Other than “Rescue Me” and “MythBusters,” I can’t handle too much television. But I was delighted to find some late-night “M*A*S*H” reruns, and I make it a point to hang with Hawkeye for as long as I can stay awake and still function the next day.
And, I confess, I often find myself fighting back tears as the gang makes the best of a bad situation. (Right about then, someone in my house will admonish, “You know this is fiction, right? And even if it were real, the Korean War ended more than 50 years ago … ”)
But I make no apologies. One episode that always gets to me opens with gruff, old Col. Potter dressed as Father Time and making a toast: “Here’s to the new year. May she be a damn sight better than the old one … and may we all be home before she’s over.” As the episode ends he repeats the toast, and melancholy sets in as you (OK, I) realize that 30 minutes and yet another year are coming to an end and Hawkeye, B.J., Hot Lips, etc. didn’t make it home “before she’s over.”
I saw that episode not too long ago and, with 2007 looming, I thought about you. About the people who spend every working day raising money to fight the good fight, whether it’s to bring the arts to inner-city kids, shelter to abandoned pets, comfort to ailing children, food to home-bound seniors or human rights to women in developing countries.
Most of you could — and many probably do — make a similar toast each Dec. 31, raise a glass and make a wish that would close your organization’s doors and maybe put you out of a job, pray for viable and permanent solutions to the problems you’re working to solve.
But years pass and wars rage, children and animals suffer, disease
persists. Floods take out entire regions. People continue to be cruel to one another and to our mother, Earth. Faith remains strained. Even if one problem gets solved, another manifests itself somewhere else.
Still, yours is a profession built on hope — and on faith, in something, even if your work isn’t particularly “faith based.”
So in this blessed season, it seems only natural to celebrate you — for your perseverance, for your faith. And to thank you — for what you do and for your support of this magazine, whether it be through readership, editorial contributions or advertising. In keeping with the theme of recurring sentiments, I wish you again what I wished you last year: warmth, peace, joy, gratitude, grace and the courage to live with outrageous hope. Merry Christmas … Happy Holidays … and Brightest Blessings to you all.