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Aisle Seat: Resolutions Are Not Solutions

Updated: Jan 10

By Naomi Serviss / New York City



Raise your hand


if Christmas or New Year’s


great expectations


went up in smoke.


Whose didn’t?


Stress and anxiety


over canceled flights,


scoring home Covid tests


and sheer panic


stretched our wafer-slim patience to the nth.


Civility took a powder


on flights accentuated by slap-happy,


duct-taped passengers


who forgot their kindergarten lessons.


Who could process resolution-making


when the sky was falling?


Here we go again.


And what’s the point of resolutions, anyway?


They don’t solve problems–


they manufacture agita.


Resolution-making couldn’t help


thousands quicksanded


in transit limbo hell.


High hopes of hugging out


the garbage year with loved ones?


Crushed like harvested wine grapes.


How about those loners stuck home,


kids too far-flung to gather?


The bloom is off the Zoom.


We’re Twilight Zone-terrified


of contracting or passing Omicron,


home Covid tests are a myth


(try to find one!)


and the infection rate


hasn’t even plateaued.


Thanks to the past year’s


malevolent tornadoes,


floods, blizzards, fires, droughts


and permafrost melts,

maybe we should look up.


By the way, climate change deniers:


it’s NOT “just weather.”


Everything’s a mess.


An unusual warm winter spell in Alaska


had soaring temperatures (60 degrees Fahrenheit)


and torrential rain,


during a period when bitter cold and snow


had been the norm.


Dr. Fauci urged wannabe


New Year’s Eve revelers


to shelve it.


The country has reported


200,000 new Covid cases every day


since October 27.


That’s the highest seven-day period


since January 19, 2021.





I’ve never been much of a resolution-person.


I don’t schedule self-reflection


promptly after winter solstice.


It’s a reflex, always on call.


Plus, making resolutions


gave off religious vibes.


Its Babylonian roots


were sown 4,000 years ago–


The new year began


when crops were planted mid-March.

Resolutions were cast,


pledging loyalty


to either the reigning or replacement king.


Debts would be settled.


Borrowed items would be returned.


So it shall be written.


Romans were doing likewise or similarly


under Julius Caesar,


who spun the calendar his way,


designated January 1


as the Official New Year.


Resolution-making evolved with the times,


as should our Constitution.


Early Christians held night services


to entice the heathens away from partying.


Secular humans


have tweaked the tradition,


vowing to stop smoking, gambling, drinking.


AA lite.


Some resolutions are well-intended


but not viable.


Like resolving to dissolve


a toxic relationship,


only to be sucked back in,


mid-April.


Or resolving to think before placing


my size 11 foot in my mouth (Sagittarian).


But there are some–


let’s call them goals–


to be aware of.


(Would have written “mindful”


but I am so over that word.)


We can resolve


to be kinder and compassionate


and still demand


social justice and corporate responsibility.


Let’s prioritize what’s important:


*Good health, starting with Mother Earth

*Getting the pandemic under control *No more free trial subscriptions


Solutions might be long aborning,


but let’s dedicate 2022


to restoring faith in,


and being grateful for,


science.


It’s merely a suggestion of intention.



 






Naomi Serviss is a New York-based award-winning journalist whose work has been published in The New York Times, Newsday, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Highroads (AAA magazine), in-flight publications, spa and travel magazines and websites, including BroadwayWorld.com

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