So long 2018; hello 2019


Another year (2018) has departed: 12 months, 52 weeks, and 365 days have ticked away. The residue of events, happenings, and goings-on of 2018 dwell in newspapers, history books, human memories — and in the bowels of computer hard drives, cell phones, and other techno devices. More time has passed — 8760 hours, 525,600 minutes, and 31,536,000 seconds have ticked away.

Sunrises and sunsets. The earth, sun, and moon work together. Gravity fastens our feet to the ground. Spring, summer, fall, winter — the four seasons happen yearly in Ohio.

Tick-tock. Tick-tock. Tick-tock. The old year has come to an end.

The media looks back on each previous year to tell the top stories on planet earth: political scandals, natural disasters, murder and mayhem, tragic accidents. International stories. National stories. And local stories.

Hollywood looks back at award-winning films. Along with celebrity marriages and divorces. Celebrity births and deaths. Celebrity gossip.

People look back at trophies, plaques, medals, honors, prizes, and awards. Mementos of excelling and winning. Hard work and teamwork. Academics, sports, arts, music.

In the USA, wind, water, and fire received our full attention in 2018. The wildfires in California. Historic Hurricane Michael left a trail of destruction across Florida, Georgia, and the Carolinas. Hurricane Florence flooded the Carolinas.

Closer to home, Ohioans look back as well.

River Flooding of 2018

According to the National Weather Service for February of 2018, “Repeated rounds of moderate to heavy rainfall across the entire Ohio River basin totaled between 8 to 9 inches along and on either side of the Ohio River from February 15 to March 1. These totals were 200 to 400% above normal values for mid to late February. The large areal extent of the excessive rainfall led to significant rises on area rivers, including the Ohio River.”

In an April 2018 article, the Plain Dealer listed and pictured the most beautiful place in each of Ohio’s 88 counties. lists 40 things every Ohioan should do. Ohio Magazine has been the authority on places to visit in Ohio for more than 35 years.

We look back so we can look forward. “If you want to understand today, you have to search yesterday,” surmised Pearl Buck.

2018 is no more. We read the newspaper in our community; watch the evening news; and scan headlines via the internet. We talk and text recollections. We reminisce with laughter or tears.

Tick-tock. Tick-tock. Tick-tock. The new year is here.

In 2019, every person will become a year older between January and December. Vehicle registrations, property taxes, and income taxes are due again. More births, graduations, marriages, retirements, and deaths will occur.

“Neither the life of an individual nor the history of a society can be understood without understanding both,” proclaimed C. Wright Mills.

Are you welcoming or dreading 2019? Or both? We’ll make resolutions, goals, and plans. Buy a house or sell a house. Keep a job or take a new job. Have children or not have children. We’ll make easy decisions and difficult decisions in 2019. Some things will stay the same. Some things will change.

What are some of my New Year’s resolutions for 2019? Use my new Golden Buckeye card. Encourage more old ladies to wear yoga pants. Read more books. I may go wild and get microblading for my eyebrows (aka getting your eyebrows semi-permanently tattooed). And learn how to use a chainsaw.

Happy New Year to the fine folks of Ohio!

Melissa Martin, Ph.D., is an author, columnist, and educator. She lives in southern Ohio. Connect with her on her website:

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