Resolved: Take Another Letter

2 Jan

Last year, I noted that I don’t really make New Year’s resolutions. This year, I decided they weren’t such a bad thing after all. My quibble with NYRs isn’t that I fear commitment, but that one can—and probably should—resolve to improve oneself throughout the year. If the Jews, the Muslims, the Chinese and the Europeans can’t agree on when each year actually begins, does it really matter when you make your resolutions? Plus, I needed fodder for my Naperville Patch column.

So, I made a resolution and made my family resolve as well. My husband resolved to eat carrot sticks. My daughter resolved to put away her clothes every night. I am pretty sure she thinks putting them in the laundry hamper counts. My son resolved to do his Chinese homework. Actually, he was pretty squishy about it, noting that he couldn’t promise promise because you never know what might happen and “really, Mom, I have ADHD, so the best I can do is try.” I was going to say that Justin Timberlake and Michael Phelps both have ADHD, but I have no idea if they did their Chinese homework.

I would tell you what my resolution is, but I can’t remember it.

So, having forgotten my resolution, I am establishing a tradition with my second annual letter to people who’ve annoyed the crap out of me in the past year.

To the “Merry Christmas” cranks: I got the “Xmas” thing and I agreed with you. Definitely, let’s put the “Christ” back in there. But, do we have to keep reminding you to have a merry Christmas? Will you really forget to have fun on December 25 unless you are reminded multiple times in the four weeks preceding?

To the prayer people: Kids can pray in school. Honestly. I’m pretty sure they can cross themselves before hand, too. They just can’t be made to pray. Frankly, I’m thinking a fervent personal prayer has a lot more meaning than a rote recital of a generic devotion lead by the school principal, but that’s just me.

To the Pledge people: Yup. Kids can say the Pledge of Allegiance, too. Happens every morning in schools all over the United States with exceptions I am too uninterested to research. See above comment about rote recital.

To my husband: there is a reason office parties are called office parties. They are for people in your office. They are not for people who live 38 miles away and must drive through rush hour to get to them. I like the people you work with and am pleased that my frustration at driving two freaking hours to see them gave them such pleasure. Next year, they can freaking well find someone else to freaking laugh about. Except your boss. He can laugh at me all he wants.

To my children: I do not put vegetables in your food as a test of your manual dexterity. I swear they are edible.

To the man—it must be a man—who designed the white porcelain sink: every day my sink sees grease, coffee grinds and tiny bits of vegetable my children refused to eat. Please come over and tell me how to clean it without using toxins.

To the biodegradable, compostable everything people: stop telling me how wonderful your biodegradable plastic bag and compostable carryout container are. Both of them are going in the trash until we’ve got municipal waste composting facilities.

To the woman who wondered if the pockets on her jeans made her butt look big: yes.

To the Boomer-hating generations that followed mine: who do you think put organic food in your mouth, saved for your college education and made it ok for moms to work? We gave you Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, and Led Zeppelin. Now will you get off our backs and go make up for John Mayer and that Chocolate Rain guy?

Speaking of Bill Gates. . .

To the people circulating his “Rules”: he didn’t write them. Charles Sykes wrote them. It is an amusing list full of wit and wisdom. Let’s give Mr. Sykes credit.

To the people who insist on using less when they mean fewer: I have less and less patience with you. Let’s go over this again: if you can count the things, you have fewer; if you cannot count them, you have less. Let’s suppose I made many cookies for Christmas and that they were delicious. At the same time, let’s suppose that I pulled a calf muscle, which hampered my ability to run. So, I ate more cookies and ran less. I do not say I ran fewer over winter break. That sounds ridiculous, doesn’t it? Next year, I will make fewer cookies and run more. Right now, I will go throw away all of the cookies so that fewer will go into my body and I will have less weight to lose.

To myself: is it really necessary to call yourself an idiot when you forget something, lazy when you take a break or mean when you curse the cat? People your age forget things all the time, especially things like where they put their glasses. Unless you’re going to get one of those granny-looking glasses leashes, suck it up. Lazy? Even your son, who never compliments you on anything, says you’re the opposite of lazy. The cat? Ok, you’re mean to the cat, but he deserves it.

So, I guess I’ll resolve to be kinder to myself. I’ll make fewer cookies and try to be less annoyed by people. I’ll let go of the fantasy that my children will one day love vegetables and, given a year of recovery, might even consider going to my husband’s office party.

Thank you for your support. It’s been a terrific year for my blogging adventure. May the cosmos be kind to us all this year.

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11 Responses to “Resolved: Take Another Letter”

  1. bobbi January 2, 2012 at 3:39 pm #

    loved this post. and love you too!

  2. Rayme Wells @ A Clean Surface January 2, 2012 at 5:53 pm #

    I seriously doubt that Justin Timberlake did his Chinese homework.

  3. SueMarue January 2, 2012 at 6:25 pm #

    Yes, it’s best that you let go of the vegetable fantasy. I fooled myself into thinking my oldest daughter enjoyed the veggies I made her eat. She came home from college one day refusing to eat them anymore. She only tolerated them for me and now that she’s an adult, she will not eat them. Sigh.

  4. the waiting January 3, 2012 at 11:35 am #

    I weep for the coming generation if the Chocolate Rain guy ever becomes influential! Awesome post and happy 2012!

  5. rsmithing January 4, 2012 at 11:57 am #

    Carrot sticks are awesome. I discovered the goodness of baby carrot sticks at holiday parties one December and have been hooked since. I also enjoy the irony of getting hooked on a healthy food in the season of the year least associated with such. Great post!

    • jmlindy422 January 4, 2012 at 12:09 pm #

      I and my family disagree about how carrots should be eaten. I favor cooked; they like their carrots raw. I think potatoes are the only vegetable we unanimously endorse. Thanks for the kind words.

  6. Her January 4, 2012 at 3:41 pm #

    Great entry! Gave me a good giggle

    • jmlindy422 January 4, 2012 at 3:48 pm #

      Thanks! I have a very good time writing my annual rant.

  7. philosophermouseofthehedge January 11, 2012 at 1:18 pm #

    Just hilarious – and soooo true. Thanks for saying what many of us are thinking. (Now do be gentle with yourself in 2012 – you’re just too much of a treasure to lose)

    • jmlindy422 January 11, 2012 at 2:49 pm #

      Aw. That’s so sweet. Really. And needed during a down week. Thanks.

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