Every year, I make New Year's Resolutions. Every year... nothing happens.

This year will be different! I am Resolved! My New Year's Resolution is to keep all of my New Year's Resolution - sort of a "wishing-for-more-wishes," beating the system kind of deal. Plus, this year is different. With this year comes my college graduation and my entrance into the real-people world, where you have to pay bills and stuff, and student discounts are a thing of the past. Yeah. That world.

So, without further ado, my Resolution shortlist. This will not be the last mention of it, hopefully. With a little bit of Resolve, I will happily report in three months that I am faithfully keeping all of my Resolutions.

1. Be a better student.
I haven't been the greatest student this past semester. It started out harmlessly enough, but as the semester progressed, I started missing more classes than I should have. And then I found it more enjoyable to play chicken with impending paper deadlines than to just plunk down some words on the computer screen. (See? I'm doing it now! It's not so hard...) And then I was shamelessly procrastinating on...well, on everything. Anyway, it's time for change. Despite my growing apathy about all things academic (part of the reason I decided to postpone my eventual enrollment in graduate school), I Resolve to do better for my last semester in college. No more wistfully eying my approaching graduation - focus on the here and now. It's only a couple of months...

2. Exercise.
Once upon a time I was a high school athlete who spent two hours a day, five days a week, running around on a soccer field. I was in kick-ass shape. I struck fear into the hearts of my opponents ninety minutes at a time with my slide tackles. Unfortunately, throughout my college career I have somewhat let myself go. While I would certainly not characterize myself as unhealthy, I'm definitely not in good shape. And it would be nice to be in good shape again. I've attempted, in the past, to form a running habit. The problem here is that I hate running. Eurgh. So I Resolve to find something else athletic that I like to do, and just do it. Like the commercial.

3. Read more. (And smarter.)
There's this BBC list floating around - 100 books, of which the BBC reckons the average person has only read 6. The list itself is semi-arbitrary, as far as I can tell - I mean, who puts The Da Vinci Code on the same list as Moby Dick? - but I did it anyway. At the beginning of 2009, I had read 44. Coming up on the end of 2009, a cursory glance shows that I have only added three books (The Kite Runner, The Time-Traveler's Wife, and Persuasion) to the ranks of those that I'd read. Anyway, this harmless anecdote is just an intro is to what I mean to say, which is that I Resolve to read more. (And smarter.) I consider myself to be a fairly widely read person, but there's always room for improvement. (And entertainment.) So from now on, I'm scouring book lists everywhere. Top Ten, you're going down.

4. Write a book.
I have written a lot...and finished nothing. This is depressing, to say the least. For 2010, I Resolve to finish one book. What this means: one complete draft, with beginning, middle, and end. It need not be polished or pretty. But it must be there. 

5. Find my passions.
Again on the college-ending riff. College is ending, which means a whole chapter of my life is coming to a close. For the first time in my cognizant life, I will not be defined primarily as 'student.' This is a huge change, and one that births several offshoots of thought, such as: Am I prepared for a non-student life? How does one create a non-student life, anyway? How will I give my life meaning? How do I pick the best TV shows to waste my time on? Who am I? Damn it, why didn't I hide myself away in graduate school like a smart person? To this end, I am Resolved to find my passions, to experiment, to think about what I enjoy and how to live a better, fulfilled sort of life. (And to figure out where I want to go to graduate school.)