I'm not a fan of New Year's resolutions.
People of faith are taught to make resolutions daily, not annually, and even if I did believe in them, the Jewish time for resolutions is during the High Holidays in the fall. I suppose any tradition that gets people thinking about making changes for the better is not all bad, however, so here goes.
I, Rabbi Marc A. Gellman, PhD, do hereby resolve that in the New Year, I will try my best to: Eat less. Exercise more. Swear less. Give more. (These are my big four.) Call people I like more often for no real reason.
Call people I don't like and try to find something to like about them, even though I have not found anything yet.
Shut up more and listen harder.
After the death of my dogs, try to find some way to fill the hole in my heart that does not involve getting another dog.
Learn how to say no to people with love.
Try to remember that those people who criticize me are all doing so because they just have not yet had the true pleasure of understanding me.
Try to remember something - anything - that I still like about Tiger Woods.
Always let drivers merge ahead of me because, despite how I act sometimes, I did not buy all the air in front of my car when I bought my car.
Don't honk at those who don't let me merge and push me off onto the shoulder of the highway. May I remember at those times that they are living small, shriveled, meaningless lives and that they will rot in hell for their selfishness (and I mean that in the most loving and compassionate way).
Try not to keep score in my life. OK, so this contradicts the previous resolution. Give me a break. If you want a perfect columnist, read Charles Krauthammer! When I see guys fixing utility poles in a storm or after a storm, go get them doughnuts and coffee right away. I already do that, but not nearly enough.
Love all the seasons of my dear wife, Betty, because she's the one who agreed to share me with you.
Try to figure out how to answer my 4-year-old granddaughter, Daisy, who asked me, "Poppa, do you still work, because you know, you ARE very old." Try to love playing golf again, even though I can't ever again play with Tommy .
Keep rooting for the Mets for no good reason, because everybody needs a team, even a losing, gagging, choking team, and the Mets are my losing, gagging, choking team.
Keep rooting for the Jets for no good reason, because everybody needs a team, even a losing, gagging, choking team and the Jets, with some notable exceptions, are my losing, gagging, choking team.
Tolerate Yankee fans because my theology requires me to believe that even Yankee fans are made in God's image.
Try to remember that every day my blessings exceed my burdens.
Try to remember that I can teach my children to fly on their own, but I cannot fly for them.
Listen to more music I hate because I could be wrong (I was wrong about Metallica).
I read mostly nonfiction about wars, so let me try to read more fiction (about wars).
Remember to personally thank all the doctors who never give up trying to heal me, even though I often give up trying to be healed.
Try to enjoy the movies my wife likes, even though in all those movies nothing blows up and people with no visible means of support live in insanely expensive apartments and homes.
Try to pray a Thanks Prayer, a Gimme Prayer, an Oops Prayer and a Wow Prayer every day.
Pray for Tommy with all my heart and with all my soul.