Rainbow over Galileo Lane, Tucson

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Happy New Year

Another New Year
With a birthday in late December each New Year is also a new year for me. This is my 87th new year. Though it ends a year that was not very good for the world and my country, it was a pretty good one for me and Yetta.

 Each year which we continue to exist is itself a bonus.  And continuing to be productive as also a major plus. I finished what I believe is my most important book which hopefully will be published this year. The new augmented edition of What’s Whole in Whole Language was published in time for NCTE in November by Denny Taylor’s Garn Press. My keynote at UKLA in Brighton England was very well received. It is indeed a good year for Yetta with two major awards The Oscar Causey from LRA and the James Squire from NCTE. Her Oscar Causey Address at LRA occupied her for the better part of the year and was a great success. And the new Essential RMA was just published by RCOwen. See it on our new website Thosegoodmans,

New Year’s Eve has never been much of a celebration for us. Usually we are home watching the ball drop in Times Square. In our early married life we did attend parties with close friends and staying up all night seemed to fun.
The most interesting New Year’s Eve we had was at the Wall in Jerusalem at the beginning of the Millennium in 2000. We were completing a tour of Colleges teaching English in Israel sponsored by the US State Department and some visits to schools with Margaret Spencer for the Israeli Ministry of Education. We had been warned to stay away from the Old City by the US Cultural Attaché.  But Prof. Bernard Spolsky who lives in the Armenian Quarter had invited us to dinner and after dinner we went to the wall to celebrate with his congregation. There were no tourists and no trouble- though as we walked from the Sheraton in Jerusalem we had seen truckloads of Israeli soldiers just outside the old city.
The other interesting New Year was in Pasto Colombia in 1991. My daughter Karen was doing her doctoral research in a village across the border in Ecuador and we were visiting. There is a parade the last day of the old year with humorous floats attacking the local and national government and US policies and political figures. Then at midnight they burn effigies of  the old year in bon fires at intersections.

We live quite comfortably in Academy Village at the Southeastern edge of Tucson, Arizona in the beautiful Sonoran Desert. Our interesting neighbors will celebrate with a New Year’s day brunch. We’ll watch our UA Wildcats in the Fiesta Bowl (good game but they lost) on television and like our neighbors be home in bed well before the dawn of 2015.

May 2015 indeed be a happier New Year for all.
Peace, clean air and water, shelter, food
And may sanity return to education policies around the world
That would be enough.
And a few more new years.
We woke this morning to a rare blanket of snow covering our desert plants.