Raise your hand if you’re happy to see 2021 go away. It was the year the new normal became just the normal. Foolish me, I’m still holding my breath waiting for the pandemic to be over, but something tells me I’ll be turning blue before that happens. My only hope is that I won’t have to learn another letter of the Greek alphabet.

I was trying to come up with some kind of philosophical thoughts or insight to wrap up the year but to be honest, I got nothin’. Not unlike the sailors of old trapped in their little ships with no wind, I’m stuck in the doldrums here in the week after Christmas.

Incidentally, I was wondering if there was a name for the week between Christmas and New Year’s Day. It’s the one week out of the entire year that is basically like a long, long Sunday afternoon when we piddle around trying not to think about having to go back to work on Monday. You could say it’s the twilight of the year when people should stay in their jammies and work from home and sleep in every morning and have coffee in bed and spend the rest of the day binge-watching shows or movies on the internet.

I plead guilty to doing my share of binge-watching stuff the last few days on my Roku and I don’t know if it’s just me or not but it seems there are more shows and movies set in the fifties and sixties coming out.

For example, the new Beatles movie/mini-series/thing Get Back got me thinking about my adolescent and teen years.

Although I tend to reminisce fondly about those times of my growing up, it’s like someone once said, “…I think that American society is much better off today than it was in the ’50s when there was very little freedom of any kind. Unless you were dressed the right way and spoke the right way and thought the right way, you were marginalized.”

Maybe that’s a little extreme, but times sure were different. There was that Commie scare and we kids had to watch films in the first grade on how to survive a hydrogen bomb. They even had an air raid siren in town for exercises in duck and cover, and fallout shelters were the latest luxury.

Those sixties. I remember a lot of it, although I have a friend who jokes, “if you remember the sixties you weren’t there.” Like David Letterman once said, “You’ve got to be careful smoking weed. It causes memory loss. And also, it causes memory loss.”

I guess it’s hard to be nostalgic when you can’t remember anything anyway. I’ve never really been a pot smoker, but it doesn’t matter because I’ve always been a forgetter anyway. Like this past year.

In any case, here we are only a couple of days away from hanging a 2022 calendar on the wall and putting an “out of order sign” on 2021. People are going to be shooting off fireworks, watching other people in New York watching the ball drop on TV, and generally whooping it up. I’ve never been much of a partier, but there was that one New Year’s Eve in Mexico 26 years ago when the only thing I remember is shouting “uno mas Cervesa, uno mas!” while friends were bodily carrying me out of a Quintana Roo cantina.

Um, moving on…

Elsewhere in the pages of this week’s Chieftain is a summing up of Socorro’s big news stories from this year. Looking back on last year as a whole and trying to grasp what events were important, the ones that might have changed our lives is not an easy thing to do.

I was trying to recall some of the events in my own life, but I end up getting my years mixed up. Was it this year or last that I had to be reminded to wear matching socks?

I have an amazing ability to forget, but it doesn’t matter because for some reason Facebook deems it important to remind us what we did on any given day in the past. And as for the rest, pass me a bottle of Phillips Milk of Amnesia.

As for now, it’s time to start to think about next year and those New Year’s resolutions. I must confess my last year’s resolutions are still in effect; exercise 150 minutes a week, put some money in the savings account, eat healthier, same old-same old. But here’s one new one: I resolve to not take a pill for sleeping and laxative at the same time.

Was it this year or last I learned that?

Anyway, I’m hoping you have a most healthy and creative 2022, and don’t forget to take Wet Willie’s advice: “Keep on smiling!”