Christmas is past. My greatest gift was spending time with my family. Hopefully, I will spend more time with friends before the holiday season is over.
With COVID making a new surge, life does not appear to be changing for the better. We may be going back to mandates. Life has been challenging for many without social contacts at work, school, family, and friends.
Violent and other crimes are spiraling out of control in the city I love. Like COVID, the situation is not improving. Like COVID, crime keeps us at home more or seeks hopefully safer places to recreate or shop. Too many of us live in fear of becoming collateral damage, innocent victims of violent crime.
Many holiday celebrations were curtailed or canceled due to the COVID resurgence and the Omicron variant. We still live in our safety pods of people we know and trust to stay safe. I know friends or their family members who recently tested positive. I wish them well.
2021 was a horribilis annus. Though it does not seem so, we hope 2022 will be a better year.
People start making New Year’s resolutions most will not keep about this time. I rarely make resolutions. This year will be an exception. My resolutions will be based on things I enjoy or want to try.
We are Chicago. We are a forward-looking people. We can change the dynamic in this city. Most of us can’t change the world, but we can change the small part of it we inhabit. Since COVID struck, our worlds grew smaller. It is easier to change a small world. I will look around my community and see what I can do to leave some positive effect or outcome, even in a small way.
If time and money allow, I want to expand my creativity into other art genres. I believe it is essential to create, to make, things. That I will do, even if it is for my personal enjoyment.
I am a fierce critic of Chicago and Cook County governance, especially their epic public safety failures. In the New Year, I will continue to criticize. I will also showcase the things, past and present, that make Chicago the best city in America, including some people who made this city so special.
Since I love to cook and eat, I will add more food writing, especially about the restaurants and ethnic grocers in the neighborhoods. Maybe I will toss in some recipes or how-to pieces.
I want to try new things this upcoming year. I may try podcasting or vlogging if I can get the few pieces of necessary equipment I need. I want to explore Chicago neighborhoods again with a fresh eye to record the changes since my last visits.
Please do not drink and drive if you are going out for New Year’s Eve, AKA Amateur’s Night. I witnessed the devastation driving under the influence caused, both personally and professionally. The Great Comedian created cabs and ride-sharing to keep people safe from drunks and drunks safe from themselves. Plan ahead. Take a taxi or some other transportation. Maybe get a room close to wherever you are celebrating. Do not become or cause a catastrophe or fatality.
Happy New Year. Live, love, laugh, eat the sandwich.