Saturday, December 31, 2011

What are you doing New Year's Eve?

Somewhere in the world, someone is already drinking champagne. Like, in New Jersey.

New Year's is fraught. All the commercials right now are for quitting smoking and losing weight, making more money and finally meeting that special someone. You should be thinner, and richer and younger, and adored. People make ridiculous resolutions and fail to keep them. And they should, because if everything was tempered by a cold dose of reality, then no one would ever try anything.

In middle school, my Italian pen pal, Valentina, told me that in Italy they believe if you do something on the first, you'll do that all year. It's a good idea to do something you love. Be with family. Eat good food. Read. Be in love. Wouldn't you believe anything a girl named Valentina told you? I would.

In my nervous brain I have translated that to whatever I do on New Year's Day I will end up doing all year: arguing? check. Worrying? check. Not writing? check. Being too fat? check. Wrestling a giant pile of laundry? check.

I'm going to make ridiculous resolutions. I'm going to do everything I want on New Year's Day.

I will wrestle a giant pile of language.
I will get married.
I am going to write another novel.
I will sell the other novel.
I will be a rock star.
Better yet, I will marry a rock star. We will both be rock stars.
I'm going to do better in school.
I'm going to have children.
I will lose 30 pounds.
I will quit drinking.
I will start drinking with more purpose and gusto.
Eat more chocolate.
Kiss more people. Really? Let's bring back the social kiss, and replace the stupid handshake.
I'm going to exercise more and go to bed earlier and breathe more and be outside and look at clouds and stars and trees and plant flowers and walk the dog.
I'm going to stay up later and love the darkness and write poems at midnight and sleep til noon.
I will spend less time worrying.
I will worry about the right things.
I'll get a job.
I'll quit my job.
I'll get organized and then learn to love and value chaos, the chaos that is every day no matter who you are. Everyone has it. Everyone's is different, which makes them all the same. You are not a unique snowflake of chaos. You are just human.
Have something to fall back on.
And then burn the bridge to that thing you can fall back on.

In the meantime, I'll worry about every step I take tomorrow, every word I read and write and every sip of wine or bite of chocolate. I'm going to kiss one more person than I did the day before. I will make snowflakes out of people. And catch them on my tongue.

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