My New Year’s Resolution: In 2012, I Will Humiliate Myself Publicly On This Blog

What passes for an illustration on this blog today.

I love reading illustrated blogs — blogs with cartoons, watercolors, or even doodles. But although some of my posts have included photos, graphs, and even a few images I’ve cobbled together with Photoshop, I’ve never posted any original drawings. The reason for that is simple: I can’t draw. At all. Which leads me to my first resolutions:

Resolution #1: I will attempt to learn how create some kind of original freehand illustration that won’t make me cringe with embarrassment. (Any suggestions on how to accomplish this would be greatly appreciated).

Resolution #2: I will post some of my attempts on this blog, even though I don’t really expect to achieve the “won’t make me cringe with embarrassment” part of Resolution #1.

Also, because of recent events:

Resolution #3: I will not buy any flashlights in 2012.

Resolution #4: I will acquire some matches.

And finally:

Resolution #5: I will make Sugar Plum Awareness Month a reality in 2012. Sugar plum fact of the day: sugar plums are the most popular of all the flavored plum confections, outshining vinegar plums, anchovy plums, and even wasabi plums.

Happy New Year!

December is Sugar Plum Awareness Month

It was brought to my attention this week that many people have no idea what a sugar plum is. In an attempt to combat the global problem of sugar plum ignorance, I hereby declare December to be Sugar Plum Awareness Month.

Q: You’re making this announcement on December 29th? Wouldn’t it make more sense to choose a different month?

A: I chose December because it’s the month in which the sugar plum awareness theme song is heard most frequently. The timing of this announcement is less than ideal, but I think we can make it work — there are still a couple days left this December, and next December should last at least 21 days.

Q: Have you ever seen a sugar plum?

A: No.

Q: Do you know anyone who’s ever seen one?

A: Not to my knowledge, no.

Q: How do you know they exist?

A: Wikipedia has an article about them.

Q: Wikipedia also has an article about Santa Claus. Does that mean he exists?

A: Sugar Plum Awareness Month is a time of discovery, during which we will separate the truth about sugar plums from the myths.

Q: You really should have led with that.

A: Yeah, I know. Too bad I never edit these things.

Q: What do you think will be the high point of Sugar Plum Awareness Month?

A: The highlight will be Sugar Plum Tasting Day, when participants will attempt to taste sugar plums for the first time and then report back on them. This will enable us to resolve the question of whether sugar plums exist and, if they do, to track regional variations. Unfortunately, there wasn’t time to organize a tasting day this year, but we expect to have one in 2012.

Q: What exactly is a sugar plum?

A: Wikipedia says it’s a kind of candy made from chopped dried fruit, almonds, honey, and spices.

Q: So a sugar plum doesn’t necessarily contain either sugar or plums?

A: Right.

Q: Have you learned anything else interesting about sugar plums so far?

A: Apparently they grow on trees.

Q: How can I, a member of the public with no specialized training, help to make Sugar Plum Awareness Month a success?

A: I’m so glad you asked! You can add any sugar-plum-related information or questions you might have to the comments here. You can suggest sugar plum activities. And next year, you can participate in Sugar Plum Tasting Day.

You can find more sugar plum facts (and, eventually, more information about Sugar Plum Awareness Month) on the Sugar Plum Awareness page.