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Opinion: Seeing clearly in 2020

Christmas time has come and gone. Trees that were the stars of the show are now stripped and waiting at the curb. As a new year approaches, it is time to reflect and ponder on what’s ahead. I typically stay home on New Year ’s Eve. Television has Dick Clark’s Rockin’ Eve and a slew of other themed parties. From news broadcasts to concerts and parties featuring different music genres the entertainment industry provides an alternative to being out-and-about on New Year’s Eve.

I’ve always viewed New Year’s Eve as something of an amateur’s night with people going out to party who are either new to the experience or maybe they are just out of practice. It gets dangerous when people believe they can still rock, imbibe and maintain like they did “back in the day.”

I saw an Internet meme that made me laugh, it rang so true. It said, “If 60 is the new 40, then 9 p.m. is the new Midnight!”

I wonder how it would affect the bar tally if the taverns celebrated midnight on New Year’s Eve by time zones.

Stay with me here, at 9 p.m. ring in the Eastern Time Zone, at 10 p.m. celebrate Central, at 11 p.m. Mountain and finally at midnight the Pacific Time Zone. How big a hit would the night’s receipts take if patrons got the chance to make noise, pop balloons, toast and kiss strangers four times on New Year’s Eve? How many people would stay to bring in the Pacific Time Zone midnight? I know I’m weird, move on.

Live music locally finds The Vineyard Restaurant, 605 So. I Street, welcoming back the Rock-n-Roll stylings of “The Skydogs.” Patrons may enjoy dinner if they like and then dance the New Year in with the band and its favorite rock tunes. Dinner reservations are recommended by calling 674-0923.

At the Elks Lodge, 112 W. 6th St., the party is on, 8:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. The popular service club hosts its New Year celebration with dancing to the Stallion Dance Band. Enjoy a full cash bar with beer, wine, cocktails and free hors d’oeuvres. Admission is $15 single and $25 couple. For information, call the lodge 673-1918.

There are a great many superstitions associated with the New Year.

• According to Business Insider’s web page, not kissing someone at midnight will bring a year where one is unlucky in love.

• My mother seriously subscribed to the practice of eating black-eyed peas on New Year to ensure a healthy new year. Add eating collard greens to bring a year of financial prosperity, BI said.

• One should make sure their cupboards aren’t bare lest you be cursed with a year of scarcity.

• Don’t throw anything away on New Year’s Day or you will lose things all year long.

• Also, don’t clean anything on Jan. 1 lest you will sweep away your good fortune for the year.

• Open all your doors just before midnight to let the old year out and the New Year in.

• Madera’s vineyard growers will like this one — eating 12 grapes, one for each month, brings good luck all year.

• Don’t cry on New Year’s Day or you could be looking at a year of sadness.

Lucky foods to be consumed on New Year’s differ by region and culture. Vasilopita is a New Year’s Day bread or cake in Greece and many other areas in Eastern Europe and the Balkans, said BI. It contains a hidden coin or trinket which gives good luck to the receiver, like the Western European king cake.

In Italy, pork sausage over lentils, is a New Year tradition. In the southern United States, it’s cornbread to go with the black-eyed peas and collard greens.

Even if you aren’t superstitious what’s the harm in subscribing to these traditions? I will be following them, you know just in case.

Every year I have the pleasure of joining the folks at Madera Community Hospital with welcoming the first baby born on New Year’s Day. Without overtly shaming anyone, every year I pray the baby is born to stable, married, adults. But that is my best-case scenario for every baby born.

Long days and pleasant nights, have a good weekend and see you next year.

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Readers may contact Tami Jo Nix by emailing or following @TamiJoNix on Twitter.

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