Happy New Year


It's the first day of the New Year! Or not. Maybe the New Year doesn’t start until March 15th. Or, sometime next October. Who knows? January 1st is, after all, an arbitrary date picked by a Pope in the 16th Century while the Spanish Armada was headed to England.

For over 1600 years the standard calendar for most of the world was the Julian Calendar, designed by Julius Caesar in 45 B.C. A great accomplishment but based on round numbers. The earth and the sun, however, do not operate in round numbers and the calendar was doomed to fall apart. By the 16th century it was obvious by simply observing the spring equinox that the calendar was off. Way off.

In 1582 Pope Gregory XIII launched the calendar we use today. He had to cheat to make the numbers work – he deleted October 5 - October 14th, 1482. He undated them. They never happened. Then he finagled the ‘leap-year-every-four-years-except on centennial years that aren’t divisible by 400.’

‘Centennial years not divisible by 400’ – you have to wonder how much trial and error went into that not-so-scientific calculation.

Gregory finished by changing New Year's Day from March 15th to January 1st.

January 1st is arbitrary – a prominent historian has observed that 'New Year's' has always been whatever and whenever society says it is.

That's our point today. January 1st is just the day that starts, as Larry David so eloquently put it, the time ticking on the statute of limitations for wishing people a Happy New Year.

Your New Year begins when you want it to, forget the calendar, it, like time, is arbitrary.

You make a bunch of resolutions that don’t survive the first week of January? Fine, January 13th is your New Year!

Miserable in an unfulfilling relationship? Create your New Year by doing something about it - like calling us.

Think of it this way, if Gregory hadn't changed it, you might be counting the days down to March 15th to go on diet, work out, find your happiness, file for divorce, get an estate plan, or whatever floats your boat.

Change when you want to change, start a new year, a new life when you want to. Count the days from there, it’ll mean more in the long run.