As a rule, I do not cotton to "new year's resolutions." I mean, January 1 or 2 is as a good a time as any to start something new, but why the pressure as you hang a new calendar on the wall?
Additionally, most resolutions are "good for you," something a person hasn't started for one "good" reason or another — a reason that can as easily color the person's future as it did her/his past "future."
Finally, most resolutions are a little pie-in-the-sky. Nothing short of a taffy pull will make me 5-foot-8, and even Miss America Wannabees don't weigh what their bios claim. If I want to look like someone else who's tall and svelte, I can resolute all I want — and when I don't achieve it, I can simply chalk it up to my inability to keep a resolution, then settle back on the couch with Cisco and a bag of Cheetos. Oh, well, it was just a New Year's resolution.
Between hype and ambivalence, I think it's safe to say a resolution is easily doomed, doomed, doomed.
Therefore, I'll give the whole resolution thing a shot. (I always root for the underdog.)
The first thing I'll do is read more. In 2009, I read only 40 books. At that rate, I'll never finish everything in my library — and I've got some good books waiting for me. If I don't work on it, I'll never get to all of the great tomes I eye every day. (Another advantage of the printed book: perusing their spines as they line the library.)
The second thing I want to do is write more letters. I love writing about everything and nothing in a conversation on the page, and the occasional non sequitur amuses me. I like Facebook and Twitter, but a letter is like a surprise gift. I would use homemade stationery for the letters I sent to my grandmother. (As her eyesight deteriorated, I simply used larger fonts.) Send me your address and we can start a written correspondence. I'd like that.
David's and my new iPod will help with another resolution: to listen to music more. We have hundreds of CDs between us, but rarely have we play them because the 5-disc player required selection, loading, unloading and more selection. With the mega-iPod, now all of our music is available to play with a few clicks of a dial. Set it on "shuffle," and we hear a little of everything (and subject the family to "deep in the vault" songs, like Jingle Cats — go ahead, listen to a snippet or two).
While I am at it, I want to listen to more music. Every time I climb into the car with Nikki, I hear her music. It hearkens back to the music I listened to once, the lively, culturally pertinent pop music of my youth. I loved that, and some of today's pop music gets me listening (and, yes, dancing in my car seat). I need to listen to more music — which means I need to find a good pop radio station. (I've heard classic rock all my life, so I'm looking for something new.) I'll take suggestions: and remember, the Internet makes most radio stations within our reach.
I want to run faster. I am not a snail, but I know I could be better. I might not get back to my high school heyday of a 7-minute mile (hey, don't laugh! I won some exciting races with that speed!), but I'd like to take less time doing what I do. I'm sure there are ways to do that, like just moving my feet faster, but we'll see.
These ideas will keep me busy for now. Plus, if I actually achieve one or two of them, I have a chance of trying the whole "resolution" thing again.
A few people at Borders have announced their resolutions. What are yours?