Celebrate the new year with safety
by Jerome Wassmann
Dec 31, 2011 | 412 views | 0 0 comments | 4 4 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Jerome Wassmann
Jerome Wassmann
Can you believe that a new year has just begun?

I just got used to writing 2011 on my checks and now I will have to remember that we are in a new year and the date needs to be changed. No doubt the first few checks will probably contain the date of the previous year. I’m sure I won’t be alone in that boat as many will continue using 2011 until cautioned we are in the new year.

I have never been one to make a lot of New Year’s resolutions, because to be quite honest, I forget I made them or just don’t have the ability to stick with them. One that I would always make every year was the promise to myself that I would quit smoking. That would last maybe the first day when I constantly had it on my mind, but, by the second day, I was back puffing away again. Since I quit smoking 22 years ago I no longer need to make that promise to myself. And, in retrospect, that is a habit I was most happy to get rid of. Was it easy to give it up? No. But I was determined that I was going to be stronger than the strength of the addiction, and I made it. I have always said that at least 50 percent of the battle was right between my ears, making up my mind to quit and then doing it.

No doubt that can be said about many of the resolutions that one makes.

Back when I was much, much younger I always looked forward to New Year’s Eve and the party and dance that went along with it. I enjoyed the dinner and dance and a glass of champagne that always went along with the hats and noise makers. It was fun reflecting on the past year and looking forward to the excitement and challenges of the next 12 months. Now I prefer to sit at home in my recliner and let the younger generations enjoy their evening of dining and dancing. And if I’m not too tired I try to stay awake long enough to see the countdown and watch the ball drop in Times Square. However, as I have gotten older, the ability to await the countdown has become harder and harder. I think a time or two as I have tried to stave off the closing of the eyes I have fallen asleep in the chair and been awakened by the celebration on the TV after the ball has dropped. I have just about come to the conclusion, that at this stage in my life, it is best just to go ahead and go to bed and watch the dropping of the ball on the news the next day.

I remember as a child that my dad and several of our family friends would always bring in the New Year with a bang. They would load their shotguns with bird shot and at the stroke of 12 would fire their guns in the air. I never gave it any thought, and I’m sure they didn’t either, that someone could get hurt as a result of their celebrating. After all, they were firing their guns in the air. And, since my dad and many of his friends all grew up on farms, and had celebrated this way for years, the idea of someone getting hit with buckshot was probably one of the furthest thoughts from their minds. However today, I can see how it could be quite dangerous. Thankfully, at least as far as I know, no one was ever injured because of their method of bringing in the New Year.

If you are celebrating the beginning of a new year, we urge you to be careful and enjoy that celebration with safety foremost in your mind.

And from all of us here at the Eagle, we wish everyone a most happy and prosperous New Year.

Jerome Wassmann is editor and publisher of the Daily Mountain Eagle.