This will be my last post of 2016. So I hope you’ll forgive me for using it to write about a few personal reflections.

It was a little over a year ago that I started writing regularly on weekdays here at Political Animal. As some of you might remember, I spent most of my professional life as a counselor, therapist and nonprofit director. That isn’t the normal path that most people take to writing about politics. But I started doing so as a hobby about nine years ago. To make a long story short, I was as surprised as anyone else to find it turn into a whole new career at this late stage in life. I will forever be grateful to the folks here at the Washington Monthly for giving me this amazing opportunity.

My reason for taking up that hobby years ago was that I was curious about this guy – Barack Obama – who was running for president. He didn’t seem like anyone I had ever seen in politics before. So I started following his candidacy and then presidency to see what I could learn about him. The more I looked, the more it became clear that most of the media was missing the story – which only motivated me to write more.

To tell you the truth…when I took this gig here at Political Animal I never dreamed that I would find myself writing about a Trump administration as the next stage in our country’s journey. There have been times when I’ve wondered if I’ll be up for the challenge. But what I saw in the days immediately after the election is that writing about what is happening makes things all a bit more concrete and therefore, less depressing. That provides a totally different kind of motivation for writing than what kept me going during the Obama era. But it is in that frame of mind that I look forward to hanging out with all of you right here at Political Animal in the year ahead. I hope you’ll join me and that we’ll find a way to get through this one together.

As I get ready to say goodbye to 2016 and prepare for 2017, here’s the song that best captures my mood and perspective.

YouTube video

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Happy New Year, everyone!

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