Happy New Year!
By the time you read this, we will be into a new year and a new decade — the 2020s.
An aside — I realize there is controversy over whether a new decade actually begins in “0” numbered years or “1” numbered ones. One faction rightly points out our Gregorian Calendar is based on what was once thought to be the year of the birth of Jesus of Nazareth. That would be year 1, as there was no year zero.
So the first decade would have started with year 1 and ended with year 10, and the second decade would have started with year 11, and so on. That contention seems the most logically consistent and precise to me.
On the other hand, because we refer to decades by the “10s” digit, it seems more commonsensical to consider a new decade to have started when the tens digit flips. Despite my preference for precision, I think I am actually starting to prefer this interpretation.
So it’s a new decade. And for the first time in the 21st Century, we finally have a decade with a name that doesn’t sound contrived, confusing or awkward. Welcome to the 20s.
I’ve noticed a lot of Facebook memes popping up since Christmas with references to the so-called Roaring Twenties — the 1920s. These memes all feature the innovative fashions of the decade — the hats, dresses, suits, and accessories. Think Downton Abbey and The Great Gatsby.
It’s not much of a stretch, but I do predict a renewal of interest in the Roaring 20s as we begin another 20s decade. I think it would be fun to see men’s and lady’s hats become fashionable again, along with some of the other icons of that memorable era.
Here’s another idea I got from social media. One of my friends posted a link to an article about a unique New Year’s Eve celebration to be held for the first time this year in the town of Marion, Virginia.
According to the article, there are several events scheduled for the evening of December 31, including something called “Kilby’s New Year’s Pickin’ Party,” and culminating with a unique take on the famous Times Square ball drop. In Marion, the new year will be rung in with a “possum drop.”
I’m not kidding. A possum drop.
It’s sort of like a piñata. The giant possum will be filled with candy and prizes and dropped from the roof of a local school at midnight. Presumably, it will burst open upon impact, revealing the goodies inside for the children of the community.
This got my friend and me to thinking. What if downtown Winchester planned such an event for next year?
The climax of the evening could be a similar item to be dropped, perhaps from a downtown location such as the courthouse. It should be something unique to Winchester. My friend’s idea: a giant replica of an Ale-8-One bottle, also filled with candy and prizes, and designed to break open upon impact. (It wouldn’t be glass, of course!)
There could also be other events, such as a concert at the Leed’s, and maybe a party at the Opera House. Downtown merchants could stay open until midnight and offer special sales. Imagine our little downtown filled with people and activity at midnight on New Year’s Eve — just like in the Big Apple!
I could see the “Winchester New Year’s Eve Ale‑8 Bottle Drop” becoming the place to be for hip Central Kentuckians.
What do you think? Follow and comment on my new Facebook page at fb.me/PeteTheSun. I’d love to get feedback on this idea, a past column or ideas for future columns.
This article appeared in The Winchester Sun on Thursday, January 2, 2020.