Ramblin’ with Roger 2012 Random Year in Review

Hey, it was HOT out.

My blogger buddy and near-twin Gordon, the only non-local blogger I ever met in person (2008 in Chicago) always does this thing whereby he randomly selects a blog post from each month in the past year, and does a single post that serves as a “year in review”. As these are random selections – I even use a random number generator to pick the post and the line – I’m not sure how representative these are, but what the hey.

January – Will the advent of the talkies mean the end of his career, in favor of younger talent, such as the pretty extra Peppy Miller (Argentinian-French actress Bérénice Bejo)? My review of the movie The Artist.

February – Here, then, is Salon’s Who’s the worst president of them all? My Presidents Day post.

March – Or maybe it’s just that these dudes want women to shut the hell up, particularly about issues that primarily impact women. A political rant, so VERY rare.

April – One library vendor decided, after the fact, that library patrons can only take out an e-book, I believe, 28 times, because that’s some average book circulation number. In answer to a question by Jaquandor, a technology rant.

May – (Although I was REALLY hoping she wouldn’t opt for the hyphenated choice; after a while, when Mary Smith-Wesson marries John Smith-Jones, and she -or they – become the Smith-Wesson=Smith-Jones family, it can get cumbersome.) My Mother’s Day post; the “she” is my wife Carol.

June – During the House committee hearings on impeachment, Republican House member William Cohen of Maine’s looked pained as he recognized his President’s failings. An ABC Wednesday post about Watergate.

July – The fact that a larger pool of consumers, historically, has lowered the costs of goods and services. Answering Amy’s question about health care.

August – The people of the congregation were all dressed with expensive clothes and fine jewelry. One of the very few times I stole a post from an e-mail. Hey, it was HOT out.

September – We’d been to their wedding only a few years earlier. A day in the life.

October – Ever since I was old enough to discern things independently of what my teachers taught me, I’ve been utterly fascinated by Columbus Day.

November – On either side, there are possibly more people than what the properties are zoned for, though I couldn’t prove it. Neighbors.

December – Then some major holiday the week after that.
I note that http://byzantiumshores.blogspot.com/2012/12/best-of-2012.html Jaquandor does a great job in his year in review. I could put together such an extensive retrospective list – what movies I saw, which books I read. I have a difficult time spending a long time looking back in a strict annual way.

Dustbury on Patti Page.

2012 Revisited

My daughter has started playing the clarinet. My wife has been playing with her.


One of those year-in-review quizzes from Jaquandor.

Did you keep your New Year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?

Maybe I’ll make some this year. This past year felt as though, if I could keep my head above water, it was good.

Did anyone close to you give birth?

Not that I can recall.

Did anyone close to you die?

Three SBDC counselors died. Steve Amell of Binghamton I didn’t know well but liked (and he was 49 and died of ALS); Mike Heftka from Buffalo, a swell guy who I’d know for a long time, another youngish guy, who’d been battling cancer for quite a while; and Don Dods out of Kingston, who I’d known for years, who was a great counselor and a tremendous guy.

Joe Morehead, one of my library school professors. Sweet guy, and very bright. Learned a lot about government sources of data. I remember running into him at a tennis match in Schenectady after I had graduated, and I could speak with him as person to person, rather than as student to teacher.

Nate Erlbaum was this guy I would see at these NYS Data Center Affiliates meetings and he would drive me crazy, mostly because I had no idea what he was talking about. As I grew to know him better, though, I recognized how important getting the data correctly and with accessibility was so important. Any time he could help me, he would; he was a font of knowledge. He retired from the NYS Department of Transportation on April 23, having been diagnosed 15 months earlier with lung cancer, and had been receiving chemotherapy, though lots of people working alongside him didn’t even know. He died about a week later at the age of 61. I did mention him here.

Mary Durkot, mom of a friend of mine, was 91. I wrote about her extensively here.

Albert Wood, 57, was in my church choir. He also knew my wife separately, from where she used to work. While I mentioned him somewhat on this blog, I wrote about him more extensively here.

