The Public Eye

printed 12/28/2018

Looking back at New Year’s columns past, I re-discovered why I don’t make New Year’s predictions: if I did, it might ruin the surprise, given my ability to be right just about everything. Go ahead, ask my wife (just kidding, don’t ask, I want to start the new year with a clean slate).

For instance, I had a vision late last year that I would fall asleep in the chair during 247 prime time television shows, 23 Saturday afternoon B movies, several hours of Home Shopping Network ­– because my remote control finger hit the wrong button – and nine baseball games, including one when the dogs spent an afternoon eating sandwich remnants off my shirt.

Amazingly, it all turned out to be true. But did I tell anyone this would happen? No. That would have killed the wonder of it all and deprived a certain someone of the pleasure of saying 181 times, “Well, I see Mr. Excitement has returned to the living” while on the other 98 times she simply observed, “Ah, the beast awakes!”

Unfortunately, the little bit of clairvoyance that I possess is limited to my own circumstance and does not extend to the outside world.

If it did, I would not have begun last spring thinking there was no way the Orioles would lose more than 114 games. Nor would I have said, “Mark my words, the odds of the Orioles losing 115 games are about the same as Brittany Spears having another wardrobe malfunction.”

Obviously, I was wrong on both counts, and just as obviously, only a wretched few bothered to care about either.

Even though I can’t see into the future, I do feel that certain things are destined to happen in 2019:

1. The public approval rating of Congress will go up, if only because there’s a point where even a 1 is a positive trend. This also will prove that while we remain dissatisfied with its performance, Congress at least has the support of beings living in an alternate universe.

2. The Other Guy, who is to blame for everything, will reveal his or her identity.

3. The NSA will start its own Facebook page and, like everyone else, have its information sold to Google and Amazon: “Dear NSA, people who bought the A1 Eavesdropper also purchased …”

4. In a bow to public pressure, the Washington Redskins will change their name, but will rethink that decision when the Prince George’s Redskins doesn’t catch on.

5. The Maryland General Assembly will pass a law requiring all participants at annual family dinners to wear helmets, even at the little table.

6. I will not win the lottery, because just in case I do, I’m not telling.

7. 2019 will be a good year for everyone who thought 2018 wasn’t that bad. Those who thought 2018 was great are living in an alternate universe, have picked the O’s to win it all and like the way Congress has really stepped up to the plate.

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