2008 – A Year In Review

It’s been a helluva year. Let’s look back at what happened over the year.

The year began its usual way, with a mix of road-site updates, memes (including one of my favorites, the rant meme), and the parade of birthday wishes. These are regular occurances over at “Observations”. With respect to birthdays, the Sheriff is preparing his list of songs for the 5th annual poll, which is posted in early February.

Theatre started early in 2008, with “The Color Purple”. The year saw a lot of theatre, and only one movie. Each got its review, which I hope you enjoyed reading. I do enjoy writing the reviews: it allows me to look back and remember what was good and bad about the performances. The other shows we saw in 2008 were: “Ain’t Misbehavin’”, “Steel Magnolias”, “Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson”, “Orson’s Shadow”, “1776”, “Grease” (VNHS), “Jekyll & Hyde”, “Sweeny Todd”, “Wit”, “Mask”, “Tommy”, “The Brain from Planet X”, “Pippin”, “The Full Monty”, “Of Mice and Men” (PP), “Grease” (NMS), “A Very Brady Musical”, “Pest Control: The Musical”, “A Chorus Line”, “The Taming of the Shrew”, “Songs from an Unmade Bed”, “The Drowsy Chaperone”, BBVD at the Bowl, “Parade”, “Looped”, “Singin’ in the Rain”, “Assassins”, “Vanities”, “9 to 5”, “Of Mice and Men” (Rep East), “Kiss of the Spider Woman”, “The King and I”, “Blood Brothers”, “Into the Woods”, “The Lady with the Answers”, “Spring Awakening”, “And Then There Were None”, “Scapino” (VNHS), “Be Careful What You Wish For” (NMS), “The Life”, and our sole movie, “Milk”.

Every year brings its share of passings. There are the notable and that unknown. There are the famous and the infamous. There are strangers, and (alas) there are those near and dear to us. The first passing I noted in 2008 was Jim Anderson, a giant in the Computer Security. The last passing was Jay Davis, a giant in our family. In between them were many, from Johnny Grant and Robert Lynn Asprin to Odetta and Miriam Makeba.

There were the other special days. The second week of January brought National Delurking Week (“Would it kill ‘ya to comment?”). National Gorilla Suit Day. National Punctuation Mark Day. Talk like a Pirate Day.

As always, there were the observations on the news. Those grew this year because of the political silly season. Although elections are fun, we’re glad when they are over and things get back to normal. As the year went on, these musings turned more and more on the economic. Here’s to hoping that the Obama administration will bring back some confidence in the economy, and perhaps we’ll see a rebound start sometime in 2009. Certainly, let’s not have a repeat of the drop of 2008.

Nostalgia was always big with me, and I had numerous observations over the years regarding old TV shows, especially old childrens television. 2009 will bring the digital transition. Will it be as big of a bust as Y2K (i.e., it occurs with a wimper, not a bang)? We’ll have to see. We also saw a lot of transitions in the corporate world, as brands and banks disappeared or crashed and burned.

The year brought various trials and tribulations, including the passing of my father-in-law at the end of the year. But we also saw life with a teenager, headaches, a bathroom remodel, worries about refinancing (we’re hoping to do that in January), the science fair, and the usual interactions with (as my daughter says) “L-A-U-S-Duh”.

But on the whole, 2008 (other than the election) left us with a sour and sad taste in our mouth. Let’s pray that 2009 is a better year, for ourselves, our families, our economy, our country, and our world. We can use a good year.