2016 Is Over. (and this is what I learned)


  1. Americans are still pretty arrogant and have no long term memory.

Exhibit 1:   In 2016 we lost a bunch of famous people, so what, that is nothing new.  Last year Leonard Nimoy, Wes Craven, Yogi Berra and Maureen O’Hare all passed away.  In 2014 Robin Williams, Shirley Temple, Joe Cocker, Casey Kasem, Harold Ramis and Phillip Seymour Hoffman died.   1977 saw the death  of Elvis Presley, Werner Von Braun, Groucho Marx, Zero Mostel and Charlie Chaplin.  1959 was the last we heard from Ritchie Valens, Buddy Holly, J.P.  “The Big Bopper” Richardson, Cecil B. DeMille, Lou Costello, Frank Lloyd Wright, and the original  “Man of Steel” George Reeves.  Stop acting like 2016 was something special or out of the ordinary.  Every year people die this year was no different than any other year in the history of the world.  Celebrate the achievements and what wonders those people gave us but don’t be so egotistic to believe that 2016 was anything especially tragic.

Exhibit 2:  The whole presidential election, from beginning to now it was a very bad joke and very few people realize that history is going to look back at us and try and guess what drug was in the drinking water.   We had a choice between an arrogant self absorbed, proudly unsophisticated reality star who’s biggest talent seems to be self promotion and an arrogant, power obsessed, out of touch individual, who would not condemn her monster of a spouse even when he abused a powerless subordinate.   Then people were seemingly outraged that another government would try and influence our election but were blind to the knowledge that the American government has been interfering in other countries’ elections  for close to sixty years.

  1. The unexpected or failures are not all bad and can become great.

I did not complete a book this year. I did a lot of work on the next one, Primary Collision but at this point I am not anywhere near completion.  I did write a lot of good stuff this year;  We Need A Monster (which some people loved), A Fire (a piece about sex), Solar Powered Cemetery Lights, Really?, Take Me Out To The Ball Game, and an article about The Bayernhof Museum.

You would not think a day of hard work would be memorable. Throwing hay bales with my brothers to get my younger brother’s ranch set up for the winter was terrific.  My brothers and I baled a lot of hay on an eighty acre farm growing up, working long hot hours behind an old John Deere tractor and bailer.  Throwing hay with them this year , now that are 47 to 51 years old made me feel connected to them like I have not felt in years.  (My family also built a concrete block wall and we put up a fence on his ranch.)

A lady I was dating broke up with me.  That may sound like a bad thing  but I have had more enjoyment telling the story of how she broke up with me then I might have gotten from the actual relationship.  (I will not put the story in writing as it makes her look bad, but if talk to me I will gladly tell it to you, it involves me sending her flowers on Valentine Day. I am such a monster.)

My love life described simply:  After being run over by a very large truck. One of those bemouth tractor trailers with three trailers.  After a long slow recovery  I cautiously approached the road again, I looked left, I looked right, I looked left again then I got clipped by a clown car that was driving on the sidewalk. 

  1. One of the most important things we have in life is the stories we make with the people we love.

Would my story of going to Voodoo Donuts in Denver at midnight on a Tuesday night be as exciting if my daughter was not with me?  She claimed that there was  marijuana in her doughnut  and  it made her paranoid.  (Not true, there was marijuana in my doughnuts that is why I let her drive,  just kidding, Voodoo doughnuts does not sell THC products.)

Or on the same trip my daughter showing off her mad skills of dealing with Disneyland Cast Members  as she wove a  a strings of fibs together so we could go to the front of the line like we had an Fast Pass.

Then there my trip to see my best friend, Scott Beck’s, full ordination as a minister in Methodist Church and my car died. (Looking back I probably should have not taken it as it had two tires in the grave and the other two on black ice.)  I sold the dead car to a junk man in Virginia for $80.00 and my great and wonderful parents drove six hours to pick me up and drive me home on Fathers Day.

All in all 2016 has been a year, some parts better than others, some parts worse than others.   This year is what I made of it, I have no one else to blame or give credit to if this year was not full and packed with adventures and accomplishments.



Categories: My Views On The Real World

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