No one ever keeps their New Year's Resolutions, do they?

A calendar is such an arbitrary thing, and not everyone follows the same calendar. Even for the majority celebrating TONIGHT, there's variations. As I write this, there are still two hours left in 2004(though by the time I finish this long entry, certainly even less that that). Yet due to time zone differences, it's already 2005 in Europe and Asia. And when it is 2005 here, other parts of the United States will still have 1-3 hours left in 2004. Yet people mark a moment all the same, as a turning point to make changes, major changes, and “turn it all around.”

I used to make big plans but eventually stopped because I never followed through. People often set their goals too high and the first time they falter, give up completely. A person may vow to call his middle school crush after 3.5 years at a different school and ask her to his senior prom, only to spend the next few months hanging up after six digits at every attempt and missing the prom altogether. People have resolved to give up snacks and lose 30 pounds, and by noon on January first have found themselves sitting alone in bed with an empty 13 Oz. Doritos bag. No one I know, of course. ::cough::

On Monday I mentioned an idea I was considering. Thinking about resolutions, I thought it would be interesting to compile a list of fantasy resolutions, major changes I should make in my life within the unrealistic boundary of one year in which I do EVERYTHING. Not only would this serve as a study in human nature, possibly touching on the failed resolutions of any who might read and relate, but it would also be fun to document and compare 365 days from now, to see if I actually did any of it. So what follows aren't exactly resolutions since I don't make those, but a list of things I SHOULD but more than likely WON'T be doing in 2005. Enjoy!:


Not going to happen. In college, I hardly exercised except for walking from class to class and marching in parades. My weight fluctuated on the sole basis of my diet. If I wanted to drop 5-10 pounds I'd go a week or so without snacks, and it'd be gone. At 5'6”, I think 150 pounds is a good weight. I haven't SEEN 150 since the summer before my senior year of college, unfortunately. As we get older, it's a fact that our metabolisms slow down. This is especially true for those with sedentary lifestyles who spent the amount of hours I do sitting in front of a computer, both at work and at home. My diet has vastly improved the last few months, theorizing allergies might have something to do with the fatigue I've experienced. I can't remember the last French Fry I ate( a blatant lie: it was October 23rd at 6:27PM), and I've added a multitude of fruits and vegetables as well as vitamins. Every morning I have a banana and in the afternoon usually an apple, sliced melon, or tangerines. For exactly two years I've been going to the gym on a regular basis and doing large amounts of cardio. Before slowing down this summer, I would generally run 3 miles on a treadmill in a half hour, then take another half hour to ride 10 miles on a bike, then take a break to lift weights, then finish with another 3-4 miles on an elliptical machine. Through all of that, my weight dropped from 190 to a disheartening 185. That's pretty much where I stay no matter how much I work out or how many snacks I eliminate. It would be nice to be back in the 160s at least, but my guess is that by the time I see that number on a scale I'll be several decades older, and several inches shorter. I should lose weight(my parents are unanimous in believing I'd feel healthier with the extra weight off), but I don't think it's something I can achieve.


I learned how to drive on a 1981 maroon Monte Carlo. It was my dad's, although it had belonged to my music teacher before that. My dad took great care of that car before, during, and after it was his, and lasted me until the end of 1998. By then many things were wrong with it, most notably a rotting body. My dad had welded old metal signs from his old shop on the underside to prevent my feet from falling through rust holes and going into ”Flintstones” mode. It was a great car, getting me back and forth to school in Queens as well as to gigs in Brooklyn and my girlfriend's out on Eastern Long Island. But in the Fall of ‘98 she took a job in Massachusetts and though I planned to continue to see her, if biweekly, my dad informed me that there was no way I would be going with THAT car. Shortly before junking it my dad accidentally hit a rock with a lawnmower, sending it into the passenger side window and shattering it. I still have a shard by the side of my bed, a souvenir of my “Millennium Landau” as my girlfriend had dubbed it(a combination of the type of roof the car had and the Millennium Falcon--her car I had dubbed the “Mirth Mobile”, a Wayne's World reference.)

