Celebrating the Unpopular Arts

Question of the Week: What’s your New Year’s Resolution?

I don’t really do resolutions in each new year, simply because people don’t change that dramatically, and we should be trying to improve ourselves every day, in small increments, but what the heck, it’s the first of January, the arbitrary “new year,” and I want to hear if you’ve decided to change anything in your life!

Mine is always deceptively simple: Lose weight. Here’s the tale: When I was a child, I was fine. I ran around like a terror, played outside a lot, played some sports, and didn’t eat too, too badly (although I didn’t eat as well as I should have, which came back to haunt me). When I was in college, I walked everywhere, and Penn State’s campus is pretty huge, so walking everywhere meant staying in shape. Obviously, once you get out of college and get older, you have to work harder to stay in shape. As your metabolism slows, you need to eat better. I did neither, and slowly my weight crept up. It was never too awful, but it climbed steadily. I had high cholesterol and high blood pressure, but I started having that in my late 20s, and my doctor told me that a lot of it was genetic, so what are you going to do? I tried to eat better and exercise, but life gets in the way. Then, as I approached my 50th birthday, I decided to try to lose some weight, mainly because I owned some cool shirts that I couldn’t wear anymore, and I wanted to! So, on my 49th birthday, I started weighing myself every morning. On the 19th of May, 2020, I weighed in at 288.6 pounds. Whew! Over the course of that year, I crept slowly upward, and the holiday season is always a pain, so I hit my peak on the final day of the year, when I weighed 297.4. I did not want to ever tip the scales at 300 pounds, so I started trying a little harder to get down. A year after I started weighing myself, on 19 May 2021 (my 50th birthday), I weighed 278.0. Not bad. My doctor also told me I was pre-diabetic, and I did not want that! I have been doing pretty well ever since, and at my last check-up I wasn’t pre-diabetic anymore and my cholesterol was a lot better, but recently, I’ve been ticking upward, so it’s time for a new commitment. My lowest weight was 246.9, which it was on 19 July of this year, but the 250-pound barrier has been a tough nut to crack, and I’ve been under a bit of stress over the past 2-3 months, so I’ve been stress-eating, which I know I do but find it hard to stop. This morning I was 260.8, which is annoying but, I mean, it’s a lot better than 297, so that’s that. This past year has been tough, as I’ve weighed pretty much the same all year (I was at 258.4 at the beginning of 2022). So, I know what I have to do, and I’m going to try to lose 20 pounds in 2023, which might sound ambitious as I’ve been unable to get lower than 250 in over a year since I consistently got below 260 (and now that I’ve ticked up again), but dang it, that’s my goal! Eventually, I’d like to get below 200, but that might be beyond my reach. I just like eating crap too much, although I’m a lot better about it than I was even a few years ago, and I’m exercising more. I will keep myself honest by updating you guys every month when I do my review post. Sound good?

Anyway, that’s my resolution. Boring, but important. Do you have any you’d like to share?


  1. tomfitz1

    Burgas: It’s good that you’re losing weight, but it’s not impossible to get below 200 lbs.

    For most of my adult life, I’ve been around 240-250 lbs, but this past year and a half, I’ve managed to get down to about 175 lbs.

    I’ve been struggling with diabetes since my late teens, so it’s been a struggle to lose weight. I will tell you this, eat less junk food and focus more on healthier food.

    If you can drink more water and walk more, it helps.

    Keep the faith, and if you don’t do it for yourself – do it for your family. 🙂

    Don’t feel guilty if you indulge in junk food once in a while, as long it’s not to excess. Just walk some more to burn off those calories.

    For me, my weight loss is startling as I went from size 44 to 38, and will have to get some size 36.

    1. Greg Burgas

      I know it’s not impossible, so I’m not despairing, but it is hard, at least for me. I don’t seek out junk food too often, but Mia eats a lot of caloric food (sorry, not a lot of it, but a lot of different kinds of it), so we have it on hand, and it’s far too easy to dip into. If it’s not in the house, I do better, but it always is. That’s the most frustrating thing. But I’m working on it!

