Wednesday, December 31, 2008

End of the year

Many bloggers and websites run some kind of summary of the year as it draws to a close. There were many interesting things that occurred this year, to me none the list of which are the Bearcats becoming the Big East champions in only their second year of playing in the division. “Interesting” caused me to reflect on one of my sayings, “may you live interesting times.” Many familiar with the phrase will attribute to the Chinese as a curse. According to the website, the phrase may have nothing to do with the Chinese and everything to do with a science fiction writer. Perusing a few other sites indicates that famous phrase is actually Western in origin and may be an attempt by some to sound like Confucius.

It is rather disappointing to find out that a good phrase may be nothing more than a literary invention, never the less it still has some interesting implications as we go into the New Year. The economy is in the worst shape it has been in 20 years (although on the plus side it has kept fuel prices low). The first ever African American president was elected on a platform of change (although despite Ellen Goodman’s gushing article to the contrary, it appears to be business as normal). Earlier it looked like Ohio had a lock on dumb ass politicians that don’t understand they serve a higher purpose (i.e. former governor Taft and his buddy Tom Noe, and of course former AG Marc Dann to name a few) but now Illinois has reclaimed the top spot with Governor Blagojevich. Iran and Russia seem to be taking turns for the worse and now the Gaza Strip has reignited.

Although my field of expertise causes me to follow all of the above, I am not racked with dread for the New Year. Instead there is the possibility of new discoveries both on a personal as well as a national level. I look forward to new friends that I will meet or the chance to reconnect with old friends that I’ve lost touch with. There will be new discoveries in health and technology that will allow us to live longer, and hopefully, more meaningful lives. The Bearcats will most likely come home Orange Bowl champions. The Reds may even start winning. The economy has cost many people their jobs and their homes but with a new year comes the chance for new jobs and people to regain what they have lost.

Most of the stories that are unresolved as we go into the new year deal with prosperous people. It therefore seems appropriate to end today’s blog with a quote. Mark Twain once said (according to the Yale Press website), “If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a dog and a man."

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