Here we go again. A new year. A new chance. A new beginning. A fresh start. A clean break. Three hundred sixty-five days of endless opportunities, limitless possibilities, unimagined adventures, unfulfilled resolutions.
On the other hand, 2007 could very well turn out to be a rerun of 2006.
What will happen this year? Is it worth resolving to transform ourselves into perfection? Does anyone really care to hear predictions about an unknowable future?
Resolutions, as they might have said, are made to be broken. Predictions aren't worth the breath we spend on them.
After all, think back a year. At the beginning of 2006, did anyone warn us we would lose James Brown and Gerald Ford - both in the last week of the 12th month, after all the pundits had told us what kind of year we had just had? Nope.
I don't put much stock in such nonsense. On a lark, though, I read my horoscope for today. It says that, because I've hidden my talents long enough, I need to "get into the fight."
I have news for Astrology Central: My talents are so well hidden that it's going to take more than a new calendar to bring them to the surface in any recognizable form.
Moreover, who wants to get into a fight? Here's what I want in 2007: peace and quiet. If the astrologers want a fight, let them duke it out.
Am I supposed to believe that my fortunes, my personality and my fate are controlled by the positions of the planets and stars at the instant I was born? Give me a break.
I have read that if it were possible for the gravitation and alignment of faraway heavenly bodies to affect our lives, then the weight of the obstetrician who delivered us would be the largest factor ruling our lives. Did my mother have a fat doctor or a thin doctor? Oooh, scary.
Anyway, a horoscope more often than not just passes on some witticism or generality that could apply to any of 300 million Americans on any given day.
Here's one I found: "Gather your like-minded friends and get everyone in a party mood." (That's great for a hangover, but what if I want to map out my future?)
Another: "You like to associate with people you know a lot." (No joke, Nostradamus. I've often found that when I associate with people, they are people I know.)
Finally, this one: "There's a real chance to change what's wrong." (Then again ...)
If we read five horoscopes today for our sign of the zodiac, we will get five different guides for living the perfect life, finding love, losing weight and retiring while still young enough to enjoy it.
Where's the part that tells me my future so I either try to head it off or else coast along and leave my fate to the zodiac? Didn't "psychic" Jeane Dixon go around foretelling assassinations? If we need crystal-ballers at all, they should all be like her.
I've never been to a fortune teller, but I have a feeling that any fortune I get would be as enlightening as my daily horoscope. Likewise, a fortune cookie all too often serves the likes of: "Happiness is nearer than you think." It never says: "You will walk outside after supper and get hit by a truck in the parking lot."
The slip of paper in a cookie is not a fortune; it is a way of saying: "Dinner's over; go pay your check."
So, we've opened the book on 2007. Chapter 1, anyway. I don't know what lies ahead, nor do you.
My advice, then, is to forget everyone who wants to tell us the plot and simply enjoy each page by doing the best we can. I think James Brown might have told us to "get on the good foot."
Glynn Moore is a columnist for the Augusta Chronicle.
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