Sunday, December 31, 2006

December 2006

YOUR DISCWORLD HOROSCOPE

by Lady Anaemia Asterisk

A BRAND NEW YEAR, A BRAND NEW YOU

Greetings, my happy Hogswatch horoscope-readers! The ancient time of Hogswatch signals the start of a new year full of fresh opportunity, endless possibilities and a host of Zodiac-influenced disasters. It's also a time for visiting dear friends and family, feasting and quaffing to excess, and most of all for New Year's resolutions. In light of this, I've recently travelled the Disc to seek out a number of well-known personalities (mainly with people attached to them) to discover their resolutions for the New Year and share them for your delectation and entertainment and also as a possible source of inspiration. There's no time like the present for changing your ways - after the festivities are over, of course.

Happy Hogswatch to all, and mind how you go with the sherry!



The Adamant Hedgehog 21 Mar - 20 Apr

Willikins, butler to the Ramkin-Vimes family:
"In the following year, I intend to see to the further restoration of Lady Sybil's ancestral home. Now that Young Master Sam is growing rapidly, it's time some of the long-disused rooms got a proper airing and are made suitable for visitors and guests. I shall also be studying new strategies for convincing Lord Samuel to allow me to buttle him properly. And I shall make time for a refresher course in the martial arts of Shamlegger Street, since I have finally accepted that extra-familial violence in the Ramkin home is simply a part of daily life for a personage as danger-prone as my employer."

Sally von Humpeding, Watchman and, um, spy:
"My Hogswatch resolution... well, after so many years of having Hogswatch as the number one time of the year for going out and getting really hammered on... um... my species' favourite drink, I think my resolution nowadays should be to never do that sort of drinking again. So this Hogswatch and every Hogswatch I will renew my Temperance Society pledge with extra formality and a good unbeating heart. I also resolve to do less drinking of the human sort, that is to say alcohol, because every time I go for a big night out at The Bucket with my colleagues, I wake up with some of my bats missing. Life as a Black Ribboner is difficult enough without having to spend hours chasing down bits of my extremities! So no more of those drinks with the funny paper umbrellas in them - they cause me to, well, let's just say that for a vampire, the expression 'forget my own head next' is upsettingly literal."

Mrs Earwig, a self-confessed modern Ramtops witch:
"Next year my sacred mission on behalf of the spirits of higher magicks is to fight against the latest resurgence of the un-Enlightened witching community. It seems that the younger members of the Craft are acting like, well, like old ladies in black - mixing curative herbal potions without so much as donning a piece of occult jewellery or consulting my book of Rituals of Purification for the Sisters of Arcana, making personal visits to those dreadfully unsophisticated villagers, and even refusing to cast spells! One can't be having with that sort of thing, can one..."

Lord Rust, scion of an old Ankh-Morpork family:
"My Hogswatch resolution? Get some law and order back in this city. What these uppity Guilds need is to be taken out and thrashed good and proper, to a man. And that should be to a man. Time we rid this city of all those lawn ornaments and rocks. And those vampires and zombies while we're at it - what they need's to be given a damn good thrashing and shown the way to the Turnwise Gate. Oh, and get that de Worde feller thrown off that upstart newspaper. Ought to have the whole damn thing shut down. Public opinions? Hah! The holding of opinions is an hereditary right of the nobility. The public need a damn good thrashing, the lot of 'em."



Gahoolie, the Vase of Tulips 21 Apr - 21 May

Grag Bashfull Bashfullsson, an encouragingly modern Dwarf:
"In this coming year, I resolve to turn my face further into the light while yet remaining endarkened. These times of change call for changing ways. Slowly changing ways, of course. I have every respect for our thousands of years of laws and traditions. But as the axe of the mind cuts away all but truth, so can it cut away the mined-out seams of pointless hatred and ways no longer useful to our people. Ankh-Morpork may be a city of the lost, but the lost can be reclaimed. Any anyway, the beer at Gimlet's beats anything I ever had back in Copperhead. Nothing like a friendly pint to help the reclaiming along."

