On being ... alphabet soup

By Ingrid Sapona

I used the alphabet as a prompt to look back at some of the things that were noteworthy to me in 2011 and it was a fun challenge, so I thought I’d do so again looking back at 2012.

A is for apps. Now that I’ve worked on an app, I (kind of) get what they are. Welcome to the 21st century?
B is for basics. When my business started to dry up during the first half of the year I was forced to return to the basics of networking and beating the proverbial bushes to find clients. Fortunately, my efforts paid off and work has picked up a bit. The trick, of course, will be trying to continue to network, network, network.
C is for Charlie Rose. I’m thrilled that I wake up to him every day, thanks to CBS’s new morning show.
D is for disasters, of which there were just too many this year.
E is for elections, which are never ending in the U.S. E is also for Ehud Olmert, former Prime Minister of Israel. Mr. Olmert was noteworthy in my books because, in stark contract to candidates in the U.S., he waited until December 2012 to announce whether he’d be running in the January 2013 Israeli election. Why does the U.S. need a four year election campaign when other countries do it in under two months?
F is for friends. Earlier this year when work had slowed to a near stop and I was watching my pennies more than ever, friends were especially generous and understanding.
G is for guns, which Americans have been brainwashed into thinking make you safer.
H is for human and hero. This year we were reminded that even some we laud as heroes are human.
I is for inspiration. Somehow this year I felt generally less inspired. I fear that may have come through a bit in my columns. (If so, I’m sorry.)
J is for jubilee. I thoroughly enjoyed the spectacle of it all and I hope that when I’m her age, I’m as spry as Queen Elizabeth was during her jubilee year.
K is for “kidding around” and the harsh reality that not everyone finds the same thing funny.
L is for looking forward. I’m hoping 2013 brings better things for all.
M is for milestone. Writing the 250th On being … was a big milestone for me this year.
N is for Northwestern, my alma mater. I went to my 30th reunion this year. I was pleased to find that since we all aged (gracefully?) at the same rate, everyone looked the same (in my eyes, at least).
O is for Ontario Wineries. Having visited over 90 over a relatively short time to work on the app, I’m amazed at how wonderfully unique each is.
P is for patience, which I noted I lack in direct proportion to how fast I think something should be done. More importantly, I noted that being that way doesn’t help make things happen faster.
Q is for questioning one's self. Ever notice that when you hit a rough patch, you question yourself more?
R is for root canal. This year I discovered root canal can even be something you look forward to. All you need is a really really handsome endodontist (and lots of freezing).
S is for Sandy. Though I generally don’t refer to friends by name in On being… I have to tip my hat to my friend Sandy, who I teased about having a devastating storm named after. My Sandy is an awesome consultant with the patience and good humour of a saint and one who I owe much to for all her computer and business advice.
T is for tragedy, turning away, and tacit. (See G and V) I honestly think that as a result of the near daily reports of tragedies as a result of gun violence, Americans have adopted a tacit coping mechanism that has allowed them to turn away from the issue. I know the right to bear arms is “enshrined” in the Constitution – but the Constitution can be amended. It was amended to ban liquor – and then again to allow it. Hell, in the 70s there was talk about a constitutional amendment to ban flag burning! Why has no one taken up the cause on behalf of all the innocent victims of gun violence? T is also for time – and frankly, I think the time has come…
U is for unknown. This year I was reminded on many occasions that no matter how hard you try to cover all the bases, or how qualified you are, or even how thorough you are, there are always unknowns that you can’t anticipate and that can trip you up. (Who was it who said something about “the best laid plans…”?)
V is for violence. (See G and T) Remember when V was for victory? There has always been violence, I know, but this year the amount of it has felt overwhelming. I know some think it’s just a fact of life. But should it be? Must it be?
W is for wine industry. Working on the app I gained an appreciation for how the industry works.
X is for xasperated. (I know, that’s not how you spell it – but honestly, coming up with a real “X” word is nearly impossible.) – See G, T and V. I realize that at this point, some of my readers may be exasperated with my going on and on about gun violence – but honestly, I think it’s time for those who oppose guns to become as vocal as those who favour them.
Y is for year – even though we got one extra day in 2012, the year went by in a flash.
Z is for zzzzs… which, like many of you, I hope to have more of in 2013.

Happy New Year!

© 2012 Ingrid Sapona


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