2016 Year in Review

Punter 2016

Here are a few key dates as I look back on 2016.

January 1: Rang in the New Year with my once-a-year Mountain Dew.

January 2: Began work on New Years goals.

January 5: Forgot all my New Years goals.

January 10: Was shocked to read that David Bowie died, much like his career had thirty years earlier.

January 13: Did not win the $1.6 BILLION Powerball drawing because I did not buy any tickets. You can’t lose if you don’t play.

January 14: Bragged that my daughter Emily won the award for Utah English Teacher of the Year.  I claim partial credit.

Emily reading

January 15: Told a Facebook friend that I thought Trump would win the election. Was immediately un-friended because “Trump is intolerant.”

February 5: Celebrated my EC’s 54th birthday.  Who knew I could be attracted to an older woman?

February 12: Had one of those perfect days.  FOML3, Alex, married a most wonderful girl named Madi. They are perfect for each other, and they did it the best ways possible – in the Gilbert temple.

Alex Madi

February 24:  Sent FOML4 off on a mission to Xalapa, Mexico.  The house suddenly fell silent – but not in a good way.

Dan Mission departure

February 29: An extra day for Leap Year.  Also the day that I officially got tired of hearing the word “Caucus.”

March 3: Lost all 90% of respect for MItt Romney when he blasted Donald Trump. (link)

April 2-3: General Conference. Always a high point of the year.

April 7: Went to the Big Apple with my EC. Saw some great theater, stopped by to offer some advice.

Trump Tower

April 8: Ate Buffalo Mac ‘n Cheese. Further proof that God loves us.

buffalo mac

April 15: Saw the movie “Midnight Special.” Still not on speaking terms with Hollywood.

April 19: Received first shipment of my book, “There’s a Message in There Somewhere.”  It is a groovy feeling opening that box.

Book box

April 20: Found a beehive with a bazillion bees in our wall. Had them exterminated.

April 21: Received dozens of messages about how to get rid of a beehive without killing the bees.  Just a wee bit late.

April 21: Prince died, joining his career.

April 23: Commemorated the 400th anniversary of the death of William Shakespeare I tried speaking only in iambic pentameter.  Most people thought I was trying to rap.


May 2: Had this conversation with my son in the kitchen:

FOML5: You know what I’m sad about?
Me: The Holocaust?
FOML5: No, we’re out of chocolate milk and donuts.
Me: You are so shallow.

May 6-7: Went to the LDS Storymakers Conference in Provo, UT. Met all sorts of wonderful people, learned a lot, and found that the majority of writers are ferociously insecure people. I felt comfortable.

May 10: Got a belated Mother’s Day Skype call from our missionary. Gotta love the technology.

May 23:  I bought a soda with cash. Actual paper money. And I had to think back to where I was supposed to put the change.

May 25: Send FOML5 off on the handcart trek, leaving my EC and I as empty nesters. We suffered those few days. And by “suffered” I mean relished.

June 2: My sweet wife referred to me as “Donkey” in a text message. She is claiming that it was autocorrect’s fault, but I’m not buying it. No matter how I misspell “Honey” it does NOT come out as “Donkey.”

June 14: Found a water leak that destroyed part of our wood floor and disrupted our lives for the next 6 months.

June 20: Weathered Arizona heat wave by staying indoors, pondering why we live in this hell.


July 4: Celebrated Independence Day with the fan at the beach. Doesn’t get much better.

July 7: Watched the shark movie “The Shallows,” then immediately went for a night swim in the ocean just so I could post it on Facebook.

July 12: Went to the doctor for a check up. He told me I could use to lose a few pounds. I told him to stop fat-shaming me.

July 18: Celebrated our 30th wedding anniversary by staying at a fancy hotel close to home. Lame, right?

August 5: Opening ceremonies of the Summer Olympics from Rio de Janiero.  I didn’t watch them, but I did watch at lease three hours of Olympic coverage this year.

August 8: Learned there was some dude named Evan McMullin running for President.

August 19: Read that Donald Henderson died. He was a major force in the eradication of smallpox, but he never had a number one song, so you probably never heard of him. (link)

August 29: Continued my streak of consecutive days passed without playing Pokemon Go!

August 30: Celebrated my company’s 25th birthday.