Lobsang Ludd, a noted Time Lord:
"In honour of my esteemed teacher and boyhood guide Lu-Tze, I resolve to get around to giving the History Monks some fresh hours and a good supply of yesterdays. I also intend to investigate the mystery of why so many humans seem to have time on their hands. I'm quite sure I didn't put it there."

Sadie, an Agony Aunt:
"Actually, dear, I make other people keep their resolutions. I've never had a problem with my own. Although I suppose I could wish to work even more quietly next year. And to leave fewer marks."

Mustrum Ridcully, Archchancellor of Unseen University:
"In the New Year, I intend to institute some changes to the University. Time we brought back the daily compulsory dawn jog for all senior staff. And callisthenics. And fish. Must have a word with the Chair of Thaumozoology about breeding some sludge-resistant fish for our stretch of the Ankh, that wussy natural selection is a complete failure when it comes to making good tough pike with good tough teeth. And I'm going to have a word with Stibbons - he needs to get out of that stuffy High Energy Magic building and into the good healthy fug of the Archchancellor's Games Room so he can devote his high energy to something useful, like creating more wormholes in that rubber sheet he always goes on about so I can do more spectacular trick billiards shots."



Herne the Hunted 22 May - 21 Jun

Ella Saturday, Baroness de Genua:
"My resolution for next year is to visit Mrs Gogol more often - I've been kept so busy practising laissez-faire that it's quite ruined my social life. And I'll check all the palace mirrors more frequently and make sure they're safely covered. Oh, and much as I hate to interfere with the daily business of my dear people, I think I'll issue a proclamation, no, a request, that all restaurants keep frogs' legs off the menu from now on. The thought of frogs still gives me the heebie-jeebies."

Tiffany Aching, witch and cheesemaker:
"Next year I resolve to not kiss any boys under ANY circumstances! Even if they make avalanches and icebergs for me. And especially not if they give me water-colour painting sets! Also, I shall write my diary in code. And I promise to take Wentworth fishing at least once a month, and make sure he catches a fish of more than forty pounds' weight. Hamish the Aviator brought me a request from Horace to make him a bride, but I think one mobile sentient cheese is more than enough, if one can call an honorary Feegle sentient."

Susan Sto Helit, governess and part-time anthropomorphic personification:
"So another Hogswatch season comes, another mad scramble to buy showier presents than anyone else and dine and drink with relatives you spend the rest of the year avoiding for good reason, another time of taking vital ancient traditions that once had a purpose, a purpose of visceral urgent blood-deep death and renewal, and making them into debased tinsel-wrapped cuddly children's nonsense. And of course, of people who have spent the whole year misbehaving in depressingly typical human ways suddenly swearing to completely change those ways, and of this passionate resolve lasting only to the end of the post-Hogswatchnight hangover, at which point the whole sad parade of weaknesses begins all over again. You know, at times like this I almost feel a certain sympathy for Grandfather's, um, state of existence, as he doesn't have to bother with any of this. Yes, he makes a habit of trying to bother with it, but the point is that he doesn't have to. Excuse me, you're standing in front of a bogeyman. Pass me the poker, would you?"

Hodgesaargh, Royal Falconer of Lancre:
"Oh, is it a new year again? Hawks aren't too concerned about the new year, they really only care about the right season for nesting. My resolution is to increase the number of successful hatchings next year. And to teach Her Majesty's wowhawk to let go of my arm before flying off."



The Wizard's Staff and Knob 22 Jun - 22 Jul

The Librarian, a noted wizard and ape:
"Oook ook ook oook ook. Eek!"

    [Translation: "Next year I must discourage the student wizards from reading the books. What do they think they're playing at? That gets under my fur, that does. Books aren't meant to be read - they're meant to be cared for and cherished and comforted on stormy nights when the Library's magical field is off the thaumometers and above all else not read. They get frightened when people look at their pages! But these, these, these students, they borrow them and read them and bring them back with strawberry jam and sushi stains in them and - argh, it's more than an ape can bear. I'm going for a lie-down with my blanket. If anyone wants me, I'll be under my desk."]


