The year 2021 started out with some hope and optimism. The Democrats just barely won control of the US Senate and thus supposedly would be able to get some things done. Donald Trump would be out of office in three weeks. Vaccines were going to be available soon that would enable us to emerge from the pandemic.
But things did not work out that way. Trump has gone full bore bonkers with his claim that the election was stolen and enough of his cult believe him to cause problems. Two Democratic senators Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema seem determined to side with Republicans in opposing efforts to improve the lives of many people. And new covid-19 variants have emerged that, coupled with inexplicably stupid resistance to taking them and other pandemic resistance measures, has seen the number of cases rise sharply at the end of the year.
But the eternal optimist in me hopes that this year will surprise me by turning out better than the current signs indicate.
In general, I am not a fan of year-end retrospectives or lists of various things such as best books, best films, and the like. One exception is a list of well-known people who died during the year, many of whom did not get much press attention at the time of their death and so I missed it. For example, I learned from that article that the celebrated Indian sprinter Milkha Singh had died at the age of 91. I remember him because of a very silly joke that I heard at the time when he came to Sri Lanka to compete in a meet. The joke went that as he was sitting by the side of the track after a race, someone came up to him and asked, “Are you relaxing?” To which he replied, “No, I am Milkha Singh.” That shows the kind of juvenile humor that appeals to me and sticks in my mind.