Sunday, December 28, 2014

New Year's decision

Traditionally, today is the day Kim and I decide what we're going to do for New Year's.

Party or not to party?

Interestingly enough, our decision is usually based around our grocery shopping habits. Eventually, we'll find ourselves standing in front of the wine racks, casing out the champagne.

"Do you want to celebrate New Year's this year?" one of us will ask.

"I don't know. Do you?"

"Well, I'm not really into it this year."

"Me either."

"Hey, do you think this champagne is any good? It's got a neat label."

"I don't know. The only way to see if we like it is to buy it."

"Well, if somebody invites us to a party, at least we can bring some champagne."

There is a certain logic to this. If we buy the champagne, we're pretty much committed to staying up to midnight on New Year's eve. If we decide it's not worth the trouble, we'll move on to the frozen foods.

If we decide to buy the Moet, however, then it's a trip to the dairy section to find some worthy cheese, followed by a visit to the cracker aisle, with maybe some pretzels and nuts along the way. It adds up.

There have been times when we buy a cheap champagne and celebrate on our own, just the two of us. We'll watch the ball come down on Times Square, sip our bubbly, and be sound asleep by 12:08 a.m. It works for us.

One year, we decided to host a small party at our house. I invited a couple of friends from The Dispatch, where I worked, and Kim invited a few couples from the bank, where she worked.

I think four people showed up. Six of us in all. Cheese and crackers everywhere and nobody to eat it. We never did that again.

Some years, as a sports writer for The Dispatch, I had to cover the holiday Christmas Tournament at Ledford, and the championship games were usually held on New Year's eve. I'd get home at 11:55 p.m. on a good night. Sigh.

There was one year, after I became sports editor, where I didn't have to cover a game but my sports writer did. I felt bad about it. So Kim and I went to The Dispatch with a bottle of champagne, and when midnight arrived, we popped the cork and had a little party in the newsroom with the staff that was there. That might have been the best New Year's party I'd been to in maybe ever.

There's also New Year's Day to consider, especially the meal. Traditionally it's pork (ham), with greens and black-eyed peas and sometimes sauerkraut. It's supposed to bring you wealth, but it's never worked for us.

This year, we're considering a turkey breast in the slow cooker with some dressing that Kim made for Christmas and is taking up space in the freezer.

As far as I'm concerned, that's a pretty good way to start off a new year.

Here's hoping the best for all of you.

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