Warren Gerds/Critic at Large: Extra: OUCH!

Critic At Large

A New Year's Day column

Copies of a column for January 1, 2020, torn up. (Warren Gerds)


That hurt!

It was more than someone slamming your hand in a car door.

It was more than stubbing your toe in the dark.

It was more than an unexpected pinch from your snotty brother.

It was 2020.


That year hurt!

If you somehow escaped being, let’s say, inconvenienced by 2020, you probably are keeping a lid on it. The inconvenienced people might want to put a hurt on you.

My significant OUCH! crept in when the avalanche called COVID-19 reached unstoppable momentum… and I became embarrassed.

I recalled what I wrote for this column last year:

“Twenty-twenty has a nice ring to it.”


I posted that on January 1, 2020.

And I couldn’t take it back.

I have written a whole lot in very visible media for a long time and know this:

Putting your name to something in public view is like running along the edge of a knife.

You can get cut.

In hindsight, I wrote something that came to ring false.

Today, we know the sound of 2020 is more like BONK!

The BONK! is so loud hurts the ears.

So here we are at the start of 2021.

The coming year has to be better than the thing that’s lying back there in the ashes.

We want to move forward.

We will.

January 1 represents so much.





Especially the hope that our ouches are small.

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