New Year’s Rezilutions – A Word of Warning

By Dr Gert Swanepoel

Good day. Goeie dag. Sawubona. And Happy New Year, to all you wonderful citizens of Safferland. I hope you had a blessed Christmas with family and friend, filled with joy and laughter, swims in the swimming pool and maybe also a few braai’s. We celebrated Jesus’s birthday with a very special turkey which was marinated for 12 days (of Christmas) in a sauce with brandy and nutmeg, then slow-cooked in a big Weber in Bethlehem, the one in between Harrismith and Senekal, not the one in which the baby Jesus was found, although he must have also been cooking – in the manger, cause let’s face it- it’s bladdy hot in the desert.

And so now here we are with our full bellies and fancy suntans, looking forward to a brand new year. We are filled with hope and determination to make it a better year than last year, which, let’s face it, was a bit kak for everyone. (Marta and I are both big George Michael fans). So what do we do? Yes, we make our New Year’s resolutions.

The dictionary says a resolution is a ‘a firm decision to do or not do something’, and I say there’s nothing wrong with this. For example, I needed to make a firm decision to not let Marta’s brother Arno cut a piece of the turkey off on the 7th day of cooking to see if it was being cooked all the way through, cause then it would’ve dried the turkey out. Sis. But the danger of making a resolution- that I want to bring in to your attention- is the pressure we put on ourselves to not break it.

Imagine yourself, for a second, you decide that in the New Year you want to cut down desserts because your doctor, who’s not a psychologist, has told you that your blood sugar and pressure levels are high, and if you not careful, you will be a risk for getting diabetes or heart and kidney disease. Then you wake up on the first day of the new year and you feeling great about your resolution, in fact you already feel more healthy in your thoughts and this puts you in such a good mood that you find yourself singing a Adele song in the pool and even laughing at your bother-in-laws sick jokes. It’s going so well but after lunch, (which was delicious and moist) you suddenly realise that there is a big lemon meringue pie sitting on the table, and lemon meringue pie is your favourite dessert. The voice in your head says ‘Don’t eat it! Think of your health!’ But you also hear the lovely lemon curd and soft, spongy meringue singing, in harmony, better than Adele, ‘Taste me! Put me in your mouth and feel the explosion of flavours!’ And eventually, after a minute, the lemon meringue voices is so strong that you can’t resist anymore and you take a bite.

It tastes amazing, the hint of cinnamon in the biscuit base is a unexpected surprise, but because you broke your resolution you feel terrible. And the danger of feeling terrible, is that you feel so terrible, that you give up there and then, and don’t try again. Terrible! That’s not going to help, is it? And if you don’t keep trying to cut down on sugar, in a short time you’ll get all bloated and fat and have bad breath and die. And then none of your New Year’s dreams will come true.

So be careful of making big New Year’s resolutions. Rather make little resolutions every day. And if you break them, don’t worry, because they little, so it’s easy to make them again. Keep on making them until they start to stick. Because Rome wasn’t built in a day, and Usain Bolt had to practice every day before he became the fastest man on television.

Also, be sure to wipe your mouth after eating lemon meringue pie, cause you could fall asleep and have your lip stung by a wasp. At least he couldn’t tell any more jokes.

All the best.

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