Finally, Avery Cahn, who was 20 months old. I wrote about him here. But the story gets worse. While the babysitter initially stated he accidentally suffocated the child, later he admitted to killing the toddler “because the child would not stop crying.” On the front page of the local section of the paper, we got to see the smothered baby’s relatives tell the court of their devastation, particularly Avery’s mother, who is a member of my church. As I noted earlier, I also feel for the paternal grandmother, who is a good friend of mine.

What countries did you visit?

I’m a real nowhere man. Didn’t even leave New York State, except for the spring trip to Rhode Island and Connecticut.

What would you like to have in 2013 that you lacked in 2012?

More optimism.

What was your biggest achievement of the year?

Denise Nesbitt gave me ABC Wednesday to run for this round, and I didn’t totally derail it.

What was your biggest failure?

Failing to get out of my own way.

What was the best thing you bought?

Nothing is coming to mind.

Whose behavior merited celebration?

Nate Silver, and anyone else who did math, or recognized the validity of science. Also, the voters who turned out those idiot legislators who talked about women who experienced “legitimate rape” who couldn’t get pregnant.

Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?

The good news is that Donald Trump no longer annoys me; he’s so jumped the shark with his rants. But all of those other people after the election who talked about secession and revolution. Also, those climate change deniers – has Hurricane Sandy changed your mind? And political pundits, who go with their “gut feelings”; remember President Romney, Dick Morris?

Where did most of your money go?

The house. Even though the mortgage is paid, there are always repairs for an old residence.

What did you get really excited about?

My daughter has started playing the clarinet. My wife has been playing with her; I hadn’t heard her play in years, and in fact practically forgot that she even had her instrument.

What song will always remind you of 2012?

I hear so few new ones that stay with me. Call Me Maybe by Carly Rae Jepsen was unavoidable. Especially when my daughter would dance to it while watching Dancing With the Stars, over and over and over…

Compared to this time last year, are you happier or sadder?

Sadder. The body politic has worn me down.

Thinner or fatter?

Very slightly thinner, less than five pounds.

Richer or poorer?

Mixed bag. The mortgage is gone, but I had some dental bills at the end of the year that ate up those savings.

What do you wish you’d done more of?

Going to movies, always.

What do you wish you’d done less of?

Thinking. Melancholy. Insomnia.

How did you spend Christmas?

Went to church, doing the gift thing.

Did you fall in love in 2012?

Yes, and it was the clarinet – her doing her art.

How many one-night stands?

As many as last year.

What was your favorite TV program?

CBS Sunday Morning, The Daily Show, Grey’s Anatomy (to my surprise).

Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?

No, but willfully ignorant people continue to amaze me with their “skills.”

What was the best book you read?

11/22/63 by Stephen King.

What was your greatest musical discovery?

The music from Wicked.

What did you want and get?

I wanted music, both singing and buying recordings.

What did you want and not get?

Some dedicated time to blog. It’s still catch as catch can.

What were your favorite films of this year?


What did you do on your birthday?

Well, I didn’t work; I probably ate Indian food.

How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2012?

“Fashion” is silly. Function over form.

What kept you sane?

Writing; singing; listening to music; learning new stuff; and then I suddenly realized that the question ASSUMES that I AM sane, which may or may not be the case.

Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?

Jon Stewart; Nate Silver; the CBS News, which is the closest to a real news network left of the Big 3.

What political issue stirred you the most?

The search for real truth, not spin, or lies.

Who did you miss?

I miss my parents.

Who was the best new person you met?

I “met” one or two interesting folks online this year.

Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2012:

I LOVE my answering machine and caller ID, and my DVR. The numbers of political calls and ads I missed, even in this reliably “blue” state, were astonishing.

