By Carol Randel

I make pretty much the same New Year's resolutions every year. The always have to do with eating better, exercising more, sticking to a budget, calling my friends more often, listening more carefully, doing more for charity, and a smorgasbord of other choices about being a better person.

However, if I'm making the same resolutions every year, something must be going wrong. Let's just say I am a work in progress and yearly resolutions don't do the trick. This year, instead of making resolutions for myself, I'm fantasizing about what I would want if I could make resolutions for everyone else. Here goes the 10 things I'd like to see in 2011. They range from the silly to the serious, but as long as I am dreaming ...

1. Fashion: I'd like to see shoes meant for real women who actually have to walk as they live their real lives. The current fashion of insane stilettos, towering platforms and architectural designs that look like small buildings attached to the legs must be meant for women who basically don't move. I thought foot-binding was a thing of the past.

2. Entertainment: I'd like to see a great romantic comedy hit the theaters. Although I can enjoy almost any rom-com, most have fallen short in the last few years involving ridiculous stories and characters who are not all that appealing and don't have much going on between them. I'd love to see a movie that contains two great-looking, interesting, believable characters with clever dialogue, an unpredictable plot, some good laughs and a few tears. And some sexual chemistry between those good-looking actors would make the film a 10 for me.

3. Food: Let's get some definitive rulings on what we are and are not supposed to eat. Which is more important, organic or local? Are we omnivores or vegetarians? Should we eat full, low, or no fat? Green tea or black? Is wine good for us or bad? Have we consumed enough kale yet?

4. Technology: Let's take a sabbatical on new technology for the year. It would be great to get some use out of the stuff we already own without their becoming obsolete by the time we recharge the batteries. Maybe we can even learn to use all the features on our old cell phones before we have to get new ones.

5. Medicine: How about a pill to stop hot flashes that has no serious side effects. Come on all you scientists who are probably male or too young to appreciate the need for such a remedy. Having to throw off your clothes every 20 minutes as your cheeks turn crimson and your body springs a leak in every pore is not a fun way to get through a day.

6. Publishing: I'd love to see more good fiction hit the bookstores. The size of the fiction list is shrinking compared to the non-fiction, yet a good novel holds more truth than any predictable "I was beaten, got drunk, took drugs, hit bottom, and was redeemed" memoir or celebrity tell-all written by someone whose name doesn't even appear on the cover. The fiction that we do get is mostly junky romances, junky mysteries, junky vampire tales or formulaic thrillers, yet a good novel holds more entertainment value than any sex-with-a-vampire-while-wearing-stilettos genre book. The days when I can't wait to get home to my book are too few and far between lately.

7. The Environment: This is easy. How about an end to speculation about global warming. It's here, it's not good, now what should we do about it?

8. Civil Rights: Let's try tolerance. No more isms -- racism, ageism, sexism, size-ism. Let's accept the fact that people come all different ways and even though most of us have some sort of bigotry (for instance, I am convinced that people in small cars who can barely be seen over the steering wheel are always horrendous drivers), let's stifle those ugly feelings.

9. Politics: In order to fix what is so dreadfully wrong with the way our politicians have been behaving, let's just kick out all the cranky old white men in both parties. But let's not replace them with cranky young white women.

10. The World: I'd like to say that my New Year's resolution for the world is peace, but I'm not running for Miss America, and anyway, I'm afraid that's asking for the impossible.

How about starting with the children? My wish is that the world takes care of its children. Let's make sure that they are all fed, clothed, kept healthy, educated and protected. I know it's a tall order, but what else are resolutions for?

Carol Randel shares her "Random Thoughts" regularly in the Westport News.