Dr. Bill Atwood

Predicting the future. Because that’s where we’ll spend the rest of our lives.

Happy New Year!

We are now past the festivities, parades, and many of the bowl games and can now focus on the normal aspects of our lives. The year 2018 was interesting. Who could have predicted many of the events that actually took place?

Years ago, a man billed himself as a great predictor of the future and he made a nice living with his entertaining and flamboyant mannerisms. Billing himself as The Amazing Criswell, he would appear in Las Vegas as well as occasional appearances on late night or daytime television. His predictions were outrageous, to say the least. He would predict American political leaders traveling to the moon in the 1960s, or encounters with aliens from outer space.

One prediction that came true almost killed his career. In early November of 1963, he predicted that President Kennedy would not be on the ballot for re-election in 1964. Just a couple of weeks later, the assassination of President Kennedy in Dallas made Criswell’s oddball prediction a reality and some people started to take him seriously. That nearly killed his career because he just enjoyed shocking people with his silliness. He happened to be a friend of my grandmother and he would visit our home once in a while for dinner and make silly predictions. He wasn’t a seer at all, just an entertaining guy who was great at self-promotion.

With 2018 in the history books and 2019 in a stage of infancy, I am going to go out on a limb and make some predictions for the year. Please remember that The Amazing Criswell is my role model.

First, I wish to address the economy. My prediction is that the Dow Jones Industrial Average will close above or below 25,000 points each day. Donald Trump will Tweet-praise for himself when the Dow is above that number and will fault somebody when it falls below that threshold number.

The Super Bowl. I will predict the score of this year’s game before it starts or even before we know the names of the teams that will be playing. Bank on my prediction here. The score of the game will be 0 to 0. (Of course some will realize that is the score before any game starts but I went public with my numbers first!)

Gas prices will fluctuate, utilities will want to charge more for our energy, the bullet train committee will state that the budget will reflect more red ink than originally thought, and it will be hot in Fresno this summer.

But life will go on and whatever is predicted each of us will trudge through the day-to-day aspects of life. Some other predictions I offer I am positive will occur. Our local high schools will graduate a bunch of great kids with educations that give them wonderful options for great lives. Local service clubs will raise thousands of dollars to gift to local organizations that need the financial boost. This community will raise more than $100,000 for high school scholarships for our local kids.

Volunteers from our community will pick up litter, umpire sporting events, serve as volunteer emergency personnel, and will gift supplies to schools and scouting troops. Dentists will do free work for poor folks as will local doctors and lawyers. People will tutor others for free in many different subject areas and others will help develop plans for the creation of new programs to make this area better.

It’s easy to predict great local events and volunteerism in 2019 for our area for one simple reason –the great people who live here.