The year’s end is just hours away, and it can’t come soon enough for me. This has been a banner — make that bummer — year! It began with big plans: I was going to make real a new scheme for the Rancho’s garden. The problem was what I had stirring in my head caused me physical pain when I tried to achieve it and that slowed me down. By summer the pain had become continual and things had come to a standstill; I was diagnosed with a a slew of spinal issues. Seeking relief I went on medical leave, hoping rest and a treatment plan would help (it didn’t). In the fall I had surgery; it’s been only a sort-of success (the issues it was supposed to address have begun to return). Then, the ever-more-desperate gods of corporate America demanded a sacrifice and the day after Christmas The Times terminated me (it’s not as bad as it might be due to long-term insurance benefits). Still, it’s a truly crappy finale to a singularly crappy year.
You might think that this turn of events would cause me to despair, and to be honest it did for a moment. The worse was when I went to send my farewell message out to colleagues only to learn that an itchy IT person had already deleted my email account: That was bad. But I soon rebounded thanks to a good friend who sent it for me (after going through channels, natch). Once it had gone out I began to receive a ton of emails from people I hadn’t seen or heard from in ages … People I hadn’t worked with since the ’90s, when I began at The Times. Their messages were so kind and so complimentary I couldn’t help but feel uplifted, not to mention moved. These were tributes written by journalists of long-standing who’d been let go in other earlier purges, or who had retired, reaching out to say they’d found inspiration in my artwork, my design sensibility, my humor — in my silly desk accoutrements, even — and wishing me well.
I get the same warm feelings receiving comments and emails from readers of this blog. My posting of late can be spotty, but in spite of it you still come … and even if you don’t leave a comment I know you’ve been here; the numbers bear that out. Thank you.
I’m going into the new year with hopes of getting better physically, so I feel confident making the following resolutions: I will get out more … right now being a passenger leaves me with a simian gait, but I’m going to go further anyway. I will see more, and make more worth seeing. I will post more and I will post more often. I will promote the work of others and produce more work of my own worthy of promotion. I will work on the Rancho’s garden, even if it’s with hired hands … and I will hold a art class for children there (something I’ve wanted to do for awhile). Lastly, I will have a party and entertain long-neglected friends.
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This is my long-winded way of saying thanks for reading in 2012, and …
H A P P Y N E W Y E A R !