Lady Roberta Meserole, a noted... aunt:
"Now that I'm spending what one might delicately call my dotage back in the pleasant clime of my very late husband's Genua estate, I've had time to look back over my more active years. Having done so, my conclusion is that all the resolutions I ever had have been brought to a satisfactory pass. My dear nephew continues to make a fine job of the position I so wisely arranged for him to take; my dear friends in Uberwald are making excellent progress in their quest for more modern and less sanguinary forms of government; even young Ella seems to be taking to heart my teachings on the subject of laissez-faire governance. I sometimes wish I was young enough to take a more proactive role in developments regarding the current Agatean Empire... no, I think the Fangs, Tangs, Hongs and MacSweeneys have a sufficient complement of political manipulators among them to solve the situation without my help. So my one remaining resolution is to continue having a quiet life. And improving my breed of long-haired white cats. I'm presently selectively breeding ones that possess a natural enigmatic half-smile. So appropriate, don't you think?"

Gytha Ogg, a noted witch of Lancre:
"Hogswatch resolutions, eh? My daughters-in-law 'd better be making plenty of 'em! I swear, I don't know how they can call themselves housekeepers - why, every time I run my fingers over the undersides of the cold-pantry shelves and down the back of the couch cushions, I come up with enough dust to fill an entire scumble glass. And sometimes when one of 'em brings me my breakfast in bed, the tea is cool enough for me to dip my finger into without getting scalded. The cheek! Speaking of cheek, I've had a request from that Mister Goatberger in Ankh-Morpork to send him a new book for publicating next year. I can't believe the nerve of that man, after he tried to rob me over The Joye of Snacks! But he says this time he'll send me an advance, and I never could resist a man's advances. So I s'pose my resolution for the new year is to give him what he wants. O'course, chances are he'll get more than he wants, but that sort of thing always seems to happen with my little books. Amazing, isn't it, how good some people are at misunderstanding. Or at not misunderstanding at all. So I'm minded to write a nice series of stories for children, all about love among the Gods and their earthly followers - and in keeping with my established theme (that's publisher talk), I'm going to call it The Joye of Sects. Make sure to buy a copy so's I can get some more advances!"

Serafine von Uberwald, a noted noblewolf:
"My resolution for next year is to be firmer with Guy regarding his table manners and other personal indoor habits. I also intend to write to Angua and her young human; after all, there's nothing wrong with a harmless old lady encouraging her daughter to produce a fine strong litter of grandpups. I would have resolved to answer Sybil's letters, but since her last visit she seems to have stopped writing altogether. I can't imagine why."



Bilious, God of Hangovers 23 Jul - 23 Aug

Roland de Chumsfanleigh, heir to the Chalk barony:
"Sausage and cheese keep very well, but they are rather binding; I resolve to stock up on extra fruit next year, especially prunes and dried figs. And speaking of prunes, I really must do something about my aunts. The way they've been selling off the family silver, it's a wonder I've any knives left to cut my sausages with. I'm also inclined to study the noble profession of shepherding. And cheesemaking. Not, you know, because those have anything at all to do with a certain young local witch or anything..."

Major Blouse, a career soldier of Borogravia:
"As every new year brings our beloved Borogravia further down the 'path to enlightenment' and the old traditional ways of our couture, I mean culture, move 'ever onward', I think the establishing of a full-time theatrical troupe within the military is an important and noble goal. We must 'keep up the spirits' of our fighting forces; even if we're finally not fighting anyone, it pays to be vigilant and 'ready for action'! So my resolution for the coming year is to create a 'special force', the Wrigglesworth Brigade, which will be dedicated to providing good healthy entertainment for 'our little lads'. I myself intend to play a major, ha-ha, there's a clever 'play on words' for you, I say a major part in these uplifting productions. After all, I am a trained thespian. With a fine 'collection' of frilly petticoats."

