Writing year-end "best of" lists is easy, and writing 2012 New Year's resolutions is even easier. After all, it's not very challenging to opine about what we would like to see.
It's much trickier to predict the future.
So, because I consider myself a sporting guy, here are five "bold" predictions for 2012 ... and five "not-so-bold" predictions for the new year.
Add your own via the almighty Talkback, keep score at home, and at the end of 2012, we'll all check back and see how we did.
And please note, my predictions aren't necessarily my personal wishes. This is just what I expect to go down in the new year.
Ryan Braun won't serve a 50-game suspension: I'm not sure the reigning National League MVP will get off scot-free, but I don't see him serving a suspension for performance-enhancing drugs ... because he didn't take PEDs. Rather, I think an embarrassing and/or awkward, but unrelated to baseball, situation will be revealed, and either Braun will serve a shorter suspension or none at all. In the end, his reputation as a baseball player won't be hurt, and at least in Milwaukee, his reputation as a person won't be, either. Additionally, someone at ESPN is getting sued and/or fired over their incorrect and libelous account of the story.
Scott Walker will survive the recall election: There will be an election, but the combination of voter apathy, an already polarized electorate and a weak Democratic candidate will fail to give Walker the boot. Even though he will stay in office by a very narrow margin, Walker won't change his policies one iota, further infuriating the left and further strengthening his base on the right. He will never win re-election, however, assuming the Dems can offer up a candidate who really wants and deserves the job.
The Packers will win the Super Bowl: I guess this isn't that bold, but repeating a Super Bowl victory is harder than it looks. The Packers will do it on the arm of Aaron Rodgers, and despite a non-existent defense, they'll score enough points to make it look easy. I'd like to predict Green Bay would defeat Tim Tebow and the Broncos in the big game – but Denver will never make it that far.
The Rock 'N Sole half marathon/10K will go off without a hitch: After last year's debacle, the event will be perfect. And there will be plenty of water for all. I won't speculate whether I'll be in good enough shape to run it, however.
Prince Fielder will sign somewhere for much less than originally expected: I still have a sneaking suspicion that Fielder will rejoin the Brewers, but I'm not crazy enough to predict it. Instead, I think he'll join a team that will pay him something near what the Brewers already offered him, but due to his desire to test the market and the Crew's subsequent big-ticket signings, it's no longer viable for Milwaukee to pay that price.
And now, for some not-so-bold predictions:
- The Brewers will set another season ticket sales record
- No significant progress will be made on any Downtown rail solution
- Obama will win re-election by a landslide and will narrowly take Wisconsin
- Northridge Mall won't become a Chinese mall, or anything else in 2012
- The Journal Sentinel will kill off its hybrid entertainment site, Tap Milwaukee
One bonus, non-Milwaukee prediction:
- The world will not end on Dec. 21, 2012
Andy is the founder and co-owner of OnMilwaukee.com. He returned to Milwaukee in 1996 after living on the East Coast for nine years, where he wrote for The Dallas Morning News Washington Bureau and worked in the White House Office of Communications. He was also Associate Editor of The GW Hatchet, his college newspaper at The George Washington University.
Before launching OnMilwaukee.com in 1998 at age 23, he worked in public relations for two Milwaukee firms, most of the time daydreaming about starting his own publication.
Hobbies include running when he finds the time, fixing the rust on his '75 MGB, mowing the lawn at his cottage in the Northwoods, and making an annual pilgrimage to Phoenix for Brewers Spring Training.