2016 Look Back and 2017 Look Forward

This post will not be a gaming post but a general post about whatever I feel like writing or ranting about and will be more personal to me.

I try to keep my blog posts to gaming as that’s what the blog is all about but for this one it’ll be more about me and my thoughts about the last year and looking forward into 2017. I’ll be doing a separate post on my gaming 2016 and 2017 resolutions soon. 

I’ve read a lot online recently about how bad 2016 has been with all the celebrity deaths, Brexit happening in the UK, Donald Trump becoming the next president of the USA and all the terrorist attacks.

Personally 2016 hasn’t been a bad year but then I’m the type of person who doesn’t worry about what’s happening in the world and just focuses on the things I have control over. If you only worry about what you have control over then you can make sure those things are good.

I’m not sure what the big fuss is over celebrities dying, people die and there’s nothing you can do to stop it so there is no need to make a big deal out of it, especially when you look at the age or lifestyles of some of them. I think people just jump on the band wagon and make it a big deal on social media whether they care about them or not.

The doomsayers have been out in force this year regarding Brexit and Trump. If you believe what they say then the world is going to be fucked and will probably end next year in world war 3. I think too much negative talk about it has made people worry more and too many people can’t think for themselves these days so believe what the doomsayers are talking about.

Brexit could be good for the UK long term. All it means is our government will have more control about what happens in the UK. If they wanted to they could keep all the current legislation and policies, they could pay the same money to the EU and keep things as they are except we won’t be officially part of the EU, or they could change everything for better or worse. The important part is the UK now has control over the UKs future, it’s not in the hands of the other EU countries and it’s now up to the elected government to make sure they do what’s best for the Country. 

I am happy to admit I voted for Brexit because I feel that a change was needed so that my children can have a better future while I take the short term hit now.

After the vote it was assumed by the people who voted remain that people who voted to leave the EU were uneducated racists who only voted to kick out immigrants, didn’t look into the full consequences and that the next day they all Googled what would now happen causing it to be the top Google search. I think there was a lot of people who fall into this assumption but there would have been a lit more who voted to leave after doing some research. Most people wouldn’t have voted to leave without thinking it through unless they are idiots.

I looked into everything I could and done plenty of research to see the pros and cons. I didn’t listen to any of the rubbish the remain or leave campaigners were all saying as most of it was biased statistics, blatant lies or embellished truths which proved nothing and my own research concluded we have a chance of being better off long term if the future is in our own hands.  

I actually think it was the remain people searching for what happens next as I know personally a lot of people voted to remain because they didn’t know what would happen if we left and we’re scared of it. They also believed what the media were saying rather than thinking for themselves.

Regarding the USA and Trump being elected I’m not sure what to make of it all. It seems strange to me that a business tycoon could be elected as probably the most powerful person in the world.

I don’t think there was a good choice either way between Clinton or Trump but surely it should never have got to the situation where there was 2 poor candidates. They should have just scrapped the rule where a president can only do 2 terms in office and allowed Obama to run again, he would have blown Trump away.

I think a problem America has with elections is that too many states vote the same way regardless of who the candidate is and there are only a few swing states which decide the outcome. A good example of this is that my sister-in-law voted for Trump yet she is from a Mexican family and although she is an American citizen, having a racist in charge of the country who wants to kick all Mexicans out and build a big wall seperating them could affect her extended family. You’d think she’d vote against trump but in Texas I think they all vote republican regardless.

In a way I think Trump could end up being good for the USA as he wants to make the country better for US citizens, bring back jobs for Americans and improve the quality of life for Americans. The problem being I think this will be a detriment to non US citizens and could cause problems for the rest of the world. At least he seems friendly with Russia so they might not end up fighting with each other but he could upset other nuclear capable counties and could be trigger happy and not afraid to go to war.

The terrorist attacks going on does worry me a bit, I know there’s nothing I can do and it’s out of my control so I don’t let it bother me but my worry is that something needs to be done by the world leaders before it gets worse. Too many innocent lives are being lost due to these acts of terrorism and not enough is being done to stop them.

