As is our custom we were asleep. Well, most of us.
Karen and Noah were asleep downstairs. Conner had fallen asleep after I had carried him around in a blanket over his pajamas around the yard to see the fireworks in the sky.
But I was still awake and wandered down to the B&B Studio to wish Bagman and Butler a Happy New Year.
BAGMAN and BUTLER (in joyous unison): "Mark!! You're here!! We were just making our resolutions and now you can make yours too!!"
I give a wan smile (or is it a wane smile) -- a kind of sad smile in any case -- and say, "Sorry guys. I've never been able to keep New Year's resolutions so many years ago, I resolved not to make any. So far, that is the one resolution I've been able to keep. It's kind of related to the A.A. philosophy of 'A day at a time'."
BAGMAN: "Horse manure!" (Yes, I edited that a bit).
BAGMAN and MARK (in unison): "Balderdash?"
"Sorry, guys. I'm not making any resolutions. I never do and am not starting now. But don't let me stop you. Go ahead and I'll write them down. I'm really kind of interested in what you both want for yourselves in 2012."
BUTLER: "After you, my Baggie friend."
BAGMAN: "I want to have more fun! I want to run, wear less clothes, and flirt with women!"
BUTLER: "And by women, I assume you mean one woman, the one that Mark is married to?"
BAGMAN: (I couldn't tell but his fingers might have been crossed behind his back): "Well, uh, yes, of course. I got tired of being chained in the basement years ago." (long pause) "But you have to admit that the concept of flirting has many gray areas."
BUTLER: "If you start quoting Bill Clinton, I'm going to throw up."
BAGMAN: "Okay, okay. Can I continue resoluting?"
BUTLER: "Resoluting is not a word."
BAGMAN: "Who cares! In 2012 I want to write more, blog more, photograph more, get back to playing the banjo and the guitar and show off how clever I am so people will applaud me and love me!"
After that, he seemed to have stopped so I clapped quietly for him and he smiled. Wanly. We both then looked at Butler.
BUTLER: "My resolution is simple but not always easy. I resolve to serve better.
BAGMAN: "You mean like using the good china?"
BUTLER: "That could be part of it, but it is really more than that. Helping others. Being nicer to family. That kind of thing."
BAGMAN: "I can see that. You are a kind of service oriented fellow. Butler, and all that. And it would be a sneaky way of getting people to applaud us and love us more."
BUTLER: "That just shows the difference between you and me, Baggie, my egocentric friend. I don't even count it if anyone knows about it."
By now it is getting close to midnight and I am seldom awake at midnight so I stand up to bid Bagman and Butler adieu. "Good luck to both of you and your resolutions for 2012. I'm turning in."
BAGMAN and BUTLER (in unison): "You're really not going to make any resolutions?!"
I grin back at them, not the least bit wanly. "Nope. No resolutions for me. I'll just sit back and see how you guys do on yours. And don't sleep too late. We're having black-eyed peas and greens tomorrow."
All three of us look at each other for a moment and then, in unison(of course) say, "yuck."