Many people go to great efforts to make New Year’s resolutions, most of which they quickly lay aside in the trash bin of unfulfilled resolutions.
I haven’t broken a New Year’s resolution in several decades because I’m still keeping one that I made so long ago I don’t remember when I made it.
That resolution was not to ever make another New Year’s resolution.
But this year I’m seriously considering breaking that durable, long ago resolution.
For some time I’ve recognized a need to quit writing “His View” columns in the Daily News in order to concentrate on devoting my fast diminishing time on completing the writing of two books that I started decades ago and starting and finishing the writing of one more.
All are about my family’s history.
The reality of approaching my 83rd birthday is forcing the realization that — for me — time is running out and I need to prioritize whatever time I have before my brain turns to jelly.
Perhaps I should make a New Year’s resolution to give up my lifelong habit of falling down. I fall so often that sometimes family or friends express concern. I just tell them I’m a professional, so don’t get hurt.
But, I believe resolutions should be reasonable enough that there is some chance that they will be kept.
Next, I thought of resolving to quit writing columns.
They are a lot of fun; but time consuming and time sensitive, thus pushing work on the books to the back burner.
Then there’s the added difficulty of nursing myself off of news.
Currently I subscribe to the Daily News, Lewiston Tribune, Seattle Times, Salt Lake Tribune, Washington Post, The Week magazine, The Capital Press, and several e-newsletters on history, the law and politics.
Additionally, I daily watch two or three major national news broadcasts on television.
As readers of my columns know, I also am a prodigious reader of nonfiction books on biography, religion, politics and history.
Well, as you may have guessed, as a practical matter this pretty much rules out resolving to give up writing my views.
Every time I’ve tried to do that, current news drives me back to the keyboard. How does one quit journalizing after more than a half century in journalism? As I say, resolutions should be reasonably … well, reasonable.
So, the fallback position is I will break my long-standing, unbroken string of new years without making a resolution.
I hereby resolve to write far fewer columns in 2021. I’m going to really try; but don’t bet your lunch money that I’ll succeed.
After all, I’m aching to write about:
n The sordid Mexican Repatriation of the 1930
n Whether insanity is contagious
n Whether God is conservative or liberal
n How the US Post Office and parcel delivery services are defrauding customers
Honest, I’m trying to go on a strict writing diet, but …
Terence L. Day is a retired Washington State faculty member and a Pullman resident since 1972. He encourages email to [email protected]