Friday, December 27, 2013
2013 — The Year in Review
We have come to that time of year when we a recollect on what has transpired over the past 12 months and think ahead to what we would like our lives to become in the future. It also gives me the ability to fill column inches without having to think up anything new.
As I look back at the columns I've written over the past year, it feels as if I'm gazing down upon a hacked-up, old, fungus-covered, rotten tree stump embedded in a dewy cow pasture. Just as the concentric rings of the stump combine to tell it's life story, the columns remind me of the stuff that made up my 2013.
The year started out with a realization that if Kevin Bacon showed up at my house, wearing those torn-up blue jeans, doing that same dance that he did on top of the Volkswagen in the movie "Footloose," my wife would have absolutely no use for me whatsoever.
From there I proclaimed my steadfast support of sportscaster Brent Musburger being allowed to say that a good-looking woman is good-looking during a nationally-televised college football bowl game. He just needs to control his drooling while he does it.
It was a bad year for animals. In the middle of January, a deer hit me. Most people would say that they hit a deer, but most people don't have the finely-tuned driving skills I possess. The deer definitely hit me. He sprang off into the wilderness afterwards, but I'm pretty sure he was a little sore the next morning.
In October, our family said a good-bye to our beloved family pet Bubble Eye Goldfish that my daughter named Sandy Cheeks. It was as beloved as any pet can possibly be when they only live four days in your ownership. I'm still waiting for Sandy's ghost to arise from the toilet bowl.
But don't feel too bad for the animal world because it got it's revenge on me. In June, the interior of my Jeep was attacked by a crazed sparrow in what can only be described as a blitzkrieg-style, fecal assault. Oh, the humanity! One of these days I'm going to have to clean it up.
I reminisced about several things during the year. I informed you about my vast collection of records that I cut out of the back of cereal boxes. I think I had two, one by The Archies and the other by the bear on the Super Sugar Crisp box.
I brought up the fact that due to a foolish NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament wager placed in the mid-1990s, my wife became the smartest woman in the world. This haunts me to this very day.
The year of 2013 was a personal milestone. In April, my dad turned 80 years old. I wrote about how he taught me to respect women, root for the Chicago Cubs and to never ever pee into the wind.
The biggest milestone noted in my household this year was that my wife no longer needs me to open her pickle jars. She now goes straight to my healthy, athletic, 20-year-old son, (or Kevin Bacon if he happens to be around.)
In an intervention-style column, I came clean about breaking my first pair of eyeglasses back in fourth grade after only owning them for less than 120 hours. (That's still longer than we had Sandy Cheeks.) I must admit that it hurt me deeply to publicly proclaim to my parents that after all these years of hiding the facts from them, the broken spectacles were in no way my fault. I felt kind of bad for throwing my friend, Rob, under the bus on this one, but since he doesn't live around here anymore, I bounced back rather quickly.
It was a year of challenges. In July, my family barely survived a whirlwind "vacation" to Chicago. The whole time that we were in the city, we were surrounded by strange smells, cut-throat thieves, malicious marauders and the most sinister characters of all — American Girl dolls.
In August, my wife claimed I was using big words, not knowing what they meant and completely out of context. I told her that she was vaudevillianly wrong, and that she should spend her opulent time telling me something I don't already know. (Take that, Kevin Bacon!)
It was a year of unspeakable trials and tribulations. Ones I spoke about. On a cold, dark morning back in March, I experienced an alarm clock malfunction. I overslept by five full minutes. To this day, I have never caught up.
Just recently, elves ransacked my house — again.
In September, I watched a coworker suffer from a fascinating bout of the hiccups. Sometimes it's amazing how hilarious someone else's misfortune can be.
In October, I misplaced a banana. That's all I have to say about that.
But fear not: 2013 was also a year of victory. After a brief exit from the world stage, the Hostess Twinkie returned in all of its caloric splendor.
At the end of June, my daughter placed in the Top 7 cars at a Girl Scout pinewood derby erasing 40 years of my own personal shame and embarrassment amongst the pinewood-derbying elite. And if a Top 7 finish doesn't seem like a big deal to you, well … you're just a jerk.
The year of 2013 was also one of dreams. Some fulfilled, others … not so much. I told you about my plans to get a tattoo. I'm still trying to find the right one. Those rub-on tattoos and back hair just don't work well together.
This summer, I let you in on my intentions of joining the professional badminton circuit. With the arrival of cold weather and possible hamstring injuries, I have let that dream go by the wayside.
But in November, I replaced that dream with one of becoming a professional beard-grower. I'm happy to report that my unconditional laziness involving anything that has to do with personal grooming has served me well over these past two months and the beard still exists. I believe that it lends an air of suave sophistication to my persona, you know, kind of like Sigmund Freud or Colonel Sanders. My wife claims that it has more of a Unabomber look to it.
As we stand at the precipice of 2014, it's almost impossible to not take a little peek into what the future might have in store for us. Back in April, I discussed the upcoming zombie apocalypse and how I plan to seamlessly fit in to their ranks. My wife thinks the beard might help.
Recently, I talked about watching a group of fourth-grade boys emerging from school like the cast of "Braveheart" screaming "FREEDOM!" at the top of their lungs. I would have been right there with them, but I just don't have the gams to wear a kilt anymore.
And back in March, I brought up the age-old question that we all have to answer sooner or later: Who would win a fight between 100 duck-sized horses and one horse-sized duck? The obvious answer is the horse-sized duck, even though my wife thinks that I'm a fool for saying that. (Honestly, I don't get what Kevin Bacon sees in her.)
These are just a few of the things I wrote about in 2013. It's a wonder I even survived. As I peer into the crystal ball and look at the coming months of 2014, I see I have jotted down some positively scintillating ideas for future columns. Among the topics I might possibly expound my thoughts upon are my superior abilities to use bread-wrapper twist-ties properly; the realization that I may or may not be blinking more often than I used to; why coffee is icky; and I evidently have a column simply titled. "An Ode to Armpits."
It looks like 2014 is going to be a stellar year.
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