C.W. St.J. Nobbs, a Watchman and professional Nobby:
"My Hogswatch resolution's to be less good at dodging ole Hammerhead Pushpram's fish when she throws 'em at me. I'm def'nitely goin' up in her estymation - these days when she takes aim, she's usin' almost fresh ones. When she gets to the herring wot don't smell at all, I reckon it'll be time for me to pop the question. After all, we're none of us gettin' younger, an' I haveta think about producin' a child of my loins to carry on the Nobbs name. Never mind wot Fred says about my loins, we Nobbses are a proud old family. It's not like the Colons got within a sparrow's fart o' becomin' King, eh? Also I'm startin' a new enterprise for my retirement like. With all this new modern edjymacation, I notice there's a big market for paper an' pencils, and the other day I overheard someone talking about how there's a big consignment o' Number Three grey-lead pencils comin' up fer sale to the smartest buyer. After all, a person can't spend his nights out in the rain upholdin' the sacred principles o' law 'n order after a certain age."

Miss Perspicacia Tick, a talent-scouting witch:
"I hereby resolve to set a new personal record for witchfinding next year. I'm also going to work on my shamble technique. Oh, and I need to put out a new edition of the Magavenatio Obtusis, because I'm getting tired of having to comb river algae out of my hair several times a week. I think it's time those anti-witch folks moved up to the next phase - the one where, rather than tying witches up and throwing them in the nearest river, they dump one or two buckets of water over them and offer a good shampoo and conditioner. And naturally I shall apply myself to continuing and expanding my Feegle phrasebook. So many Pictsie swear words, so little time..."



Mubbo the Hyena 24 Aug - 23 Sept

Igor (not an Igor) of Biers, a publican:
"Resolutions for next year? All about improvements to the bar. It's what I live for, since I'm pretty much the only living being involved in running this place. Find a new supplier of meat pies and pasties - have to say Mrs Drull's pies just don't taste like they used to. Oh, and buy some raven-proof pickled onion jars. Also, search the second-hand market for sapient pearwood bar stools - word on the street is that they're self-repairing. Though I suspect that Dunelm at the Mended Drum has bought up the entire available supply. Oh yesss, and I need to find a better splatter for the door. These days it seems like half the customers are normals coming in just to goggle at the regulars. Though I've got to say, they certainly buy lots of my most expensive cocktails."

Pors Stronginthearm, a weapons maker:
"My resolution for next year will be to turn all Burleigh & Stronginthearm swords and crossbows into ploughshares. Hah! - no, sorry, just a little Kad'k joke for you there. Although with the way things have been since the Koom Valley Disambiguation, the idea of branching out into interspecies farming implements has a certain appeal. But our culture will endure beyond wars and... truces. And where there's a dwarf there's and axe, and where there's an axe there's always a need for a newer axe, so the B&S foundry will carry on from strength to strength. Actually, I do resolve to offer a new line in sized-up traditional Dwarf arms and armour next year. It seems that the recent Thud craze has led to high demand among Troll players for appropriate costume. Never let it be said that B&S doesn't believe in multiculturalism, especially when there's profit in it."

Annagramma Hawkin, a young witch of the Ramtops:
"Next year will be my year! The year when I teach the teacher. Oh, not Mistress Weatherwax; she's far too set in her old-school ways to learn from bright new blood, that is to say from me. But Mrs Earwig, now - it's time the silly woman woke up and realised that witching isn't just about spells and jewellery and dancing in the moonlight and selling books to impressionable young girls. I personally have rolled up my sleeves and witched in the presence of actual genuine peasants and farm women! Yes, and I might add that I'm entirely self-taught. So my resolution is to bring the true way of witching to all those who think that it's just about what gimmicks and accessories you can buy in a shop. Now, as far as personal resolutions, I don't think I need to improve myself at all. But I might take the time to have Petulia the pig-witch show me how she's coming along with her, er, craft. That should be amusing. It's not as if there's anything I need to learn about witching livestock, surely not!"

