WILSON: New Year resolutions for 2019

All of the members of the Circular Congregation Breakfast Club were gathered around the big, round, oak table, occupying center stage at Sarah’s Diner. It was the first breakfast of the New Year and, judging by their hearty orders, Sarah surmised that none of them had placed a healthy diet atop their list of resolutions.

Last year, Harrison Winkle went that route, and resolved to lose a few pounds. He figured it would make him more appealing to the ladies. The previous summer, his wife had run off to Port Huron with a hardware salesman — leaving him with an empty house, a disagreeable old tom-cat, and a wide-open social calendar.

Harry’s first and last attempt at social networking was a blind date, arranged by Mort’s wife, at a potluck dinner held in the basement of the Baptist church. Having become a backslidden sinner over the course of the past 50 years of adulthood, Harry had forgotten how many “Thou-Shalt-Nots” accompany any function held in the basement of a Baptist church.

It did not take long for Harry to realize that being out in the dating world required personal maintenance, attention to detail, and feigning interest in someone else’s interests — all good reasons for his wife to take up residence in Port Huron. Disenchanted, Harry quickly abandoned any resolution involving dating, diets involving kale, or anything requiring self-improvement — allowing him to finish the year content in his self-centeredness and a steady breakfast regimen of biscuits and gravy.

“Anyone make any resolutions this year?” asked Sarah, as she went around the table, topping off cups with fresh, hot coffee.

“I resolved to not make any resolutions,” laughed Arnold Tobin, to everyone’s chagrin. It was the same resolution he made every year. Being the nation’s most renown unelected politician, Arnold worried that making a New Year resolution might expose his personal foibles as fodder for opposition research material.

“I resolved to do something about this convoluted time zone,” complained Jimmy. Jimmy hates everything about the Eastern Time Zone, loathes Daylight Saving Time, and by resolving to, “do something,” he meant, “continue to complain.” He is certain that his personal calling is to change time — to Central Standard.

“I resolve to finally meet the Lady in the Garden,” Tommy Jones said in a determined voice. “We have been typing messages every day for months. My fingers are getting chafed.” Tommy, at 82 years of age, had met a much younger 77-year-old lady by the garden produce in the grocery store. Following that initial meeting, their entire courtship had played out online via Facebook Messenger. It was a senior romance that drew its strength from the fact that the two never saw each other.

“I resolve to be a better man,” announced Big John Hudson, with a smug and satisfied grin.

“That won’t take much,” Firewalker observed — summing up everyone else’s thoughts concerning Big John’s path to betterment. “I’ve decided my resolution is to kick the can down the road this year,” Firewalker explained. “I’m having a Continuing Resolution — maybe revisit it in another few weeks and see if I can kick it down the road for another month or so.”

“Maybe you could get a partial shutdown of the resolution system until you get everyone to agree to resolve things the way you want things resolved,” groused Harry. “And good luck getting Jimmy to agree with anything.”

“How about you?” Harry asked of Sarah. “Did you make any resolutions?”

“To finally get some customers that know how to tip,” she laughed. It was the same resolution she made every year.

Larry Wilson is a mostly lifelong resident of Niles. His essays stem from experiences, compilations and recollections from friends and family. He can be reached at wflw@hotmail.com.

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