The first day of the new year is nearly at an end, and I’m still hoping for better things in the coming 365. No reason not to. We did have some good things happen in 2008, but it seems like everything came crashing down there towards the end of the year. I know I shouldn’t focus on the negative, so here are some of the highlights of he past year.
Jenni graduated from high school … one of the top 12 in her class. We were fortunate enough to be able to go to the graduation, and I was very proud to be in Constitution Hall in DC to watch her receive her diploma. Later, when she started school at Miami of Ohio (Motto: Miami was a university when Florida still belonged to Spain), we had the good fortune to visit her in Oxford and see her perform in the marching band. It was a very nice trip, up until the last day when Andie’s mom had her first bad bout with the pain from the pancreatic cancer. It gave me an opportunity to be a proud dad, and I was.
There was also the wonderful trip to the islands in July. That is well chronicled on the blog, with pictures from the trip on Flickr.
We spent time in North Carolina at Andie’s dad’s place up in the mountains, I got back onto the Improv stage however briefly with Milk Comedy Crew, and made a final pilgrimage to my hometown of Bedford, Indiana, shortly before mom moved to Florida. No matter how you slice it, it was a very full year.
But it ended poorly, which is also well chronicled in the Blog, and it seems like no matter how much good happened, what happened most recently is what sticks. So last night, I was none too sad to see 2008 go, with it’s roller-coaster ride of ups and downs. The new year stretches out in front of us like a long ribbon of a road, disappearing off into a point on the horizon. We don’t know what’s out there, but there is no choice but to start down the road. So we’ve pushed off, and are ready to see what lies beyond the first rise.
I just hope it’s back to one of the incredible highs we experienced last year.
In the coming year, I still want to find a way to be engaged with the community, to make a difference if I can, to finally try to get my weight back under control, and to enjoy the life I’ve chosen. All life is about choices. I’ve made some outstandingly good ones and spectacularly bad ones … and sometimes one has led to the other. I’ll let you speculate on which order in which that happened.
I want to write more, and write better. I’d started on a novel with Scott, and since he’s now moved away, I might try to pick up and finish it on my own. Or at least advance it. I don’t know the first thing about writing a novel, though I’m sure there’s a how-to somewhere on line. I want to play my guitar(s) more, and maybe finally get that lead solo with The Druids.
But mostly, I want to be able to use the talent I have to make a better life for myself, and my family, and to try to make where I live a little bit better. I didn’t realize how important that was to me until I actually wasn’t doing it any longer, and that’s a feeling I’d truly like to re-capture.
But the first order of business is keeping the roof over out heads. After that, it’s all gravy.
I saw a piece in “Forbes” today that’s actually from before Christmas that discussed how much money billionaires have lost in the recent unpleasantness. I somehow can’t feel any sympathy for someone who’s fortune has gone from 12 (b) billion dollars to 1.2 (b) billion dollars. I know it may seem like a lot to them, but I’d be happy to take their scraps. And while intellectually I know those are the people who create a lot of jobs that someone like me depends on to have the life I have … emotionally all I can think of is “shut your pie hole and be thankful for the 1.2 (b) billion bean you still have to count. And if that’s demeaning to you, then I’ll take a few sheckels off your hands”.
But as Billie Holiday wrote in “God Bless the Child”
“And the rich relations may give you, a crust of bread and such. You may help your self, but don’t take too much.”
Ain’t it the truth.
So, we’ll cross our fingers, out toes, and our arms and legs if necessary for an improvement over the past 10 weeks in 2009. There are some things that couldn’t be improved on … just fantastically unique experiences that I count myself very lucky to have enjoyed. But when it ends with a thud like last year did, we’ll all hope for the an uptick in the coming months.