Okay. So here is what I think about New Year's resolutions.
I think it's really quite a noble thing to be able to look at yourself and say "You know what, I could do better than this. There are some things I need to work on." I think admitting that there's room for improvement is a very positive thing.
Unfortunately, a lot of the time that's not what New Year's resolutions are. Instead of being an honest appraisal of ourselves, they become a litany of "I would be happy if only I could quit smoking/lose 10 kilos/eat more salads".
Which is why I don't do New Year's resolutions. Except... I kind of have one this year.
My New Year's resolution... is to wear perfume.
This isn't because I've checked with my nearest and dearest and they have confirmed a long-held suspicion of mine that I am smellier than "normal" people (the Silver Fox does sometimes like to accuse me of this, but frankly he would be the pot to my kettle in this particular situation). It's more a case that up until now I have been wasting resources.
I just did a tally and I have 10 bottles of perfume on my nightstand. I don't know how that compares with other women (or men for that matter) but it doesn't seem like too massive a hoard to me. The problem is that most of them are 80-to-90 per cent full and this is because I pretty much always forget that putting on perfume is an option unless it's a special occasion or I'm going out to dinner or something.
If my current rate of consumption continues there's every chance I will be bequeathing a half-full bottle of Agent Provocateur Maitresse to one of my grandchildren (hopefully a girl-child, but I'm not ruling anything out). In fact, I have a bottle of Chanel No. 5 that a friend gave to me for my birthday when we both lived in London. I moved back to New Zealand in 2000, so it's probably around 12 years old. And I've only used a third of it.
If I don't actually use my perfume for its intended purpose then really I'm just hanging on to a small collection of fancy, dust-attracting bottles containing alcohol that's not even drinkable. And what fun is that, I ask you?
It's not as if I don't like any of the perfumes I own. I do. Putting them on just hasn't been a part of my morning ritual in the past. It's not as if I need Lancome to come out with an "Eau de Ham" to get my attention (though if they did, having a sexy advert with Jon Hamm in it would probably do the trick. As long as it didn't go the way of that atrociously pretentious Chanel spot with Brad Pitt in it. They should change the last word in that ad from "inevitable" to "inexecrable". Gah!)
My other smallish resolution, mostly prompted by the arrival of my 2013 departmental calendar (it has little dollar signs on the days I get paid. Hurrah!), has been to take to heart some of the less conventional International Observances, to mark these on my trusty calendar in advance, and to commemorate them in my own small way.
So I encourage you to add the following to your own calendar or diary and fill 2013 with randomness and wonder:
6 February - Bob Marley's birthday. Just go right ahead, take the day off work!
30 April - International Jazz Day. To be celebrated by busting out "jazz hands" whenever you feel like it. Unofficial slogan (that I just made up) "what would Bob Fosse do?"
22 May - World Goth Day. Your summer tan will have faded by then anyway so why not chuck on some black lippy, just for the day?
23 May - World Turtle Day. To think we were only 24 hours from there being a World Goth Turtle Day. Makes a change from them being ninjas, I guess*.
25 May - Towel Day. A commemoration of the life and work of Douglas Adams, an opportunity to wear a towel around your neck a la Billy T, and coincidentally the anniversary of the premiere of a little movie called Star Wars (I prefer this date to that "May the fourth" nonsense).
9 June - World Gin Day. If you don't know the best way of celebrating this then there's no hope for you, you'd better have a gin...
5 August - International Beer Day. If you don't know the best way of celebrating this then there's no hope for you, you'd better have a beer...
9 August - National Rice Pudding Day. This appears to be celebrated in the US only, but I see no reason why Kiwis shouldn't embrace any and all pudding-related celebrations.
19 September - Talk like a pirate day. Much less obscure than it used to be, and an excellent excuse to dress like Johnny Depp complete with eyeliner.
30 September - Blasphemy Day. Jesus, Mary and Joseph at Ikea, this is the day for me!
28 October - International Animation Day. Take the day off to stay home and watch cartoons.
So there you have it, a schedule of light entertainment for the year, and a commitment to actually use some of the most expensive cosmetics I own. I think that's pretty achievable and I am happy with my chosen projects for 2013.
Do you have a stash of perfume (or some other product) that you haven't been using that you could start whittling away at this year? Do you have any other international days that you think would be good additions to this list? Will you add any of these to your calendar?
* Tune and lyrics now in my head "Teenage Mutant Emo Turtles - Heroes in a half fringe. Turtle Power!"