A look back at 2018

Siloam Springs Herald Leader - - OPINION - DEVIN HOUS­TON

2018 is com­ing to an end, and I say “Good rid­dance!” As chaotic as this year was, we may look back and de­cide it wasn’t so bad af­ter all. Maybe each year will just be worse than the one be­fore. Wel­come to the new nor­mal. Let’s take a look at some of the high­lights of 2018.

Jan­uary: Cal­i­for­nia le­gal­izes mar­i­juana. Sen­a­tor Al Franken re­signs from the Se­nate over sex­ual ha­rass­ment al­le­ga­tions. Pres­i­dent Trump tweets that his nu­clear but­ton is big­ger than North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s nu­clear but­ton. He also tweets, in the same week, that he is a “very sta­ble ge­nius.” Then Trump shuts down the fed­eral govern­ment, tweets about Jay Z, and goes golf­ing on Martin Luther King Day.

Fe­bru­ary: Punx­sutawney Phil saw his shadow, mean­ing there would be six more weeks of win­ter caus­ing Trump to de­mand that Congress in­ves­ti­gate. Pres­i­dent Trump re­quests that the Pen­tagon put on a mil­i­tary pa­rade big­ger and bet­ter than the one he saw in France. White House of­fi­cials state that the re­quest was just a “brain­storm.” Democrats ar­gue that ev­i­dence of a brain is lack­ing, but there is a Stormy Daniels.

March: Steve Hawk­ing dies peace­fully in his sleep, leaves note stat­ing, “See you later, suck­ers!” Sec­re­tary of State Rex Tiller­son, FBI Deputy Di­rec­tor An­drew Mc­Cabe, and Trump aide John McEn­tee are all fired. Trump later says Tiller­son is “dumb as a rock,” to which Tiller­son replies, “Sticks and stones, I’m rub­ber and you are glue!”

April: Teacher strikes con­tin­ued in Colorado and Ari­zona. Stu­dents urge strike to con­tinue in­def­i­nitely. E. coli in Ro­maine let­tuce found to cause ill­ness in at least 100. Chil­dren urge par­ents to boy­cott all sal­ads, and veg­eta­bles also, just to be on the safe side. Barbara Bush, wife of Ge­orge H. W. Bush, dies at age 92. Trump de­cides not to at­tend so as to avoid look­ing like a de­cent hu­man be­ing.

May: Cal­i­for­nia an­nounces a new law re­quir­ing all cof­fee to be served with a can­cer warn­ing. Sci­en­tists an­nounce that drink­ing cof­fee may lower risk of di­a­betes, pro­tect from Alzheimer’s and de­men­tia, and lower risk of Parkin­son’s dis­ease. Cal­i­for­nia leg­is­la­ture re­sponds by an­nounc­ing that sci­en­tists cause can­cer and must be la­beled as such.

June: The swim­suit com­pe­ti­tion is dropped from the Miss Amer­ica con­test. No one no­tices. The Cen­ter for Dis­ease Con­trol links pre-cut mel­ons to a Sal­mo­nella out­break. In re­sponse, Ro­maine let­tuce and E. coli file griev­ance against wa­ter­mel­ons for copy­right vi­o­la­tion. Paul Manafort, Pres­i­dent Trump’s ex-cam­paign man­ager, is sent to jail to await trial. Pres­i­dent Trump as­sures na­tion that this is fi­nal in­dict­ment from Mueller in­ves­ti­ga­tion. Na­tion laughs un­con­trol­lably.

July: Pres­i­dent Trump nom­i­nates Brett Ka­vanaugh for Supreme Court, claims nom­i­na­tion will be a “slam dunk.” A shark, dis­guised as a baby, was kid­napped from a Texas aquar­ium. Two men were later ap­pre­hended and charged af­ter tear­ful plea by the shark’s par­ents was tele­vised na­tion­ally. The shark, named Miss He­len,

was safely re­united to the grate­ful fam­ily. How­ever, two chil­dren in New York were at­tacked by sharks, ap­par­ently in re­tal­i­a­tion for the kid­nap­ping. Pres­i­dent Trump calls for a travel ban on all sharks.

Au­gust: Sen­a­tor John McCain dies at age 81 af­ter a heroic bat­tle against can­cer. Pres­i­dent Trump states he prefers peo­ple who don’t die from can­cer.

Septem­ber: A man opened fire in Bak­ers­field, Calif., killing five peo­ple and him­self. Cal­i­for­nia leg­is­la­ture re­sponds by is­su­ing warn­ing that Bak­ers­field may cause can­cer.

Oc­to­ber: Sears, a 132-yearold com­pany, de­clared bank­ruptcy as CEO over­heard say­ing, “What’s Ama­zon?” Floor col­lapses at Clem­son Univer­sity, in­jur­ing 30. One stu­dent in­ter­viewed asked, “How were we to know that jump­ing up and down with more peo­ple than legally al­lowed on a wooden floor would cause an ac­ci­dent?” Na­tion strug­gles to re­move palm from face.

Novem­ber: GOP loses bigly in mid-term elec­tions. Pres­i­dent Trump calls the elec­tion a tremen­dous vic­tory for him­self. Shoot­ings oc­curred in Florida yoga stu­dio, Cal­i­for­nia bar, and Alabama mall. Na­tion of­fers thoughts and prayers. NRA an­nounces record gun sales in first half of 2018.

De­cem­ber: Ge­orge H. W. Bush dies at age 94. Na­tion mourns loss of ci­vil­ity. Michael Co­hen, Pres­i­dent Trump’s ex-lawyer, is sen­tenced to 3 years in prison for, in his words, “cov­er­ing up Trump’s dirty deeds.” Pres­i­dent Trump calls Co­hen “a liar.”

Happy New Year?

— Devin Hous­ton is the pres­i­dent/CEO of Hous­ton En­zymes. Send com­ments or ques­tions to devin.hous­[email protected] The opin­ions ex­pressed are those of the au­thor.

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