Wednesday, December 29, 2010

2010 in Review, A Personal Perspective

Well, I must say that 2010 has been the worst year I have had in a long time.  It has been mired by personal tragedy, illness, death, and a never-ending stream of struggles.  I look forward to 2011, because I believe that it will be one of my best years so far.  That having been said, I felt like offering my personal perspective on some of the events that happened around the world in 2010.  I know there is alot I left out, but lets just work with what I could remember.  And just as a disclaimer, I am not out to offend anyone but my opinion tends to insult at least a few people at any given time.  Sorry.

The United Nations designated 2010 as the International Year of Youth.  I suppose I am still in my youth, although 27 feels older every day. 

On January 12, a 7.0 magnitude earthquake struck Port Au Prince, Haiti.  As happens many times, people all over the world pretend that other countries like this are all a bad dream, that a place so poverty-stricken could not possibly exist in the 21st century.  But that day, we learned once again that places like Haiti are everywhere.  The world poured aid and money into Haiti to help the millions who were made homeless by the earthquake.  Now in December, most people don't remember why Haiti was in the news.  Most didn't even think twice about the country, or the fact that famine and disease now run rampant, just like colonial times.

On April 14, Eyjafjallajokull erupted. I know the name sounds like someone had marbles in their mouth.  I pride myself on being the only English speaking person within a 1,000 miles who could properly pronounce that name.  I speak of the Icelandic volcano that wrecked havoc on Northern Europe.  Flights were canceled and thousands of people were stranded without any indication of if and when the volcano would ease up.  I personally took great satisfaction in this event.  Man sometimes grows too power-hungry and arrogant and needs to be reminded of where they stand in the grand scheme.  Life eventually returned to normal and most people forgot all about that lonely volcano in the land of fire and ice.

6 days after the volcano erupted, tragedy struck closer to home.  On April 20, an explosion on the Deep Water Horizon oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico caused the worst oil spill that has been seen since Exxon Mobil.  There isn't much I can say about this.  It made me sick and it made me hate these big businesses who sacrifice everything in the name of capitalism.  The picture speaks for itself.

On a more positive subject, from June 11 through July 11 the world marveled once again at World Cup Soccer.  As an American, I wasn't raised with soccer.  I was raised on 'football' instead of 'futbol'.  However, I enjoy futbol much more than any other sport.  It also helps that I speak and understand Spanish.  I tried to watch the World Cup as narrated by British commentators and it lacked the passion necessary to narrate the game.  But the Spanish commentators were much more lively.  GGGGOOOOOLLLLL!  I love it!  And the final game was incredible.  The entire tournament was full of amazing plays, sexy players, and intense rivalry.  Spain triumphed in the end, Spain are the only team that has won the World Cup title after losing its opening game. Spain are only the second team to win a World Cup outside their own continent. Spain is also the first European team to win the World Cup outside of Europe.

The last event of 2010 that really inspired me was the Total Lunar Eclipse on December 21.  I am always awed by these celestial events, but this one was more special than most.  It occurred on the Winter Solstice, a Holy Day to my faith. This is the first time such a thing has happened since 1638.  And lucky me, I could see the whole thing from my bedroom window, sparing me from having to stand outside in freezing temperatures.

Some notable people died this year as well.  Ronnie James Dio died of stomach cancer at the age of 67.  Originally, the announcement of his death was a hoax.  But sadly within a few hours of the posting, it was revealed to be true.  And people really took it hard.  One commentator on Blabbermouth went as far as posting the following: "Nostradamus foretold the death of Dio as the final sign of the apocalypse: "When the keeper of dragons and rainbows passes from this world, so shall this world pass into darkness and fire.""
Not sure I would stretch it that far, but humans have a wild imagination.  Also dead this year:  Leslie Nielson, Elizabeth Edwards, Gary Coleman, and Dennis Hopper.  May the all find peace.

The top grossing movies of 2010 were: Toy Story 3, Alice in Wonderland*, HP and the Deathly Hallows Pt. 1, Inception, Shrek Forever After*, Twilight: Eclipse*, Iron Man 2, Despicable Me*, How to Train Your Dragon*, Clash of the Titans*.  The ones with asterisks next to them are ones I saw.  I don't have the energy to write much in the way of opinions for them, except to say that 2010 was a slow year for movies.  2011 promises to be full of must-see films that I look forward to seeing!

2011, one more year until 2012.  I have an opinion about this 'end of the year' stuff in regards to 2012, but I will save it for another entry.  Stay tuned...

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