Well here we are, well into the new year with only 362 days to go until 2017.  (It’s Leap Year!) That means you have only 11 months to prepare your list of New Year’s resolutions for next year.  So my question is, how are you doing so far on this year’s resolution?
I personally didn’t make any this year – again – because as I’ve learned over the past half century plus, I never manage to keep them.  Could be maybe because I’m a procrastinator.  Like I could sit at the computer for days pecking away at an article so I can get it in early for a change and I end up with writer’s block every time.  But let me look at the calendar and realize I have to have it done yesterday, and I can whip something up in a New York minute.  Well, maybe a Florida minute, since life is paced so much slower down south, especially when you’re an official Medicare card carrier.  (“Never do today what you can put off until tomorrow”.)
Which brings me to the present situation.  It was tomorrow yesterday, or maybe even the day before, and I find myself on a fast train to deadline, or possibly even missing it.  Time will tell.  So let me tell you as quickly as I can why I never make New Year’s resolutions – make that resolution, singular – because it was always the same old story:  “This year I gotta lose some weight.”  I’m sure this is the same reason 99.9% of everyone who make that resolution on January 1st every year fails to keep it.
So here’s a no-brainer, “Why didn’t I think of that?” quote from the local paper here in town regarding that very subject: “The only way to lose weight – and keep it off – is to eat less and exercise more.”  Duh!  If that were so simple, we’d all look like Twiggy. (Remember her?)
The only people who think that’s a snap are, always have been, and always will be skinny as a rail and have never known the heartbreak of psoriasis, er, I mean obesity.
For example, a couple of weeks ago I went to an orthopedic doctor for knee pain.  In addition to other recommendations for what I should do to ease the pain, he gave me this spiel about how it would help a lot if I could lose some weight, and went on to tell me how easy it is to lose a pound a week.  You just cut down on this and that, blah, blah, blah, and before you know it, in one short year, he says, you could lose 50 pounds.
Yeah, here’s this 6’3”, 150 pound Ichabod Crane look-alike who probably never had to worry a day in his life about putting on an extra pound – the kind of kid who wouldn’t eat his mashed potatoes, telling me how easy it is for me to lose weight.  This, after squeezing my knee as hard as he could and twisting it back and forth until I wanted to scream bloody murder and give him a hard, swift kick you-know-where.
But, being a nice person, I just held my tongue, wrote a check for my co-pay, limped out of there with my prednisone prescription and never told him how things worked in the real world of losing 50 pounds.
By the way, the article in the local paper went on to say – in complete opposition to my orthopedic surgeon/slash/quasi weight-loss expert, that the small changes (such as Dr. Jack Sprat suggested), “Could easily add up to 5, 10, even 15 pounds in a year.”  (In all fairness to Dr. Stringbean’s years of orthopedic prowess, the prednisone worked wonders on the knee.)
And even though I didn’t make a New Year’s resolution to lose weight, maybe by April I’ll be psyched up sufficiently to work on losing a few pounds.  If not, maybe next April.
Here’s a start on the road to reductio. If you feel the need to frost cake, I take no responsibilities for the extra calories.

CHERRY ALMOND ANGEL FOOD CAKE
1 angel food cake mix              
1/2 tsp. cream of tartar
10 Marachino cherries, chopped    
1/2 cup juice from cherries
Mix cake from directions on box, adding juice from cherries to enough water to equal total amount of water called for in box instructions and adding ream of tartar with liquid and gently folding cherries in right before spreading batter into pan.  Bake into ungreased 10” pan, using cake mix package baking time and temperature.  Invert pan as directed and cool for two hours before from removing.  For 12 servings, only 168 calories and 1 gram of fat.  If you need to frost cake, I take no responsibilities for the extra calories.