DOWNEY - In response to a mysterious urge, people find the waning moments of the old year as an occasion to do some soul-searching to enable them to face the New Year with more clarity, more confidence and more resolve.Some people, perhaps thinking of previous failures of execution, come up with just one resolution, others manage to come up with more. This is OK: it's the quality and depth of the commitment that should matter anyway, not its number. The resolutions most commonly made generally fall in these categories: lose weight, save money, give up smoking and/or lessen alcohol intake, acquire more or better education, take that trip. When pressed, some people are also able to articulate earlier than usual what they want most to accomplish in the coming year. After interviews were conducted among some Downey community members (a broader cross-section of the community was not possible because many were away enjoying their holidays), it became apparent, and this ought to have been expected, that the resolutions are unique, reflecting the interviewees' line of work, their ages and their experience. The following is a sample of what the citizens of Downey are planning to focus on in 2011 as their New Year's resolutions, given the times and their main weapon, fortitude: •John Lacey, realtor, who is recovering from a triple bypass surgery performed six weeks ago: "No more triple bypass, at least for this year." •Maribel Alatorre, Wells Fargo Downey supervisor, married 14 years: "Good health (eat well), and enjoy life more (have more fun)." •Jeannie Wood, 32-year employee at Albertson's and active with the Chamber of Commerce: "The first one is work on being more financially secure (she's concerned about the future of Albertson's and the possible impact on her retirement benefits); and the second one, "My biggest dream is visit Austria before I die." •Javier Moreno, insurance brokerage: "Besides becoming a better human being, I'd like to continue to investigate and expand my knowledge of new wines." •City library employee, who asked not to be identified, eyeing retirement: "Take care of my final affairs, i.e., living trust, funeral arrangements, etc." •Kaili Rowland, of the Columbia Memorial Space Center, who recently got engaged and plans a late July wedding: "Save money to buy a house, and lose weight for the wedding." •An elementary school student attending a science camp at the Center: "Get better grades and stop fighting with my sister." •A couple of kids, attending the same science camp: "Do better in our DJAA (basketball) tournament." •Barbara Hruden, city manager's office: "I resolve to act on my New Year's resolutions." •Juddy Ceniceros, neighborhood watch coordinator: "I have none. I've given up on making any. I always end up breaking them anyway. So what's the point?" With advances in technology being realized at a dizzying pace, and untrammeled access to questionable forms of entertainment and amusement feeding upon itself, it's easy to get comfortable with a sense of entitlement but lose all sense of balance. It therefore behooves us to remind ourselves that 'the more things change, the more things stay the same'. There are still the eternal verities to guide us.
********** Published: December 30, 2010 - Volume 9 - Issue 37