I’ll be honest: I’m pretty horrible at New Year’s resolutions. I make them and then I don’t stick by them, usually because they’re too broad, too intangible — things like “get a real job,” “be healthier,” “appreciate New York more,” “keep in touch better,” and “be more social.” While worthy and important goals to be sure, these things are not exactly super exciting to think about or even do. So this year, I’ve decided to look at my resolutions a little differently. I’ve compiled a list of things that are easy to track, tangible entries on my 2016 checklist. Some of them might be harder to accomplish than others. But they are all things that will make me happy if I can do them, and things that, if I manage them, probably mean I’m accomplishing some of those more intangible goals too. So here goes…
Shenanigans In London: My friend Kaitlin moved to London in the middle of last year, and since then she’s been sending me various Thrillist, Time Out, and Buzzfeed articles outlining things we absolutely must do when I visit (because my visiting is non-negotiable). Zelda and I visited London back in 2011, and there was definitely something in the jam and clotted cream. We fell in love with the city, and I think five years is the perfect amount of time to revisit. I’d go back just for this bar, and some of these views. And, if I am able to make it across the pond, that means I’ve probably saved at least some money, and possibly have a job with real vacation days? Maybe? A girl can dream.
Thematically Catered Movie/TV Marathons: Okay, so this one might not be super big-picture-goal-oriented. But before The Force Awakens opened, some friends and I had a marathon of the original Star Wars trilogy, complete with thematic snacks, and it was so much fun that it definitely needs to become a regular thing. Next up: A Sunday Funday marathon of You’re the Worst (at least all of season one, maybe season two as well), complete with Edgar’s special breakfast dishes (breakfast nachos, lasagna, and pizza), and Vernon’s trash juice (recipes helpfully compiled by the Hollywood Reporter). Other marathons and thematic recipe suggestions are welcome.
Four/Five-Borough Brewery Tour: I love craft beer, yet although I’ve lived in New York City for three and half years now, I have yet to visit the many breweries that lie within the city’s borders. I’ve decided I need to get my butt to at least one in each of the boroughs, or maybe just Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens and The Bronx…but if there’s a brewery I should drag myself out to Staten Island for, please let me know. And with appreciation of good beer produced right here in Kings, Queens, or New York County, comes a greater appreciation of this city I (sometimes begrudgingly) call home these days.
Brush Up Your Shakespeare: My roommate and I had this crazy idea about a year ago. What if we tried to see staged productions of all of Shakespeare’s plays in one year? It was a crazy notion, one we really had neither time nor money for, but then in November, the idea resurfaced and we told ourselves, “Let’s just try it.” Maybe we’ll fail, but in the end we’ll get to see a lot of Shakespeare, even if we’re not quite at 100% or the First Folio. In the process, we keep ourselves cultured, and we get to tell people about this crazy thing we tried. More to come on this front; stay tuned.
Escape The Room: I had my first Escape the Room experience a few months ago for a friend’s birthday, and I cannot think of a better thing to do with a bunch of pals and an hour. Seriously, if you like high stakes, puzzles, teamwork, and celebrating your personal achievements however small, this is for you. I want to go to all the different puzzles with all my different friend groups! Being more social, check.
Girls Trip: For a few years, our (mine and Zelda’s) Louisville friend group has been planning a trip to Thailand. It was supposed to happen at the tail end of 2016, but it’s probably going to be postponed due to our all being in very different places than we were when we originally planned to take the trip, and currently lacking the funds/vacation days for a big international trip. But that doesn’t mean we can’t take a less involved trip. So goal for the year: a weekend getaway with those gals. Also, already on the docket, a mid-July trip back to Louisville with Zelda, Steph, and Katie for this year’s Forecastle Festival. Now if I could only throw a road trip into the mix, preferably cross country, I would really have hit Trip Goals.
James Bond: Let me tell you a secret. In my entire life, I have seen, total, one James Bond movie (Skyfall, mostly because I liked the Adele song). So in an effort to educate myself in important pop culture reference material, I’m going to attempt to watch — actually watch, not just have on in the background — all 24 Bond movies, most of which are now available on Hulu, in 2016. This is mostly for my own sense of accomplishment. I love crossing things off a list, and I also love watching movies. Plus as a self-declared pop culture nerd, I feel this is an important gap in my grasp of the canon that needs to be filled
Resolutions are always hard to keep, and I think maybe it’s because we do things we think we should want to do, and not necessarily things we actually want to do. This year, I’m going to enjoy my resolutions. They’ll allow me to spend more time with my friends, appreciate the city I live in, have a reason to save up money, and fill in some all-important gaps in my pop culture knowledge. But most importantly, they’re personal, and they’re things I have a realistic chance of accomplishing, with a concrete plan for how I’ll know when I can check them off my list. This year, let’s resolve to celebrate small victories and to do things we want. Those are promises we may actually be able to keep.