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Happy New Year’s (un)Resolution | Lisa Scottoline

Skip the resolutions this year, because who needs it?

It’s the time of year when most people make New Year’s resolutions, but not me.

I make New Year’s unresolutions.

In other words, rather than thinking about the things I did wrong all year and resolving to stop doing them, I prefer to think about the things I did right and resolve to keep doing them.


I like to be positive.

And I don’t think it’s good for people to sit around and think about all the things they suck at.

If that person is me, for example, it becomes a very long list in no time.

And, honestly, why bother?

Or, as Mother Mary used to say, who needs it?

You may remember that Mother Mary, when she was in hospice at my house, wrote those very words on her little dry-erase board, since at that point she couldn’t speak. Those were actually her last words to us, and we will never forget them.

So anytime you’re thinking negative thoughts about yourself, I invite you to ask yourself, who needs it?

And the answer is: Nobody needs it, least of all you.

Because you’re a great person and I know that because you’re reading this column.

Secondly, I like to be realistic at all times, and New Year’s resolutions have never been a realistic option for me.

Like, for example, I’ve been resolving to lose weight for years, and the only time I lost weight was last month in Rome, when I resolved to eat everything I wanted.

Can you explain that?

I can’t.

And, anyway, who needs it?

So, my friends, let’s try to make this unresolution thing happen.

You can play along at home.

Think about things you really liked about yourself this year, and resolve to keep being adorable.

You can make yourself happy just by being yourself.

How great is that?

So, for example, here is something I’ve done this year that I intend to keep doing in the new year.

Watching food television.

I watch more food television shows than anybody on the planet. I watch Lydia, Nigella, and Rachel, and I also watch Netflix shows like the British baking show, and now a show about salt, fat, acid, and sugar.

Basically, my personality in a nutshell.

I’m not cooking, but I’m learning about cooking, which is almost the same thing.

For example, I’ve learned there are different kinds of salt, which led me to buy in addition to Morton’s, kosher salt and English salt. This is supposed to give me a variety when I season my food, but so far, I’ve tried my three different types of salt on only one type of food, which is popcorn.

And I can reliably report to you that all of the salt is salty.

Which is just what I was going for!

I also learned there are different kinds of pepper, so I went crazy in the spice aisle, getting black peppercorns, pink peppercorns, and green peppercorns, then I bought a mill for them, and now it looks like funfetti on top of my scrambled eggs.

And the cracked peppercorns get stuck between your teeth, which is a great look for those of us who enjoy our celibacy.

And the same thing happened with vinegar.

I learned that not only is there wine vinegar, but rice wine vinegar, and balsamic vinegar, which comes aged 15 years and also aged 30 years, which looks like black gold and cost as much.

And now there’s so much stuff on my kitchen table that between the bottles of vinegar, the salt shakers, and the pepper shakers, there’s no room for food.

Or me.

Nevertheless, it’s fun, and if you’re looking for ways to give yourself unnecessary choices in life, this is the unresolution for you.

And the other great thing about food television is that it is not about politics.

I don’t know if you’ve noticed lately, but everything these days is about politics.

Music ends up being about politics, and sports ends up being about politics, and family dinners are about politics, and conversations at cocktail parties are about politics.

I just left a cocktail party and everybody was talking about politics, and instead of smiling, they all ended up frowning.

Eventually, I sneaked away and left them yelling at each other.

Because Mother Mary was right.

Life is too short to frown too long.

Happy New Year!