Quote a song lyric that sums up your year:

There’s an Elvis Costello song called 20% Amnesia [LISTEN]. I started making up new lyrics to it and calling it 21st Century Romnesia:

Mitt’s positions are like Etch-A-Sketch. (21st Century Romnesia)
What he really means, I just can’t catch. (21st Century Romnesia)

He bashes the 47 percent. (21st Century Romnesia)
Then says that’s not really what he meant. (21st Century Romnesia)

He comes up with a misleading auto ad. (21st Century Romnesia)
His misrepresentation makes me so mad. (21st Century Romnesia)

To try to win, he’ll even lie. (21st Century Romnesia)
I must say that it makes me want to cry. (21st Century Romnesia)

I wrote about a half dozen other verses that I’ve lost, but you get the idea. Every time I heard a Romney/Ryan “misrepresentation”, I’d sing to myself, “21st century Romnesia.”

December rambling

The 45 Most Powerful Images Of 2012. There are some incredibly inspiring pictures in here, but warning: Some of these may break your heart.

Eddie at Renaissance Geek has melanoma, which he’s having removed tomorrow. For reasons he explains, he’s named his new “friends” (his word) Nigel and Sixtus. Good luck, buddy.

SamuraiFrog writes: “The trailer for Now Is Good promised me only half of what I’m feeling right now, after having watched the film this morning.” Very touching blurring of film review and personal recollection.

On Facebook, I posted A Note to You, Should You Be Thinking of Asking Me to Write For You For Free by John Scalzi, which Jaquandor cited twice this month. It got a LOT of support from creative types.

Batman and the Golden Parachute.

Liberal values.

The last man on the moon was 40 years ago. That was only a 3.5 year period of moon exploration.

Stephen Colbert interviewed Jon Stewart “at the Wellmont Theatre, a fundraiser for the Montclair Film Festival. While the two have discussed their work onstage together before, this was their first lengthy public one-on-one. And despite their 14-year professional relationship, each brought forth stories that surprised both each other and the sold-out audience.”

The power of words.

Pale blue dot (Sagan).

Calendar of meaningful dates.

The 45 Most Powerful Images Of 2012. There are some incredibly inspiring pictures in here, but warning: Some of these may break your heart.

The best (and worst) media errors and corrections of 2012.

Zeitgeist 2012: Year In Review.

Steve Bissette’s Pop Culture Injustices of 2012. Marvel/Disney figures prominently.

Each year around this time, the good folks at Turner Classic Movies release a long, stylish video noting those in the movie business who’ve passed away since January 1.

Arthur@AmeriNZ on Robert Bork, and Dustbury on Fontella Bass, both of whom died this month.

It’s not that I don’t care; it’s just too hard. Literacy Privilege: How I Learned to Check Mine Instead of Making Fun of People’s Grammar on the Internet.

Bokeh? In photography, “basically it is when something is in perfect focus and the background is blurred.”

Mike Sterling’s 9 years of blogging.

Many comic book heroes have roots in the Hudson Valley, the area I went to college. Hmm – have you guessed MY secret identity?

How Superman’s Butt Saved Christmas. “Blame SamuraiFrog for this one, folks — he gave me the title! I deny all accountability,” Jaquandor pleaded. “Except for the part where I write the following tale. Which I’m doing stream-of-conscious, right off the top of my head. No editing.”

Based on the trailer for the new Superman movie, I might actually watch Man of Steel. Don’t think I’ve seen a Superman film since Superman II, more than 30 years ago.

ADD on the end of American Elf.

Paraguay Landfill Harmonic Documentary Features Recycled Orchestra.

Ukulele Orchestra of GB – Fly Me off the Handel.

The opening number of Fiddler on the Roof done in Lego.

The first world problems rap.

Theme from the movie To Kill a Mockingbird by Elmer Bernstein. Some yahoo on the Internet suggested that Atticus Finch was a failed lawyer because his client was convicted. Oy.

He who dies with the most toys is still dead.


An extraordinary entrepreneur and executive in the social services industry with over three decades of diverse professional experience in the field, Roger Green has routinely exhibited the passion, vision, dedication, and diligence necessary to be mentioned among the elite. As a result of his phenomenal body of work, Mr. Green has earned inclusion in the distinguished network of leading professionals with Stanford Who’s Who.

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