The tradition of New Year's Resolutions goes back to 153 B.C. The Romans named the first month of the year after the mythical king Janus (January), the god of beginnings and the guardian of doors and entrances. He was always depicted with two faces, one on the front of his head and one on the back, allowing him to peer backward and forward at the same time. Hence, Janus became the ancient symbol for resolutions.
Though I have never put stock in proclaiming what too often are merely temporary personal improvements, I relent now and begin 2009 with these lofty aspirations:
Learn to follow directions better: