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Feature
‹‹ V.22 No.3 | January 17 - 23, 2013

Feature

Hit Me With Your Learning Stick

By Carl Petersen

The trouble with New Year's Resolutions is that they so often focus on the negative. Bobby wants to quit this, Betty wants to quit that, and the underlying subtext fairly screams that Bobby and Betty hate themselves about something. Even a resolution framed in the most benign language, like for example your decision to “start eating healthier,” is just a thinly veiled confession that you often live on nothing but corn chips. Inevitably, your bold proclamation becomes a one-way ticket to a bag of corn chips and a stare-down with the meaningless universe. (It's a universe with corn chips, at least.)

There's absolutely nothing wrong with hating yourself. It's a virtue, in fact. But why not, in addition to your hatred, focus on something positive? Learn a new skill, create a new talent, water some small seed of knowledge with your tears of discontent and let it grow into a monstrous tree of self-congratulatory bluster. The tree can never be taken from you. Instead of a compulsive chip-eater, you become a compulsive chip-eater who knows how to fold an origami frog and drive a semi-truck. Let's all hit ourselves with the learning stick and pick up a couple tricks on top of the pounds we might not lose. I'll meet you for chips in 2014.