There comes a time when each man must draw a line in the sand, puff out his chest and really take a stand on something, even if it might not be the most popular opinion for him to have.
Yeah, I got nothing. I just wanted to suck you into reading the rest of this nonsense, so I acted like I had some earth-shattering statement I just had to make.
It’s summer. The solstice truthers will tell you that the summer season doesn’t officially kick off until June 21, and they have the facts on their side. But Memorial Day weekend has passed, the pool in my community is open and the top of my head looks like it could be used to make stir-fry. Calendars can be misleading. The red glow on my McCranium tells no lies.
Each year I sit down, ponder my current state of existence and formulate a detailed list of resolutions for the new summer season. It requires a complicated algorithm that takes into account my current age, level of activity over the winter, my alloted hours of free time and the general state of the world, with an acute focus on the particulars of this community.
And, a keyboard. To be honest, it mostly takes having a keyboard in front of me to put it together.
I know, I know. The wait is torture. I hate to draw it out like this, but I’m just building layers of anticipation here for you. My column is a lot like a good chili — you want to build layers. And, also, it can sometimes give you gas.
• Every single year I say I want to get to the beach more than previous years, and every single year I fail at doing just that. A-ha! That was the case until last year, when I actually did get out to the ocean several times with friends and family. This summer’s resolution is to get out there even more frequently, and to allow myself to just enjoy the day more, as opposed to fretting over how much fish waste is on my feet.
• I resolve to not allow the often-overwhelming work demands of the summer season completely overwhelm my life. It’s an easy trap to fall into, and one I kind of enjoy because I do love what I do for a living. But I’m getting older (no comments from the peanut gallery), and it’s time I put more of my focus on my health and my family.
• I resolve to not allow the actions of other drivers to take away from my joy while attempting to drive down the road. There will be no spewing of profanities from me, no bashing my forehead against the steering wheel out of frustration and no one-finger salutes to fellow drivers. Well, scratch that last part. We’ll take baby steps with these behavioral changes.
• I resolve to not fall into the “It’s-too-hot-to-do-anything” trap that results in me sitting on my big, comfy couch while the sweet embrace of air conditioning envelops both my body and soul... Actually, let’s put a pin in this one. I’m not a masochist. Air conditioning is awesome.
• Camping is one of my all-time favorite pasttimes, and I resolve to carve out some significant time this summer to enjoy that very activity. Beer by a pond. Beer by a tent. And beer by a campfire are three of my favorite-tasting beers in the world. Actually, maybe it’s just beer I like, and not camping. Eh, why choose? Let’s do both.
• I resolve to stay patient with my daughter when she walks in and out the back door all day — at no point closing said door behind her. I’ll deal with the ants. I’ll accept my escalated electric bill. I won’t get bothered by the fact that the mostly-blind, aging pug just rolls right out the door and wanders two houses away.
No, this will not happen. Why can’t the child close a door?
• I resolve to eat less garbage. I mean, not literally. It’s not like I rummage through random garbage cans in the middle of the night to sneak a little snack. Not every night.
• I resolve to write more poignant columns this summer, eschewing my sarcasm-laced pieces for more insightful work, focused on the overall evolution of our community, and humanity, in general. It will be a much-more mature version of myself you will encounter on this page as the summer continues forth, and you’ll get no more potty humor from me.
Potty. That’s a great word. Potty. Hehe.
• I resolve to not complain about how long the wait is for a table, or how there’s no parking to be easily had or that it’s taking too long for my order to get to my table. It’s summer. There are a lot of people in an area that only has a lot of people in it four months a year. I also resolve to not take out any frustrations I might have on a hostess or server who is only trying to do his or her best under trying circumstances. I hope many of you make this resolution, as well.
• I resolve to smile more, complain less and enjoy the ride. It’s summer. This is supposed to be fun.