Dear Fnerners and Bnerers,
Once again, for a reason which dates back to 1582, we celebrate the annual re-boot of the Georgian calendar, with much jollity and good cheer, with singing, carousing, dancing and inebriation, leading to the consequent impact on personal health, as population after population succumbs to the morning after the night before.
Tomorrow (or is it already today?) is equally worthy of celebration, it being a date that even the Americans can get right - 1.1.11. So, perhaps some will turn the hair of the dog into the leg of the dog, perhaps even the dog of the dog. Just try to avoid making it the pack of the dog if you possibly can.
Moving along, we won't have long to wait for the next new year. On 3rd February 2011 we move into the Chinese Year of the Rabbit, which is another great excuse to throw a party. Shortly after that, on either 20th or 21st March 2011, we have Nowruz 2570 (1390) the Persian new year, which being the Spring equinox, coincides with several other reasons to go for it (and why not?) :
On and on and on it goes, each occasion supposedly unique and special - and so they are, just not for the reasons we give. Any excuse will do, really, religious or secular, national, international, or familial, new year, new baby, bar mitzvah, first communion, graduation, retirement, sporting victory, sporting defeat, you name it.
What these occasions all have in common is that they bring us humans together so that we can try, in our sometimes generous, often flawed and occasionally dangerous ways, to break down the inter-personal barriers which exist between us on every other day of the year. It's no wonder we sometimes break things in this great effort to reverse the social norms which constrict most of us most of the time, in pursuit of the much deeper need for renewal.
So, on this New Year 2011, let us all say a very large, long and heartfelt thank you to the Healers of the world - to the doctors, nurses and paramedics, as they cope with the flood of injuries which accompanies this annual mass loss of balance.
Thank you, wond'rous children of Hippocrates, for you are indeed special; you frequently stand between us mortals and the worst consequences of our desire to feel more connected with one another and less alone; and without you, life after the party would so often be much, much worse than a simple hangover.
Aside from that - thank you for all your kind messages and support this year. Remember to be extra nice to people who resemble small animals.
Until next time,
Jack the Cheese