Here’s a riddle for you.
When does Friday not seem like a Friday but it’s really a Friday but when someone tries to convince you that it’s not really Friday when it really is the Friday in question, when does it…you know…do that?
The answer of course should keep you busier than a woodchuck doing cartwheels on the top of an SUV going forty in the slow lane of a freeway while I, instead, present to you the very last “Words For Your Enjoyment” of 2005 — where you provide the idea, and I provide the elbow grease.
For this fifty-second WFYE of 2005, it was only fitting that the suggestion come from WFME long-time reader Stephen who writes: “My new year’s resolution is to be more like Pauly. No, that doesn’t mean more post titles like “I’m the guy who screws up your check balancing” or “Today’s prognosis on flip-flops.” It means that I’m going to write much more often… So I ask (as I’m sure that others will as well) for tomorrow’s WFYE, “What are your New Year’s Resolutions?”
Great question, Steve.
But instead of boring everyone with the same post that will show up on thousands upon thousands of blogs today and tomorrow (“My New Year’s Resolutions, Parts IV through XXXXXVI”) I would, instead, rather tell you what my New Year’s Dissolutions are. What things I will kill or remove from the equation from my life. The things that I will cease doing for my health, my sanity and the peace of the entire world.
First and foremost, I will stop asking supermarket checkers who look pissed how long until they’re off.
Seemingly, I always thought that it was my goal to make unhappy people happy but I can’t ever keep the happiness going after the initial question. I get the conversation going and then said supermarket checker is expecting something witty or even encouraging and I can never find the words to do it. For example:
Me: “Long day?”
Supermarket Checker: “Huh, yeah.”
Me: “Aw. Well, when do you get off?”
Supermarket Checker: “In like eight hours.”
[Looooong pause. Shoot. Eight hours, huh?]
Me: “Um… Can you not put that gum in the bag? I’d like to chew it now.”
I mean, really. What do you say to someone after hearing that they’re going away to prison for five years? What do you tell someone after asking them how they’re doing and they say they’ve just contracted a painful and un-treatable disease? What do you tell the woman at the checkstand after finding out she’s got eight more hours in her supermarket hell?
In addition to the ceasing of making conversation with supermarket checkers, I will also stop chewing an entire pack of gum or an entire box of those chewy mints in five minutes flat. I will no longer treat mints and gum as entrees of a meal that does not exist. I will refrain from asking people who wear t-shirts with single-fonted words on the front (bitch, stud, atari, et al) what said words mean or represent. I will stop laughing at the uncomfortable sad parts in movies, stop asking people with fake legs if they’ve ever used them to hit someone over the head in robbery/pickpocketing situations and I will definitely stop sorting the marshmallows out of the Lucky Charms for my “master box of marshmallow only Lucky Charms” that seemingly will never come to be.
I will stop trying to convince people to buy TiVo.
Because really – who am I to convince you that you need to buy a recording device. When I hear myself sell people on the features that this amazing device that has been handed down by E.T.’s from outer space, I almost can’t believe what I’m saying:
“So you hook this thing up to your TV… And then when you’re gone you set it up to record shows so you CAN WATCH TV WHENEVER YOU WANT! You can actually record a show at one point, then watch it at a totally different time!!!! It’s amazing!”
Isn’t that called a VCR?
I will stop saying “jinx” when me and another person say the same word at the same time because as adults you can’t really hit the other person in the arm when you say “jinx” like we all used to do as kids. I’ve tried it once during a conference call/meeting and it didn’t go over too well.
I will refrain from asking people if they would ever want to live in the window of a Crate & Barrel store for one month straight (sleeping, showering, dressing, eating, reading) for a monetary sum because it is both unrealistic, never going to happen, and it is my trademark question that is getting extremely old.
And, oh boy, I am so going to stop saying hello to people in my neighborhood that I’ve never met in an attempt to be that friendly neighborhood guy and then never following up my hello with anything else. I mean, sure, I say hello and good morning and you say hello and good morning and then we smile and then walk right past each other and never say anything else. I do not know who you are, where you live and why I said hello in the first place and this practice must be dissoluted immediately.
I will no longer eat olives by the dozen. I will no longer wear UGG shoes with socks. I will stop singing the theme song to The O.C. and then tell people that I went to college there, which seemingly must make it okay for singing that song. I will chew with my mouth closed for the first time in 30+ years and then make sure to point out when you’re chewing with your mouth open since I’m so cultured that I chew with my mouth closed. I will scream every time I see the trailer for that stupid Heath Ledger movie, Cassanova, because it is worse than any painful torture I could ever imagine:
“M’lady will take the animal, but the pig stays outside…” Ha, ha, ha, ha, B*L*A*M!
In removing such actions and practices from my life in 2006 I will be forced to fill my life with other exciting new practices. I will be pushed into a corner much like the rattlesnake of the Gobe Desert is often pushed into a corner and must fight back with a fervor never before seen. I will take take take and then give give give back a whole new slew of things.
But calling out and revealing those practices (like learning to understand the differences between women’s black strappy shoes – which all look the same to me and starting to put empty milk containers in the garbage instead of the fridge) would simply do us all a disservice, especially me… For then what will I write a year from now, when I must (once again) reveal which ridiculous actions I have practiced in 2006 only to remove them in preparation of 2007? It would be the wrong thing to do to the readers, the world and me.
So instead I will simply stand by these New Year’s Dissolutions and stick to them.
For at least today.