I am that most brilliant of women, the kind who knows just how to spend a winter afternoon when all four of her kids are at the movies, and she and her husband have the house alone to themselves for the first time in 96 hours.
You guessed it: I'm writing a blog post while my man naps on the floor in front of the fire. After twenty-five years, we've figured out that the activities you had in mind can be squeezed in whenever we have ten minutes to kill, but an uninterrupted nap and a Facebook-free computer are rare gifts from the gods.
Besides, it's high time I worked on my NEW YEAR'S RESOLUTIONS, a phrase I like to capitalize so that when It all goes down in flames it's that much more a spectacular failure.
I mean, SPECTACULAR FAILURE. See? Those caps really validate things.
At first I thought I'd just revisit my resolutions from last year to see how well I navigated the waters of 2009. But honestly, what's the point? I'm sure I did just fine, considering that one of my resolutions was not to be nominated as a candidate for the Vice-presidency.
Familiar with my position on teen pregnancy or a federal bailout for the struggling polar bear jerky industry? Tina Fey making bank on the way I say "you betcha"?
All righty then, consider that one Resolved.
Besides, 2010 is a New Year, full of all sorts of new ways to justify not changing anything. The world is doing enough of that for all of us. When the rest of the planet hops aboard that hand-basket, someone's got to stick around to water the lawns. Maybe then I can finally get caught up on my "Law and Order: SVU" reruns.
However, I do subscribe to the philosophy that "the unexamined life is not worth blogging about" (Socrates would have said it that way if he'd had any idea) and as such I offer for your consideration a few items I devoutly resolve to...um...give real thought to later tonight in the tub.
1: I resolve not to marry any professional athletes named for animals and building materials. I'm sorry, "Wombat" Styrofoam and "Three-toed Sloth" Concrete, it's over between us. I now realize that no matter how perky and photogenic and breathtakingly Swedish I remain, you will always fall victim to the fact that the tools and terms of your sport lend themselves to a thousand naughty jokes.
I understand; no one could swim against the tide of a punch line that practically writes itself. Just take your 'woods' and your 'holes-in-one' and be happy in the life you have chosen.
(Come back when you're done commenting and watch this!)
2: I resolve not to star in any reality television shows that highlight my skills as a mother, a model, a chef, or a tattoo artist. Considering my limited abilities in all of those areas, I'd wind up botoxing a skull and crossbones into my kids' foreheads and baking them at 350 degrees until they developed an eating disorder.
Knowing that this would still make me a better parent than Jon and Kate is of only marginal comfort.
3: I resolve not to have my gall bladder removed in 2010.
Now, you'd think that having had it removed a couple of months ago would guarantee success with this particular resolution. But I have yet to undergo a medical procedure without at least twelve people sharing with me their "Terrible Tales of (Medical Procedure in Question) Gone Wrong".
"...and there was a SHADOW gall bladder behind the first one, most likely left over from a parasitic twin that only developed a gall bladder before giving up and taking a job at Sea World Orlando."
I've met so many folks whose sister-in-law had her gall bladder removed and from then on could only paint watercolors with her feet, or lost her ability to do puzzles, or brayed like a mule whenever she smelled bacon, I honestly wonder how the species has survived under the bumbling care of incompetent surgeons.
So I don't care if the crazy organ grows back and has so many stones in it Mick Jagger has to take a number. It's staying in.
4: I resolve to maintain balance in the eco-universe by purchasing eight Happy Earth reusable grocery bags from Albertson's and then leaving them home every time I shop.
5: I resolve to finally figure out how to add to my sidebar the little "award buttons" I have so generously been offered by fellow bloggers. The only reason I got the MMB one and the NaNo one on there is they came with instructions written for a three-year old garbanzo bean, complete with illustrations and an 800 number for tech support.
Jenny Mac, Debbie, and all of you other kind souls who have seen fit to recognize the dubious contribution this blog makes to the betterment of humanity, please accept my gratitude as well as my plea for any lifeline that could rescue me from 1987, where, apparently, I still live.
6: I resolve to launch an expedition to the Mysterious Land of the Creators of Word Verification Words. Whereupon I will hold a live grenade in one hand, and a list of questions in the other, starting with, "Why is it that some WVs are simple, like "jaja", while others look like the chemical formula for reproducing the Big Bang ("CoHydLungAaughToHellWithIt")
7: I resolve to get my money's worth from my lap band by treating it like a freshman pledging to a fat, hostile fraternity.
"Think you've got what it takes to make ME skinny? Well, let's see how well you stack up to...Mister Ham and Cheese Omelet!! Swallow! Swallow! Swallow!"
8: I resolve to once and for all answer the question, "If you avoid dusting for so long that Hobbits move into your piano, can you get a tax break for providing public housing?"
9: I resolve not to giggle too loudly when young mothers in my circle start sentences with the words, "My kids will never..."
And girls, be warned: The Fates hear you saying those things, and they reconstruct reality for the express purpose of turning your child into the kind of person who, in fact, sets the BAR for whatever it is you have just declared your kid "will never".
I'm certain Jeffrey Dahmer's mother often told her friends, "My kid will never get into frozen entrées. He's all about freshness."
10: I resolve to continue my campaign against hyper-apostrophization in all printed materials. Apostrophe's wher'e they' dont be'long a're 'a' bl'ight on' th'e lit'er'ary land'scape a'nd mus't b'e' stop'ped, wh'ate'ver t'he c'os't.
11: I resolve to celebrate 25 years of marriage to the most patient guy in the world, and 23 years of parenting the luckiest four kids ever to ask for the keys to my car. I resolve to remain the poster-grownup for teaching old dogs older tricks as I continue this new and unexpected journey toward professional authorship. Mostly, I resolve to just keep plugging along, taking the hard stuff as it comes (I miss you, Dad) and rejoicing in the little moments of grace that remind us we are never really alone.
HAPPY 2010, EVERYONE.
I mean that, capital letters and all.