Cognitive psych! Or, That's the way it goes, I guess

I'm pretty sure it's not just nostalgia talking when I say, some things were better then.

But now that we've gotten the PM Dawn out of the way, I feel a fresh wave of mild confessionalism coming. A post-holiday dose of Richard Ford-ified conventional wisdom.

Od's blood, guys. Happy fucking New Year. I fucking hate New Years. Fuck you.

The buildup and comedown of the holidays is always the worst. On top of Mike Huckabee urging us to think of Jesus and how you and your family can never live up to the ideal of the suburban American sublime and everybody else seems to be all Miracle on Elm Street and what's wrong with you, which is by now de rigueur, it's also the time of year in which the worst stuff happens. For example: I'm getting a zit in my nose. If you think that would happen in July, then fuck you.

I've got no resolutions. If Beam were as good as Jack, it would have no reason to exist. We need that $13 bottle just as much as we need that $23. I don't operate in terms of injunctions. Thou shalt not! I'm a newer model. I run on shame, the world's greatest renewable resource. I don't have New Year's resolutions. I have New Year's trepidations.

1. I should develop a work ethic.
2. I should keep a clean house.
3. I should do yoga... or something. I should do something.
4. I shouldn't eat animals.
5. I shouldn't be such an asshole all the time.
6. I should volunteer.
7. I should make sure to recycle recyclables.
8. I should take pride in my work.
9. I should write something that’s better than the things I write.
10. I should try harder to be better than I am.
11. I should suck it up.
12. I wish I were funnier. I should be funnier.
13. I should be more serious.
14. I should be interested in more things.
15. I should stop stealing the internet.
16. I should get more money so I can afford the internet.
17. I shouldn't worry so much about money, or about anything, really.
18. I should stop telling myself what I should do, and I should do something.
19. I shouldn't be so negative.
20. I shouldn't be so lazy. No no no!
21. I should be happy. I should do all the things that I need to do to make me happy.
22. I should own the things about myself that I don't like and can't change. People like it when you own your flaws.
23. I shouldn’t worry so much about what people think of me.
24. People should like me more.
25. I ought to do something about all these things right now. Go!

Go, I said!

But that's ok. Because resolutions don't work. People get their resolutions and they say Goddamnit, this is getting done this year. And then they forget about them until they find the list next year, right after they've finished making the same list again. But trepidations don't flit and fly like this. They're not as majestic, but they're far more loyal. The trick is -- the trick I've been learning slowly slowly slowly for the last 24 years -- the trick is not to let them shout you down. They're like your children. Either the best or the worst thing that ever happened to you.

So fuck you, New Year. I'll see you next year. And I'll be in a better place than I was this year. Remember me last year? You won't catch me like that again. Game on, New Year. We'll see who laughs last when I die smiling on the hottest day of the summer with ice in my drink and a whole life behind me. Huzzah!

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