Fanfare for the Common Man: One resolution for 2013 …

  • Monday, January 14, 2013


I have one resolution for 2013. Manage.
My American Collegiate Dictionary defines manage as “to be in charge of; to administer and regulate; to moderate.”
I was never in charge, and I consider moderation a four-letter word, but there are many facets of my life that I need to better manage.  
I want to better manage my weight, which leads to better managing my health. I’ve done a decent job of managing my weight so far, managing to almost undo a 150-pound gain since my divorce. I have 50 more pounds to go, but when people ask me how I’m doing it, my answer of “it’s the ‘I’m Broke’ diet,’” is not a good example of managing.
Surviving the last four days until payday by making homemade Ramen noodles because I can’t afford to drop a dime on a real package of Ramen noodles is not managing. Neither is calling a bullion cube in a cup of hot water “soup.”  
I need to start managing my money. “Finances” is too grown up a word for what I do with money. It implies having money, which I don’t most of the time.
Managing money does not mean doing a fist pump when I find a lost $20 bill in my pants pocket as I try to figure out which pair looks the least wrinkled because I can’t afford to do laundry.
Anyone who knows how to calculate the split between what to charge on your debit card and what to pay for with Coke-gunked coins pilfered from the front dash cup holder does not know how to manage money.
Time. I want to manage my time. I either have too much of it or not enough.
I waste, kill, spend, and long for time.
“I’ll do it later,” is my mantra. I am the Henry VIII of procrastination. Never put off until tomorrow what you can put off until the day after tomorrow, or get someone else to do for you.   
I don’t trust myself to be on time so I’m either the first one there an hour early, or I’m embarrassingly late. I do my best work at the literal last minute. I have the award plaques to prove it, too.
Lastly, I want to manage my life.
Currently I employ the “Runaway Wagon” method of life management. It is when you describe your life as being on a runaway wagon careening wildly down a steep hill, the brakes are out, and there’s a BRIDGE OUT sign at the bottom.
Use of the word “careen” to describe anything happening in your life outside of wild, unbridled romance is not good. Neither is “dodging bullets.”
I am the Neo of dodging bullets.
Navigating around life’s sharp turns down this same steep hill as three of the four wagon wheels become airborne and the fourth grips precariously to a few stray pebbles of the road shoulder is not effective life management. Keeping it between the ditches isn’t either, but somehow I’ve managed.
I don’t want to just manage, I want to manage.
I want to do more than prove my mom, “raised me better than that,” even though it is loads of fun to make her think she didn’t.
The New Year is like life’s mulligan, and given how I suffer through golf, I make full use of all mulligans. I’m already compiling my list of 2014 resolutions.
Just in case.  

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