Resolution update: March 2017


1. Don’t die.

Still alive and kicking. 

2. Lose 20 pounds.

I lost four more pounds in March, bringing the total loss to nine pounds.

Well ahead of schedule, thanks to consistent exercise, careful eating, and little time for lunch. 

3. Do at least 100 push-ups and 100 sit-ups five days a week.


4. Practice yoga at least three days a week for at least 15 minutes each day.

No progress.

5. Take the stairs whenever I am ascending or descending five flights or less.



6. Complete my sixth novel before the end of 2017.

Work continues in earnest. Due date in July.   

7. Complete my first middle grade/YA novel.

SOLD! Work now begins in earnest. Due date is December.  

8. Write at least three new picture books, including one with a female, non-white protagonist. 

Many ideas, but no progress as of yet. 

9. Complete a book on storytelling.

Work continues in earnest. Due date in July.

10. Write a new screenplay.

No progress. 

11. Write a musical.

No progress.

12. Submit at least five Op-Ed pieces to The New York Times for consideration.

I have submitted one piece to the Times so far in 2017.

No luck.  

13. Write a proposal for a nonfiction book related to education.

I'm taking notes on one idea as the school year progresses, and I have several other ideas that I am expanding into paragraph summaries. Work on this will likely commence at the end of the school year. 

14. Submit one or more short stories to at least three publishing outlets.

No progress.

15. Select three behaviors that I am opposed to and adopt them for one week, then write about my experiences on the blog.

On the suggestion of a reader:

I will spend April praying to God at least once a day. As you may know, I'm a reluctant atheist, so I haven't prayed in a very long time. But I'm willing to give it a shot and see what happens.  

16. Increase my author newsletter subscriber base to 1,600.

I grew my list by 33 subscribers in March (and 99 overall this year). Total subscribers now stands at 1,383. If I continue at this pace, I will exceed 1,600 by the end of the year. 

17. Write at least six letters to my father.

I received a letter from my father in February. I am still writing a response.    

18. Convert Greetings Little One into a book.

No progress. 

19. Record one thing learned every day in 2017.

Done! My favorite thing learned in March is this:

The 1969 NASA mission that landed the first two humans on the moon - the average age of NASA employees in the control room throughout the launch and landing was just 28 years old.


20. Produce a total of 12 Speak Up storytelling events.

We produced one show in March: A showcase in conjunction with Unified Theater that featured students, parents, and staffers working with the organization. They performed brilliantly.

This brings our total number of Speak Up shows in 2017 to six.

21. Deliver a TED Talk.

I will be speaking at a TEDx conference in April. 

22. Attend at least 15 Moth events with the intention of telling a story.

I attended one Moth StorySLAM in Boston in March, bringing my yearly total to four.   

23. Win at least three Moth StorySLAMs.

I won a Moth StorySLAM in Boston in March. This is my first win of 2017.  

24. Win a Moth GrandSLAM.

It looks like my next Moth GrandSLAM will be in July.  

25. Produce at least 50 episodes of my new podcast Live Better.

I pulled down my first episode after receiving feedback from a friend who works in radio. I'm currently re-recording with a slightly different format.

To be honest, my biggest problem is that I cannot find a moment of quiet in my home to record. 

26. Perform stand up at least once in 2016. 

A local stand up venue has invited me to perform. I'm getting my material ready. I plan to perform this summer. I will likely perform in New York with a friend as well.  

27. Write a one-person show.

The "writing" for this show is nearly complete. 

A local theater is interested in having me perform. I'll be meeting with the director in April. 


28. Explore the option of teaching a college class.

No progress.   

29. Cook at least 12 good meals (averaging one per month) in 2016.

No progress.

30. Plan a 25 year reunion of the Heavy Metal Playhouse.

No progress.


31. I will stand in vocal opposition to every negative comment made about age disparities between male and female romantic couplings because I choose to respect a woman’s choices of romantic partner regardless of their age or the age of their partner.

No opportunities to vocally oppose in March.   

32. I will report on the content of speech during every locker room experience via social media in 2017.   


Not surprising, I heard no man bragging about sexually assaulting women in any locker rooms (or anywhere else for that matter) in March.  

33. I will stop presenting the heteronormative mother-and-father paradigm as the default parental paradigm when speaking to my children and my students.

Done. Not as hard as I thought. I switched over to "parents" in January and haven't slipped yet.     

34. I will not comment, positively or negatively, about physical appearance of any person save my wife and children, in 2017 in an effort to reduce the focus on physical appearance in our culture overall. 

Done. No close calls in March. No desire at all to comment on physical appearance.

I'm considering adding my mother-in-law, father-in-law, and grandmother-in-law to my permitted list. If my mom was alive, I would likely comment positively on her appearance. These people are similar enough to consider it.   

35. Surprise Elysha at least six times in 2016.

I brought home flowers for Elysha for no reason other than I thought she might like some flowers.
Not exactly original but still a surprise. 

Two surprises so far in 2017.  

36. Replace the 12 ancient, energy-inefficient windows in our home with new windows that will keep the cold out and actually open in the warmer months.

No progress. I can feel the heat creeping out of the windows by the second.   

37. Optimize our television for a streaming service. 

We upgraded our cable television interface to a voice activated, much more intuitive system that may fit the requirements of a streaming service. This upgrade is tremendous. Credit Elysha for the upgrade as well as the reduction in our cable/Internet bill as well.  

38. Set a new personal best in golf.

No progress until the snow goes away. 

39. Play poker at least six times in 2016.

No progress.

40. Spend at least six days with my best friend of more than 25 years.

No progress. 

41. Post my progress in terms of these resolutions on this blog on the first day of every month.