By Don Rush

Gosh, it’s nearly midway through October and, looking back over the previous nine months, I’m not sure what I have accomplished this year. Oh, I have written a few pretty good columns, but over all I didn’t make any meaningful headway on any project.
Dang, how’d I get so mediocre?
As every year, starts, 2019 started off with so much promise. A new, fresh start on a whole brand new 360-some-odd days to make “it” happen. Of course, I’m sure that depends on your definition of “it.” And, while I do not make New Year resolutions, I kinda’ have faint, vague inklings as to what I want to achieve. Not fame nor fortune, I usually just want to complete a modest task started the previous 12 months.
Curious, I went back to my first Don’t Rush Me column of 2019 and discovered what I hoped for.
Wrote I, “I, for one, am ready for 2019. 2018 was as foul smelling, 365 days of ranker, intolerance, anger and ignorance as was 2017. I am resolute in my stance that making resolutions for the new year rarely works to better my lot. So, I will say this: in 2019 I hope to get back to 10,000 steps a day, to finish my book, be a better man than I was yesterday.”
Well, double dang and har-rumph!
I think I was thrown a loop early on in the year after I had my income taxes compiled in February. While I normally do not get much back in overpaid taxes — something like $300 — this year I ended up owing 1,300 big ones, combined to the feds and Michigan.
Thanks, Mr. President!
No auto mileage deduction in lat year’s tax law really kicked me down under. I had to buy $1,200 worth vacation days to pay off the government. GRRR!
And, to make sure I am not in the rears to Uncle Sam and Auntie Gretchen come April 15, 2020, I reduced my with-holdings from “One,” to “None” from April through August — almost a $300 a month subtraction from take-home pay.
Heavy sigh.
So, that’s how the year started and I never really got back on track. Spring never really materialized this year for any of us in these parts. Usually, I am out in the yard starting in April and by mid May my vegetable garden is ready to rumba!
By the end of May, 2019, I did have said garden planted, but, like many folks reported, their gardens (like mine) kinda’ sputtered along. I love getting in the garden in my bare feet, no gloves and weeding and pruning the plants. I love getting in the dirt for an hour or so a day. It’s my own little therapy sessions. Taking tender, loving care of all the little bean, tomato, pepper, cucumber plants brings me joy and lessons daily stress. But this year, June was a bust because of rain, and I just didn’t get back into the swing of things.
Furthermore, when the plants started taking off by mid July, for the first time in 10 years, smackin’ frackin’ deer jumped over the fence into my garden mowing down, beans, tomatoes and pepper plants to just stalks. I lost my garden groove and hardly spent anytime out there — it was so depressing to look at.

Oh, Don.
My book. Nope. Came to a screeching halt on that, for no good reason I can surmise. I think I ended the year with a little over 60 pages written and with over 280 days crossed off the calendar, I still have 60 pages on paper. I think I need another 60 to finish her up.
Walking 10,000 steps a day . . . well, I am averaging 3,000 to 5,000 steps a day, but mostly 3,000. So, much for that idea.
I didn’t finish painting and paneling the bathroom. Didn’t de-clutter, didn’t do much of nothing. However, as not to be too much of a Donny Downer, I think I’ve been more mellow and empathetic towards others.
I reckon there is still time to make good on some things. Heck, if Phileas Fogg can travel the world in 80 days as Jules Verne said he could in 1873, then Don Rush should be able to get his butt in gear and finish something.
Anything, for goodness sakes!
There are about 80 days left in 2019, let’s see what I can make happen!
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