September 4: Took my EC to Maine for a week for four reasons: Lobster Rolls, scenery, alone time and belated Anniversary trip. Spend the first 2 days with the stomach flu. I’m such a romantic.


September 13: Turned 55 – but I don’t feel a day over 60.

September 16: Attended and presented at the American Night Writer’s Conference. That was good fun.


September 17: Became the first official male member of ANWA. Yeah, that’s me – a trailblazer.

September 29: Checked into the local Residence Inn while our floors were replaced. Learned that I am content to live in a small living space as long as there is good internet and maid service.

September 30: Realized I have blown right past gray hair and am going white.

white hair

October 1-2: General Conference.  Always a highlight.

October 8: Went to Disneyland with the entire family, and 25% of the entire total US population. Stood in line for an hour to watch animatronic pirates that were built in 1967.

October 18: Had personal emails hacked by Russian spies.

October 19: Had emails returned from Russian spies with a note saying, “Comrade, your life is boring.”

November 8: Trump wins the president election. Who saw that coming??? Wait – I did. Exercised my restraint muscles by not posting dozens of “I told you so” comments.

November 9: Promptly forgot who Evan McMullin was.

November 17: my son and his wife took my granddaughter away and moved to Utah. What. The. Heck.

November 19: Installed a new oven in our kitchen and did not burn the house down. The oven didn’t work, but it was installed.

November 23: Happy to learn that I am still near the top of Mcat’s kidney donor list, in ink. Never can be too prepared.

November 24: Full of gratitude for all my blessings.

November 24: Sad to hear that Carol Brady died. She was like a second mom to lots of us


November 29: Lost remaining 10% of respect for MItt Romney when he had dinner with Donald Trump.

December 8: Made my final orthodontia payment. Now ready for the millennium.

Ryan ortho

December 14: Regained 50% of respect for Mitt Romney when he told Harry Reid “Good Riddance.”

December 19: Found out that Zsa Zsa Gabor had still been alive all this time by reading about her death.

December 20: Embarrassed that 15,000 intolerant Mormons would sign a petition asking the MoTab not to perform at the inauguration of a US President.


December 25: Enjoyed celebrating the birth of Christ. Especially enjoyed it being on the Sabbath.

December 25: Read the shocking reports that George Michael had joined his career in death.

December 26: Had a small problem with caramel popcorn. And by “problem” I mean “gorge-fest.”

December 27: Carrie Fisher died, leaving hundreds of celebrities anxiously watching the calendar, hoping to make it through the last few days of the year.

December 28: Wrote my year in review list, on the assumption that if anything noteworthy happens, it can always be added later.

Making it out of 2016 with your life and/or any shred of sanity should be considered a huge success.  If you are reading this, then you are already a winner. As for 2017…

Bring it on….

(Oh, be sure to read the comments. I was informed that I need a proofreader… who knew?!)




About the author


  1. “David Bowie died, much like his career had thirty years earlier.”

    Savage X)

  2. I had an early birthday brunch with two of my daughters. One of them reluctantly voted for Trump the other one reluctantly voted for Hillary. Somehow we are still able to sit and eat and laugh together. Way too many people are letting politics ruin friendships and relationships, not to mention killing their sense of humor. One of the reasons I keep returning to read MMM is that your humor has a little bit of bite. The other reason is that sometimes you seriously inspire me. Keep it up.?

  3. I have been totally disgusted by the ratio of media coverage given to deceased “celebrities” most of whom were paid vastly more than they were worth in sorry comparison with the lip service mention in passing of the Law Enforcement and Armed Forces members who laid down their lives in our defense. All too many of them for wages qualifying their families for Food Stamps.

  4. How much do you bribe the people who write these comments? – just curious. I especially enjoyed the one about people like you who give Mormonism a bad name. And I like bacon too.

  5. I do love the irony of your fb friend being intolerant of Trump’s intolerance. There’s a lot of that going around.

  6. I love your posts and look forward to reading them. One of the greats passed away. Lovell Edwards. Now that’s a man we can all take lessons in life from.

  7. Thanks for the recap, I love it! I’m going to try to use “braggadocios” 3 times before the new year. It’ll be the 2016 resolution I keep. MMM, you are good enough, you are smart enough and doggonit, people like you! (I know you’re sensitive to negativity, so I thought I’d better help?)

