The Carillon staff's most successful, least successful, and current New Year's resolutions
Most successful resolution: I wouldn't exactly call this a New Year’s resolution, but since I was younger I have worked hard to lose weight. It started off in elementary school, when I was unsatisfied with the way I looked. I started using our aerobics machine at home and slowly began to notice results. This drive to lose weight continued through some of high school. I participated in sports, ran outside or on the treadmill, and lifted weights. But it takes more than that to lose weight. I have also had reduced the amount of fattening foods I have eaten. These days, I am happy with my weight so I would call this a success. However, I remain dedicated to working out and eating healthy. Perhaps the biggest thing I am working on cutting out still is Pepsi. With the business of my schedule, there is every opportunity to eat unhealthy so it is definitely a challenge.
Least successful resolution: One of the commitments, not necessarily resolutions, I have failed to maintain is not playing video games. When I was younger, I didn't exactly play tons of video games, at least compared to some kids anyway. However, at times I have tried to limit the amount I play or stop playing all together. That hasn't quite happened. The thing is, I don't view playing video games as an unproductive thing anymore. When I have a break from school and am not working or doing homework, it is refreshing to take a break and blow someone apart with an AK47. I still don’t overdo the video games, but I will continue to indulge in the technological buffet.
This year’s resolution: This year, I have a pretty clear resolution. I want to try and enjoy university more. I’ve heard from numerous people that university is the best time of your life. Well, I haven’t noticed this yet. Between taking five classes a semester and working at the Carillon and the Leader-Post, I haven’t found tons of time to take it easy and get out there with my fellow pupils. In a way, it seems like my social life is being punished for the fact that I am working hard towards my potential career of journalism. I guess if I liked drinking or going to bars I might be having more fun. This semester, by working hard on homework during the weekdays, especially early in the semester, I am hoping to find more time at night or on the weekend to relax. It sounds pretty easy to achieve this goal, but we’ll see how I’m doing when the tough part of the semester rolls around. Luckily, I’m taking four English classes so it should not be a terribly huge workload.
Most successful resolution (of 2010): In early 2010, Jan.1 as it were, I resolved that I would within 365 days I would take singing lessons. Do not get the wrong impression, I didn't want to take singing lessons to become the next Frank Sinatra – because Frank Sinatra is dead and that’s not what singing lessons are for – I wanted to be able to, in the crudest sense of the phrase, carry a tune. Thus, in the dying days of October I finally signed up for voice lessons. I took them, and I still take them. Friends, it’s a home-grown Sandy Rinaldo CTV Success Story.
Least successful resolution (of 2010): My university marks for the recently finished semester had been posted, and they were less than stellar. As I sat by myself weeping one Christmas eve, as I do every Christmas eve, I brashly and without clarity of mind resolved that I would tighten my belt. This cleared up the short-term problem of my pants continuously falling down, but it did nothing to aid my lacklustre grades. So, I declared that in 2010 I would read all my readings, work on all my work, and study all my studyings. For the reason that I was feeling particularly disappointed in myself that day, I also promised to attend all my classes for good measure. Having just barely made it through 2010 – my academic year from hell – I can assuredly say this resolution was a dud. Sorry, mom.
This year’s resolution: To put an end to the ups and downs of resolution life, I have resolved this year to never make resolutions. By definition, I think I failed already. Damn it all.
Kent E. Peterson
Most successful resolution: Anything that wasn’t too specific. I’m an expert at giving up on New Years resolutions, but I usually give up on the really concrete ones first. It’s a shame, since those sorts of goals (exercise every day, get an 85 per cent GPA, etc.) are probably the best ones to set because they give you something definite to strive for. But I’m pretty lazy and weak-willed when it comes to self-improvement, so for me definitive goals just lead to definitive let-downs. Which is why I try to keep my resolutions vague, like I did in 2009 with my vow to just have fun. And obviously I did! Not as much fun as the year before it or after it, but there was at least one enjoyable moment in that year and that means I won.
