I just read the funniest popslash story of all time. So says Sandy, and she is right. Find it here, and beware of reading it at work:
There's having an ear for dialogue, which I usually like to think I have, and then there's having an ear for *funny* dialogue, which clearly other people have spadefuls more of than me. Spadefuls of ears. Whatever.
Ever since the holidays started I've been restless at work, more days than not. I guess it's to be expected. I'm feeling all slackerish because I had yesterday off and for tomorrow the veep has given us free tickets to see The Two Towers, so there's at least a half a day happily blown. I feel guilty though, because I love my new position. This editor's position is everything I hoped it would be. And now I will knock on wood, because I've learned my lesson--I failed to knock after bragging about my car the other day, and within twenty minutes it crapped out on me for the first time in a year. More on that later, perhaps.
New Year's resolutions are being discussed. I've made resolutions. I'm torn between keeping them to myself and sharing them. Keeping it to oneself. Advantage: If you fail, no one knows it. Disadvantage: If you keep your resolutions, and try to backdate and brag about them six months later, people will be somewhat dubious. Sharing your resolutions with others. Advantage: If you succeed over the long term, you earn awe and respect. Disadvantage: If you fail, everyone knows it. Of course, everyone expects you to fail resolutions--that's what they're for, it's human nature, a tie that binds us--so the mocking is usually minimal. It's just that you end up feeling sheepish, weak, and ordinary.
Anyway, what the hell. I have the most common of resolutions, but it's not really a resolution. Resolutions are something you make once, and they're goal-oriented. I'm not looking ahead. I have put myself on the track of being physically healthy because I'm no longer willing not to be. Something clicked a few weeks ago and I looked at it--eating right, exercising, losing and maintaining weight--differently than I ever had before. I realized it's about process, not product. I think it's because I have the sobriety model now: one day at a time. You can't look ahead any further than that. There's no point. It makes things easier, actually. If you can manage one day, that's all you need. I've lost significant weight twice in my life--dropped 50 pounds or so each time. I've got a bit more to go this time before I hit the status I want to quo. And then there's drinking. I've been undrinking now for six months, with two lapses. One a deliberate experiment, one a social choice. I felt a bit rocky after the second time, because my mind started cajoling me in that predictable way it will, trying to weasel and negotiate for more drinking, but I picked up and went on again.
I know it's a cliche, but I'm weirdly certain of change. More certain than not. It's not optimism. It's more like necessity. And not because "I can't go on like this," because I could. But it's like a gear has switched, and if I stay in that gear, the momentum will continue. I'm not setting any long-term goals--"I'll lose 60 pounds in 6 months!" I have to recommit each day. Which isn't easy. It's just easier than setting goals. Because once you set a goal, you invest this huge amount of emotional energy in it, start thinking in terms of success and failure. You keep looking 10 miles or months ahead instead of focusing on what's happening now, today.
Okay, I think I've managed to pack every bit of existing self-help jargon into this regrettably earnest post except for "visualization," "affirmation," and "self-actualization." Consider them said.