  8. 100% of everything you said is true. And funny. Because it’s true? (ESPECIALLY the Mitt Romney & musician comments ?)

  9. Love your review. I still like Mitt though. Glad Trump won. Personally never saw him winning. What a relief!! Disneyland of today is overrated. ❤

  10. Love you MMM!!! (And I don’t care if you need autocorrect or not!!) 🙂 Happy New Year and keep up the great blog!!

  11. Enjoyed your entire post! Thanks for the humor and quick journaling inservice. Personally happy about TRUMP!!! Now, 12/28/16, must add Carrie Fisher’s mother, Debbie Reynolds to the actresses who’ve passed on during 2016.
    Looking forward to 2017 and more fantastic posts!
    Happy New Year!

  12. Love your look back on 2016. You had a much more exciting year than I! Looking forward to 2017, and so thankful for my blessings as well!

  13. Hoping that your prediction that Trump would win doesn’t mean you supported him… Your earlier post about America getting what it deserved in candidates rings truer. I don’t care about MOTAB singing at inauguration but I am sad about the president-elect.

  14. Boy, Wendy is a real grouch. I don’t care for your new president, but I’ll probably survive.

  15. Still laughing over the ignoramus who freaked out about the gray hair comment and who clearly has no sense of humor, nor has any understanding of the concept of “be nice.” I am one of those ferociously insecure authors and am oddly exhilarated that I’m one of the many conference attendees in your picture of your ANWA workshop. It makes me feel popular or something. I love your blog and agree with 99% of what you say 🙂

  16. And today, Debbie Reynolds followed her daughter, Carrie Fisher, into the next life. You are right…only days left and we wonder who might go before 2016 is over.

  17. LOVE LOVE all things about your blog! Serious. Love it because it is witty…People that are witty are are super smart. The comment about Zsa Zsa ….still laughing about it. I do like Mitt however.

  18. 15,000 signed the petition? What were they thinking? It’s an honor to sing at a Presidential Inauguration!

  19. You ask that these comments be nice, but yours are filled with sickening braggadocios and sickening observations of life. It’s people like you who give Mormonism a bad name. I’m also curious about the fact that at 55 you don’t know there is no such thing as a gray hair. Your hair either has pigment or none, thus, it is colorless (white). Hair may look “gray” because of the mixture of dark and light strands. In other words, EVERYONE skips the gray hair and goes straight to white. You are not special. Your irreverent comments about the deaths of some famous musicians are uncalled for, also. Your wife is right; you ARE a donkey. Yes, I will be unsubscribing. (p.s. You need a proofreader. Carmel is a place in California. Caramel is what your popcorn was.)

      1. Again, where IS the LIKE button? I actually think you help give Mormonism a good name, and Thank You!

      2. Big fan of the blog, but I actually agree with Wendy that you went too far about the deaths of celebrities. Your response to her was also distasteful. I don’t mean to be critical, but I’ve read your blog for a long time, and it doesn’t usually seem so disrespectful– I thought calling you out might help xD

        1. It won’t help, but it curious that you are supportive of commentors that say things like “sickening braggadocios and sickening observations of life. It’s people like you who give Mormonism a bad name.”

          And I also thought I showed great restraint by not mentioning the fact that many of these celebrities ruined their lives and bodies by a lifetime of drug abuse and questionable lifestyles. So there’s that.

          1. I never supported or even agreed with ALL Wendy’s comments, but I did agree with the thing I mentioned, and I wanted to comment as well. Wendy was a bit over the top, and it was easy to dismiss what she said, especially after the bit about gray hair (What?)

            Anyway I didn’t call HER out because she doesn’t have a blog that I like.

          2. And about the celebrities, I used to be a big fan of tabloids (I still LIKE them I must admit, but I try to stay away more than I used to). I don’t know when or why, but at some point, I realized that reading about someone’s personal life that they didn’t choose to have published was wrong.

            I try to cut celebrities more slack now. It’s true that a lot of them live terrible lifestyles, and they’ve made bad choices. Fame is a hard lifestyle though, and most of them don’t have the gospel. One thing is clear when you look at the tabloids: the lifestyle and temptations of fame usually chew these people up and spit them out. Satan really doesn’t support his own. Because of this, I have compassion and I try to be respectful.

    1. I’m 60 and I didn’t know my hair color is “colorless”. I flunked Cosmetology.

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