Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Vent Column: Resolutions

DIGImmortal Photo: 365 Project &emdash; Day 80 12-31-09 Good Riddance 2009

Vent Column: Resolutions
Written by Rob Acocella

Wow! It's been a really long time since I've taken the time to write a Vent Column entry. Truth be told, I've changed a lot in the years since starting Paragon. It's been a decade of complete and constant change and evolution and one of the things I learned to do was not hold on to anger as much as I used to. That means that even at moments that I'd had great ideas to write about and venom to spit, if I'd waited on them for a more appropriate time to sit and write it out, the urge and feeling would dissolve and I would no longer feel the anger as intensely.

However, today's installment deals with something we see every single year at the same time: New Year Resolutions.

Every year at this time you hear people starting to profess what big new changes they're going to initiate right away as of the first of the new year. Well, I've got news for you, if you're waiting for the calendar to say the right number on it, then you're just looking for an excuse to put off those changes.

Nothing in my life that I've changed that has ever meant anything to me, ever had to be done on a certain date unless it required an appointment of some kind or relied on someone else's schedule to get initiated. When I decided to change the way I dealt with certain people, I didn't say "I'm going to do this on Monday!" and when I decided to go vegan for myself and for the animals that I loved, I didn't wait until the next grocery shopping trip, or the first of the month, or for the right time of day. When I decided to get back into the martial arts, I didn't wait until a few after my decision, I took the time to find a school that was right for me and I checked out the very next available class, and I've never looked back since. Anything that's important enough to change can and should be done immediately, otherwise you're just looking for an excuse to delay and/or back out of it at some point.

You want to work out more and eat more healthy? Why do you have to say so on December 26, and then wait a full week before actually making the change? Why can't you just decide right then and there that if it's important enough to you, you can do it right now? Opt for a salad rather than a burger for lunch and then just go from there? What difference does the calendar make? Are you suddenly going to have less cravings for junk food or be less lazy the day after binge drinking your sorrows of the past year away? Doubtful. If anything, alcohol consumption actually raises your cravings for junk food and actually inhibits your bodies ability to burn fat. Do you really think that gym membership is going to make a difference past February? The novelty of going to the gym will wear off real quick when you leave all sweaty and walk out into the frigid Winter air.

My favorite are the people that decide to change the way they deal with other people "I'm going to be nicer to my family and neighbors this year." Or "I'm going to be more compassionate to strangers and give money to the poor and go to church more." You need a new calendar to start doing that? You can't just decide right here and now that not being a dick to people is important enough to institute immediately? If that's the case then you're doomed for failure. You're either a dick or you aren't, and going to church regularly for a month or two, or giving some spare change to a panhandler on the subway won't make you less of a shitbag, if that's indeed your personality type. In fact, the very fact that you need to wait until the most opportune moment to make that personal change speaks volumes about your unwillingness to actually be a decent human being.

In a sense though, I do get it, everyone wants their "Last Hurrah!" Everyone wants to make a positive change right after indulging in their worst qualities one last time. I guess the positive change they plan on making needs to feel justified after bad behavior so they look like even more the model citizen. I've got news for you though, you're still a douchebag.

Here's to a new year, stop being dicks.

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