Let’s Start the New Year Right by
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Prompted By Resolutions

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I don’t have any specific memory of making New Year’s resolutions as a child, although I suspect I did, because everybody did. What would they have been? Clean my room, do my homework, don’t procrastinate. . . .  I’m sure I never kept them for more than a week. To be clear, I did always do my homework eventually, but first I would go into the bathroom and read whatever book I had stashed in the narrow space between the laundry hamper and the wall. I would stay there for an hour or two – I always meant to read just one chapter, but when I finished that one, I couldn’t resist starting the next, and on and on. I actually believed my mother didn’t know what I was doing. If she hadn’t, she would have been worried about what kind of gastro-intestinal problems I must be having to keep me in the bathroom so long. But she knew. I’m sure she checked on what books I was reading too, not that she would ever say anything about them.

On one very memorable New Year's Day I married my second husband.

Since I thought it was odd that I was drawing a blank on childhood resolutions, I asked my sisters what they remembered. Neither one of them could remember making them or not making them. So obviously it wasn’t anything that our parents cared about. Oh, they did want me to clean my room, I’m sure, but not necessarily to make a resolution about it.

I also asked my children if they ever made New Year’s resolutions. One daughter said she used to, but she doesn’t any more, and when she did, they were about eating healthier foods, and exercising (the resolutions of a teenager, not a small child). Hmm, now that she mentions it, I should make a resolution to exercise, I am terrible about that. My son, the comedy writer said “I have no specific memories of talking about resolutions as a family, whether it be you sharing your own or encouraging them in us. Not saying those conversations didn’t happen, just that we all must have been very drunk when they did.” Readers, that was a joke, in case you couldn’t tell, and it’s too late to report me to CPS anyway. 🙂

On one very memorable New Year’s Day I married my second husband. That’s us in the Featured Image, cutting the wedding cake on our dining room table. It was a small wedding in our living room, with only a few relatives and friends. We were both in our forties and had been married before, so we kept it simple. A friend of ours who had just been appointed to the bench performed the ceremony as his first judicial act. And we did say some vows. So I suppose my promise to love and cherish him til death do us part was a resolution of sorts. I hope even after all these years, my husband would agree that I have done a pretty good job of keeping that resolution.

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Characterizations: funny, moving, right on!, well written

Comments

  1. Betsy Pfau says:

    Getting married and keeping those vows is a great resolution Suzy. And very nice photo. Nothing else comes close in the resolution department.

    • Suzy says:

      Thanks, Betsy. I was pleased to find that photo, since I’m not organized in the photo department the way you are. I first used it in my story Glory Days on the Anniversaries prompt.

  2. John Shutkin says:

    A delightful story about New Year’s resolutions — or the lack thereof — Suzy! Notwithstanding your son’s sobering (ahem) thought, I’m betting that they simply were not made in your family. Might you have ever made a resolution not to make any resolutions? And would that count?

    That said, I love the idea of your New Year’s Day wedding vows as a form of resolution. Indeed, perhaps the most important one anyone could make. So real congratulations to you on keeping that one!

    And, yet again, I did not recognize your song title title. But I’m really kicking myself for this one. It is not some post-80’s song that I could not be expected to know, but, per Google, a Bing Crosby song from the movie “Holiday Inn.” To be sure, “White Christmas” from that movie was far better known, but, still, Irving Berlin is Irving Berlin.

    I resolve to do better with your story titles this year.

    • Suzy says:

      Thanks, John. Pretty sure I never made a resolution not to make any resolutions, and wouldn’t that be a contradiction in terms?

      I have had Bing Crosby singing this song in my head all week, which has been lovely. Not sure if I’ve seen “Holiday Inn,” but the same plot and some of the same songs were recycled in the movie “White Christmas” twelve years later.

      • John Shutkin says:

        Exactly right, Suzy. It is not as if movie sequels were invented in our lifetime. And a lot of people think that “White Christmas” was first sung in “White Christmas.” It’s a good trivia game stumper.

        • Suzy says:

          Good point about the trivia game stumper. You mention movie sequels, but “White Christmas” was not a sequel. Here’s what imdb says:

          “[White Christmas] is neither a sequel to, nor a remake of, Holiday Inn (1942), a persistent myth that continues to this day. Aside from both films starring Bing Crosby and featuring Irving Berlin scores (most notably the chestnut “White Christmas”), the plots and characters’ names are completely different.”

          Also, you’ll notice Danny Kaye plays the second guy in WC instead of Fred Astaire.

  3. Wonderful story Suzy, and HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!
    (Resolve to get drunk.)

  4. Love your story and its perfect resolution, Suzy, but especially love your photo…the champagne glasses as cake topper and your perfect second wedding attire and its off-white sophistication. Wishing you both a happy new year…and a HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!

  5. Marian says:

    What better way to start the new year right, Suzy, than with a wedding! I’m impressed by how you pulled it off and am glad it all worked out. Best of anniversaries.

  6. Dave Ventre says:

    Happy anniversary! You made it easy to remember; smart move.

  7. That was almost too quick a transition from “we were all drunk” to “I married my husband.” On rereading, I do understand the former (a fiction in any case) was not the precursor for the latter.

    I’m impressed with the investigative reporting you carried out for this prompt, interviewing members of different generations to glean whether your family had “cultural norms” around resolutions. Apparently, they do.

  8. Laurie Levy says:

    Your last resolution at your New Years wedding was the best of all, Suzy. Think of what a better world it would be if we all resolved to love and cherish those who are dear to us. Happy anniversary!

  9. Wonderful day to marry. No problems remembering anniversaries! My favorite episode involved you reading chapter after chapter of any given book in the bathroom. It’s a wonder you weren’t kicked out by one or several of your sisters!

    • Suzy says:

      We remember our anniversary, but nobody else does! (See my comment to Dave.) As to my reading in the bathroom, my sisters didn’t kick me out because we had several bathrooms.

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