Millie Chillum, lady-in-waiting to Queen Magrat of Lancre:
"Ooh, you actually want to know my resolutions? Um, well, 'scuse me while I curtsey, makes me less nervous. Um, her Highness Missus Queen Magrat Ma'am keeps telling me to be more self-assertive, so I guess my resolution is to be more self-assertive next year. Um, 'scuse me, I just have to pick up Princess Esme's toys. So I guess what I'll have to do is learn more about what self-assertive means. Missus Magrat Ma'am says it's about self-determination, but I'm not sure how that applies to me because everything I do 's always been determined by other people. She, her Highness that is, said I also need to practise regular self-assessment, but I've always been regular and I've nothing an assessor'd be interested, I'm sure. Um, 'scuse me, I just have to go change the herbs in the garderobes."



The Small Boring Group of Faint Stars 24 Sept - 23 Oct

Banjo Lilywhite, former thug and current part-time anthropomorphic personification:
"Youse mean I gets a whole year? Jus' for myself? An' no gibbin it back! Golly! I don' haf dem reso, resola, dem things cos I'm happy here, dere's trees an' grass an' ever't'ing's clean like me Mam allus said it oughtta be. An' Miss Susan comes by sometimes an' we gets milk an' cookies an' she shows me how ta wash m'hands an' speak betterer. Um, I guess next year I could make a statchyer of me mam outta teef. Gots lotsa teef here. A whole year? Golly!"

Brick, a foundling Troll and trainee Watchman:
"My New Ears Resalooshun is not fallin over der wagon again, an' to work real hard and be a pro-duck-tive member of sossioty like Detritus, cos it hurts when he thumps me. Hey, why dey call it New Ears anyway? I don' need no new ears, I gots perfickly good ones already. Or mebbe dat's why Detritus him allus say he gonna gimme a fick ear. Anyway I hope I has a good year an' none'a dat stuff dat makes me brain all sparkly no more."

Petulia Gristle, a noted pig-witch of the Ramtops:
"Um, resolutions? Oh, I hadn't given it much, um, thought, we've been so busy here getting the pig-houses ready for winter, at least we'll be having a regular winter here this year, ha-ha, Tiffany hasn't been going to any special dances lately...um, no, can't think of any - ohh! Is that a Sto Lat Saddleback sow in the field over there? Lovely! I didn't know anyone up this way had one. They're wonderful pigs to work with, you know. Gentle, brighter than most breeds, and the sows in farrow are just fabulous, no bother at all. If more people invested in Saddlebacks my job would be a lot easier, I can tell you that. I'll just go over for a closer - sorry, what were you talking about?"

Assistant Postmaster Stanley of the Ankh-Morpork Post Office:
"My Hogswatch resolution is to catalogue all the Post Office's stamps by the number and size of their perforations. Many people might not realise what a fascinating activity this is! A stamp is more, much, much more, than a mere gummed square or oblong of coloured paper. There's the type, quality, texture and thickness of the paper; the type, quality, texture and thickness of the gum; the composition and colour depth of the inks (or, in the case of Quirm Specials, the cabbage and broccoli juice); the nature, size and calligraphic classification of the official Post Office writing on each stamp; and last but certainly not least, the size and number of the perforations. It's absolutely enthralling! Of course, some people claim that the type, size, weight and maker's mark of the perforating pins is also of vital interest but that's typical of your undedicated hobbyist collector - the stamp, the whole stamp and nothing but the stamp is what it's really all about. Honestly, who could possibly care about pins?"



Androgyna Majestis 24 Oct - 22 Nov

Queen Ptraci of Djelibeybi:
"My resolution for next year is to purchase more Royal crocodiles. And to feed more smugglers to them. Also, to double the number of flush toilets in the Palace. And hot showers. And cold showers. And to import an Igor, even though it's said they don't thrive in desert conditions. I can certainly understand that - this desert sun doesn't half play havoc with my skin! Which is why I want an Igor in the first place. Some people might think having your face on all the national currency is quite impressive, but I don't want to go down in Djelibeybian history as the Queen with a faceful of wrinkles."

