We make them at the start of each New Year and then promptly break half of them by the end of the first week. Indeed, New Year's resolutions are made to be broken. Since we are at the start of 2010, Thingsjamaicanslove.com has produced the following resolutions that we believe are worth adopting and keeping and may even make a difference in the average Jamaican’s quality of life in what is shaping up to be a challenging year:
1. Get in Shape - Does your belly have its own Facebook profile and Twitter account? Do you need a stick to touch your toes? Do the back of your thighs bear a striking resemblance to the contours of the cockpit country? Then you just may need to get in shape. The first step is admitting that you are getting too big. The second step is engaging in counter measures (as opposed to more counter flour measures). There’s no better time to start than now.
2. Spend More Time With Your Bredrins/Sistrens - The last time you saw your bonafide bredrin was early last year. He was standing in front of the Women’s changing room at a popular department store, looking quite comfortable holding his wife’s bags while she tried on some outfits. Damn it man, y'all grew up together and now you only “buck-up” each other occasionally when he gets ‘let out’ for a wedding or a funeral. Take the initiative and organize something nuh! – preferably at frequent intervals.
3. Discover Jamaica - Crime keeping you locked behind doors? Be brave and come on out, Jamaica is bigger and more beautiful than you know! If you’ve never departed from the highways/city streets and visited the country’s interior - I’m taking about places like the hills of Westmoreland, St. Bess, Manchester and Northern Clarendon here - then you don't know what I'm talking about.
Just make sure you have gone through the checklist of essentials that includes valid drivers licence, road map, insurance certificate, enough funds to soften the firm hand of the law if caught speeding (I’m kidding of course…ahem!), current weather update, pumped-up spare tire and a machete (for dealing with wild bush, rabid mongooses, intimidating countryfolk, etc.).
4. Start Eating Healthy – The Christmas ‘nyamings’ almost did you in? Well start the year right with a good, professional, industrial-strength ‘wash-out’. Having ‘flushed your system’ how about you start eating those fruits, vegetables and ground-provisions again? (Do it now before the Government changes its mind and decides to tax them!)
The tip of the day: use less oil. For some reason, in Jamaica, if it isn’t floating in oil then it’s not great food – what’s up with that!
5. Get Out of Debt – It’s 2010 and it’s about time you stopped playing hide and seek with the bailiff. Just give the people back dem tings and stop buying on credit!
6. Learn a Skill - Your wicked boss almost giving you a nervous breakdown and making you seriously consider a career change? Then go learn to do something marketable from now. Do an evening course, watch a free internet tutorial, or learn a new language (some may even find learning the ‘Queen’s English’ beneficial). Please note: picking locks is not considered a ‘skill’. Please make sure your new skills are not illegal.
7. Start Reading - Don’t be like the guy who after reading about the dangers of drinking, gave up reading. Even if it’s the instruction manual for the new toaster that you got this Christmas, start reading - Jamaicans just don’t read enough. It’s especially important to become familiar with current local and global events. That way, when you hear somebody important on the television say that we won’t be affected by a global financial crisis affecting every other nation in the world, you can immediately say with confidence, “Eh?!”
8. Work With a Plan - 2010 is going to be rough. We all know that. So work with a plan, It will make life easier and the unexpected more manageable. I hear that there’s a book you can buy with the current year at the front and lots of dates and days inside and space for writing down planned activities. I think its called a Diary...If you going to buy one, get one for me too...afterall!
9. Start Paying your Taxes –Inadequate parking outside, long lines inside. Confusing forms with crazy numbering. A system for online payment but you still have to go in for a receipt. What you have to go through in order to pay taxes at the tax office ain’t fun and you still will never know where the money goes. But let’s just take their word that it goes to more than pricey consultants giving advice on even more things that can be taxed.
10. Wear Your Size - Shirt too small, skirt too tight - the double stitch bawling out for mercy. Don’t know your neck size, inseam, arm length or belt size. Shoes on your feet so small that people asking you what’s wrong and why you crying. Playing tug-o-war with your pants crotch, constantly tugging at your undergarments in the back when no one’s looking. C’mon it’s 2010, wear yuh size nuh!