My New Year’s anti-resolutions

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A few days ago, during one of those rare occasions when our whole family was together and my three semi-grown daughters weren’t nursing an iPhone while wearing universe-canceling headphones, my wife posed probably the most oft-asked question this time of year: “Does anyone have any New Year’s resolutions?”

Although that conversation quickly took an off-ramp into a discussion of something earth-shattering like Taylor Swift’s armpits, it got me thinking about my own potential resolutions, or, in my case, “anti-resolutions.”

First, I am not resolving to worry about my weight or the general decomposition of my anatomy this year. Now, don’t get me wrong, I will continue to participate in some daily geriatric exercise-ish activities, and I will still attempt to avoid most foods that will kill me if ingested in satisfying quantities, but I’ve reconciled myself to the fact that I adore chips and salsa far too much to go on anything resembling a diet. Life is just too short to do without Tex-Mex.

Next, I am not resolving to be a “better person” in the new year. Again, this doesn’t mean I plan to be a bad person – or even a worse person than I have been. I mean, I will continue to do my best (with the good Lord’s help) to follow the Ten Commandments, the Golden Rule, state and federal law, my employee handbook, the Cub Scout Oath and most local ordinances.

But, at my age, I wonder if I haven’t reached my better-person “use by“ date. My pets seem to like me (especially at feeding time), my semi-grown daughters mostly tolerate my presence (also especially at feeding time), I have a couple of friends who will share a basket (or two, or three) of tortilla chips with me (and let me eat most of them) and my wife hasn’t left me (if she does, I’m going with her). If I can keep all of that going, I’m good – unless my wife tells me differently.

Next, I’m not resolving to spend time looking for things I lose this year. The older I get, the more I seem to lose stuff. In particular, I tend to lose one part/piece/component of something that comes in a pair. The other day, I lost one of my workout gloves. Since keeping my hands soft, smooth and supple is a priority, this really bothered me – until I realized that wearing just one workout glove sort of made me feel like the King of Pop at my local gym.

And speaking of the gym, I also like to wear a pair of knock-off AirPod earbuds while I’m pumping a very limited amount of iron. Of course, I recently lost one of my earbuds, and although I nearly resigned myself to putting up with the uninspiring pop drivel (other than Taylor Swift, of course) they play on the gym sound system, I soon found out that listening to Led Zeppelin’s “Whole Lotta Love” in left-ear mono is a new and exciting experience.

So there you have it – my anti-resolutions for 2024: no dieting, no self-improvement and no worrying that I look like Michael Jackson with a hearing aid when I exercise.

Happy New Year, and let me know if you’d like to join me for some chips and salsa!

Copyright 2023 Jase Graves distributed exclusively by Cagle Cartoons newspaper syndicate.

Graves is an award-winning humor columnist from East Texas. His columns have been featured in Texas Escapes magazine, The Shreveport Times, The Longview News Journal, and The Kilgore News Herald. Contact Graves at [email protected].

Jase Graves is an award-winning humor columnist from East Texas. His columns have been featured in Texas Escapes magazine, The Shreveport Times, The Longview News Journal, and The Kilgore News Herald. He is also a frequent contributor to The Erma Bombeck Writer's Workshop, which named him Writer of the Month for June of 2017, and he has served as a judge in the Erma Bombeck/Anna Lefler Humorist in Residence program.

The National Society of Newspaper Columnists says, "Whether he's breaking down the common types of yard sale denizens ('The Lingerer . . .she was here so long, I'll probably be able to claim her on my next tax return') or sharing cautionary tales of mattress shopping, Jason flays suburban life with a sharp wit. Shopping for his daughter's swimsuits, he wonders if he has 'strayed into the first aid section and . . .was looking at a new line of colorful ACE bandages.'"

Other than writing, his hobbies include berating the television when the Texas A&M Aggie football team is playing and sleeping as late as possible.