Here We Go Again

The ending of a calendar year, a fresh start, a week or so where reflections and resolutions demand center stage.

Probably it doesn’t matter, because we quickly return to our normal ways of life. Those good intentions disappear along with the stash of fudge we thought was safely hidden.

This New Year I was in bed before any balls dropped or fireworks exploded. Our dog growled when the neighbors shot off a few July leftovers, but it didn’t last long and we all slept well. I have a difficult time staying awake past ten o’clock, and midnight’s asking too much.

I avoid resolutions, too, since I’ll only lose the paper I’d write them on. My desk is already covered by mysterious waste, bearing word fragments, numbers (without names) and other meaningless markings. It’s my hand writing, all right, but that’s all I can tell you.

As a photographer it should have been easy to come up with at least one actionable resolve. Treat everyone who looks at or buys your photographs with courtesy and intelligence. I learned that years ago, and it’s called a good business sense. It makes you feel professional, even when you want to punch a guy out for his knuckle-headed comments. I resolve to spend less money on equipment this year. We all say that, then buy what we need. There’s the game: need vs. want. This year’s glossy advertisements are tempting (the photographer probably used the latest model, the weakling), but since The Old Stuff continues to please me that one won’t work either. See how hard resolving can be?

Like the ultra-marathon runners who keep their goals immediate, never looking too far ahead, I’m just going to try to be more thoughtful about things and not waste time on unimportance. Simplify, simplify seems a more urgent call each year, and the person who coined hindsight is always 20/20 wasn’t a 20-something.

If I wander off the trail occasionally I’ll no doubt be in good company and will anticipate our conversation.

May this year be as you wish it to be.


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