While I have a lot to be grateful for and a lot to to be looking forward to personally in 2008, I am not exactly full of cheer.
George W.'s last year in office should be a good thing, except I don't think he's done crapping on the constitution, bitch-slapping the democrats in congress and killing US military and Middle East civilians. There's more millions he needs to make for his friends while costing us trillions. It's going to be a long year. Assuming he doesn't pull out one of his unchecked late Friday afternoon executive orders to keep his ass in office, we'll get a new president by the end of 2008. Possibly worse (Guiliani), possibly better (Obama). If better, gear up for the republican machine to fire up 24/7 to spin and exploit whatever it can to bring him or her down. It's the kind of crap that pussywhipped Carter while he was in office and it wasted valuable time, money and energy while Slick Willie held the seat.
Meanwhile, our country's reputation as a world leader has been horribly damaged over seven years and reshaped into a "fuck you, we're America" unstable, violent arrogance.
Full of good cheer, aren't I? Believe it or not, my pessimistic outlook for the new year shifted a bit through the death of a high school friend, Vicki Carnicom. She passed away just before Christmas. She was truly a good person. I was unable to attend the funeral, but a mutual friend (everyone's mutual good friend at P.C.H.S.), Lori Letterhos, sent out an e-mail describing Vicki's beautiful send off.
She included a passage from the Bible that was read at the service...
1 Corinthians 13
LoveIf I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.
If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.
If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing. Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.
It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails.
I'm pretty jaded about the Bible, too, but sometimes it surprises me with it's simple, indisputable wisdom.
The Beatles said it this way... All You Need is Love.
The message has been around for thousands of years. Guess it's time to start listening.
Richard Belzer has a similar thought over at The Huffington Post.
Happy New year to you. Thank you for reading Bite and Smile. I hope it has brought, and continues to bring in 2008, moments of laughing out loud at your computer while giving your brain something to chew on.