Happy Ending: Resolutions

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Sean BrileyShawn Briley, nary a resolution in sight. Photo: Brent Bielmann

There is no phenomenon quite like that of a new year. As one calendar year comes to an end, and the next one beckons on the not-very-distant horizon, strange things begin to happen. Champagne sales skyrocket. Women wear dresses that shine and heels that impede. Men wear their nicest flannels. Both genders wear the worst plastic hats and tiaras, toot horns that sound like dying geese and watch a big glowing ball slowly descend in the heart of Manhattan. It is all so phenomenal.

But perhaps the strangest tradition that a new year ushers in is that of the resolution. Every year, in late December, people tend to intrinsically analyze their lives with the most critical of eyes. What am I doing wrong? How can I become better? More often than that, this all boils down to being fat. In the mind of most folks, the only thing they’re truly doing wrong is obesity. And so they resolve to ditch some pounds and arrive at fighting weight. But is that really what matters?

Shawn Briley doesn’t say no. He shouts it. Losing weight will not make you any better of a person in 2014. Philanthropy, or at least general kindness will. So if you’re two clicks away from Jenny Craig and an annual gym membership, it might be time to reconsider. Why don’t you just save that money and go to Teahupo’o, tubby? —Brendan Buckley