Relative Resolutions

Another year come and gone.  Tonight I face the challenge of divulging my top three resolutions for 2016 to my friends and neighbors without the shroud of alcohol to mask my inadequacies (I don’t drink any other night either BTW, but just to be clear Bishop).  Usually I have a quantifiable thing or two rattling around the forefront of my noggin that’s politically correct and mildly ambitious enough to share on such an occasion.  Tonight I have nothing.  Like Whitney Houston from The Body Guard, “I Have Nothing”, nothing.  So I started thinking about perspective, and what I’d want for 2016 that wasn’t on track in 2015.  But last year was a great year and I have nothing to complain about.  So like the guy scratching his head in the above drawing, I took a step further back and thought about what’s better about our 2015 world than the 1915 world–and I did some research and crunched some numbers.  In 1915 the average white male could expect to live for 52 years, which means that I’d only have about 10 years left.  In 1915 only 14% of homes had a bathtub, 8% had a telephone, and the speed limit in most cities was 10 mph.  The average US worker made $0.33 per hour, the average car cost $2,005, and the average home cost $3,200.  The average dude would then need to trade almost 6,100 hours of work for a car and 9,700 for a home.  By contrast, the average hourly rate in the U.S today is $21.19, which is 1,474 hours for an average car and 8,381 hours for an average home.  Given the astronomical price of stuff these days, it is a surprising revelation to me that cars are 75% cheaper and homes are 14% more affordable in today’s world.  Not only that, but there are four bathtubs and four different phone numbers in my house today, and I get to keep the needle at 80 mph to keep up with freeway traffic. Which reminds me that one of my resolutions for 2015 was to get fewer speeding tickets–which I did, with a grand total of zero.  Mission accomplished. For 2016 I want to be more content and cultivate a grateful heart.  Not sure how to track that one, but it’s probably a good idea all things considered.  Here’s another one: I’d like to work fewer hours.  I am not sure how to track that one either but I think I’ll start by taking tomorrow off.  HAPPY NEW YEAR!