You’ve probably heard about people who never do today what they can put off to tomorrow. Well, I’ve been guilty of that of late. I’ve been putting it off for months, but I finally made myself go back and look at my new year’s resolutions, posted precisely a year ago, to see how I was progressing in my self-improvement efforts. And it seems like a good time to make a few more resolutions that really matter for 2007.
First, as promised a year ago, here are last year’s New Year’s Resolutions for Fun Hogs and my truly honest status report.
In 2006, I resolved to:
Spend more time outdoors than I did in 2005. It was a challenge, but I did it!
Stop acting like a teenage boy and force myself to refrain from thinking about fishing thirty times per day. Never came close, but I’ll try harder next year.
Spend more nights in tents than motels. I did it, bearly.
Pare down the size of my fishing tackle box so I can lift it into the boat all by myself. This was a joke. What was I thinking? Now, I have two tackle boxes I can hardly lift, and many killer lures and flies still unopened in the Man Room.
Spend more time outdoors with my grandkids than I did in 2005. I did it, but still not nearly enough, so I resolve to do twice as much in 2007.
Forbid myself from thinking uncomplimentary thoughts when watching somebody having a hard time backing up his or her boat. An easy one for me because I’ll never forget my first time.
Ride my bicycles one mile for every two miles I drive my truck. This might sound hard, but I knew I could do this because I’ve done it seven years now, and I resolve to do it again next year..
Apologize and retract all the bad things I’ve said about my boss and promise to treat him respectfully and invite him to the Christmas Party and even buy him a brewski or two on Friday night. I retracted them all, and I’m still self-employed.
Stop making so may typos in my colums–and stop writing it on Friday night after I’ve been out drinking with my boss. Not even close on this one. And I thought you’d want to see my favorite typos of the year again: “beer aware” (instead of bear aware), “chronic washing disease” (instead of chronic wasting disease) and “President Push,” which was so innovative that the guys down at the saloon thought I did it on purpose. I’d be tough to improve on these three next year, but I can always fry.
Eat Fewer Frozen Fish. I failed again, caught too many fish, and had to freeze them, but I’m keeping my Omega 3 levels up this winter.
While hunting, see at least one elk before it sees me. I spent too much of November working, so I confess to not putting in an adequate effort on this one. On those few occasions when I was out walking around with my gun, though, I did some good work for the Elk Stress Relief Foundation. In trying to see elk before they saw me, I gave them a good laugh and a welcome relief–and a better chance to avoid good hunters who actually threaten them.
Clean my boat more than last year, which would be at least twice. Ouch. I admit it. I only did it one time, but I vow to do it at least twice in 2007.
Kill at least half of the spiders in my Man Room I killed a few, but not enough, and they are a long way from being endangered species. Besides I’m starting to bond with them.
Become more of a trusting person by not saying so many bad things about my fish finder. That &#$%* fish finder is more useless than ever.
When backpacking, always pee on a rock. Score one for me. I learned my lesson.
Live every day like it was my last opportunity to go fishing or hiking. In other words, live every day like it’s the beginning of the rest of my fun, and of course, try to keep a positive attitude. I did it, no problem.
Spend less on outdoor gear than I did in 2005. Foolish me. I thought it would be hard to spend more than I did in 2005, but I did it, easily, without even thinking. And I’m not even going to try to improve in 2007.
Never criticize people until I have a walked a mile in their shoes because if they get angry, they will be a mile away and barefoot. Still working for me, and I suspect it will next year, too. Based on some of the comments I get on my columns, I should keep this policy.
Try to overcome my guilt from always catching more fish than my fishing buddy and giving him “anchor shoulder.” Not there yet, but working on it.
And most important, continue to be strong enough to fend off pressure from the health fanatics among us to eat one of those chicken and apple bratwursts. The easiest resolution of them all to keep. I won’t even resolve to do this year because it’s too easy.
And a few new ones. In 2007, I hereby resolve to:
Write fewer uncomplimentary stories about the Forest Service.
Write more uncomplimentary stories about the National Rifle Association.
Oh yes, a couple for the ultimate goal, marital bliss:
I promise to never again spill Buck Scent on the living room carpet.
When storing my Worm Lodge in the refrigerator between fishing trips to keep my bait fresh, I vow to more carefully seal it so the nightcrawlers will never again escape and crawl around on the leftovers.
In twelve months, I’ll report on how I fared with this year’s resolutions as well as last year’s failures.