Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Welcome to Aught-8

  • What I'm Watching/Listening To/Reading:
    • DVR-ed a good portion of the "Twilight Zone" marathon on SciFi today. I'm always blown away by how brilliant Rod Serling was. In his case, I don't use that word lightly.
    • I don't follow college football at all. I just happen to hear things on "PTI" or wherever, so I was intrigued to see Hawaii play. It's early in the game, but they don't look like they belong.
    • I'm reading Michael Chabon's latest, "Gentlemen of the Road". Good so far.
    • Nobody writes how men think better than Nick Hornby and nobody writes how Jews think better than Michael Chabon.
  • Random Thoughts/Links:
    • My left hand is becoming a claw from Guitar Hero. Getting better at it though.
    • In my awards, I purposefully left out awards for music, since I pretty much only liked Kanye last year. However, I did forget two -- worst TV show ("A Shot At Love with Tila Tequila") and movie (O, Jerusalem!).
  • Daily Rant:
    • Why do people make New Year's Resolutions? Is it because they're too lazy to try to improve themselves on a perpetual basis? Is it because they don't really want to make the change, so they can just laugh it off as a resolution they knew they weren't going to keep? Is it because they think that everyone else makes them and they want to fit in? I'm kind of intrigued because the thought of having one has never passed through my head. It just seems so phony to decide that you're going to make a change in your life because of some arbitrary date; to me, it's sort of like giving up french fries or something stupid like that for Lent because you have to give up something. Behaviors like these show that people are just paying lip-service to tradition. I'll be one of the first people to say that tradition is important, but only if you really find it meaningful. Nobody finds New Year's Resolutions meaningful. Life's too short to waste it on lying to yourself and everyone around you for appearance's sake. If you're really resolved, make it an everyday thing. People will respect that a lot more anyway. In the meantime, I can't wait until January 16 so I can go to the gym without worrying that it will be overcrowded.

6 comments:

Angie said...

Dude, why'd you have to bring Lent into your rant? Seems to me you could have just as easily have referred to keeping kosher during Passover...same thing, right?

Josh said...

Not really. You can choose what you give up for Lent, right? The rules for Passover are written in stone. No choice -- you keep kosher or you don't.

Angie said...

I think you either missed or are ignoring my underlying point...it's insulting for you to state/imply that it's "phony" for Christians to celebrate Lent by giving up something. I actually agree with your original point about New Year's resolutions, but it was inappropriate to make a derogatory comment about Lent and those who celebrate it while trying to make that point. I would think that someone who is so quick to find insult/offense in comments/actions regarding the Jewish faith and people would be a little more respectful of others of a different faith/culture.

Josh said...

My intention is not to be derogatory about Lent in any manner. I'm being derogatory about people who celebrate something by paying it lip service, by not giving up something truly meaningful. I'm sorry if I wasn't clear about that. I'm saying that I think that giving up french fries, for instance, is not really showing the reverence to such an important and sacred time.

Angie said...

Ok, I think I understand your distinction, but I still think it was inappropriate in your original post because
a) your argument against New Year's resolutions seemed to be due to the somewhat arbitrary timing, not the weightiness of the resolution itself; not so with your comments on Lent, so it's not really the same thing; and
b) while I agree that there are a lot of people out there who pay it lip service rather than take it seriously, I don't think it's up to other people to decide whether any particular individual is serious about it or not. French fries could be a good choice for someone who eats them every day. In past years, I have chosen to give up chocolate, soda and my snooze button for Lent; none of those are any more serious on the face of it, but actually were challenging for me. On the other hand, giving up cigarettes, which on the surface would seem meaningful, would be a joke of a choice for me since I don't smoke.

Josh said...

I was saying that the arbitrary nature (or because everyone else does it because it's tradition) undermines or, in some cases, replaces what could be a serious decision to change something.

A couple of other people got on me about passing judgement on people for what they consider to be important to them or difficult to give up. I think if I were to give up chocolate or soda (or any caffeine) for more than a few days, I'd probably kill someone. So I kind of randomly chose french fries because they seem like a dumb thing to me, but it's true that I'm passing judgement based on myself.