On the Beat | By Wong Chun Wai

Lofty targets for the New Year

And my resolutions for 2012 are:

> Watch less television – that’s a promise I intend to keep as being a TV news junkie is affecting me. Anyway, there seems to be nothing else on the idiot box these days except news of Kim Jong-il, Kim Jong-un, Kim Kardashian and Kimora Lee.

I have decided enough is enough after waking up one night in cold sweat from a horrifying dream of me sporting Jong-un’s slicked-back haircut. The only amusing part was when my colleagues saluted and hailed me as “The New Supreme One”.

> Go outdoors more – I intend to exercise more. I know it can be dangerous, even fatal, for anyone over 50 to do something as strenuous as playing badminton. Enough politicians died last year because of the game. They should have just stuck to golfing and goofing off.

I think I will just do more brisk walking. I need a tan anyway. It’s getting spooky in the house because my daughter and her friends seem to think looking pale is the in-thing after watching the Twilight movies. Locked up in their rooms and sleeping at odd hours, even the glow from the computers are turning them into vampires.

> Lose weight – I seriously need to reduce my weight. My doctor has told me to shed off some pounds from my waist, although I think he needs to listen to his own advice. We all know how difficult it is for us to cut down on food in Malaysia.

Maybe, I will just have to move to Africa where there’s a famine, or to Somalia where no one can leave the house unless one has a suicidal tendency. Or perhaps, I should migrate to Australia where the shops close at 5pm, so there’s no chance of having a late night supper.

But since I will stay put, the best option, I guess, is to try to eat like a rabbit by chewing on more greens and less meat. I’m not sure if brewed barley counts as organic food or vegetable, but I hope it will be acceptable.

> Think of better excuses – This one is urgent as I’ve run out of excuses for my office boss and home boss. I need to commit myself to drawing up a fresh list of excuses for being late, forgetful or insensitive.

For a start, I think flash floods can make a good excuse for being late these days. After all, they are the latest phenomenon in KL and it’s better than blaming the “traffic jam” all the time.

> Stop saying “on the way” or “coming” – this is so Malaysian. We haven’t even left the house yet but we are already telling whoever is waiting that “we are on the way”. This has got to stop. Can someone come out with something more original for 2012?

> Spend less time on the Internet – this is tough but I need to get a life. I am sick of reading e-mails from Nigerians claiming to be ill or lost or Zimbabweans with corrupt relatives serving in Robert Mugabe’s government. And I’ve had enough of strangers trying to sell me Viagra online.

Also, 2012 is likely to be election year in Malaysia and we can be sure of being bombarded with political messages that will choke up our system.

> Stop taking pictures of food – I am no longer a teenager, I’ve got to act like a responsible, conservative father and a role model for the family. I may not be on Facebook but I am on Twitter. I should not be competing with my daughter to snap pictures of the food on the table.

Anyway, a plate of char koay teow looks the same everywhere although the taste may vary. As for tweeting my whereabouts, who cares whether I am at a bank or in the toilet.

> Grow old gracefully – I will resist taking any miracle drugs that claim to rid me of my grey hair or eye bags and make my hormones rage so much that I may just end up looking like a pimply adolescent. I also won’t buy steroids that promise to make me look like Chuck Norris or Bruce Willis.

At 51, I know that age is creeping up on me despite people saying the 50s are the new 40s. But I will resist all temptations to change my style, my nose or buy a bungalow at a discount.

Now, that’s a pretty long list of resolutions for the year and I’m not sure if I can keep them. But I hope my readers will support me by adopting at least one of them – resolve to always have a smile on your face.

And to laugh, love and eat more … did I just break a resolution?