January 01, 2005

The First Broken Resolution

On New Year’s Eve he resolves, “I’m not going to stay up till midnight this year. I’ve seen enough of them in my time. An assault of cacophony, a futile denial of mortality.”

After a heavy and wine–filled dinner, he stretches out in bed at ten o’clock and begins to snooze.

Sure enough, his inner clock wakes him an hour and a half later. He shuffles into the TV room, rubbing his eyes. Everyone’s gathered there. They’re laughing at a TV comedian, the kids are wrestling on the carpet, the grownups are shouting merrily above the kids’ noise. He stays to watch the ball drop. He takes a sip of champagne and then, what the hell, downs the whole glass. Goes back to bed at one.

He wakes up the next morning parched and headachy, bedsheets sweaty from bad dreams, and he’s grumpy and disappointed with himself all day.