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Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Bill Pekarski: Day 119, Living life on my terms

Bill Pekarski:

Day 119, Living life on my terms.

Well, another Christmas day and birthday have passed and now I get to look forward to New Year’s Eve and the end of 2016. It has always been difficult to follow the adage “out with the old and in with the new,” because sometimes I am just not ready to let go. I guess it is all part of that nostalgic bone I have and my yearnings to relive the past.

In the 70’s, my family would stay in on New Year’s Eve and play games all night long. We would play several rounds of Yahtzee, some card games like rummy or kings in the corner, and all sorts of board games.

Our favorite game to play was Clue. I remember how my mother was so good at the game and always seemed to figure out something on every else’s turn. I would barley have my choice of weapons narrowed down to the rope and revolver, and she would already making an accusation, and she would be right! I had not even considered rooms or killers yet.

Of course we still had fudge and cookies to nibble on while we played, and the pork and sauerkraut would be cooking in the kitchen. Oh, how I loved getting a pile of her mashed potatoes with a big slab of butter melting in the middle. I could take my fork and grab some kraut, pork, and potatoes into one bite; dip them all into the well of butter and feast to the New Year.

The best thing was still just sitting around the table with my mother, brother, and sisters. My father wasn’t much for the games and would usually be in bed hours before midnight. He would have to wait until the next day for his pork and sauerkraut.

At the point where I was a teenager, my New Year’s Eve was always at Magic Valley Skateland. Myself, my brother Joe, and my sisters Anne and Lucia all worked there at one time or another and we always looked forward to the late skate or all-nighter that fell on New Years Eve.

As midnight grew near, people would stand along the perimeter of the floor. We passed out party hats and noisemakers to everyone and started making all sorts of noise. There were two different balloon nets attached to the ceiling and when midnight struck, we would release them. Inside many of the balloons were free passes for admission, free sodas at the snack bar, even some plain old cash in a couple of them. It was always a whole lot of fun spending the night there. Even better if you had a girlfriend and got a special New Year’s Kiss!

Today it seems like most people, at least the adults, are hitting the bar and club scene to celebrate. That is fine in all if that is what you like, but I would much rather get together with friends and bring in the New Year the old fashion way.

I want to play games all night long with family and friends. I want to take a break about 30 minutes before midnight so we can watch Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve. I want to listen to Barry Manilow sing “It’s just another New Year’s Eve” while playing the huge grand piano in a studio just outside Times Square. I want to smell fresh popped and buttery popcorn being passed around the room. I want to count down with everyone starting at 10 and ending with HAPPY NEW YEAR! I want to hear Auld Lang Synge playing in the background as we go around the room sharing hugs and kisses. Then I want to grab a glass and toast to the good health and good fortune awaiting all of us in the New Year. Lastly, I want peace on Earth and good will to men.

Today I am dedicating my progress to my family of old as well as my family of new. I am happy to be able to share this time with all of you.


Anonymous said...

Blame the media and advertisers for making New Years Eve another drunken brawl and slosh pit. As long as the government allows the sale of alcohol instead of the much safer marijuana, there will be the same old issues. Unfortunately, it is in human's evolutionary DNA to seek mind altering substances. I don't know the answer as to why or how to stop that. I do know that allowing a safer alternative, marijuana, to satisfy that craving will result in far less mayhem and costs to society dealing with the aftermath of a bunch of drunks.
Before the bar stool crowd starts popping off, do something novel and research the safety and yes, the medicinal benefits of each. Research the ancillary costs to society for each product. It would be great if we as a society had ZERO cravings for such things but we do. So why not allow a safer and less costly alternative to society to pacify those who have such cravings.
BTW, I don't drink, smoke, do drugs as I just don't have the desire. I'm not preaching to anyone to quit anything, I think it is unfair to put unneeded costs on society due to societal ignorance of these different vices. I'm only pointing out the time has come to abandon the "Reefer Madness" mentality and see pot for what it really is instead of the old stereotypical hippie drug! Look at the proven health benefits that medical research has found that marijuana provides. That is why it is finally being legalized not only as a medicine but also for recreational use for those who so choose the actual safer alternative.

Anonymous said...

Love the picture of the old clue board. It is my daughter's favorite game also & even though she is in her late 20's now, we always have to play when I visit. Which I don't mind, I was always glad she enjoyed playing it through her teen years. And the pork & kraut & mashed potatoes also a favorite. Have a Happy New Year Bill.

And 8:34 I have to agree with you.

Anonymous said...

wonderful family times bill instead of spending million to redo or replace the town pool they should give the kids another skateland and arcade used year around less upkeep pool used 2 months a year not with my tax money i hope