I have a nasty case of the post-holiday blues. Apparently they’re pretty common, seeing how the world is ending in 2012 (why, John Cusack, why?) and it’s no longer good enough to overhaul just certain aspects of your life, like your snaggly cuticles or inability to stand up to your boss. No, now you must change everything:
Talk about pressure. I like how the Yankee magazine people added “for the better!” Just in case you weren’t sure. Just in case you thought this was an article on how to royally fuck up everything.
The year 2010 is particularly traumatic for me because I am turning 35 on January 4. I had assumed that self-reflection would help smooth my descent into 2010 and close-to-middle-age-dom. You know, a few days of Who am I and how did my ass get so big? But after Googling “dying inside after Christmas” I stumbled upon an article that said not to peer inward.
According to Susan Battley, PsyD, PhD, a leadership psychologist and clinical associate professor at State University of New York at Stony Brook: “If you keep looking back at the old year—especially last year—you will get into a downward spiral.”
(I'm curious what the "old year" might be if it's not "last year." 1982 maybe?)
Battley believes in something she calls Three BAGs Full. A BAG is a Big Audacious Goal. She says that three is the absolute maximum and that one might be more realistic. I like the idea of only having one to three goals, but I absolutely detest the word audacious; why not Big Ass Goal?
Alas, the BAG acronym is her brainchild, not mine.
The perky Battley is nice enough to provide suggestions for people’s BAGs. I was nice enough to provide my responses:
• Learn a second language. No. I don’t feel like it.
• Volunteer. I already do; every night I volunteer that night’s culinary disaster to the garbage can.
• Make more money. Bite me.
• Join a dating service. Ok, but I’ll have to check with Chuck first.
• Change careers.
Aahhhhh, change careers. Now there’s something I can dig my teeth into. Why, just yesterday as Junior and I were watching the sea lion show at Mystic Aquarium, I was thinking that exact thing. I marveled at how active the sea lion trainers were; how their jobs were so hands-on and varied. Then I thought about my own job and how I spend 35 hours a week sitting on my ass.
Why? Why did I choose such a sedentary career? Why, when the high school guidance counselor separated us into groups of those who’d like to sit for a living and those who’d like to stand, did I pick the sitters? If I’d played my cards differently, I could be tossing raw fish into the mouth of a 600-pound sea creature and paying my bills all at the same time! Just me, my perky butt and fish.
So, that’s one of my BAGs. In 2010 I’m going to change careers. At the top of my list are: belly dancing instructor, Mulletville investigative reporter and professional dart-ist (don’t laugh: the average salary for professional dart player is $73,000). Wouldn’t that be sweet poetic justice?
My second BAG is to learn how to stuff stuff into stuff. Like these:
Yep, that about does it. The new me: a belly dancing, food stuffing dart thrower. Aim high, Mrs. Mullet, aim high.
(Admit it. You want me—even in my 35-year-old faded glory. You do!)
About me: I'm 42 and added another gherkin to our pickle party of a family. My husband Chuck, our 9-year-old Junior, our 6-year-old Everett, our toddler and I live in a town in Connecticut I affectionately call Mulletville Lite (aka my childhood hometown). My friends call me Nutjob, and they're right. In my husband's spare time he dresses up as a Viking and chases ghosts (and I'm the nutjob?). When I'm not busy working as a graphic designer, I lie in a ball in the corner.