From the Editors: Flight 2022 now boarding
A new year typically symbolizes new beginnings, hitting the reset button, and/or circling back around
From the Editors
Flight 2022 now boarding
No matter where you are in the world or what calendar you follow, the ever-trendy Gregorian or any one of six others, a new year typically symbolizes new beginnings, hitting the reset button, and/or circling back around. If we should be carrying any of last year's baggage with us, we are advised to stuff it in the overhead bin and leave it behind on the tarmac. Inevitably, though, once the new year takes off, it's bound to encounter turbulence, and old issues will spill out into an aisle we are desperately trying to keep clear.
We can superstitiously eat all the pancakes (France) or pig-shaped marzipan (Germany) we want, smash pomegranates against our doors (Greece), throw our old red underwear out the window (Italy), or as many locals do, fill up on pork and sauerkraut — the winds will blow just the same. Whether we like it or not, every year humanity is due for a bumpy flight somewhere along the way. As individuals and as communities, it's all about stabilizing and steadying ourselves so we do not lose our constitution any time our fuselage is rocked.
During his swearing-in ceremony on Monday, Jan. 3, reelected Erie Mayor Joe Schember spoke of the ongoing turbulence we've experienced amidst budget deficits, the seemingly interminable COVID-19 pandemic, socioeconomic inequality, and population loss while thanking his co-pilots on the City of Erie staff. He reiterated his mission to "build opportunity, restore hope, and transform Erie" while setting forth some more tangible resolutions. First, boost vaccination rates to a level where COVID-19 could be virtually eliminated by summer. Second, bring more jobs and more people to Erie — 10,000 new residents by 2030. Those are ambitious goals, and certainly attainable, but before we get there, we're going to have to keep our seatbelts on a while longer.
As we continue to navigate challenges at a city-wide and county-wide (see Ben Speggen's interview with outgoing Erie County Executive Kathy Dahlkemper) level and beyond, we can take solace in some excellent onboard entertainment. This month, the Warner Theatre will host the Erie Philharmonic again for the first time in nearly two years. Our community theaters continue to put on bold, vibrant, and provocative productions. The second half of the Mercyhurst Institute for Arts and Culture's 2021-22 season will welcome more world-class talents to the 814, and our events calendar remains dotted with gems on a smaller scale.
Assuming we are allowed only one carry-on, let's board 2022 with a sense of cautious optimism and the resolve to bring this year to a fulfilling resolution.