reasons to be cheerful: New Year’s Eve edition

Here in my favourite time zone fewer than 12 hours remain in the year of our lord 2013. And while that means it’s premature to offer a summary of the year’s events, I’m willing to take a chance on at least noting a few positive things that happened during this nearly-completed year. I do so mostly to counter the relentless stream of depressing images and memories that have graced our media in recent days and weeks. Canada’s media have, for example, chosen the Lac-Mégantic tragedy as the news story of the year — surprising, given that they know all too well it was not the story on which they obsessed in 2013. Perhaps they were too embarrassed to acknowledge what was truly their ‘news story’ of the year — though that doesn’t sound like our media.

So, as we prepare to bid farewell to another year, please allow me to take note of but three good things that strove to make life a little more bearable amid the grim news of the day.


1. Lucky Ron became a recording artist

In 2013, Lucky Ron released an album! And it was good. Again, that’s a CD of original material from veteran local country singer and bona fide local institution Lucky Ron Burke, whose debut album turned out to be a delight, very much worth the decades-long wait.

2. Attention spans grew shorter

See reference to grim news of the day, above. This, it seems, has been the year in which the attention span of classic rockers — likely as a result of the aging process — finally caught up to that of the average teenager. I offer as proof the Bowie craze that dominated all media at the beginning of 2013. Davie Bowie’s latest album was promptly hailed as the greatest work the man had produced since Ziggy Stardust. Greater, even. Greater, in fact, than anything ever done by anyone. Ever. For 24 hours, it was all Bowie, all the time. Then, Bowie fans took the time to give the album a proper listen. And it was never mentioned again.

3. The end of windchill

Environment Canada offered this bit of cheery news to help us all feel warmer for the holidays. Let’s face it, days like, oh the one we’re experiencing right now, are made that much more bitter when a cold wind is factored into the equation. We’ve all dreaded that windchill calculation each morning. Hard to say why our national environmentalists have insisted on keeping our winters so windy, but I wholeheartedly support the decision to put an end to windchill once and for all. Now, we can exit our homes secure in the knowledge wind will not be an issue.

See? Doesn’t that feel better. Now, get out in that non-windy weather, go buy Lucky Ron’s album and, um, I forget what the third thing was but go do that too.

And hey, have a happy new year, eh? You’ve earned it.

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