2017: the year that wasn’t

Posted: January 1, 2018 in Observations and Commentary
Tags: , , , , , ,

Man, the years keep on keeping on, don’t they? It seems like just yesterday when 2016 exploded into 2017 and the prospect of the new year brought with it an impending sense of doom which lurked just around the corner of January and 20th. We use “impending” as a harbinger, a warning that it is time to prepare for bad, bad juju because it will soon be spewing from every crevice and pore. One does not think of an impending ice cream cone or an impending night out at the cinema. No sir. Impending is saved for the serious shit – an impending nervous breakdown, an impending layoff at work, an impending nuclear war. On December 31, 2016 that’s what we all faced – an impending 2017. It wasn’t comfortable, but there you have it. And in many ways 2017 was all it impended to be.

But not in every way. So let’s take a moment and appreciate a few things which did not happen in 2017.

• The United States did not collapse under the weight of its fractured political system and its irrational partisan population. This was huge. Sure, it was hammered about like a fat fastball off the bat of Mike Trout, but it survived. For all the attempted and dispirited chipping away at what America is and should be, the Constitution bobbed and weaved, but stayed on its feet. For now.
• Our newsfeeds may have said otherwise, but decency, kindness, and human rights did not forever vanish in 2017. Sure, the tiki torch brigade and other self-appointed purgers disgusted many of us, but those bozos were the exception. Good stuff still happened. Like the rabbit rescuer or the ouster of Yahya Jammeh.
• Okay, Tom Petty died. That really sucked and none of us thought it was impending for another decade. However, the impending passing of Keith Richard did not happen. Is Keith ill? I don’t know, but his ticket to rock and roll heaven – enthusiastically purchased in the 1960’s – still was not punched.
• The big, beautiful border wall with Mexico wasn’t built, although amazing plans continue to percolate in the head of the man with the best words. However, to be fair the possibility of the wall appears to be impending for the foreseeable future. Then again, for every 30’ wall there is a 31’ ladder. I’m sure the best brain has considered this.
• Traditional book publishing did not disappear in 2017. (Yay!) The old pipeline continued to dwindle as brick and mortar (along with wood and nail) bookstores shut their doors. Yet books were still printed, bound, and sold to consumers, Kindles be damned.
• Finally, once again the Prince of Wales did not become King of the United Kingdom. I’m sure by now many royal family hounds feel this will never occur and maybe it won’t. One would think if it were to happen, it would’ve by now. But it didn’t, not in 2017.

What won’t this year bring? Who knows! Even though 2018 seems even more impending than 2017 was, we have to wait until January 1, 2019 to fully realize those things we did not experience. It keeps life interesting.

  1. Dina Honour says:

    Happy New Year, John. I hope those American institutions continue to hold up in 2018.


  2. sparklebumps says:

    And the long – awaited book by Sparklebumps did not get finished. Damn.


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