Here we go again. The 2008 Hot Men of Medical Research calendar has been taken down and the 2009 Vomitoriums of the Rich and Famous calendar is waiting in the wings (wow, look at Mario Batali's gold inlaid porcelain jobby). It all feels a little bit arbitrary if you ask me. I mean, if we were committed to this thing we'd mark the New Year on a solstice, but that's just my inner pagan talking.

Either way, there are certain rights and rituals that must be observed on New Years: sipping champagne, kissing your love at midnight, getting shit-faced, blowing horns, watching the ball drop, eating black eyed peas on New Years day.

But the most dreaded of all traditions is the New Year's resolution. I guess the new year is a good a time as any to turn over a new leaf. It's like a psychological blank slate. You are given permission to toss off the person you were and be the person you want to be. It's not as if you couldn't have done that at any point this year, but at least now everyone is doing it. In that way, the inevitable sting of a failed resolution is lessened by the fact that you're not the only one who will fail. Neat trick.

So this is your chance to make it public, Blogtownies. This is the time to have your resolution scorched indelibly into the soft pliant flesh of the Internet, to be revisited at some future date.

I, for one, have the usual resolutions. I intend to quit smoking, lose the food editor poundage I've packed on since last spring, work on my writing, start that novel, revisit one of the dozen unfinished scripts languishing in my laptop, blah blah blah.

How about you? What do you resolve? Tell us in the comments and encourage your friends to post a comment too. After all, will there be anything better than pulling up the evidence sometime at the end of next year and asking your pal, "So, you were going to read War and Peace and get washboard abs, huh? How'd that work for you?"