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From elections to sports, ‘The World Almanac’ has it all

From elections to sports, ‘The World Almanac’ has it all

Posted: Friday, December 14, 2012 8:00 pm
By: By Donna Ryder

From elections to sports, ‘The World Almanac’ has it all | Donna Ryder, Just A Thought

The end of 2012 is fast coming to an end. Faster if you actually believe that Dec. 21 will be the end of the world, as the Mayans supposedly predicted.
So, for my last “Just A Thought” column for 2012, I thought I would review a few items from this momentous event-filled year. They come courtesy of “The World Almanac and Book of Facts 2013.”
The presidential election tops the list no matter which side you were on. It was a long, hard-fought battle, but President Obama won a second four-year term. The “Facts” book includes the election results for every state and every county. It also has a comparison from the 2008 election, so readers can compare how many more or less people voted for Obama. Fewer people voted in the presidential election in Obion County in 2012 than did in 2008. Republicans did not lose as many voters as Democrats did, though. John McCain had 8,873 votes here in 2008, while this year 8,814 votes were cast for Mitt Romney. Obama lost almost 1,000 votes, dropping from 4,308 in 2008 to 3,320 this year.
The Summer Olympics were held in London in 2012. I enjoy watching the Olympics, both summer and winter. Michael Phelps turned in another impressive medal total with four gold and two silver. I personally enjoyed swimmer Missy Franklin, who brought home four gold medals. Second to swimming for me in the Summer Olympics is gymnastics. American Gabby Douglas became the first black gymnast to win individual all-around gold. She also helped bring home the gold in the team competition.
Also in sports, the Giants beat the Packers in the Super Bowl. The University of Kentucky beat the University of Kansas to win the NCAA basketball championship. Bubba Watson won the Masters and the L.A. Kings beat the New Jersey Devils for the Stanley Cup. The book includes all kinds of stats for all the major sports. It’s a good book for anyone who wants to study before playing Trivial Pursuit.
Highly publicized tragedies in 2012 included the cruise ship Costa Concordia capsizing off the Italian coast, killing 32; and James Holmes opening fire in a crowded theater in Colorado where residents eagerly awaited the midnight show of “The Dark Knight Rises.” He killed 12 people and injured 58.
“The World Almanac and Book of Facts 2013” includes a listing of famous people who died between Nov. 1, 2011-Oct. 31, 2012. Among those who are familiar to me are Ernest Borgnine, 95, who played on “McHale’s Navy”; Dick Clark, 82, host of “American Bandstand,” “The $10,000 Pyramid” and “Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve”; and Andy Griffith, who was 86. I had forgotten that Davy Jones died in February at age 66. I love still to watch him in episodes of “The Monkees.” And, I wasn’t aware that artist Thomas Kincade had died at the age of 54 in April.
There are lots of interesting facts from economics to energy and military affairs and health.
When the book was published, the best-selling magazines in the U.S. were “AARP The Magazine” and “AARP Bulletin,” followed by “Game Informer Magazine” and “Better Homes and Gardens.” Read into it what you want.
For 2011-12, “Dancing With the Stars” was the favorite prime-time television program, “Judge Judy” ranked the top favorite syndicated program, “Jersey Shore Season 4” was the favorite basic cable program and “Game of Thrones” was the favorite premium cable program. Super Bowl XLVI became the all-time most watched television program on Feb. 5, 2012.
I hope your 2012 has been a good one and that your 2013 will be even better.
Merry Christmas and happy new year.
Associate Editor Donna Ryder can be contacted by email at

Published in The Messenger 12.14.12


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