A star above Mission High and the city...
Illustration by Julie Liu

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What? No one wants to lose weight anymore? Or perhaps the prospect of 2023, and the memory of nearly three lost years, has made the tradition of making New Year’s resolutions more realistic. Here is what visitors to Dolores Park had to say about resolutions for 2023.

“To get a car,” said Sebastian, who walked his dog as he skated by. “I’d like to get out of the lease I’m currently in and buy a cheaper, used car. … A nice little four-cylinder gas saver would be great.” His dog, Jazmine, had resolved “to go on more walks in the New Year,” he said.

Sebastian at Dolores Park
Sebastian and his dog Jazmine take in the view. Photo taken by Adrian Fernandez, December, 2022.

To save enough money for his own place, said  Matt as he was selling food and drinks from a cart that he pushes through Dolores Park. “I live in Oakland, so I’ll probably get a place down there. That, and I’d like to open a more physical storefront.”

“I’m looking for connections. It’s not what you know, it’s who you know,” said Ulysses, who was sitting on a bench in the upper section of Dolores Park. At 31, he said, he’s made an awful lot of unkept New Year’s resolutions. “I feel like we just fall into that [trap of thinking], next year I’ll get ‘em, next year I’ll get ’em, and it’s like, go get ’em right now.”

“Keep working as a stagehand and play more music,” said Edward. As for his well-trained poodle. “He hopes to eat good food and chase a bunch of balls.”

“To be successful and make the next year better than the previous one,” said Taja as he smoked a cigarette, giving him an air of a philosopher. “[Life] is like a loop, you know, we just live in it. … We gotta go with the flow, do what we’re supposed to do. We just have to wait for the fruit to be ready, to mature.”

“Get my own apartment and get better at skating,” said Ben, a local skateboarder waiting for Muni near Mission High. He was part of a larger group of young men who all carried skateboards as they sat and waited. Marlin, a friend, had his resolution ready as well: “To get way better at skating, get sponsored, and get my own place.” The other skateboarders nodded in agreement. 

“To find people who will value, understand and see me,” said Caro, who sat atop his black 650 cc sports bike as he looked out at the view atop the Dolores Park hill. “In other words, my new year’s resolution will be to get rid of those false narcissistic people who say they are your friends but [stab you in the back]”.

“To finish my schooling and [complete] my thesis,” said Sara, who is visiting from Germany for the holidays.

To travel as much as I can in the U.S. and see many places, especially in California … then we’ll see what else I can do,” said Illy, a Mission local. 

“To travel,” said Gene, who already made the trip from England to visit her son. It’s been a rough year for her. “I’ve been in the city for nearly three months. I just lost my husband. … I’m just still getting used to it.” 

“To get ahead in my career as a computer engineer,” said Allison as she threw a ball across the grass for her dog, Taki, to fetch. “I’m usually the only woman in my office, but I’ve gotten used to that.”

Allison and Taki
Allison and Taki. Photo taken by Adrian Fernandez, December, 2022.

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