Time flies when you are having fun, and never do I have more fun than on New Year’s Eve at the exquisite little Georgia Sea Grill on St. Simons Island, featuring a group of friends better than I deserve and a heaping platter of corn-fried shrimp. I pray I never run short of either.
As always, I have great expectations for the New Year and I hope I am around to see what transpires over the months ahead. To paraphrase Mark Twain, may reports of my death in 2014 be greatly exaggerated.
I know you are eagerly awaiting my predictions for the New Year. I don’t blame you. I’m pretty good at this soothsayer stuff. As you will recall, I’m the guy who said publicly an obscure Republican state senator from Bonaire by the name of George E. Perdue could not possibly defeat the powerful Democratic incumbent Roy Barnes in the 2002 gubernatorial elections. Not only am I good at seeing the future, I am also a great kidder. I was just pulling your leg. Of course, I knew all along that George E. was going to win.
But enough of my past successes; let’s take a look at what I see happening in 2014. Note: Any reproduction or rebroadcast of these predictions without the expressed written consent of The National Soothsayer League is strictly prohibited — unless I happen to get one right.
First, I predict that President Obama will admit during his State of the Union speech that Obamacare stinks worse than an Alabama hog farm. He will say that like everybody else in Washington, he had no idea what was in the law but it doesn’t matter, because in three years he will be out of office, richer than Croesus and won’t need insurance anyway, so go eat cake.
I predict the liberal weenie media will gush and say this is more proof the president is doing a bang-up job. They will then proceed to blame the whole healthcare fiasco on global warming and George Bush. Jimmy Carter will blame Israel.
Speaking of President Peanut, I think he is a slam dunk to be considered by historians as only the second-worst president in history. I predict this remark will get me a lot of angry mail from the usual revisionist apologists who will blame me for global warming and George Bush. I predict I will pace the floor at night worrying about what they think.
I predict our intrepid public servants in the General Assembly will pass a resolution in the upcoming session praising public school teachers and reminding them that their mother/sister/child/aunt/uncle/cousin was a school teacher. They will do this because it is an election year. Legislators love school teachers in an election year. It is the other years that are the problem.
I predict that when I write about how blessed we are to live in the Great State of Georgia with its beautiful mountains, silver-sanded beaches, rolling hills, pecan trees, barbecue, Augusta National Golf Club and the greatest state song in the history of the world, “Georgia on my Mind,” as sung by Albany's Ray Charles, the greatest singer in the history of the world, I will get a snarky response telling me that we are a bunch of backward rubes and the place isn’t all that great. I predict the writer will be a transplant from a state where it snows 10 months a year and all their buildings are rusted and who wouldn’t move back on a bet.
I predict that the sportswriters at the Atlanta newspaper who have their shorts in a wad over the Atlanta Braves leaving Malfunction Junction for Cobb County in 2017 will let everyone know that they are writing their screeds from the newspaper’s offices in suburban Dunwoody, which is further away from downtown Atlanta than the Braves’ proposed Cobb County location. If they don’t tell you that, I predict I will.
OK, that’s enough. Too much soothsaying gives me a headache and the heartbreak of psoriasis. I would suggest you clip and save this column and keep it handy for reference during the coming year. If not, please use it as a training aid for your new puppy — face up — with my compliments. Either way, Happy New Year.
You can reach Dick Yarbrough at firstname.lastname@example.org or P.O. Box 725373, Atlanta, Ga. 31139.