As happens each year, the last hours of 2012 beg the chance to reflect on the past twelve months, both good and bad, both worldwide and personal. And as is always true, some pieces will be viewed as fond memories, and some we'll be happy to bid farewell and good riddance to.
For sports lovers who are from New Jersey and New York, 2012 was an exciting year. The New Jersey Devils almost, but not quite, reclaimed the Stanley Cup. But for Giants football fans, 2012 started on the right cleat with their amazing Superbowl win, which in Arizona coincided as usual with the Phoenix Open weekend. It's a tribute to those fans' stamina that they were able to recover and function for the remainder of the year.
But recover they did, and just in time to celebrate Arizona's 100th birthday in February, complete with plays specially written for the occasion.
Those plays weren't the only compelling news in the arts world in Arizona. In 2012, we were chock-full of excitement in the film community as well. From the Phoenix Film Festival, to a movie being made about Tempe's music heyday in the early 90s (set to premiere in 2013), to a local young filmmaker who successfully raised over $10,000 to make 52 short films in 2013, Arizona continues to be a hub of creativity and original entertainment.
We also had our share of artists whose tours traveled here, including music legend Greg Lake of Emerson Lake and Palmer. His intimate show made a stop in Mesa in May and Mr. Lake granted the Transplants to Phoenix Examiner an exclusive interview where, among other things, he revealed his thoughts on Arizona.
In the national arts scene, one book dominated the best-seller list and book club discussions for most of the year. Fifty Shades of Grey was the most talked about novel to come along in a long time, and was tied to a general trend of women becoming more powerful, as predicted by the Age of Aquarius.
Of course, not all such predictions proved true in 2012. Doomsday, which some thought would happen on December 21, obviously didn't. But, sadly, others experienced their own personal doomsday with tragedies no one saw coming. The Sandy Hook school shooting in Connecticut shocked us all, perhaps more deeply than any tragedy since 9/11 has, its poignancy literally bringing Americans to their knees days before Christmas.
And Hurricane Sandy brought devastation and loss to thousands on the east coast in October, creating a disaster scene whose recovery will probably take years.
These are the kinds of memories we would prefer to forget as we enter another year.
But as we ring in 2013, let's not forget. We honor ourselves and others by remembering the good and the bad. Because while our mistakes and dark days may not be the best components of ourselves, we can learn from them and they help to make us who we are.
So let's enter the new year with the best parts of ourselves, while remaining aware that if we miss a step in our New Year's Resolutions, it's not the end but a part of the process. Author Joe Dispenza says in his book, "Moving off purpose and then getting back the next day is a symbol of greatness."
Let the next year be one of greatness.
Happy New Year!
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