      Nice job with your own weight loss. You give me hope!!!! 🙂

      1. Der

        I also believed that I could never lose weight. I was around 98-96 kgs(that’s 211 pounds according to google) almost since I was 15, so I was like “that’s my weight, whatever”. I even went so far as being 110 kg(242 pounds) But that was way too much and I didn’t like how it made me feel so my wife helped me lose weight.

        I know that doing excercise and “eating better” are the keys, but I found out that via portion control I could mantain my weight pretty much without issue.

        Yeah, I was still 211 pounds, but I wasn’t gaining weight anymore even when eating junk food(in moderation and controlling my portions) And then I lost a lot of weight before the pandemic started(I got pretty sick and lost lots of weight(I went as low as 84 kg-187 lbs) and then by eating my portions I’ve mantained that weight(plus or minus some pounds) for like 3 years now.

        Anyway, I should excercise but there are ways to lower and mantain the weight. Hang in there Greg! You can do it

  2. Rantel

    I quit my job as a mover two years ago and have since gained 35 pounds (turns out lifting heavy objects and walking with them all day will keep you thin, which knew?) so I’d definitely like to see if I can reverse that a bit.

    Other than that, mostly just usual stuff: read more, write more, practice my French and Italian more consistently.

    And, nott sure if this really counts as a New Year’s Resolution, but I am in the early stages of planning a cross-Canada road trip for this coming fall, which will be getting me well outside my comfort zone and the first time I’ve ever done anything like that in my adult life (I’ve left southern Ontario exactly once since leaving high school eleven years ago.) So I guess my resolution is “do that and survive.”

    1. Der

      Hats off to any people that is a professional mover. That shit is a hard job to do men

      I’ve had to move like 5 times in the last seven years and let me tell you, the movers make it look like an easy thing, but man, I did it by myself a couple of times(lack of money does that to you) and after that I was like “Nope, never again”

  3. Eric van Schaik

    For years I’m stationary at 165 lbs. Cycling more than 5.000 km a year helps keeping that weight 😉

    We hope to discover some new bands this year, and when our renovation is finished I want to read more than last year.

  4. Der

    As for another resolution, there is something I’m planning to do for like a year or more, but I should finally do it this year: Starting a Blog.

    Sure, it will be in spanish(booo me) but still, I want to try it even if it’s old fashioned, but I’m concentrating on creating my content before posting anything so I can avoid burning out and having nothing to write.

    Anyway, I’ll open my own blog! but with more Ñ’s and funky accents!

  5. Peter

    I wrote 6 new year’s resolutions for 2022 on the last page of my old calendar, and found out I only hit 2 of them (one resolution was to finally read the whole Ostrander/Mandrake run on “The Spectre,” the other was a little less trivial – give more to charity than in prior years). So my resolutions for 2023 will be those unmet goals from 2022 – write more prose, write more songs, date more, and learn how to play Jimi Hendrix’s Bold As Love on guitar. Maybe up the ante on the charity thing, too.

    I also really should exercise at least a bit, too. I’m pretty trim with a good metabolism, and my blood pressure is normal, but I could stand to lower some of those pesky triglycerides and I’m sure not gonna accomplish that with my current lifestyle.

  6. Corrin Radd

    A few years ago I joined an online weight loss support group and I made myself post my weight there every week and that was very effective for me and I lost a good amount of weight. My weight is creeping back up so I may need to do something like that again.

    Another thing I’ve done that has been effective is to “snack” on lots of zero calorie sodas and decaf coffee. For me, it helps with the habit of putting things into my mouth and stomach. Sugar free popsicles are good for that too. The downside is having to get up to pee in the middle of the night.

    A third thing that works for me is to have lots of fresh fruit in the house and then brainwashing myself into believing that it is just as good as junk food. It doesn’t always work, but it does sometimes.

    My resolutions:

    -weight loss of course
    -spend less time on my electronic devices while my kids are home/awake
    -work to increase my disc golf drive distance/accuracy
    -practice violin for 30 min a day (I’m teaching myself to play and I suck but it’s fun. I will never be good but I am getting better).

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