As one year ends and another begins, it’s traditional to pause and reflect on the successes and failures of the past 12 months, and set goals and ambitions for a bright, shiny future.
Many people fall into the trap of listing vague, unmeasurable aspirations shrouded in meaningless self-help babble, such as “I will only do things that make my soul sing,” or, to quote the woman I saw moving out of her trailer on COPS the other night, “I won’t do anything that blocks the sunlight of my spirit.”
Apart from using language that simultaneously makes me dry-heave and want to punch someone, these resolutions are impossible to keep. If we all only engaged in activities that made our “hearts soar,” approximately 93 per cent of us would be unemployed. And we’d all be throwing rocks at the smug seven per centers who genuinely derive pleasure and meaning from writing Ministerial talking points or treating sewage (possibly the same thing). We’d also be bloody hungry, as I find it something of a stretch to believe that everyone who works on the factory line is passionate about canning tomatoes, snap freezing peas or filling the extruder with Cheezel mix.
All the experts agree that rather than aspiring to impossible dreams that can only lead to disappointment when left unfulfilled, we should focus instead on a handful of realistic, achievable desires and then take concrete steps to make them happen. Far be it from me to ignore the experts, so here are my resolutions for 2013. Feel free to be inspired.
- I will only eat my own body weight in pizza on days when I am seriously hungover.
- I will only get seriously hungover when I have had too much to drink.
- I will accept that my body is a temple. The Temple of Doom.
- Speaking of which, I will not harass other people with unsolicited lifestyle tips. So I promise not to corner you at parties and regale you with tales of how you too could have a body like mine if only you ate more carbs, drank more beer and devoured more deep fried cheese, if you promise not to bore me with details of how I could look like you if I went to the gym, pumped weights for 46 hours a day and ate nothing but sweet potatoes.
- I will try and achieve a lifelong ambition and write a book. And then – look into my eyes, you are getting very sleepy, your eyes are getting heavier and heavier, follow the chain, follow the chain, now you’re on a beach – you will buy it. Pretty please?
- I will learn the name of the bloke who lives across the road. This will help conserve words and oxygen. So, for example, I will be able to say “that Brian really is an idiot,” rather than “you won’t believe what the rev-headed psychopath did this time – you know, the one on the other side of the street who burned all those tyre marks into the road and threw a hissy fit near his mailbox and then got busted by the Feds, the one who lives at number 21, no, not the dark haired one, the other one, I mean the one with his arm in a cast, not the one on crutches…etc etc.”
- I will do my best to advance the republican cause. In a year where members of a young, attractive royal couple are expecting their first baby, I realise this may not make me popular. But I’ve been watching Merlin, and comparisons between TV Camelot and the current system leave me unimpressed. When our ruling monarchs on the other side of the globe (go figure) start leading the charge into hand-to-hand combat, slaying trolls, battling evil sorceresses and upholding notions of truth, honour, valour and sacrifice, then I might be interested. Until that day, long live the republic!
- I will only watch movies at home on DVD, to avoid embarrassing myself and sobbing uncontrollably in public. I’m looking at you, Red Dog.
- I will be grateful for life’s simple pleasures. So up yours for making me weep like a baby, Red Dog, but thank you for Josh Lucas.
- I will try and learn how to say the word ‘infrastructure’ out loud without sounding like I have a brain injury.
- I will try not to be so rude next time my usually highly culinary-talented mother pretends it’s the Great Depression and decides that what an otherwise perfectly delicious bowl of pea and ham soup could really use is…leftover sultanas.
- I will win Lotto, lose 20 kilos, meet the man of my dreams and never be tormented by public service nightmares ever again. Oh wait, that’s right – this isn’t ‘The Secret.’
Anyway, I think that’s enough to keep me busy for now. Of course I also wish for peace on earth and goodwill to all men and women, and a world filled with more laughter, love, music, colour, compassion and joy – no punchline.
Happy New Year, everyone!