Before I get all self-reflective and deep, I need to clear something up while the issue is still hot.
Despite the whole Foolery regarding exactly when decades begin and end, the reality is, That come Friday, we will be in a new Decade. Those of you who get off on being right in the face of overwhelming wrongness, good luck getting your indefatigable logic to take hold. In a world with a fascination with big round numbers, Decades and Centuries end in 0. You can hang out with Sisyphus if you like, but that reality is Dug in and here to stay.
When you’re over that, come and join me in the next paragraph.
I remember December 31, 1999 like it was yesterday about three Tuesdays ago.
I was 29, married with a very young son, working hard at 2 jobs, one of which was sort of a dream come true, the other of which supplemented my income nicely, taking care of my family with relative ease. For the first time in my life, I was communicating effectively and regularly with both of my parents. I was still years from completing any type of college education, and I was pretty sure I didn’t care about that. I had hustled my way through the nineties and still gotten on Capitol Hill and was set up fairly well. Between the Y2K scare (BWAHAHAHAH) and the general foolishness inherent in mankind, I was dead set on Leaving my house, plus the weather in the DMV (then still called DC Metro) was sufficiently crappy that I decided to ring in 2000 in my bed, with my family.
It was just that simple.
10 years Later, I wake up in Texas, with a Different wife and a THIRD young son, this time with a complex, although not fatal disease and two sons living with my ex-wife and her husband. My father is gone, my grandmother is gone, my Brother has gone from 2 children to SEVEN and My extended family has spent the decade spreading their collective pretty wings all over the Southern US. I work one job that I hate doing something I love and was born to do and FINALLY, two decades later, I am within sight of a Degree in an exciting new field. I am as close to 40 now as I was to 30 then, and my body reminds me regularly just how many more miles you pile up in this decade.
But, still, My life is pretty simple.
In 1999, the internet was threatening to take over the world 56K at a time, Television had brought the entire world together, America had emerged from a decade of unquestioned World Dominance with a president whose swagger was as unquestionable as his fidelity was, and Black Folks were still getting their cha cha slide one (2 Steps forward, 2 steps back…but in such a rhythmic fashion)
It’s 2009, now The internet HAS taken over the world at speeds thought laughable 10 years ago, America almost succeded in Pulling the entire world into financial ruin, so much so that it turned over the presidency to a Black man known only to his family in 1999 with a name that rhymes with one of the villains of the decade as opposed to a long time war-hero. In Spite of such major strides, Black folks are still cha-cha ing their way into the future.
The more things Change, the more they stay the same.
The easy thing to do is to Look backwards and talk about the ups and downs of the past 10 years.
The easier thing to do is to look forward and make predictions of what will and won’t happen in the next 10.
The important thing to do is take the rest of this weekend and give an accurate inventory of Who you were, who you are and what you are about going into 2010.
Not that surface BS that makes for a good e-harmony ad. Pop the hood and REALLY go over yourself, getting over yourself while you are at it. Identify your strengths and weaknesses….specifically. Get yourself a game plan together on where you need to be in June….in December…in 2015…in 2019.
If you don’t do that, your plans for big things in 2010 are about as potent as a Tiger Woods speech on how to keep things hot in the marital bed.
It is a brand new world, compared to 1999. You can do a great deal in 10 years. But If you don’t put in a good bit of work this weekend, You’ll be talking big and living small in 2019 just as sure as you swear you won’t.
Oh, Did I meantion that I was THINKING about writing in 1999, but really didn’t have any plans to do anything about it?
If I had done then, what I am about to do now…I would be getting paid to tell you what I just told you.
You will NOT be so lucky in ten years, I assure you.