So 2016 ended in a whimper. The weather forced my wife and I to stay home which was just as well. My kids and a few of their friends marathoned through the Harry Potter films. This is a tradition they have been doing for five years now. Over the past few years, I was usually working the night shift. Some how this year, I ended up being off unexpectedly for the weekend. Not going to complain…
Having an extra day to reflect on New Years past, I figured I’d share a bit.
Starting at age 13, my parents let me stay up until midnight and drink a flute of ginger ale as we watched the countdown to the new year. Shortly after, I’d head to bed. One year, my parents decided to invite some of my father’s Czech friends over for dinner and to celebrate. This did not go as planned.
My father had been working hard on a fancy dinner for most of the afternoon. When his friends arrived, they had a few drinks and talked and laughed. As my father was about to finish making the meal, our guests mentioned they wanted pizza instead. My sister and I within earshot totally agreed with the idea. My father’s friends then used my sister and I’s enthusiasm against him. Pizza was ordered. My dad grumbled and a few more drinks in began to make the night a tad more miserable. Minutes after midnight, my father told our guests to leave and ended the night.
A few years later, I spent New Year’s Eve at my girlfriend’s place. I was under age, but we enjoyed a sparkling apple juice as we wished each other a Happy New Year. I walked home shortly after midnight and called her from my bedroom phone and we talked into the wee hours of the morning.
At age 18, I drove into Vancouver with three lovely ladies and wandered the streets wishing people Happy New Year’s. We ended up at a bar where a guy was buying rounds all night long. Since I was underage and the DD, I enjoyed my colas. The girls I was with had a great time enjoying free drinks.
When I was 20, we had an awful snowfall (I wrote about that: Snowmageddon) and my parents had left the house in charge of my sister and I. So we had a huge party. People were wrecked. Barf everywhere, my sister got so angry she smashed a beer bottle on the ground and punched a hole in the wall. Most of us remained pretty calm, playing cards and enjoying drinks.
I believe it was the year or two after, that a friend of mine invited everyone out to a recording studio for drinks. It was a very casual and lounge feel. Intimate and fun.
The year 1999 had me getting paid a few hundred dollars to be a designated driver to my boss at the movie theater. He had planned a huge party and I volunteered my time (I also wanted money) to assist. The party was held at the movie theater and the excitement was prior to the event starting when someone had dropped a stink bomb in the lobby early on in the evening.
The following year (2000 going into 2001) I spent with my wife in bed. It wasn’t romantic in any way. I was suffering from the flu and we were watching “Toy Story” followed by “Flesh Gordon and the Cosmic Cheerleaders”. Don’t ask. I was on heavy meds for the flu trying to stay awake to wish my future wife a Happy New Year.
Since then, most of our New Year’s festivities are arranged last minute. I usually end up working, but in the off chance I’m not, we don’t get wasted.
I prefer to enjoy Christmas with my family. New Year’s Eve never meant much to me. I’m not sure why a lot of people decide that Jan. 1st is the day to set goals. It sets people up for high expectations and greater feelings of failure. Especially if you need to wait for a date to arrive to start accomplishing your goal- then clearly it doesn’t mean that much.
I quit smoking cold turkey over a decade ago. I didn’t need to wait for January 1st to attempt it. I began my blog end of January just because I had an urge to start it. I’ve been diligently working on it now everyday since then.