Muddling Along on New Year’s Eve

People complain about years, and I’m tempted myself. The problem is most things we complain about have nothing to do with the year. It’s just another way to shift blame to something outside and beyond our control. We’ve got to stop doing that.

Don’t get me wrong. 2018 has been a rocky year, for reasons anyone paying attention already knows: the effects of climate change, a political system not so much rudderless as corrupt and anti-democratic and reveling in the fact, the rise of fascism (again) across the globe, and bigotry running rampant. Yet all that has nothing to do with the year. That’s just what we’ve agreed to call one of earth’s orbital periods.

The problem isn’t the year. Not last year or even(shudder) the one before.  The problem is people, and I’m one of those. Maybe we can all do better, but right now it’s my blog and I’m talking about me. I’m not making any New Year’s resolutions because that never works with me. Instead I’m going to concentrate on what I would like to do in the new year, and by that I do not mean obligations. I mean things that would really help my attitude and perhaps make me, as a person, more pleasant to be around.

I’ve written a good deal this year. I haven’t written nearly as much as I can and would like to. I haven’t written nearly enough about the things I want to write about.  As always, it will require a shuffling of priorities to make that happen. I’m going to try.

I’ve read a fair bit this year. I would like to read more. There are a lot of good books out now by people whose work I enjoy and admire. I’d like to make room for them, because a writer who doesn’t read isn’t a writer at all, or at least not an interesting one. Reading isn’t water but it does help to refill the well. More like seeding the clouds and catching the rain.

So I’ll say good-bye to 2018 with no insults, nothing derogatory at all. It was a year. Good things did happen along with the bad. 2019 might be better or worse, but either way, it’s on us.

Happy New Year!

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