Wednesday, January 2, 2013

2013 – A Retrospective

What’s this? The 2nd of January already! Where does the time go? It seems like only yesterday we were saying good-bye to 2012 and looking, with renewed hope, into the New Year. Overall, 2013 has been pretty good so far. As I look back over the year I see it has been warm and tranquil, a time of progress, renewed purpose and fun.

2013 began with me out on the scaffolding (apparently, they are going to make this a permanent feature), playing Auld Lang Syne on the bagpipes. Just a bit of holiday whimsy, but it taught me a few important lessons: 1) preparation is key, 2) even with all the preparation in the world, unanticipated events may still arise, 3) sometimes things work out better in your head than they do in actual practice, and 4) overall, just have fun.

I couldn't get an actual photo of the event;
this is an artist's reconstruction.

It wasn’t a disaster, but I misjudged the amount of space bagpipes require and kept bashing the drones against the gutters, which caused them to go out of tune (the drones, not the gutters), which caused me to think more about the drones than what I was supposed to be thinking about (i.e. keeping the bag inflated), which caused the overall melody to sound less like a tune and more like someone strangling a cat, which caused at least one neighbor to peer out her window wondering just what the fuck was going on outside. Despite that, I made it through the entire song; I had proposed to do it, and I did, and this set the tone for the rest of the year, so far.

2013 began with me freshly redundant working full-time as a writer and I used the changing of the year as the impetus to dive headlong into what writers do; namely, write. It has been a productive time, which bodes well for the remainder of the year.

And the weather was so much better. Unlike last year--a 12-month period crowned with the title, “The Wettest Year on Record.”--2013 arrived with clear, pristine blue skies and a big yellow ball glowing in the east, which caused a bit of consternation until people remembered it was the sun. After that, the cheerful weather enticed us outside to enjoy nature, sweep the cobwebs of holiday television from our minds (“50 Worst Holiday Songs,” “Sappy, Made-For-TV Holiday Movie,” “Sappy, Made-For-TV Holiday Movie, the Sequel”) and begin the long and arduous process of shedding the results of too many turkey, stuffing and cranberry sandwiches.

So yes, 2013 has been a good year so far, one we can look back on with satisfaction, and continue to look forward to with optimism and purpose.

What’s left of it, anyway.


  1. Wow, Michael, talk about taking things slowly and trying to make the most of every day ;)

    I'm glad that you got some writing in. I definitely need to work more on that this year.

    1. I think many writers use the new year as a way to give themselves a boot in the arse (to use the vernacular) ;) Best of luck to you.

  2. Hearing "Auld Lang Syne" on the bagpipes at midnight would be a truly memorable event. I applaud your efforts to bestow this gift on your fellow English people. I enjoyed your refreshing look back at the events of 2013. I hope things keep moving ahead for all of us as we enter the 13th (or is it 14th?) Baktun and Age of Aqaurius!

    1. Thanks! And have a great 2013, or Baktun, or whatever ;)