Toast to what looks like an interesting New Year |

Toast to what looks like an interesting New Year

Perhaps the greatest challenge presented us by living in the 21st Century is the prospect of getting used to writing the year on our checks.

2000 felt really weird. As did 2001 and ’02, and now we have to contend with 2003. How many more years will we have to feel nostalgic for 1999?

Beyond that, 2003 has all the earmarks of big things waiting to happen:

— For all you retirees living off, gulp, your 401k plans, it’s the year the economy will finally rebound (we hope), and make you millionaires once again, even though you’re only 33. Moody’s Bistro, here we come!

— Judging from the buildup of forces in the Middle East, 2003 will be the year we will take another swipe at Iraq, under the presidency of another Bush. Although we know it isn’t about Iraq invading Kuwait, we can figure it will be related to “weapons of mass destruction.” In 2004 we’ll find out the real reason we went there.

— Human cloning. Although it’s hard to believe a religious cult would have the scientific knowledge to clone one (or more) humans, the media seems to be pursuing the story with a vengeance.

Without solid evidence, it’s a little speculative for our nation’s news agencies to give credence to what will probably turn out to be poppycock, but newsmen (and women) have done worse. Remember Richard Jewel, the alleged Olympic Park bomber – This is the sort of thing that happens on a slow news day.

Maybe a legitimate crazy scientist somewhere will achieve a human clone. And hopefully it will be of someone of some substance; perhaps Einstein, or Washington… or Elvis.

— The Lakers, after barely making the playoffs on the backs of Shaq and Kobe, will win another (yawn) championship, and local Kings fans will wonder “what happened?” to which Lakers fans will answer, “Shaq and Kobe.”

Don’t worry Bay Area sports enthusiasts: There’s still the ‘Niners and the Giants. Oh yeah, I guess there’s the Raiders too.

— Politics will continue to reign supreme as America’s number one source of entertainment. Thanks Trent Lott for ushering us into a new year of political scandal, and thanks Fox News, for making TV fun again by giving all the pundits a place to talk about it.

— Judging from the pounding that El Ni-o has given us so far, it will be a ski year to remember. Two years from now, we’ll talk about this year, the way we talk about two years ago.

— Gym memberships will take off in January after New Year’s resolutions are made. A directly proportional number of gym members will go twice, and lose about $700 bucks in the process.

Just don’t forget to sign your contract – and your check – with the proper date: 2003.

Jim Scripps is editor of the Sierra Sun.

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