Wednesday, December 31, 2008

I'm trying to be optimistic about 2009

My column this week in the Waukesha Freeman is a look back at 2008, and it's depressing. I re-read it and started looking for illegal Prozac in my e-mail spam.

Despite my cynical and skeptical reputation, I really am an optimist. Every year I look forward to the new year thinking to myself, "Last year had to be the worst. Therefore, things can only get better." And despite being proven wrong year after year, I persist in believing that no year could possibly be worse than the year preceding it.

Queen Elizabeth II might have thought 1992 was worthy of the distinction, Annus horribilis, but how many of us would trade being related to Prince Charles to have our 401(k) accounts restored? Having to listen to him explain the awful dreck of his late night calls to Camilla, painful though it may be, would be a small price to pay to keep the fair market value of the castle intact in this housing market.

Whatever optimism we had at the beginning of 2008 was quickly trod underfoot by the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse.

It gets more depressing from there. I think I'm going to bed early tonight just to get 2009 here faster.