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Davis, California

Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Column: Booking in the new year

So while wasting the all-too precious winter break away (i.e. through browsing Yahoo! articles), I learned that the three most common New Year’s resolutions are losing weight, quitting smoking and drinking less.

Although these facts caused some snickering on my part at the narcissistic nature of us Americans, it hit me that I have never even really bothered to have a New Year’s resolution in my 19 years of existence. (The elementary school ones when you make stuff up like “I will wash my dog better” don’t count. That probably wasn’t something to be very proud of, either.)

This was enough to get me motivated to bust out a pen and paper – or rather, open a Word document – and attempt to write a list out.

I figured the Yahoo! article would be a helpful reference for examples of what my New Year’s resolution should be. After all, the top three resolutions seem especially likely on a college student’s list.

However, I had to stop kidding myself. None of the top three resolutions are remotely possible for me.

I know I’m not even going to bother trying to go on a diet, as my “diets” tend to last half way through one meal of plain salad.

I hate the smell of smoke so much that I seriously debated joining the “I HATE people who smoke” group on Facebook. (Trust me, that was a big deal since I also hate the outrageous amount of things you can be “fans” of on Facebook …)

Finally, drinking less? I’m underage, so am I even allowed to admit that I drink AT ALL? (Not that I do drink. No, really. I don’t.) So just based on public scrutiny, there goes that option …

So what could be a legitimate resolution for me? I pondered that question while simultaneously checking my grades (damn, no A’s.) And THAT caused the epiphany – no, not the “study more to get better grades” epiphany, but the “procrastinate less to have more time to at least think about studying” epiphany.

How would I be able to actually end this procrastination? Why, of course, by slowly breaking bondage with Facebook (my consideration to even join that silly “I HATE people who smoke” Facebook group was a sign for me to get off the site ASAP).

Trust me, Facebook is a huge threat. It’s the ultimate grade-killer that sneaks in from the back of your mind and slowly slaughters what’s left of your thoughts as you attempt to keep up with your reading before you inevitably fall behind.

Not only that, refreshing the page every 10 seconds only to see statuses about all your friends’ lack of focus doesn’t help much, either. The saying “misery loves company” can only go so far. When the “company” happens to be a few hundred miserable, procrastinating online friends, that’s a little too much.

I figured I could survive (albeit meagerly) with logging onto Facebook roughly twice a week: Thursdays to post these columns (how else will my minimal audience read these?) and whenever my Facebook-oriented aunt bugs me to Facebook chat with her.

While I fiendishly placed all the blame on Facebook, I have to admit, there was a point where I felt a little foolish. How could I place all the blame on one silly little website? That’s when I decided to add a little thing called AIM onto the resolution list.

Now, normally I don’t have a problem with chatting online, except for the fact that my conversations tend to last the entire night. And into early morning – the day before a paper is due.

Trust me, these conversations range anywhere from debating the definition of “noob” to the thoughts of a philosophical thesis. (I might as well actually be writing that philosophical paper rather than bickering about it online.) So goodbye to time-wasting, late-night convos!

I’m just praying this all works out. How could it possibly not? It’s much easier than eating plain salad for an entire year. (But in case I do fail, there’s always that salad hiding in the corner of the fridge.)

TIFFANY LEW wrote part of this column over winter break. She didn’t finish it until the night before it was due. Resolution: Failed. Contact her at tjlew@ucdavis.edu to share your New Year’s resolution successes/failures.

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