This is for me, mind you. Making calendar-based sincere declarations of intent to change something in your life might be fine and dandy for you. For me, only doing so on Jan. 1 means those things are less likely to get done.
Take, for instance, exercise. It’s one of the areas most chosen by humans for wholesale change at the beginning of a new year. I made the decision to begin working out back in July, and I’m now down about 15 pounds. If I had started that on Jan. 1 instead of late-July, it would have been easier to write off when something got in the way of going to the gym. But because I did it during the summer, when there is less on my plate, it became part of my routine, aking me less likely to be thrown off course.
Or maybe I’m concocting an explanation for the fact that I started doing something to make myself healthier and actually stuck with it for more than a month. Whether it’s real or imagined, I believe it.
It’s for this reason that I’ve begun looking for things I can resolve to do on Jan. 1 that, in the grand scheme of things, won’t matter if they don’t come to pass.
The first one involves Star Wars. You’ve been warned.
For those who haven’t heard, Disney recently made a deal with Lucanfilm, brainchild of Star Wars creator George Lucas, to purchase rights to everything Star Wars-ian and, in the near future, begin a new trilogy of films. Those movies would presumably pick up sometime after the end of Episode VI: Return of the Jedi.
I consider myself a Star Wars fan, which I consider to be much different from a Star Wars fanatic. I could not hold a long conversation with such fanatics, many of whom know or have themselves created back stories for aliens in the films who serve no other purpose than to stand around looking like aliens. Seriously. Next time you’ve got an hour to kill, go Google hunting and see what you find. It’s amazing.
I’m among those fans who were disappointed in the prequel trilogy that began back in 1999, those films that reeked of Lucas screaming, “Hey! Look what I can do with these cool computer graphics!”
The bigger problem here, however, is how my son will be introduced to the Star Wars film world. If he’s anything like me and his mother, he’ll be interested in them. And, of course, the fact that he loves the new Star Wars-themed Angry Birds game backs this up.
I find myself wondering which film Brody needs to see first. Do we start with Episode IV: A New Hope, the one I and everyone else started with? Do we start him with the prequel trilogy in the name of continuity, or do we bypass them altogether because they’re so terrible? Again, if he’s anything like me, he might watch the original films first, then feel like he has to see the prequels and learn of their awfulness anyway.
Which way is better? Because it’s obvious that not watching the films is not an option.
Again, these are the kind of decisions that don’t really matter. It’s not like making a pledge to lose 10 pounds in three months, only to catch a mild cold after a week and use that as an excuse to stay on the couch. I know all about that one.
There are other New Year’s decisions I’ve made and not seen through – seeing a St. Louis Cardinals game at Wrigley Field in Chicago or a Cowboys game in Dallas. Those are things I actually want to do and actually require some planning, but I won’t think about them before February for fear of screwing it up.
For those of you making real resolutions, may your luck be better than mine.
Justin McGill is general manager of The Cadiz Record and can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.