February 1, 2023

Together with the Christmas rush and the joyous charivari of the holidays, noisy mock serenades to attempt to celebrate despite or inspite of the crisis with much banging and bell-ringing and a series of discordant noises,  is the deadline to come out with a last column for the year on a Tuesday of the week. 

With writer’s block dominating one’s head, the go-to-guy is Mr. Google, find and paraphrase without any intent to plagiarize, the holiday greetings straight from the law books and offices of our legal comrades and extend “Et beatus novus annus natalis Christi” to our families, relatives, friends and foes, not necessarily in that order.

So, a “square” greeting from “square” attorney would read:

“Please accept without obligation, implied or implicit, our best wishes for a pandemic and Covid-19- free,  environmentally conscious, socially responsible, politically correct, low stress, non-addictive, gender neutral, celebration of the Christmas holidays, practiced with the respected traditions of the religious persuasion or secular practices of your choice, with respect for the religious or secular persuasions or traditions of others, or their choice not to practice religious or secular traditions at all.  We wish for a financially successful, personally fulfilling and medically uncomplicated recognition of the onset of the generally accepted calendar year 2021. This is with due respect for the choice of other cultures or sects, and regard to your race, creed, color, age, physical ability, religious faith, choice of computer platform or dietary preference.

By accepting this greeting you are bound by the following terms and conditions:

1. The greeting is subject to further revision, amendment, clarification or withdrawal.

2. The greeting is freely transferable provided that no alteration shall be made to the original intent and that our proprietary rights are acknowledged.

3. The greeting implies no promise by the recipient to actually implement any of the wishes sent.

4. The greeting may not be enforceable in certain jurisdictions or the restrictions herein may not be binding upon certain persons in certain jurisdictions.

5. The greeting is revocable at the sole discretion of the person extending the same.

6. The greeting is warranted to be performed as reasonably as may be expected within the usual application of good tidings, for a period of one year or until the issuance of a subsequent holiday greeting whichever comes first.

7. Any reference in this greeting to a Santa Claus or any other festive figures, whether actual or fictitious, dead or alive, everlasting or omnipresent, shall not imply any endorsement by or from them in respect of this greeting, and all proprietary rights in any referred third party names and images are hereby acknowledged.

Again, we wish you a (reasonable but without any assumption of any liability on your part and in no way guarantee) Merry (and/or festive period) Christmas and (including but not limited to ) a happy New Year (12 months from date hereof).”

Now from the heart, like all of us in this Earth, we wish you all a pandemic-free, peaceful, and hopeful New Year in 2021. 

As Desiderata would say “Despite all the sham, drudgery and may I add despair, it’s still a beautiful world out there.”   

I am overwhelmed and humbled by the undying friendship and loyalty that my family and friends have been giving through the past year (s)! What more could I say? Gracias, salamat, merci, danke, obrigado, arigato, tack, mahalo, toda, xie xie, agyamanac, Dios ti agngina, thank you. 

Nagasat nga baro nga tawen yo.

Naway makamtam natin ang pagkakaisa at kapayapaan na siyang tunay na diwa ng pagbabago at lahat ng kasaganahang hatid ng taon na darating.

With the blessings of God almighty, we will have a healthy, economically viable, and most prosperous New Year this 2021. Sigh.