Happy New Year to my fellow Boingers along with a question or two


I’m sorry, @Israel_B. It sounds like it’s been tough. I, and probably the rest of Boing Boing, thank goodness that you and your wife have your health, too.


Thanks so much for responding! This is part of what makes community community.

I’d say 2013 was not the best of years for me. Many of you know my father passed away (60, lung cancer). I pass my comprehensive exams, but it was a struggle. And there were other things that made life generally stressful. But I’m still here, which means that there is always an opportunity for something brighter.

As for the state of the world… well, the first 13 years of the 21st century have not been happy and bright for much of humanity, I think. In many ways, it feels like any progress we might have made towards a more equal and just world has begun to erode. I’m not a fan of the form of liberalism (neo-liberalism) that has come to the forefront since the end of the cold war. Yet, there does seem to be noise in the right direction. @ohbejoyful mentioned marriage equality, and that seems to have reached a positive tipping point–so on gay rights, we are moving in a positive direction, but we still have deep racial and gender inequalities in our society that needs to be worked through. And class/economic inequality is still a major issue that needs to be addressed. More people are thinking about it which is a good thing, but as long as the 1%, or whatever you want to call them, holds the political cards and does not see how a more equitable society benefits them too, we can’t fix the problems that inequality causes. The question is how do we raise the issues publicly and not alienate that 1%.

But these do not have any easy answers, as we all know. Although online blogs and forums can act as massive time wasters (how many lolcats can we all look at really), they can also bring people together to think things through. I think that BB has been a great place for thinking harder and smarter–for me at least–about the world, how it operates, and possible solutions to our collective problems.

Anyway, I hope you all have a happy, productive, and (yes, as @pour_la_tete points out) safe new year!


Probably because I’m aging, a year’s notable deaths hit me harder every time the calendar advances. 2013 excelled at this…starting with Aaron Swartz on Jan. 11 right up to Yusef Lateef on Dec. 23. (Though not all passings were glimpses into the abyss – I nominate The Purrpose Driven Life for this week’s Caturday)

But 2013 managed to vindicate itself at 3:47 a.m., Dec. 28 when first grandbaby was born! Tears of joy, and not a moment too soon.


Beams (as we say on the Well), @Israel_B.


I’m with you on this one, Mindy: 2013 blew in all directions, and I won’t miss it. Marriage Equality had huge leaps forward, and huzzah for that, but otherwise… well, there were some good things. My family adopted a puppy in October, and she’s all kinds of sweet. And Badass Space Dragon ended up being, by far, my Entertainment Of The Year. That was beyond cool.

But otherwise, the politics were depressing, the economics were depressing, and we didn’t even put up a Christmas tree in my house this year, which is unprecedented. My mother passed away on December 4 as a result of congestive heart failure at the age of 84, and though it was a peaceful, contemplative, and love-filled passing, it was still a regrettable loss.

2014 will be much better, if I have anything to say about it. I am resolved to make it so, for myself, my loved ones, and for anyone else I can positively affect. Shouldn’t be too hard at all to outperform stinky ol’ 2013. Second worst year in my life, after 1993. Which sucked for entirely different reasons.

And hey: I’m glad you guys are here with me to talk about this stuff. Y’all rule.


Honestly - probably the worst year in my life :o/


I feel ya, man.

[commiseration button]


Donald_Petersen, I hope 2014 brings you more joy than sorrow. My 2013 was full of a ton of shit. I am really happy to see that year gone. High point, though: the birth of my daughter in June. The rest of 2013 can go suck a bag of shit. I’m here if you need me. Let’s commiserate! ~awjt oh hey… I can’t figure out how to pm here on the bbs. Seems to be missing now. Donald… can you email me at awjt at awjt.net ? Thanks!


I also had to put my cat to sleep this year. He was 15 years old. We took him to the vet and they were unable to figure out why he stopped eating (they also seemed fairly indifferent about what was going on). It still hurts. I still cannot find a job and my dad is also having issues with his job (they had to shut down for awhile after one of the owners stole a lot of money). Now my mom needs a CT scan because the doctor thinks her carotid artery is blocked and she might need surgery. It is hard to feel hopeful about the coming year.

I think this sort of thread is why we need a “sympathy” button.


Well, I don’t know ya, but I love ya! Don’t shoot!!! Just put the .44 down. Sliiiiiide it over there. OK. Good. Now, can you hold open your hand on the bar top, like a C shape? Can you do that for me, Chief? OK, I am sliding a pint of beer down to ya. Ready. Here we go. Sliiiiiiiiiiiide the beer. There, you have a beer in your hand. Everything ok now? Want another one?


Thanks but I’m not supposed to drink on my meds.


Shit fuuuuuck! Plan B. OK, ok, formulating. Can you hold a kitten or a puppy? Maybe a stuffed animal? uhhhh, want a hug?


No puppies or kittens - I am supposed to cut down on red meat. :smiley:


Better than 2011.


One thing I’ve learned about from the discussion in this community since I joined it is privilege. I never thought about it much, but the idea that I’m a stereoypical white middle aged guy from a (relatively) middle class background gives me a lot of “invisible knapsack” advantages.

Thanks to my participation here, I do pause more to think about privilege, and how it colors our interactions with the world and each other, much more often. So I now react to this:

(yes, that’s the Bill Budge.)

With this:

So over and beyond the Happy Mutant Fun I expected (and got! always a huge fan of BB), I … learned some stuff. That’s the best part of discussion, not yelling at people for having an opinion that’s different than yours, but listening to others with some semblance of empathy and improving your opinions.

(On the other hand, I also learned about concern trolling… not so much a fan of that.)


Happy New Year to all! May 2014 be better than 2013.

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