Miss Battye, a noted seamstr-, um, needlewoman:
My resolution for Hogswatch is to open my own needlework shop! After so many years of being mistaken for - of being mistaken, I think it's time people know me for the work I'm proud of and not for the work certain sorts of people think I shouldn't be proud of, although of course I've never done that sort of work so I can't have something I've done that I'm not proud of if I've never done it. And I can tell you, a widower on a pension, who's in need of some darning, is certainly not proud! So I shall become Battye the bespoke tailor and wield my mushroom with pride. I wanted to rent the shop next to Mrs Palm's, but a nice widower on a pension pointed out an empty premises to me around the corner in Knocking Lane and it looks perfect. I think I'll call it Miss Battye's Knocking Shop. Finally, I'll be able to work without men walking up to me and asking impertinent questions!"

The Dean of Unseen University:
"My Hogswatch resolution is to combine my new hobby of crateboarding (I learnt it from some young fellers working in the University Clacks tower; you take the wheels from a pair of skates and attach them to a grocer's orange crate, and let me tell you, the thrills and spills are almost as much fun as that Music with Rocks In) with the Invisible Horse Power spell we developed to get Commander Vimes to Koom Valley at terrifying speed. Just think of the possibilities! For a start, it will make Mustrum ever so cross. Also, I think Mrs Whitlow would be impressed, and she's a fine figure of a woman and another woman, splendid old bat if I do say so myself. And I can get Stibbons and Turnipseed to set me up some trick shots - much more exciting than boring old billiards. Now that Paintball and Toe Fu aren't allowed on campus any longer, this will bring back some of that old school spirit. Surf's up! I'm bad! Whatever!"

71-hour Ahmed, a policeman of Klatch:
"I resolve to track down that Al-jibla's source of honeyed locusts onna stick - and put an end to it. That man's crimes against edibility give Klatch a bad name, and Klatch has a bad enough name already in inter-Disc cuisine. My dear D'reg mother cooks better than he does. My camel cooks better than he does. Hmm, now there's a thought... I've been thinking about taking another... holiday in Ankh-Morpork, and I noticed last time that Morporkians have simply no idea about proper Klatchian curry. Perhaps, under an alias of course, I should open a true Klatchian restaurant, and... yes, use it as cover for keeping an eye on... yes, developments. Measure the wind, as it were. Vimes needn't know I'm there, but I might be of some small help in averting any possible future wars. I hear the Watch now has a vampire who works as an agent for Uberwald, so why not? There's always room in Ankh-Morpork for another disconcerting foreigner."



Great T'Phon's Foot 23 Nov - 21 Dec

Drumknott, clerk to Lord Vetinari:
"In the coming calendar year I resolve to get to the bottom of the missing Number Three grey-lead pencils mystery. The attrition rate of these pencils is far higher than would be explained by the Palace clerks' rate of use; further pursuant to this matter, some of the clerks have entered a complaint about the scarcity of these items, and I myself commissioned an investigation by the Patrician's Dark Clerks which has turned up no clues apart from the discovery than, only last week, an entire consignment of Number Three grey-lead pencils has gone missing without a trace. Enquiries to the Thieves' Guild have produced no enlightening results, and I refuse to take a purely internal matter to the Watch. This may seem like an insignificant detail to some, but I keep a tidy Palace and after all, Cori Celesti is in the details."

Chrysoprase, a noted businessman of Ankh-Morpork:
"Ah, der Hogwatch season am 'pon us again, eh? We businessmen o' der community mus' respec' der soft ones' traditions, hmmm. We Trolls knows all about traditions. So you makes resolutions for last year, eh? Well, I be resolvin' to expand my finance and real estate business. And der same for my... security business. We Trolls knows all about security, 'specially when it come to what you might call security in der neighbourhood. Also, I's goin' for a holiday visitin' der Low King - for a li'l discussion an' a friendly game o' Thud, you unnerstan'... but don' be thinkin dat jus' because I's going for a holiday dat der neighbourhood won' be secure. I's leavin' my bes' security per-son-nel on de job. Odderwise no locals show respec'. Gotta keep up wid der respec'. If you ain't got respec' you be sleepin wid der ooograh in der deep forest. But I no nuffin' 'bout dat, cos I am a respectable businessman."