My job then didn't pay much, under $20,000 which isn't a lot in New York, and I hadn't been out of college long enough to have any real savings. With my dad's help I eventually found a used car, a 1989 Mazda 626. The car served me well, great gas mileage a plus for the four hour drive(which I often shaved to three doing 90MPH on I95, STILL being passed by big scary trucks) to Massachusetts. She broke up with me a few months later, but I'm still driving ”Bluestreak”.

2004 was a rough year, car-wise, though it began a few months before that. On my way home from work a car edged me over to the right on a tight curve where the curb jutted out, and I flew up into the air a bit, coming down hard just shy of a railroad crossing as a train was going by. When it passed and I began rolling forward, it was clear that I had a flat tire. Changing it was difficult in the dark with a crappy flashlight, but a kind lady pulled up behind me and left her headlights on until I finished. It was tough getting the spare out--I discovered my trunk had been leaking and water had rotted a wood board covering it. It literally turned into splinters between my fingers. My luck being what it is, not a mile down the road the air leaked out of the donut. I made it to a side street in a nice neighborhood a good two miles from where I expected the nearest payphone to be, a train station. When there was no phone there, I had to trek another mile until I found a diner.

My dad was at a band rehearsal but my mom was home. She arrived to find me with police, since people in the neighborhood thought I looked suspicious and had reported my presence on the side of the road. Fortunately her spare fit, but this wasn't the end of my car trouble. A month later, my car wouldn't start after a short drive. The problem persisted for months, my dad unable to diagnose it. If I let the car cool down for a few hours it would start but if I tried to start it again after a half hour or less, it was completely dead. We replaced fuses, the starter, the battery, and more, and just when I'd given up entirely and decided to just buy a Saturn, my dad fixed it, finding a small broken wire in the air filter. He was able to find a working one in a junk yard, and the car's been running fine ever since.

If the first half of 2004 was marked by a defective car, the latter half was marked by a defective driver. Ever since some health problems I encountered in June, which I've already blogged about in painful detail, I've been getting shortness of breath and dizzy spells while driving. I've been in two car accidents in the past six months as well. First at a Fourth of July parade my dad's 1985 Monte Carlo was sideswiped by a minivan at an intersection. He floored it when I told him they weren't going to stop, saving my life, but it still caught the back of the car and spun us around 180°, ripping off the bumper in the process. Insurance totaled the car, though my mom has been reluctant to part with it for sentimental reasons(even calling my old high school for a bumper sticker because she couldn't get the old ones off). Now it's just sitting in the yard rotting, to my dad's great annoyance. A few months later on the way to work I was rearended at a traffic light, damaging the bumper on my Mazda. Fortunately, the other driver's insurance covered the body work. And when my car was inspected a few months ago, they found my muffler had a leaky gasket, which was sending fumes up through the hole in my trunk. So my dad and I put in a new muffler, and bolted metal over the holes.

I've really gone off on a tangent here and I apologize; the point is, I've never had a new car and though my car is fine, I think I associate bad things like carbon monoxide and dizzy spells with it, even though we've fixed that problem. I can't drive with my windows down this time of year since it's not healthy. I think I have an associative anxiety disorder; though I have gotten the spells driving my parents cars, they aren't as bad. I'd hate to dip into my savings and splurge for a stupid psychological assuagement, but I've had the car a while. It's probably time to get a new one, and maybe next year I should. Historical precedent tells me it won't happen, but who knows.....


