Let’s Make 2013 The Year of Nice


Phyllis Diller did not believe in “blue” comedy.

A combination of national economic woes and a string of historically violent crimes has cast a particularly dark cloud over 2012.

After watching several 2012 In Memorandum vignettes, it became particularly clear that the world has lost a lot of nice this year.

Nice in the form of song writer Hal David, What The World Needs Now Is Love; actor Andy Griffith, star of The Andy Griffith Show; heartthrob Andy Williams; singer Etta James, At Last; First man on the Moon, Neil Armstrong; housewife turned legendary comedian, Phyllis Diller and America’s oldest teenager, Dick Clark – just to name a few.

I tried to get in a healthy dose of nice by watching some of my favorite classic television shows while recovering from a raging sinus-infection.  I was forced to change the channel during a Partridge Family marathon because I was barraged with commercials for The Hoveround, depilatories and lawsuit settlement investment firms.  Apparently even advertisers think nice people are just hairy deadbeats.

Nice also seems to be an adjective that has literally lost its true meaning throughout the years.

The written definition of the word “nice” from the online Merriam-Webster Dictionary includes polite or kind as the seventh meaning on the list – which is the bottom, the cellar.

So this year, I am taking on a resolution that is much harder and holds more value than dieting or exercising.

I am resolving to be nice.

I know my mother just rolled her eyes and my better-half just laughed and screamed, “Right…!”

Even today while trying to practice my new nice persona, I let out an involuntary Tourettes-like string of profanities while seeming to forget that my heart was supposed to grow three-sizes as I shed my Grinch-like attitude.

It’s hard.  I challenge you to try it.

If you are like me, maybe you need to wean your way to nice.  A smile and a simple, “hello” may take several months – and that’s just to friends.

My goal is to willingly cook meals for family and friends in need and write thank-you notes.

It sounds very simplistic yet we’ve lost a lot of softness in our increasingly narcissistic, hide behind the first-amendment-where’s-the-filter society.

I’m not talking Care Bears and Air Supply.

How about we start with please, thank you and how are you today?

And, if you ask my mother, a Doris Day movie marathon is all it will take to get you in a nice mood.

To quote Phyllis Diller, “A smile is a curve that sets everything straight.”

Most importantly she also said, “Always be nice to your children because they are the ones who will choose your rest home.”

Here’s a toast to 2013 and getting our nice on!

18 thoughts on “Let’s Make 2013 The Year of Nice

  1. Amen to you, sister! I so agree with you that nice is disappearing at a super fast pace in our society. We’re all so enwrapped in our little world, worried that the others are just out there to get us, get ahead of us, get from us… We only get and we don’t give, concerned we’re going to be taken advantage of, rather than just doing the right thing.

    Like you, I’m making changes in my life this year. I’ve decided to “force” myself to perform random acts of kindness, to become more aware of the people around me and their needs, whether they are my loved ones, or a complete stranger. I believe in karma and would like all of us to enjoy good karma all year round. I’ll write up a post next week about this very topic. I’m glad to see I’m not the only one with this challenging intention for 2013!

  2. Don’t even get me started! I’ll just say I totally agree. Nice is completely under rated and has gone out of style in many places, venues and forums. If only all those “Real Housewives” internet commenters, etc. would resolve to take your words to heart. Maybe “nice” used to be boring….but now it is so rare, that it is downright interesting.

    Your nice, Midwestern friend.

    P.S. Phyllis looks so pretty in that picture

  3. Phyllis looks FAB! I agree~ the world does need more “nice.” It’s amazing how people have lost “it”. Take note of how many people will not hold the door at the store for you…even if you are only a few steps away. I’m trying to hold the door for others and actually wait for a response after I ask someone “How are you?” Hopefully all of us trying to to be “nicer” will become the norm again. I’m tired of “rude & selfish.”

    • Your description, “amazing how people have lost “it” is so true. Was it the death of chivalry, the me generation or social media? Likely a combination of all. Report back on how your nice gestures are being received.

  4. Although holding doors, giving someone your place in line and getting a little old lady something from the top shelf at the grocery store are NICE actions one of the nicest things I believe we can do is smile at someone. Not a tiny grimace either but a full-frontal teeth revealing grin.

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