At 4:30 p.m. on Friday Dec. 30 — days after a Christmas holiday and days before New Year’s — the Indiana Department of Child Services dropped its annual report of child abuse and neglect fatalities.
For the year 2023, I made 23 New Year’s resolutions. I’ve already broken every single one. Below is my list. I resolved that…
- In a restaurant, when the waitress sees my totally cleaned plate and asks how I enjoyed my meal, I will not say: “I didn’t like it one bit.” According to a survey I read, they hear this all the time and they do not think it is funny.
- I will make the bed in the morning. It’s still in a box from IKEA and we are tired of sleeping on our couch and lounge chair.
- When people ask, “How’s Barney?” — my famous dog who passed almost 20 years ago — I will stop saying, “Still dead.” No one finds this amusing and they think I am an insensitive jerk.
- I will stop salting what Mary Ellen makes for dinner before I even taste it. In future years, I will tackle my addiction to pepper, Heinz 57 and teriyaki sauce.
- I will put a cover on food when I heat it in the microwave, so the meal doesn’t end up as splatter all over the inside. Amendment to resolution: I’ll try to remember not to use aluminum foil.
- For stocking stuffers next Christmas, I will not buy stupid kitchen gadgets for my wife that she will never use. We have 11 devices engineered to open jar lids. None of them work.
- When Mary Ellen asks me what I want for dinner, I will not say, “I don’t care.” I still won’t care, but I will stop saying it.
- When someone says, “You remind me of Dick Wolfsie,” I will not jokingly reply: “I’m sorry to hear that; I found him very annoying on TV.” I will stop this because when I have said it, many people have agreed with me.
- I will not cut the crust off a sandwich, realize I’m still hungry and then eat the crust.
- I will not cheat when I play Words with Friends. Last year, with the help of a word-finder website, I placed “oxazepam” (a drug) on just the right squares for a whopping 192 points. Now, no one will play with me, so I call the game: Words All By Myself.
- I will not open the fridge looking for a snack and stare for two minutes hoping that some miracle will appear, like a corned beef sandwich on rye.
- I will not whistle in my downstairs office while writing my column. My wife says that if I whistle while I work, I sound like one of the seven dwarfs. Which dwarf am I? See the next resolution.
- When I watch a movie with Mary Ellen, I will not nod off, because when I wake up, I make her tell me what I missed. “Mary Ellen, why are those people jumping off the ship?” I said. “It’s the Titanic, Sleepy. I hope you had a good nap,” she said.
- When our ice dispenser kicks out extra cubes that land on the kitchen floor, I will stop shoving them under the fridge with my foot. My wife has no clue I have ever done this, but the puddles are making her suspicious.
- Finally, I will not publicly admit to my 23 broken resolutions when I could only come up with 15. I should have written this column eight years ago.
Anthony made a bold proclamation just hours after waking up on New Year’s Day.
To the Editor:
This might seem a strange question to ask, but it needs to be asked anyway. What is the greatest problem that our country — no, not just our country, but the whole world — needs to tackle in 2023?
As another Indiana legislative session begins, there is an interesting dynamic at work.
When my State Affairs Indiana colleague Kaitlin Lange asked Gov. Eric Holcomb what he was playing on his Spotify music list, he responded, “Feeling Stronger Every Day” by the legendary rock band Chicago.
I’m often asked if there is really a need for public libraries or if anyone really uses them anymore. Because, really, what’s the point in a library when everyone has the internet on their phone? Sound familiar?
Grownups I know who collected baseball cards as kids can usually tell tale after woeful tale of cards of baseball legends they would have neatly boxed up and stowed away even today were it not for little brothers who wouldn’t leave them alone or the Moms who went on cleaning frenzies and transformed comfortable—if messy—bedrooms into spotless, card-less antiseptic areas. These are bittersweet “what if?” memories. Similar tragic memories haunt those of us who were comic book collectors.