The thing that annoys me the most is that a lot of it is due to made up religions. I won’t go into a religious rant but anyone who kills anyone else based on their religious beliefs are simply idiots. It’s not just one religion either, all religions have blood on their hands going back centuries and the cultural differences are still causing problems today.

That’s enough for politics.

Onto other 2016 things my home and work life have had a good year. At the end of 2015 I got a 3 month temporary promotion at work which in 2016 was extended right through and into 2017 possibly even into 2018 unless something permanent comes up. At home things are settled, I’ve got a good work life balance so I get to spend a lot of time with my wife and kids as well as plenty of time for gaming and in 2016 we’ve been able to take the kids away on 2 holidays which has been good for them. 

One big change for me in 2016 was that I started writing my blog. I’ve been reading gaming blogs for a few years but it’s something I’d never thought about doing until I read a post about the Newbie Blogger Initiative encouraging people to start blogging. 

The more I thought about it the more it seemed like something which may be fun to do and figured I’d give it a try and see if I enjoyed it or not. I play plenty of games so I’d have something to write about I just wasn’t sure if I could write anything meaningful or if I’d get bored of doing it quickly.

Fast foward 6 months and I’m still blogging which if I’m being honest I didn’t really think I’d stick at it. I’ve got a habit of trying new things like this then getting bored but so far I’ve manged to keep it going. 

I think the main reason I’ve been able to keep blogging is that I find it enjoyable to write about something I’m passionate about and gaming has been a constant in my life for over 20 years. It’s also something I’m doing for myself so I’m not worried about getting loads of views or making money from it. 

It’s a hobby where I can write down my thoughts and experiences in gaming and find it enjoyable and relaxing. It can take my mind off a hard day at work or relax me if my kids have stressed me out all day!

If it ever stops being fun or if it becomes less of a hobby and I feel obliged to post something then I’ll stop doing it but for now I can see it continuing well into 2017 and beyond as long as I keep gaming or Donald Trump doesn’t start world war 3.

If anyone has ever thought about blogging and put it off, I would highly recommend giving it a go. You’ve nothing to lose and you may end up really enjoying it like I have.

There hasn’t been that much else happened to me in 2016, it’s been a pretty much normal uneventful year. It makes a nice change from the last few years as 2013 my first child was born, 2014 I moved jobs and got a new house and 2015 my second child was born.

Looking into 2017 I’ve not got many plans for anything and I’ll be happy with a year as good as 2016 has been to me. 

Job wise I’d like a permanent promotion and I’ve applied for an apprenticeship in management which if successful will give me a recognised management qualification. It’s doing the same job I’m currently doing so nothing will change except the qualification can help me get a permanent promotion.

At home I’ll be happy for my family to stay healthy and happy, that’s all anyone can really hope for. Anything else is a bonus.

My blogging will continue, earlier I said I’m not doing it for views or money but it would be nice to get more people viewing my blog ands it’s good to know people are reading what I’ve written.

The only other change I need to make in my life is to get healthier again. A few years ago I smoked, drank and ate too much. I packed in smoking after 20 years just before my first child was born, it was all the motivation I needed. Then shortly after she was born I found myself the heaviest I’ve ever been and had gotten myself into a unhealthy lifestyle of eating and drinking too much. 

I decided that needed to change and I needed to be healthier for my children and be a good role model for them so I took up running and limited my alcohol to special occasions. A year later I’d lost 4 stone and was healthier than I’d ever been in my adult life.

Unfortunately I then eased off thinking the hard work was done and have slowly put over 2 stone back on. So in 2017 I’m determined to sort it out and get back to my healthy weight again. My kids will be turning 4 and 2 in 2017 so I need to be fit enough to run around with them, especially in the summer.

I think that’s about all I’ve got to say about 2016 and 2017 from a personal point of view. Not too much happened to me but the world is changing and it may or may not change for the better. There is a big unknown going into 2017 and it’s hard to predict what could happen. I just hope Trump doesn’t fuck up the rest of the world.

My next post will be back to being a gaming post.

– Sparko Marco 

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