Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

December 26, 2012

ROOT: Good Riddance, 2012, here's to 2013

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Lockport Union-Sun & Journal

Lockport Union-Sun & Journal — Yes, it is that special time of the year where every columnist in the United States does what he thinks is an exceptionally original piece that reviews the year that has passed. I don’t know about you guys, but I am glad to see 2012 go. There were some ups and there were some downs, but mostly it just was a terrible year to live through.

The whole year was clouded by the Mayan thing for Dec. 21. For most people, it was the source of great fun and humor. What took the fun out of it for everyone else was the small handful of people that actually took it seriously. I don’t think there is any more disappointed group of people on the planet than the people who keep waiting for the world to come to an end. Wasn’t the world supposed to end in May as well? Or was that last year?

We had a royal wedding in 2012 but, this time, the bride was not way too good for the groom. I always found it odd that everyone wondered why a stunning beauty like Diana would marry Prince Charles. It was because he was a prince. I hope I ended years of doubt for some people on that one.

I think the thing that I enjoyed the most in 2012 was the growing popularity of Internet memes. If you are unsure as to what memes are, they are those silly little pictures you see with captions that apply to current events. You may have seen the Grumpy Cat or the Nicholas Cage drawing that has been sweeping Facebook. If you get a chance, check out a little ditty called “Texts from Dog.” If that doesn’t make you laugh, then you have no sense of humor.

Katie finally escaped from Tom Cruise in 2012…er…I mean that Katie Holmes and Tom Cruise filed for divorce in 2012. I always figured that guy was a loon, I just never expected him to go so far out of his way to prove it.

The presidential elections of 2012 showed just how divided this country really is and how bad things can really get. Things will get much worse in January if we go over the fiscal cliff and everyone’s taxes go up. Don’t think that you are immune to the damage to be caused by the fall over the cliff. It will affect everyone, and it will be a huge problem to start off 2013.

We all tried to keep up with the news and events of 2012, even though things happened so fast. But nothing could compare with the pace at which events started to unfold in October. People started shooting up malls, places of worship and elementary schools. A sicko near Rochester set his home on fire just so he could shoot at volunteer firemen. Then the coward shot himself.

If 2012 showed me anything, it showed me that the America I live in now is not the America I fell in love with when I was a kid. The 24-hour news media glorifies violence and then has the nerve to act shocked when it happens over and over again. Kids are showing disrespect to their parents in public, and there is nothing the parents can do about it because of new laws designed to “protect” children.

When I was growing up, nothing offered protection from the bad things in life like a good whooping after you did something stupid. These days, kids are out of control. It isn’t even safe to go to the movies anymore.

Amidst all of this turmoil, our grandson was born. He was born the day that the Sandy Hook shootings took place. That day was both the dawn of a new era for my family, and a stark reminder of what kind of world our little grandson was being born into.

I will always remember 2012 because our family grew by one and life became much more precious. But I will also remember it as a year where I finally lost hope in the human race. There is no such thing as compromise anymore. People have no idea how to discuss things and negotiate, even if it means ruining the financial well-being of millions of American families.

I am glad to see 2012 go, but I am not so sure that 2013 will be any better. I always have pretty good luck with dates that have a 13 in them, so I am optimistic. But if things don’t start changing, and soon, then I fear for the world my grandson will inherit.

Well, anyways . . . Happy New Year everyone. Good luck. We are all going to need it.

George N Root III is a Lockport resident and wishful thinker. His column appears every Wednesday. He can be reached at georgeroot@verizon.net.

George N Root III is a Lockport resident and wishful thinker. His column appears every Wednesday. He can be reached at georgeroot@verizon.net.