For the most part, I don’t do New Year’s Resolutions. They feel too much like rules to me and the world has quite enough of those, thank you very much. However, there is one thing I have challenged myself to do every year for some time now. Every year I fail, yet I look forward to trying again each January as I turn to a fresh page in my notebook.
If success tastes sweet, and defeat is bitter, then what would you call an experience that, while technically a fail, brings great satisfaction and joy to your life? Is it sweet or bitter? Or would it better be described with other words of gustatory perception such as salty or sour? Hmmm. Not quite right, any of them.
I recall as a child, learning about the different perceptions of taste. The teacher demonstrated with small dixie cups, each filled with a mystery liquid. She used cotton swabs to dab a drop or two of each flavor onto different areas of our tongues and we contrasted sweet with salty, sour with bitter. Later on, I learned, a new category was added. Umami. U-u-what??
I’ve always been rather sneaky. Just ask my mom. Playing it close to the vest comes naturally to me, so when it comes to New Year’s resolutions, I really don’t care to tip my hand. If I tell you what I resolve to do, you may try to hold me to it if I change my mind. To avoid the resentment that would surely ensue, I usually save us all the trouble and refuse to set goals or make resolutions. It’s simpler that way and I get to keep my friends. But once in a while, I do sneak a resolution in.