I screwed up my only possible opportunity in 2004, though as my mom pointed out, I shouldn't go out with the first girl that shows interest in ME; I should find someone I like. Still, my last relationship lasted over two years and the fact that she pursued me was not only a turn-on, but gave me some confidence and security. There's nothing worse or more embarrassing than thinking you have a shot and making a play, only to find out she's already spoken for. I've only made that mistake twice in my life, though the first time I later found out the guy was someone I was something of a friend with, adding to my guilt for hitting on his girl. Still, nothing is gained without risks. Maybe I didn't screw up with the girl from the party--at a subsequent meeting she seemed cold when I said hello and I thought she was mad, but later complemented me on a drawing I had done months ago and had used many times since. Maybe I should at least talk to her some more and become friends, find out her religious and political stances and see if she IS someone I could like. It's probably too late for that though. I should find SOMEONE next year. Six years seems like a long time to be alone, even though I was alone longer than that before my ill-fated dream relationship. Since then I've been in this catatonic state, going through the motions, partly stunned that I was once again a dateless loser and partly afraid to pursue someone new in case she came back; any time I was interested in someone, it always felt like cheating. There have been at least six girls I've seriously considered since her that have all proven out of my reach for one reason or another. I don't really know WHO she is right now, but there's got to be someone out there for me--the first track on the mix Rey made is a song by Harry Connick, Jr. that sums up these feelings quite well. Maybe 2005 is the year I meet Mrs. MCF...


It's expensive to live around here, and nearly impossible to buy a home on one salary. I always thought I'd get married and that buying a home would be something my wife and I would do together. I don't want to rent an apartment because I consider rent a waste of money, and anything I could afford even with what I've saved would be too small to house all the crap I own and refuse to part with. Between my parent's health issues and my own, it seems like there's safety in numbers right now. A few years ago I almost bought a house, mostly to make myself more “worthy” of someone I had my eye on. It's fortunate that when I crunched the numbers with my parents I found I wouldn't have any money left if I bought it. We learn from mistakes, but it's better to learn BEFORE making the huge ones. Yet it's an annual tradition to eat Chinese food with my parents on New Year's Eve(except for the few years with my girlfriend and the one year I saw my friend Mike's band headline a club), and tonight I had an interesting fortune: YOU WILL MOVE TO A WONDERFUL NEW HOME WITHIN THE YEAR. I'm Catholic though, so I don't really believe in superstitious stuff. ;-D We'll see.....


I've had dial-up since 1999 and though it's better than the nothing I had before I had internet access, 56K really sucks. First of all, the most I've gotten on rare occasions is 12K; I usually average 5. I can't watch large movies, and even small flash files take a few minutes to display. I miss out on a lot of great online gaming and it's limiting sharing a phone line. Just a few hours ago while watching the AWESOME movie Collateral, I decided to look up one of the actors whose voice I recognized but not his face(It was Mark Ruffalo looking very different than he had in 13 Going on 30, the only other movie I'd seen him in). Anyway as my computer clicked on to dial there was silence, and then two bewildered 60-something-year-old women shouting, “Hello! Hello? Hold on, I think someone's on the line!” My mom came running out of the bedroom, complaining that it was only 9:30 and what was I doing going on before 10PM? I apologized and explained that I didn't know she was talking to my Aunt, and that I only wanted to look something up very quick.

If I had DSL it would not only be much faster, but I could go online anytime without interfering in my parent's calls. DSL rounds out my list of resolutions, but as I hinted the other day, that changed already. Yes. I did it. I ordered DSL. My equipment arrived yesterday. The service doesn't activate until January 6th unfortunately, but I can wait a few more days.

So here I am on the brink of 2005, and I've already done one of the things on my list. It's VERY exciting and a big change. I can't wait to see what if anything else on the list I achieve. Hopefully, you'll all be along to see too. So, until next year, be safe and God bless; HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!!


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey! no fair...I'm counting that last one as part of 2004.



1/01/2005 9:57 AM  
Blogger MCF said...

I have to disagree.

A 2004 resolution would have been made in 2003 FOR 2004. This was among the things I'd thought of last Monday, not knowing Tuesday I would come in and find a Verizon offer on my desk, or that I would decide to take it as a sign and just do it that night. Besides, the service doesn't activate until January 6...2005.

It counts. =)

1/01/2005 11:20 PM  

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