Tom's Corner - 'May you live in interesting times'
Just two days left in 2016--a year that been astonishing in so many ways.
But the new year may prove to be equally fascinating, or even more so.
Tom Van Howe is in his corner once again tonight.
There is purported to be an old Chinese curse that says, simply, "may you live in interesting times."
No one is sure where it came from, and it sounds so nice.
It's a curse though. The implication being that "uninteresting times" times of peace and tranquility, are more life-enhancing than interesting times of turmoil, danger and uncertainty.
Well, certainly the days ahead will be interesting.
For more than six years, I've been in this corner, offering observations and reflections on life here in Michigan, and how in some ways, it's affected by what goes on in Lansing and in Washington D.C.
Some of my offerings have been received warmly. Some not. Some have inspired anger at me. Some of it intense. And some have inspired gratitude.
Whichever, none of what I have said over these years was based on whim and whimsy. Every one was the result of thoroughly researching a thought. There were a number of times my research required me to pivot from one point of view to another. I can't think of a better way to educate myself and express myself on the issues of the day.
And I've been so honored to have had the support of this station, its news director Steve Koles, and my friend Jim Lutton, the General Manager.
Not to suggest, even for a second, that they always agreed with me. When they didn't it inspired spirited discussion. And only once did they jump on a commentary and say it would not air. It was deemed too inflammatory. That was only two weeks ago and, as you might surmise, it was about our President-elect.
The whole idea with this corner was to promote thought and discussion about people and developments that have a bearing on our lives.
In just a little over three weeks President-elect Donald Trump will be sworn in as our 45th president.
And like you, I'll be watching from the sidelines and voicing my opinions to a bunch of old guys gathered for morning coffee. But I will--I promise--continue to form my thoughts based on the best sources of information I can find. Not always easy in this post-truth, fake news, factless, social media world.
And I hope that you make that effort as well. These are, indeed, "interesting times." And things work best--with a nod to Rudyard Kipling--when you can keep your head while others about you are losing theirs and blaming it on you.
It's not easy. It takes effort, vigilance, and even courage.
I hope Donald Trump is smarter than I think he is. I doubt it. But I do hope so. And I say that because we are headed for turbulence ahead.
And it remains to be seen if we can manage to fly around it. Yeah...I do hope so.
In this corner...for the last time...I'm Tom Van Howe.