By Jacob Zinn
With every new year, there’s a new year’s resolution to be made and subsequently broken.
No one is good at keeping their resolutions, your dad included. But the new year is his second, third, 16th chance to a) lose weight b) eat healthier or c) finally build that backyard deck your mother’s been nagging him about since their honeymoon.
Our family has never been one to make new year’s resolutions. It’s like creating a one-item to-do list that takes a year to cross off.
With the end so far from sight, how can anyone expect your dad to stick to his workout regimen or dirt-flavoured diet? There’s no time for using the Shake Weight or calorie counting between his 40-hour-per-week job, his regular around-the-house chores and his crime drama reruns.
Your dad might be like my dad, in that he sets smaller goals for himself throughout the year. He’ll change his eating habits/exercise routine/hygiene slightly to reach short-term achievements.
Let’s face it: your dad can only handle so much of something at a time. He’s old, and he’s not meant to try P90X or Insanity. If unstacking the dishwasher is an accomplishment to him, let him have his moment.
That’s not to say he should get off that easy for his new year’s resolution. If your dad’s been resolving to do something bigger like get in better shape, give him a kick in the pants and be his coach, the same way he probably coached your hockey team, baseball practice or child beauty pageant.
Deep down, your dad really does want to get his resolution done—he just doesn’t want to adjust his lifestyle. Dare him to finish the resolution he’s been working on since before you were born, and if he reaches that far, dare him to start another in 2013.
It’s a clean slate for resolution do-overs. Sure, your dad’s resolution may be as old as you, but it doesn’t have to be. Two decades is long enough to put something off.
And while you’re at it, get him to finish building that deck before your mom starts asking you to do it.