Mr Pump, a government employee:
"My Resolution For The Coming Year Is To Earn The Remainder Of The Price Of My Self-Purchase And To Cause This Purchase To Come To Pass. Also, I Am Considering Having My Chem Dyed A Fetching Shade Of Puce, Just To Be Fashionable. After All, Personal Internal Adornment Is An Act Of Will."

Dotsie, an Agony Aunt:
"My dear Sadie was a bit unspecific - we make other people keep the resolutions we resolve for them.



Hoki the Jokester 22 Dec - 20 Jan

Adora Belle "Spike" Dearheart, a noted social worker:
"A small child tossed a brick through my window yesterday. My resolution is to find that child and return the brick to him, preferably right between the eyes. Must send a clacks to Sacharissa. What, you expected me to take this seriously? I've got forty part-paid golems to see to, the roof's leaking again, a typhoon in Howandaland has wiped out this year's crop of my favourite tobacco, and now that idiot Lipwig has some ridiculous plan to take me gondola-trekking in Brindisi for Hogswatch. I'm too busy for resolutions."

Lord Downey of the Assassins' Guild:
"As Hogswatch leads us into a new year of undertakings, I must keep a closer eye on our Guild School. Far too many students these days are surviving, that is to say passing, their practical examinations; not a promising result, with the reputation we must at all costs uphold. For if our Guild's standards should fall, that might cause the value of our services to depreciate, and then where would we be? Certainly far less recompensed, and far less respected - and as the charming local businessman Chrysoprase so often reiterates, one has nothing if one has not respect. Apart from that, I intend to continue my personal explorations in the field of botany; my goal is to become the first to breed the famed black 'Delicia mortis' rose in this mortal realm."

Lord Vetinari, Patrician of Ankh-Morpork:
"Resolution. From the
Latatian resolvare, 'to break into tiny pieces with exceptional violence'. Interesting, is it not, the origin of the word. To rule a city, one must first consider its functions, break its very essence, as it were, into tiny pieces. Sometimes with exceptional violence. For the good of the polis, naturally. I find it fascinating that a word of such origin has come in this modern age to mean 'a decision taken with great enthusiasm on the spur of the moment, without having considered its consequences or possibility of success'. Our ancestors had a term for that as well: falcis fallacius, 'dangerously sharp self-deceit'. Hmm. Don't let me detain you."

Lily Weatherwax, a witch on hiatus:
"My resolution? Find myself! And get out of this damn mirror."



The Rather Large Gazunda 21 Jan - 18 Feb

Miss Level, a singular witch:
"My Hogswatch resolution is to improve my juggling. With all my hands."

Solstice Dibbler, nephew of a noted Ankh-Morpork entrepreneur:
"I welcome a new year of opportunities for enterprise. My Hogswatch resolution is to build and strengthen a business of my own - ever since the affair of Holy Wood (which my uncle says I must never, ever talk about) I've been scraping by while Uncle Throat goes from success to disaster to success to... hey, at least he has excitement and variety in his life. Now, he always says (in a careful whisper) that there's money in piracy, but I don't have the build to be a pirate so what I'm looking into is the fast-growing world of Clacks service providing. You may have heard of the new craze for Clacks-rooms? All it takes is a set of mini-towers and a cheap rented room and I can charge up to a dollar an hour for every pasty-faced "wirehead" who wants to spend his days passing messages back and forth with other pasty-faced wireheads in Genua and Uberwald and all over the Disc! Plus, there's a whole vista of moneymaking opportunities in selling advertising on WireSpace. So next year I shall add fame and glory to the Dibbler family. And I further resolve that after I've done it, I won't lend Uncle Throat a penny. I mean, where's he been all these years while I was scraping?"

