This month, waste time more efficiently. You know that you’ll need to watch The Sopranos at some point, and what better time to start than now? What percentage of your conversations consist of listing whatever TV shows you happen to be watching at that particular moment? There have never been fewer social consequences for not reading books. Use this information as best you see fit.
Bundle up out there, friends. The worst of it is probably over, but don’t you dare put away those gloves. This month, avoid even legitimate weather talk. All discomfort is valid, but try not to complain too much about what, by wide consensus, has been a very cold winter – or about any future cold winters, for that matter. Remember – you’ll miss them when they’re gone.
On a related note, if the Minister of Culture for New York City, Northeastern Province, United Federation of the Americas, were to explain the concept of brunch to our great-great-grandchildren, who will have only known a world of scarcity and extreme rationing, where would she even begin? Would we be regarded as fundamentally sympathetic protagonists? Don’t let this imagined, though entirely plausible, scenario bum you out too much. In so many ways, their lives will be immeasurably better than ours. This month, consider reducing your meat consumption.
If you are going back and forth on whether something is a moral imperative, chances are that it is and that history will judge you harshly for having convinced yourself otherwise. Whether that, in itself, is enough reason to change your behavior likely depends on your stance toward moral imperatives. We all have scumbag ancestry, but in their defense, the year 1 AD couldn’t have been an easy time to be alive. This month, learn everything that you possibly can about the year 1 AD.
This month, write a letter to your congressperson. Though you probably live in a safe district, what easier way to register your displeasure with the current state of affairs? Have you considered that these times might actually be less interesting than we all think they are? Regardless, cutting ties on the basis of political differences has rarely felt so justified. It’s a shame: some of the finest tax attorneys are Republican.
It’s okay to admit that you don’t like going to art museums, but be aware that a non-trivial percentage of the population will automatically judge you. New York City is the cultural center of the known universe, so why does it so often feel like absolutely nothing is going on? Romans, this is no time for moderation! The city does food and drink better than anything else, and when you’re inevitably priced out of the city, you will regret not having gone to more restaurants and more bars. This month, wait for a table to open up at Raines Law Room.
This month, spend at least one weekend outside of the city. Living anywhere else is, of course, not an option, but we too often forget that the rest of the world also has its merits. Nature, in moderation, can be quite charming. You almost certainly haven’t been hiking in a while, so remember to stretch first and to pack more water than you think you’ll need. The view from the top of the trail is as nice as everyone says it is.
This month, elevate small talk to medium talk whenever you see an opening. It gets harder and harder to make friends the older you get, so cherish the connections that you have already made. Rest assured that you are not the only one rediscovering the importance of community. Organized religion is probably still a no go, but haven’t you heard great things about that coed soccer league?
If you’re being honest with yourself, the idea of a threesome is mostly exhausting at this point. When you barely have the sexual competence to handle conventional intercourse, taking on any additional responsibility just screams hubris. That said, if you’ve managed to find yourself in a monogamous relationship, make this month a month of light sexual experimentation. Monogamy can be tricky, but satisfying sex, had at regular to semi-regular intervals, can make things considerably less tricky.
You might argue that, as a civilization, we’ve spent far too much time thinking about our mattresses. Remember when Walmart was the worst thing in the world? Back in my day, our faceless multinational corporations at least had the decency to have a physical presence. Marx obviously couldn’t have predicted hyper intelligent robots finishing off what’s left of the working class, but I can’t imagine he’d be surprised. This month, put some serious thought into the pros and cons of a universal basic income.
Deep down, you wonder whether it’s true that as long as your heart is in the right place, most people will give you the benefit of the doubt. This month, do not stand idly by if you witness injustice. Elie Wiesel, Holocaust survivor and human rights activist, gave this advice to the Washington University in St. Louis graduating class of 2011. You may have heard that there are still plenty of Nazis to call out.
This month, call your parents (yes, your dad, too) at least once a week. They may not know you the best anymore, but they knew you then, and there’s value in having regular conversations with anyone who knew you then. If you aren’t on good terms with your parents, call an old friend. If you aren’t on good terms with any of your old friends, an old adversary might suffice, but only if it’s one who truly challenged you.