Originally printed in The Daily Targum, January 27, 1994

New Year's Resolutions

I suppose it's a bit late to share New Year's resolutions, especially since I've already broken most of mine. But since it is a new year, with lots of exciting new changes around the New Brunswick area, and since you're sitting in class bored out of your immensely sleepy skull, I figured that I would share my New Year's resolutions with you. But first, I want to share with you some other people's resolutions, because I think that they are extremely important to the average Rutgers student. Of the utmost importance to you are the resolutions promised by Christie Whitman last week when she took office as New Jersey's governor. A shockingly revealing sampling from her list of things to do this year:

  1. Lower taxes.
  2. Cancel classes.
  3. Let people own lots of guns.
  4. Convince her daughters to do more sappy commercials for her.
  5. Cancel the poor.
  6. Convince her daughters to own lots of guns.
  7. Cancel the middle class, too.
  8. Legally change her name to 'Nat X.'

Okay, so I made that last one up. But you get the idea. There you have it, folks; Christie Whitman's resolutions. Let s hear it for our new governor. You have to put your guns down to applaud.

Since I don't want to be partisan or anything (another resolution broken already), I also present a list of New Year's resolutions by the newly out-of-work Jim Florio:

  1. Order a pizza. Or two.
  2. Watch the entire James Bond series, in order.
  3. Pretend to teach a class at Rutgers.
  4. Make a TA do all the work.
  5. Order Chinese food.
  6. Shave head; enter 'Mr. Clean' look-alike contest.
  7. Lose that too.

Also, I should include some resolutions of people closer to home, like our very own Fran Lawrence, who was very active in helping clean up after the ice storms this winter:

  1. Let ice melt.
  2. Laugh at people slipping on ice.
  3. Call up Jim Florio for a game of 'Connect Four.'

Of course, we at The Daily Targum have some resolutions too. For example, the Targum would like to see the Rutgers community be more aware of important national and international issues, and we have (on occasion) been criticized for our scanty coverage of such worldwide issues. Therefore, we invite you to watch for the brand new official Daily Targum 'New York Times' insert section, found daily at newsstands and big ugly blue padlocked boxes everywhere.

Personally, I had a lot of extremely insightful, incisive, and insignificant resolutions this year. One of them I was already able to exercise, in this very paragraph--spelling 'a lot' with two words. My second resolution was to go to every single one of my classes this semester. That one was pretty easy--thanks to the weather, I've only had two classes so far. Another of my resolutions was to be nicer to people in my columns, especially to public figures. This resolution lasted all of four sentences. This is not a kinder, gentler column.

Some of my resolutions were of a more personal nature; I vowed that this was the year I was going to get in shape, maybe do some weightlifting. (But this year, I really mean it.) My resolutions on the topic of personal fitness, however, always seem to change ever so slightly as the year wears on: 'I resolve not to gain more than ten pounds this year. Okay, twenty. Aw, the hell with it--give me two chicken steaks, five hamburgers, and lots of bacon, please.'

'Okay, I can skip one class a week, but just one' becomes a popular resolution about this time of the semester.

On an eventually related note, I want to thank the complete strangers who pushed my girlfriend's car out of the ice last week so that she could move in. The city of New Brunswick, which did a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad job dealing with this winter's ice storms, should take a lesson from these guys. One of my actual resolutions every year is to be more like them. Of course, every year I blow it. Last year, it was the turnips incident. This year, I promise to try harder. I won't even tempt myself by buying turnips.

(Please note that turnips can be dangerous when traveling at high velocities. Please don t throw them from the roof of a building. Especially onto my car. However, don't be afraid to buy them, sell them, or own them. Christie 'Todd X' Whitman is our governor now. She is going to try her best to uphold every New Jersey citizen's God-given right to bear turnips, no matter how many turnip-related accidents there are in the home every year. Probably, very few, I imagine. After all, turnips don't kill people, morons with guns kill people.)

Another one of my resolutions is to try to write serious, hard-hitting, analytical, coherent columns. I'll try again in a couple weeks.

Jason Gottlieb is a Rutgers College senior who is currently applying to graduate schools for the study of safety engineering. His top choices are UCLA, the University of Mississippi, NYU, Chernobyl University, the Women's College of Bhopal, and Penn State--Three Mile Island. Alternately, he is seeking employment in the White House.

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