As I sat in the hot tub Sunday (December 30), I found myself wondering where August, September, October, November, and December had gone. As the cold wind blew and the bright moon reflected light off the snow on the neighbor’s roof, I realized that it felt like it was just yesterday that we were complaining of high heat and no rain.
The next morning, I sat and enjoyed my morning coffee with a healthy dose of television. The morning news shows were reflecting and repeating key moments from their shows, but 2012 was packed with events that have shaped and changed our lives.
Where were you when you learned about the luxury cruise ship running aground in Italy? We checked YouTube for footage; we tuned into the news on the television or radio to listen to survivors and clips of the captain.
Have you thought twice about seeing a late night premier after learning about the gunman, in Denver, who entered the theater for the premier of the newest Batman film and killed 14 individuals?
Did you watch the Summer Olympics in London? Did you witness the runner with the artificial limbs race against athletes from other countries who had never lost a limb? Did you watch the gymnastics or the swimming events? We watched. We cheered. We were amazed. And for many of us, the Olympics renewed our belief that anything is possible.
When Hurricane Sandy made landfall, were you securing your own safety or concerned for the safety of friends and family who resided on the East coast?
And, most recently, did you go home and hug your children after learning about the gunman who entered the elementary school in Connecticut and killed 27 people, mostly children? Did you wonder how anyone could cause that kind of harm to innocent children?
We grieved. We prayed. We tuned in. We supported.
As figures in our world have aged, many of the people who shaped our lives and our world through their accomplishments have passed away.
Remember The Monkeys? Davy Jones? I remember watching The Monkeys. In my pre-teen mind, I thought Davy Jones was dreamy. (February 29)
“It’s a Small World” was a theme song for one of Disney World’s rides. It was written by Robert Sherman who also wrote “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious” from the film Mary Poppins. (March 5)
Thomas Kinkade’s scenic paintings seemed to have warm glowing lights. I always look at the houses in his pictures and wonder who is living there. (April 6)
Mike Wallace brought us a journalistic presence on 60 Minutes. He shaped my interest in current affairs and news. (April 7)
On New Year’s Eve, Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve aired with a tribute to the legend. Each clip they showed brought me on a different memory trip. Dick Clark also contributed to my early musical interest. My mother would turn on American Bandstand and put me in my crib in front of the television. I would dance to the music and she could get dinner made. (April 18)
In the 1960s, my neighbor friend and I would run home, pull the shades, and tune into the cult classic Dark Shadows, the story of Barnabas Collins (a vampire) portrayed by Johathan Frid. (April 14)
The Andy Griffith Show was one of my favorites as a kid. Two of the greats from the show passed this year. George Lindsey played the character Goober, a bumbling yet sincere citizen of Mayberry. (May 6) Later in the year, the comedian and star of the show, Andy Griffith, who portrayed a world of morals and expectations through life in the small town of Mayberry. (July 3)
Remember the little boy, Max, who was sent to his room without supper? Before the famed book Where the Wild Things Are hit the silver screen, it was penned by the creative mind of Maurice Sendak. (May 8)
Did you disco dance? Did you go to the discos? Did you dance to the songs “Love to Love you Baby” or “Last Dance”? Did Donna Summer’s voice sing to you as you danced away. (May 17)
As a kid, I watched Hogan’s Heroes, a show about men stuck in a German prisoner of war camp. Richard Dawson played the character Peter Newkirk in that show and later hosted the game show Family Feud. (June 1)
Dandelion Wine. The Martian Cronicles. Something Wicked This Way Comes. Fahrenheit 451. Ray Bradbury gave us these science fiction titles. (June 5)
Green Acres and Petticoat Junction shared a general store and its owner, Sam Drucker, played by Frank Cady. (June 8)
Film director, Nora Ephran, brought us such favorites as You’ve Got Mail and When Harry Met Sally. (June 26)
Harvey, McHale’s Navy, All Dogs Go to Heaven, and Sponge Bob all have one actor in common, Ernest Borgnine. (July 8)
Remember Archie Bunker’s neighbor? Sherman Hemsley first appeared in All in the Family and then went on to star in The Jeffersons. (July 24)
Her laugh was identifiable before her presence was seen on any stage or screen. The comedian and actress Phyllis Diller portrayed several unique characters and her voice can be heard in films like A Bug’s Life. ( August 20)
“That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.” Need I say more? We sat in front of our televisions and anxiously awaited Neil Armstrong to walk on the moon. (August 25)
From I Dream of Jeannie to one of the lead characters on the weekly prime time soap opera Dallas, Larry Hagman shared with us two different worlds in these shows. (November 23)
Playing the sports caster, Oscar Madison, in the television sit com The Odd Couple was only one of Jack Klugman’s contributions to the entertainment industry. He also played the medical examiner on Quincy M.E. (December 24)
These are just some of the events from this year and the people who passed this year that had an impact on my life. If you are wondering what else happened this year, check out the following websites.
Where were you when an event happened and how did it impact you? Who are you going to miss? How did that person affect your life?