The holidays are once again upon us, and nothing spells holiday cheer like compiling lists… especially lists of sudden, drastic self-improvements.
Why else would so many people make resolutions this time of year? Certainly not because they’re effective — statistics show while half of all Americans make New Year’s resolutions of some type, 92 percent of us ultimately fail to keep them.
Well, that’s the thing about resolutions: in one year, out the other.
Of course, there are ways to improve our odds, and not just by making super easy resolutions like, say, more casual punning (see above).
Experts generally agree the most effective strategies involve making resolutions specific, public and enticing to others.
To that end, I present my annual list of New Year’s resolutions for Juneau, or, as I like to call them, ’Neau Year’s Resolutions.
Fellow Juneauites — or is it, “Juneauans”?; “Juneau-Americans”? — in 2017, let us all resolve to:
Recycle. And I mean really recycle, not just filling up old totes with bottles and cans and stacking them on the side of the house under a giant blue tarp.
Fix that cracked windshield. You know you’ve got one.
Fix that dented fender. Ditto.
Change into fresh Carhartts before sitting down to dinner if we’ve just been filleting fish. Or, breaking down any type of animal carcass, really.
Lobby CBJ to change our name from “Juneau” to “Ju-YES!” (Similarly, I think Pakistan should rename its capital city from “Islamabad” to “Islama-GOOD!”)
Put the snow tires on our vehicles already! And not just to turn our wives in the boudoir… although, I’d I’ll admit, that can certainly break the ice. Washing all the dishes and putting the kids to bed by yourself — those moves also prove quite effective.
Work together to develop innovative, sustainable solutions for our financial future.
You know what, on second thought, let’s just complain a bunch without offering any viable alternatives.
Be patient while: experiencing a “mechanical” in Ketchikan; waiting for it to snow; waiting for it to stop snowing; explaining to outsiders (yet again) that in Alaska, it’s darker in the winter and lighter in the summer, just like everywhere else in the Northern Hemisphere; trying to find a tomato that’s ripe the day you need it — WITHOUT being either a gushy mess or still needing a solid week in a paper bag and, perhaps most importantly, skiing with your significant other, who blatantly isn’t as good as you. We’re trying our hardest. Not everyone’s a former college athlete.
Stop using the phrase “FML.” Very rarely are our L’s truly F’d. More like, minorly-inconvenienced (e.g. the inability to find a ripe tomato). Feel free to use MIML as much as you like.
Stop parking in the fire lane. For a town so physically fit, a lot of us sure do seem unwilling to walk a few hundred feet to the nearest legal space.
Stop letting our kids watch so much TV, mostly by giving them their own iPads.
Talk more with our kids, mostly by texting them on their new iPads.
Less quinoa, more tabouli. And can we please bring back couscous?
Start the New Year fresh and truly leave 2016 behind by foreswearing the following: Donald Trump; glitter beards — and, while we’re at it, man-buns; Pokemon Go — and while we’re at it, Hatchimals; law-breaking competitive swimmers; emojis; fake news; real news; budgetary shortfalls; selfies; Brussels sprouts; baselessly threatening to move to Canada; writing long political screeds on Facebook and can we please be done with Caitlyn Jenner?
Launch an inquiry into why that Panda Express they promised last year never opened. What’s a guy gotta do to get a little SweetFire Chicken® in this town?
While we’re at it, conduct a probe regarding Snoop Dogg’s promise, three Septembers ago, now, to play a concert in Alaska if we passed Ballot Measure 2. We lived up to our end of the deal. The retail shops are open now, and everything. Where’s Snoop?
Take down the Christmas lights sometime before Memorial Day.
Get more exercise, or at least watch more skiing movies.
Do more public service… or at least “like” public service on Facebook.
Stop referring to “owies” as “boo-boos.” While we’re on the subject, “bum” is the new “tushy.” However, “pee-pee” is still “pee-pee” and “poo-poo” is still “poo-poo.” You don’t mess with the classics.
Resist the temptation to buy the double-Nutella every time we shop at Costco. Okay, fine, every other time. Every third time. Forget it.
Take everything in life a whole lot less seriously — except waterproofing. Better remain vigilant about that.
Or, at least resolve to.
• Geoff Kirsch is a Juneau-based writer and humorist, now also offering one-on-one writing coaching and editing in fiction, non-fiction, memoir and humor. All levels welcome. For more info and special holiday pricing email firstname.lastname@example.org.