Have you made your New Year’s resolutions yet? I have to be honest, I’m not entirely sure that is a “Youngstown thing”. Youngstowners seem to be the ultimate realists who probably realize that most of those resolutions aren’t worth the paper they are written on! Usually it takes something far more drastic than a resolution to get me to eat less, exercise more, and floss daily–like having the bejeebers scared out of me by my doc!
I’ve been thinking though that there are some resolutions that fit our values and experiences as Youngstowners that I would like to try out on you:
1. I resolve to take more time this year to enjoy good food and drink with the people who mean the most to me. Family, friends, and food are high Youngstown values. These are easily overlooked in our fast food, fast lane lives.
2. I resolve to spend more time working on my home (my wife will like this!) and do what I can to be a good neighbor including watching out for others’ places (without getting into others’ business). Pride of ownership and neighborhood are things we’ve talked a good deal about in these posts.
3. I resolve to buy local whenever I can and to support small businesses and locally-owned restaurants whenever I can, even if it costs a bit more. It puts money back into the community, sustains local jobs, and fosters the fabric of community many of us grew up with.
4. I resolve to invest in the institutions that foster a healthy community — schools, libraries, museums and the arts, parks, and (for those religiously inclined) places of worship among others. You and I have celebrated good memories of many of these places over the past months on this blog.
5. I resolve to stand against those who try to exploit my community economically or environmentally for their own ends. I will refuse support to those who try to divide one group of us against another. It takes all of us and all the assets of our community to make it a good place. I’ll stand with those who genuinely love the people and place where I live, and show that by their actions.
These were things I learned growing up in Youngstown. And they are things you’ve reminded me of in our dialogs around various posts over the past months. It seems to me that whether one still lives in Youngstown or not, living into these resolves can mean both good life for us, and for the places we call “home”. A happy and prosperous 2016 to you!
I’d love to know what you think of these resolutions. What do you think are good resolutions that reflect the best of Youngstown values?