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Frank Gray

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A few resolutions to consider for 2013

Five years ago I wrote a column on New Year’s resolutions and concluded that one of my resolutions would be that I wouldn’t kill anybody that year.

That was a worthwhile resolution, I thought. It was more profound than resolving to eat salad for lunch once a week, or pledging to polish my shoes once a week.

Meanwhile, I suggested that other people make the same resolution. It might take a little self-control among the most hotheaded among us, but it can be accomplished.

It would be nice to think that a lot of other people made the same resolution, because that year nobody killed anyone in Fort Wayne until the second week of February, and with almost three months gone in the year there had only been two killings in the city.

However I am not delusional. We just had a good first three months of the year that year.

Then everything exploded and the city had nine killings in a little more than a week. There didn’t seem to be much outrage in the city despite the carnage. Before long, 2008 turned into just another year for the city’s killers.

The year 2012 was no year to celebrate, either. It only took a few hours for the first homicide to occur in 2012, and the second happened on Jan. 2.

Still, I’ll make the same resolution in 2013 and urge others to do the same. It might be an exercise in futility, but it’s worth a try.

As long as we’re talking about futility, I have decided to make some other resolutions.

Not long ago I read a story that said that sitting was worse for you than smoking.

A lot of people have jobs that require them to sit all day, and a lot of other people just sit because that’s easier than getting up and doing something. That’s why remote controls are so popular. Could you imagine what life would be like if we still had to get up to adjust the volume or change the channel on a TV set?

We’ve heard about the dangers of sitting for extended periods of time before. A few years ago, stories began appearing about the dangers of something called deep vein thrombosis among passengers on very long airline flights. The lack of activity could allow blood clots to develop in your legs, and blood clots aren’t good for you.

Apparently, the same condition can occur if you have a job – or a lifestyle – in which you sit all day.

So I’ve decided I won’t sit as much. Instead, I’ll either lie down more or occasionally get up and tromp outside for a smoke, which, according to the latest American philosophy, is now regarded as better for me than remaining in my chair.

That will have a doubly salubrious effect. I’ve read, sometime in the past, that people who fidget, who can’t sit in one place for long without getting up, actually burn a lot of calories. That solves the problem of obesity, which some among us have declared the greatest threat there is to the security of the United States.

I don’t buy into that exaggerated fear of obesity. I’m a lot more concerned about terrorism and cyberterrorism and crime and collapsing stock markets than I am about people who are overweight.

All in all, if more people make the same resolutions, 2013 will be a leaner but not meaner year.

Frank Gray reflects on his and others’ experiences in columns published Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday. He can be reached by phone at 461-8376, by fax at 461-8893, or by email at fgray@jg.net. You can also follow him on Twitter @FrankGrayJG.

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