2011- You Don't Have to Go Home, but You Can't Stay Here

2012 is going to be one of those years. I can feel it. This isn’t posturing and I’m not talking myself into anything- like Bored to Death on HBO or eating avocados. I just feel that 2012 is going to be a good year. I feel so good about it that frankly, I’d skip Christmas, the week after and New Year’s just to get the ball rolling.

2011 I learned the value of patience. It probably wouldn’t be wise to throw that out now.

So what’s cracking in 2012 that is going to make it such a good year? Well for starters I’m getting married in the summer- July 28th to be exact. And if you’re keeping track, that is exactly 8 days after the release of the Dark Knight Rises. The two events are not related- not yet at least. My lovely Future Wife and I are getting hitched on the Manasquan River in Point Pleasant, New Jersey. Have you ever been to Point Pleasant? Have you ever asked yourself questions? Either way, Point Pleasant is best described as a thin slice of heaven. Wait, should heaven be capitalized? I’m moving on, tiger style. And speaking of tigers, according to the goalie of the Flyers, if you kill a tiger in China you get the death penalty. While I question the accuracy of that statement, I certainly don’t question the amazing entertainment value of 24/7: the Road to the Winter Classic.

Point Pleasant might be an island. There are a lot of delicious crab cake sandwiches there and if I lived there I’d buy a long board to get around town on.

Also happening in the upcoming year is the birth of Baby Turner as Erin and Ed are expecting what will surely be a smart, sassy, baseball-knowledgeable and well read baby girl. I’m going to uncle the bejesus out of that little lady and I couldn’t be happier for those two. They will make great parents, my parents will make great grandparents and Dugan will make a great big brother/guardian/enforcer/body pillow. Kim and I got Baby Turner what could easily be described as the best baby gift ever- a Patriots’ cheerleader outfit- a little something for that little lady to grow into and wear proudly on Sundays in the future as she inevitably develops a crush on Tom Brady. Who doesn’t have a crush on Tom Brady? The Saturday Night Live skit lampooning Tim Tebow said it best- “I (Jesus) might be the Son of God, but Tom Brady is the guy’s nephew.”

I would like to see the Patriots win the Super Bowl in 2012, but I don’t feel 100 percent confident about that yet. I only feel about 74 percent confident. And you know, those nitwits on ESPN keep knocking the Pats’ defense and while I’m not saying that’s blasphemy, I do think they get knocked and criticized more than they should. In the last couple weeks you can really only point to one game (the Giants game) where the defense cost them the game and another game (the Redskins game) where they defense almost cost them the game. Other than that they’ve been pretty solid, really running strong with this “bend, but don’t break” style which could also be referred to as a near heart attack-inducing for fans style of defense. All I’ll say is that A) I like their chances and B) won’t be convinced until they win a playoff game.

2012 is going to be a good year. Sure there is the requisite uncertainty that comes with the dawning of each year, but I am focusing on the positive, focusing on what I can control. This time next year I’ll be married and teaching my niece how to say things like “awesome, dude” and “that’s what’s up.” The process is not certain, but the end result is. 2011 has been a year of ups and downs, heaval and upheaval. We lost my cousin Jay and not a day goes by that I don’t think about him and his family.

There is a little over week left of 2011 and you know, I won’t miss it once it’s gone. But it taught me some things, proved some things, and shot a hole in a few things. I’m ready to move it to the past experiences pile and see what’s next for Ryno.

We live, we love, we learn. We ride bikes, we ride longboards, we ride rollercoasters. We do it with smiles, we do it with frowns and we do it with tears. The minute life becomes predictable is the minute it becomes boring.

Here’s to another year of unpredictably. May we face our challenges with cold beers, good tunes and no traffic.

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