By Nathan Barton
It is, of course, all artificial – man made. Arbitrary. There is no reason to have a new year begin on 1 January – indeed, it used to begin on 1 March, according to many people, back before the last major calendar “reform.”
But still, we seem to build our lives around it. The earth orbits the sun, and we’ve decided (here in Western Civilization, at least), that our calendar starts all over again.
So, a very happy new year to all, and may 2017 be better than 2016 – and different. For my family and many of our friends and relatives, 2016 was a tough year. For the world and the Fifty States, it was a tough year as well. For liberty – well, liberty took a lot of hits in 2016. And even if things COULD have been worse, they were definitely bad enough.
But there have been worse years, and not just in distant history but recent memory as well.
My family has a custom of eating black-eyed peas on New Year’s Day. It comes from an old Texian tradition going back maybe as far as 200 years and the first Anglo settlements in Tejas. I had it explained to me as a child: eating black-eyed peas on New Year’s is to remind and encourage the family by in effect saying “if this is the worst thing we have to eat all year, it is going to be a pretty good year. (Try some, and you’ll see what I mean: definitely an acquired taste, and no matter how much ham or pork and brown sugar you add to them, there is still that underlying bitter taste. I’m told that civilized people (i.e. non-Texans) don’t consider them human food. And as recently as fifty or sixty years ago, you couldn’t buy them at stores outside Greater Texas – for example, in the Dakotas or Midwest.)
Mama’s Note: I was reminded by this of the year I planted black eyed peas in my large So. Calif. garden. Talk about grow! I never had such a bumper crop of anything, before or since. But using them was a real problem. My sons would normally eat anything without question, but these were a hard sell. I tried everything, but no go. Finally fed them to the goats, and got a big increase in the milk for a while… but it smelled and tasted a little strange. Never attempted to grow them again.
So looking forward to 2017, in just a few short hours, maybe here are a few goals.
– More self-government
– Less worrying about what government (world, federal, state, local) is going to try to do: indeed, work hard to ignore them all more and more
– More responsibility (individually)
– More preparation and practice for what might happen: the good as well as the bad
– More contact with fellow lovers of liberty and dear friends and family
My family’s best wishes to you and yours for 2017.
Mama’s Note: And from the whole Price of Liberty family to all of yours. Best wishes and good luck. Seems we have a tiger by the tail for the new year, and it will be very interesting to see what comes in 2017. Probably the Chinese curse of the same bent: We DO live in “interesting times.”