New Year's Eve was quiet for us this year. We invited our good neighbors, the Snows, over for pumpkin pie and games.
Our evening ended early, at about 9. I had to work early New Year's Day, so I slept right through 2006's exit and 2007's entry. Truth be told, I'm not much for New Year's anyways. It's largely just an excuse to get drunk and litter. Ever drive around a suburban neighborhood before sunrise on New Year's Day? It's as if the cosmic shifting of one year to another throws off people's equilibrium and balance so when they try to put garbage in the trash, they miss.
All that said I'm not above a little partying on New Year's. And just to prove it, I'm going to have a little fun and see if I can remember what I did for each New Year's Eve over the past 12 years. If it's hard to imagine having more fun than you will reading my list, that's because reading this list represents the pinnacle of good times for all humanity. It is not possible for greater fun to be had, even with the use of fun-enhancing substances, which I do not endorse.
2004… In preparation of driving from
2003… We celebrate the new year in
2002… The sewer backs up into our apartment earlier in the week, so the Thurman family invites us to crash at their castle on
2001… Shannon and I, about to be engaged, watch Better Off Dead with friends in
2000… Just six weeks ago, I thought I was going to marry my girlfriend. She decides to go on a mission – so we obviously don't marry, but we do spend New Year's Eve hanging out with four sets of her married friends. We play Mad Gab. We all kiss our dates at , but the married couples (all of whom are relative newlyweds) don't really stop. My girlfriend and I exchange awkward glances and decide to head home.
1999… I witness the false turn of the millennium (the real one, of course, occurred on New Year's Eve 2000 into 2001) as a missionary. We're traveling around the mission, working with various zones, and stop in
1998… My first New Year's Eve in the mission field is spent in an isolated mountain town called Bancroft. I stay up until well past because the upstairs neighbors are having a heck of a party. They play their music so loudly I can hear every note – but I secretly enjoy it inasmuch as it's a guilt-free way to listen to music… I mean, I can't leave. It's my apartment. I fight sleep as long as possible, hoping to enjoy one last song. I finally drift off to the Cars' "My Best Friend's Girl".
1997… Back home in
1996… I attend a smattering of New Year's functions – a dance here, a party there – to ensure maximum exposure to sundry sweets.
1995… I'm dating a cheerleader – it's pretty much the pinnacle of my adolescent existence – and I spend the evening with her and her family. We watch the ball drop on their 12-inch TV. I look around and everyone's asleep except me. I sneak out really quietly and drive home, thinking how I thought dating a cheerleader would be a lot cooler.
1994… After the obligatory New Year's Eve church dance, I head to Dave Christiansen's house with the guys. We stay up all night watching cheesy movies, repeating mindless inside jokes, and burning incense while listening to Enigma to try to summon the ghost of Richie Valens.
They may not have been the coolest New Year's Eves ever, but at least I remember them. And that's because I say NO to booze. I also say NO to sniffing Pixie Stix and NO to tiny jogging shorts.