Least successful resolution: Quit buying restaurant food and start packing a lunch. I’ve made this resolution every year since I started high school. Eating out is expensive and rarely all that healthy, so it’s a decent pledge to make, but I’ve never made good on it. In high school, south Albert Street was just a five-minute walk away, and these days I’ve got a Tim Horton’s right inside my damn school and right underneath my workplace. So I’m tempted pretty much always. But who knows? I’ve recently kind of given up on McDonald’s after being sexually harassed there, so maybe 2011 will find me slowly giving up on fast food altogether.
This year’s resolutions: I’ll be turning 20 this year, which pushes me further into Grown-Ass Man territory than I’ve ever been, so I figure it’s time to find some inner strength and set some Grown-Ass Goals. Main resolutions: eat better (less sugar and carbs, more fruits and vegetables), exercise more than zero times a week, procrastinate less, build self-confidence in certain areas of my life and dial it back in others, actually pay attention to movies/records/books that come out this year, quit doing that thing where I’m a dick to people. Back-up resolution: just have fun.
Most successful resolution: On Jan. 1, 2009, I resolved that I would start learning how to cook. Up to that point, all I could make for myself was basically a bowl of ramen. Maybe I could make Kraft Dinner, or a Pizza Pop. Sometimes I would burn one of those things. Other days I would give up on archaic definitions of “lunch” and eat a bunch of grapes or a bag of Doritos or just drink water until I stopped being hungry. That was no way to live. Nowadays, instead of making KD, I boil some elbow macaroni until it’s al dente, melt some butter in a ten-inch skillet, brown flour in it and whisk it so it keeps from burning, add milk and cream, slowly add grated cheese and some spices while continuing to slowly whisk, stir the whole thing until it’s smooth, toss in the macaroni and stir it in to coat it with the cheese mixture, top it with bread crumbs, herbs and some grated romano, pop it in a 350-degree oven for 25 minutes, and then feed my dang family. Food rules and although I’m no expert, these days I at least know my way around a kitchen. It feels pretty good.
Least successful resolution: Every year I resolve to read more and every year I feel like I don’t manage it. Last year I resolved to read more blogs; the year before that I resolved to read the Leader-Post and the Globe and Mail every day, and cover-to-cover at least once a week. The problem is usually that I only have time for this when I wind up at home, and by that time of the day I’m just pooched and would rather do a million other things than more things that feel like work. The newspaper stuff I’ve managed to keep up, mostly, but nowhere near as rigorously as I’d resolved; the blog thing totally fell by the wayside. And I keep hoping to read more books, but that usually falls on its ass within a week. I’m not resolving to do it this year, I’m just going to try to do it; we’ll see if just making it an ongoing shame rather than an annual one will actually make me successful.
This year’s resolution: Last semester was a logistical nightmare, and I barely had any time to myself; maybe, if I was lucky, I had a bit of Friday and Saturday. Otherwise I was holed up in the Carillon office, either working on student newspaper stuff or just trying to get by being a student. Now, the thing I’m most concerned about isn’t that this ate up my spare time, but rather that it left me without any impetus to go to the gym. At least, that’s what I tell myself. So this semester, I’m taking advantage of my mandatory gym membership and going twice a week. I need to compensate somehow for my inability to grow chest hair. Time to get swole.
Most successful resolution: It occurred sometime in high school when I decided to stop biting my finger nails. That was pretty much it, actually. It wasn’t even a struggle – biting your nails is gross. If only all of my resolutions could be so achievable.
Least successful resolution: To get all personal, for probably three or four years now my resolution has been to get in shape. I know, I know, round is a shape, and all that. But, dear readers, it really is important to eat well, hydrate yourself, and get plenty of sleep and exercise, regardless of what the scale says. My commitment to these goals comes and goes throughout the year, with a very close relationship to how disastrously my academic semester is going.
This year’s resolution: My resolutions, like roughly everyone else’s, are usually much more plausible in theory than they are in execution. But, for yet another year, I’m going to aim for that society-influenced, doctor-recommended, painfully-distant ideal of fitness. Judging by past years, this first run at it will last roughly until late March, I’ll start up again after finals, lapse in late summer, and start anew with the fall semester. Until finals. What I lack in ambition I make up in realism.
This is all very upsetting. Perhaps I’ll work on a supplementary resolution, one which is easily achievable so I have something to be proud of when I skip the gym and dive into the Blizzard of the Month. Perfect; 2011 will be the year I commit more fully to my Tumblr.