For the remaining 360 days of 2013, I resolve...
• To keep a running tally of every Bruce Springsteen song that I come across when scanning through my dozen or so favorite stations on the satellite radio in the truck. On Dec. 31, 2013, I suspect it's going to be an astronomical number.
I have nothing against Springsteen. He's an icon. A rare talent with incredible stamina both in the studio and on stage. He's one of those celebrities that I could simply refer to as "Bruce" in this column and you'd more than likely know who I'm talking about. The fact that his nickname is "The Boss" is a fairly good indicator of his lofty perch in the musical stratosphere.
But most of his songs I find unlistenable. Of his seemingly countless tunes that are in constant rotation on many XM Radio stations – including the "E Street" channel, named for his famous backing band and dedicated to nothing but Springsteen tunes – I can count a solid half-dozen that will cause me to not hit the "seek" button when I come across them. Of those six, I can think of four that I seriously dig, and would play a second time if the radio had a rewind button.
I won't run from the fact that most of the Springsteen songs I like come from the period when he was most successful commercially, back in the 1980s during the "Born in the U.S.A." and "Tunnel of Love" days. I think he wrote some of his best music when he was briefly and disastrously married to actress Julianne Philips, but was pining for his true love, Patti Scialfa, whom he eventually dumped Phillips for.
Don't hate me, citizens of Boss-ville.
(I could write the same critique of the acclaimed band Radiohead, too.)
• To eat at least one "Cutie" a day. Don't know what a "Cutie" is? Well, it's like a miniature orange, somewhere between the size of a golf ball and a tennis ball. And when they're at their utmost ripe-ness, it's just about the best three bites of fruit you can experience. Obviously, they're good for you, too.
My wife started buying bags of them at the store a couple months ago, and they've been immensely popular with the males of all ages in our house. There have been more for me to eat lately, too, because one of our sons a couple weeks ago stumbled across a Cutie that had apparently slipped through the cracks on the conveyor belt during inspection and had a few tiny worms in it. Now, our youngest son seem to think that every Cutie is crawling with maggots, so...more for me.
Page 2 of 2 - • To take a break from all my gum-chewing once in a while and give some trendy, yet super-powerful breath mints a try. Chewing all that gum is hard work.
• To be faithful to my renewed daily fish oil supplement regimen. Did you know they make a “no burp” fish oil pill? It costs about twice as much as the lots-o-burps fish oil pills but, still, that’s fancy livin’.
• To not feel guilty over the fact that there are two bags of Starbucks House Blend coffee beans tucked in the back of a shelf in our freezer, and yet I keep buying various bags of Starbucks or Caribou coffee grounds when I'm at the store.
Have I really reached this point of epic laziness in my life? When I’m deluding myself into believing that I don't have enough time in my hectic schedule to spend a couple minutes every couple days grinding beans in our electric grinder?
I remember a few Christmases ago, when I opened up a gift bag containing three bags of Starbucks coffee grounds, not beans, and I had to force a smile and pretend that I loved the gift. Meanwhile, deep down inside, I felt like I'd not only been shanked in the stomach by a fellow prison inmate armed with a toothbrush that’s been filed into a lethal weapon, but my attacker had also snapped the shank off in my guts, leaving me to writhe in agony on the shower room floor in Cell Block D before slowly bleeding to death.
Coffee grounds were sacrilege. Beans were the bomb, or so I told myself back in those haughty-taughty days of needless snobbery. But, today? You don't need to grind grounds. Enough said.
• To finally start writing that book I’ve been putting off for so many years. I’ve been inspired by the book I’m currently reading, “Proof of Heaven,” authored by a renowned neurosurgeon who was clinically dead and insists he saw proof of God and a glorious afterlife.
My book will be entitled, “Proof of Hell” and will consist of only a single page. On that page will be a photo of ESPN’s Chris “Boomer” Berman. Or maybe America’s royal couple, Kanye West and Kim Kardashian (and baby to be, of course).