Lady Margolotta, a discreet amateur politician of Uberwald:
"For me, every new day is a resolution. Such is the life of a Black Ribboner, as we know all too well. Now that things have gone quieter in Uberwald politics, I need a new, ah, hobby, so I suppose my resolution for the new year is to find one. My dear friend Bobbi Meserole tells me she's retired, but for such as myself there is never a possibility of gentle, aimless retirement. I am what I am. Let me see... knitting is right out; breeding ornamental rats is not nearly enough of a challenge... breeding werewolves, on the other fang... no, it just won't do. Politics and intrigue is what I love best, apart from biting throats and drinkin- no, no, must never think that way again. Perhaps an encrypted (and no, that is not a pune or play on words) Clacks to dear Havelock, to see if we can make additional use of young Sally as a quadruple agent? And while I'm at it, the idea of opening a deportment school for undead spies rather takes my fancy. Good manners are getting scarce among the young vampires of today, especially among the members of the Temperance League. We simply must keep our standards up! It's not all about underwired nightdresses and opera capes, you know."

Walter Plinge, musical director of the Opera House:
"My Hogswatch resolution is the same as last year's and my one for the year before - to teach Christine to carry a tune without dropping it on the orchestra's poor ears. I am nothing if not determined. Also, I want to get the Opera House production of 'Guys and Trolls' up and running, so a trip to Copperhead is in the offing. That's a useful coincidence, because I must visit Mistress Weatherwax and ask her to make me a new invisible mask. There are times when I can feel the old one she gave me wearing a bit thin. I certainly don't want to risk having it fall off when I'm in the middle of a full choir rehearsal... Mother would be so embarrassed, and she deserves a break from being embarrassed by her only son. And speaking of only sons, I must check on how young Slugg junior is coming with the new account books. Ever since the massive success of 'All You Need is Slugg', he's been holed up in the cellar offices. No-one's seen him for so long, he might as well be a ghost."



Lesser Umbrage 19 Feb - 20 Mar

Jeannie, Kelda of the Chalk MacFeegles:
"My Hogswatch resolution for next year is to do something no Kelda has ever before accomplished. Now that we MacFeegles of the Chalk are known as 'the Odd Clan' - the only clan with a cheese in our number, the only clan with a human lass as a former Kelda, the only clan with a fully functional aviator - I propose to have a word wi' my brother and have him teach me the playing o' the mousepipes. Why should a Kelda forever stay at home while her Big Man goes off to meet danger and adventure? Why should a Kelda not be able to recite battle poetry and use the mousepipes as her noble weapon? Why should a Kelda not be able to gie her enemies a proper face full o' heid, just like hers sons and brothers? Why indeed? Yes, my resolution is... Kelda Liberation! And getting Rob to not put so many dragons in his Explanations."

Horace, a noted cheese:
"Mnnamnamnam...mnnammnam...mnnamnamNAM!"

    [Translation: "Next year I resolve to consume many lesser cheeses, keep Jeannie's scullery free of mice and start working on a Feegle-Cheese phrasebook. Rennet rennet wax limewash CRIVENS!"]


Rob Anybody MacFeegle:
"It's a hard job bein' Big Man o' the clan in the best of times, but I wanna be the biggest Big Man in Chalk history. So for next year I intend to doin' o' the rrreadin' o' the Law, 'specially them pesky Writs an' Summonses. An' I rrresolve tae practise the not-rrreadin' as well, when it comes tae the big wee hag's pers'nal private letters'n sich. 'cept in emergencies. O' course, when it comes tae the big wee hag, there's no knowin' o' what's an emergency, but I'll always hae good Explanations. Wi' dragons in 'em."

Samuel Vimes the Younger, heir to the Duchy of Ankh-Morpork:
"Next year I'm going to find my cow! Without my Daddy's help!"

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