Time to reflect, look ahead with end-of-year routines

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Somewhere deep in the recesses of my desk are a heap of rubber-bound calendars dating back to the 1970s.

Itís a company ritual that each year around this time, neat, new cellophane-wrapped calendars mysterious arrive at our desks.

Being an obsessive scribbler, I favor the flip calendars instead of the desk models. Opting for a desk calendar would result in a mishmash of unreadable notes and pseudo-artsy designs only a mother could love.

So come next week, the 2018 model ó worn thin with once-important memos ó will take its place in the dark corners of my desk, to be replaced with a shiny and unblemished 2019 model.

Iíve foolishly pledged on countless occasions to someday revisit those old calendars to refresh my faltering memory of seemingly critical notations that were once so very important.

Turns out, those past plans have yet to materialize. But thereís always tomorrow, right?

Itís funny, in a way, how we mark time.

Way back in the day, as I tried to make a mark in this business and in this community, those calendar pages were chocked full of appointments and meetings, committee obligations, board assignments and a full array of responsibilities that make for long days and short nights.

Time has diminished those calendar pages. Yet the days remain too long and the nights too short.

Once the old calendars are relegated to the desk dungeon and the new ones replaced, I follow one more year-end routine.

I clean my desk.

As a borderline hoarder, I keep unusual news items or somewhat interesting tidbits, in the expectation that they may perhaps somehow make their way into a column or provide fodder for conversation.

They rarely do.

So with trashcan at the ready, I meticulously sort through this flotsam and jetsam of once-interesting oddities and one by one, discard them to the file of forgotten treasures.

And with that, my year comes to an end.

Up next are New Yearís resolutions, yet another task in which I donít excel.

Truth is, I long ago abandoned the ritual of New Yearís resolutions. All those countless resolutions only proved my weaknesses or lack of discipline.

Why subject myself to this self realization.

This year, like no other I can recall, does not offer much hope or promise on several levels. Granted, on a personal level ó when it comes to family ó I remain full of optimism and full-throttled excitement.

But in my small world of news digestion, the trend is obviously more pessimistic than optimistic.

And just to put an exclamation point on the upcoming year, think what 2020 might well offer.

And with that, I wish everyone a Happy New Year, slightly in advance.

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