Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Good news to end a crappy year.

2008 was a really, really sucky year for a lot of people and I've been interested to hear that reflected in the New Years Conversations people are having.

I paid a guy who did some work for me the other day and his e-mailed response was:


Here's to a better 2009 than 2008!

All best wishes,


John is not alone in talking this way. For me, a few nice things happened on a personal level, a few really shitty things happened on a personal level. But mostly the overall suck of world events soaked into my life, too.

Obama's election notwithstanding, I think a lot of people are glad this year is over. But it's probably worth noting that in many respects, life is on an upswing.

For example, people's complaints about violent videogames notwithstanding
Violent crime rates continue to be at their lowest in recent history. Sex crimes and crimes against kids are down, too.

I get that whether the average life expectancy hitting a new record is a good thing is a complicated question for those concerned about the population crisis. But I will confess that I'm pleased

Also, teen sex is down, teen pregnancy is down, teen condom use is up. The abortion rate is at its lowest in 30 years*.

Yay us!

Links swiped from one of Radley Balko's columns.

*Arguably, the abortion rate is low partially because there are so few places that will perform them these days. But I would think the condom use and teen pregnancy being down would have a lot to do with it, too, so I'm still calling that a win.


vintagecarole said...

Another way to end the year:
Our Chalice Project has 5 - 9.5"small brass chalices & 7 - 12" tall brass chalices. See the slideshow here: (copy paste address)

We ask you to look at the photos and order one for yourself or your fellowship!! They are affordable! We had them made in India and we have "made a difference". You can, too. HAPPY NEW YEAR 2009.

Anonymous said...

What the "Project" was was unclear. What kind of "difference" you are making is also unclear.
Nice chalices.

Anonymous said...

CC -- The statistics you have are different from what I have heard. Especially the life span -- I heard our lifespan here in the USofA has gone down.

vintagecarole said...

Well, I went to a hospice chapel and there was no chalice but all other faiths represented. I met a muslim indian and he never heard of uu until I started emailing about it. So this project got cooked up over the internet to make a difference. Even in Kolkata, they hadn't heard of UU but because we use it for spiritual purposes they are excited to be part of it. Our fellowship needed a way to fund raise. i have taken all photos, taken them to General Assembly, had them sold by UUA bookstore for a while. And they are cool.

Chalicechick said...


Well, I don't know where you heard the other numbers on lifespan, but I consider the CDC a pretty reliable source.


Anonymous said...

My feelings about 2008 are conflicted ... maybe the best word to describe how it was for me is "intense." I'm looking forward to 2009.

vintagecarole said...

Intense is a good word here. This year has been a struggle to stay focused. Lucky are those who even have an IRA account or a stable job, who aren't news addicts, who aren't asking themselves why they didn't divorce the estranged ghost of their past 10 yrs ago. Intense was the high when General Assembly ended this year, when Obama was elected, when the chalice was surrounded by red flowers. I'd rather be a UU here in a red state than Gaza, for sure. Intense.

Anonymous said...

OK, I guess this is what I heard, and it is slightly different: