial murder spree record). Yeah, we want to lose weight, go somewhere exotic, quit smoking, and change the world, etc., etc. But do we really want to? No, I mean do we really, really want to? Let’s be serious. You have a few extra pounds, but you love food (I know I do). You’re sick of your daily routine, but watching reruns of Friends on your comfy couch with a cup of earl grey is damn cozy. You want to quit smoking, but you’ve been doing it for 20 years already – why stop now? And you want to change the world, but the world is a damn large place. 

There are always excuses, which is why I was never keen on making new year’s resolutions for myself. I knew they would fail. I knew this because I didn’t really have my heart set on any of them. Plus, New Year’s is a terrible time to be thinking about what you want to do. Just live. Just be. Live and be in the present during New Year’s celebrations. Drink and love and screw around. If you are going to celebrate this arbitrary day, actually celebrate it! There is no difference between January 1st and any other day on our calendars. It’s just 2013. (Suck it, Mayan apocalypse freaks). We are time-obsessed. Yes, it’s good to think about changing. The next step is wanting to change. And then there is actually making the change. So don’t worry; be happy.

I’ve made a lazy list of things that I’ll (maybe) get around to this year (or next year). Who cares if I actually get them done? I don’t. We should never have to do anything we don’t want to do. So here are some things I might want to do before I kick the bucket (or not):

  • Actually get around to reading the books I buy. The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins, Cows, Pigs, Wars, and Witches: The Riddles of Culture by Marvin Harris, and The Etymologicon by Mark Forsyth are stacked on my desk. And those were just the books that were delivered last week. I need an intervention. Or I just need to read them. If only there were more hours in the day. (Hey, that reminds me of a new Mitch Albom book I saw at the bookstore the other day. Maybe I’ll get it. Maybe.)
  • Create a new word – not just open my mouth and spew out some vowels, consonants, and throw in a diphthong for the hell of it. Anyone remember that young adult book Frindle by Andrew Clements? It’s basically about a kid who makes up a new word for a pen: frindle. He sticks it to the man (or the woman – I think it was his cantankerous female teacher) by using the word in assignments. At the end, his teacher has come to respect the kid and sends him a dictionary with the newly added “frindle” in it. Yeah, kinda’ cheesy, but neologism sounds fun! So I want to establish a new word – and I’d like anyone reading to help. I’ll be posting about this new word soon and I’d love for it to gain some legitimacy… But that’s for another post. Moving on-
  • Play a song other than “Hey There, Delilah” on guitar. I started playing guitar, say, about 3 or 4 years ago. My practicing started out strong and then I plateaued, which I know is natural, but I also found it discouraging. So the only song I can play on that thing with anything approaching good skill is that Plain White T’s song from the radio a few years ago.
  • Figure out what the heck I want to do with my life. Just kidding. Screw it.

There you have it, a not-so New Year’s resolution suggestion list. Well, I feel accomplished today. Now to go back to watching Grumpy Cat videos.

What are your opinions on New Year’s Resolutions? Got any good ones? Bad ones?

Advertisements

Vacational Cerebral Atrophy (A.K.A. Getting Dumber over the Summer)

20110630-000744.jpg

Anywhere from 2 weeks ago to 2 months ago, students across the U.S. of A. were released from their annual 10 month sentence of incarceration. No more confinement with scheduled “outside” hours. No more having to ask to go to the bathroom (and getting coldly rejected). No more trips to the warden in the detentional hall. And definitely no more menial labor for “our benefit.” Because guess what? It’s summertime, baby.

It is summertime! Well, in school terms, it’s summertime. The summer solstice occurs around June 20th, so technically, it’s still spring when most schools get out. But that’s not important. What is important is the fact that – unless you’re going to summer school – there is no freaking school for 3 months. Heck. Yes.

I am Superman

And develop superhuman flying abilities

As soon as the final bell rings, you and your peers break through the rusty prison – I mean school – doors, rip off your shirts/pants and unleash a victorious warcry signalling your survival of yet another school year. Bring on the fun and the laziness! Yeah, everyone go to my house. I’ll provide the music – you bring the booze and he’ll bring the textbooks – to burn! (Of course you wouldn’t do this because you’re more responsible than that. Yeah.)

So for the next 3 months, the words “homework,” “study,” “set alarm clock,” “all-nighter,” and all their associations will automagically vanish from your vocabulary. You will purge your system physically and mentally of all mention of the mandatory institution that is public education and you will let yourself go in every way possible to make up for the past 10 months of academic brain-frying. Also, you’re trying to get a head start for next year because hey, you are a proactive fellow with goals and priorities and all that good stuff.

If you’re really lucky, you’ll even forget how to read and write! Suck that, Education System. All that work teaching me for nothin’! Aint it awsum!!!1 These next three months will be cycling between partying, screwing up my sleeping schedule, getting a tan from the sun, getting a tan from my computer screen, and wasting all the time in the world (three months’ time).

One of my high school teachers: Why don’t you utilize [he’s the kind of guy that says “utilize” instead of just plain “use”] your summer break to improve yourself and further your education?

Random Student: Dude, why would I wanna’ do that?

High School Teacher: Students always complain they don’t have enough time, when they are the ones that have plenty of time. Make yourself a more valuable person. Build yourself for success.

Random Student: … Sounds like work.

High School Teacher: *In-your-soul-and-inner-thoughts-stare* Just go kick some academic butt.

Huh? You mean, actually do… meaningful stuff over summer break?… Is that even legal? What about having fun and purging all traces of school from our systems? What? Pshaw, the future is the future – it ain’t here yet, so I don’t have to worry about it. So buck off, Old Timer.

Whatchoo Talkin' 'Bout, Willis?

Caption not needed

To the point of this entry: summer doesn’t have to be a waste of time. You don’t have to let yourself struggle your first week of school just because you forgot everything you ever learned and thus have to waste the first month of the next school year refreshing lessons from the first grade. Do I sound like a party-pooping old fart? Unfortunately, I kind of do.

Regardless, just make a list of things you want to accomplish or try or just plain do this summer. Give yourself a goal. A lot can be done in three months: travelling to Cambodia, learning a language, developing a new mathematical theorem applicable to quantum physics. Lots can be done! So don’t just sit and regret not doing things. (Conversely, don’t do things that you’ll regret doing – but I don’t want to get too old-fart-preachy.)

Here are some things you can do to make the most of your summer (Hint: Links provided for clarification. Click on them.):


So get out there and reach your potential! Explore the unexplored! Achieve the unachieved! Unleash the… leashed…

Just go!

Images courtesy of Stock.Xchng and www.hogshaven.com