The end of one year, the beginning of another. It's a bit romantic, no? The sense of renewal, out with the old, in with the new. A fresh start, a new year and a new decade. Huzzah!
And yet, it's all a bit silly. The ceremony, the hangovers, the resolutions. Isn't it just another day, a notch in time? Should auld acquaintance really be forgot, and never brought to mind? Besides, I have a major grammar-related new year pet peeve, and it persists well past January 1st. Gung Hay Fat Choy indeed.
"Happy New Years!"
Or perhaps you mean "Happy New Year's!", which is equally irksome.
The extraneous 's'. Never before has anyone been driven to madness by a single letter, apostrophe or not. But there you have it. I'm small like that. And though I try to focus on the intent behind the greeting, the well wishes for an enjoyable year, I'm cringing inside.
WHY IS THIS PLURALIZED?
Perhaps the capricious s's serve to proffer happiness for the current year and all other years to come? Maybe the well-wisher is being culturally sensitive, accounting for such new yearses (!) as the Chinese New Year (happy 4707 everyone!) and Rosh Hashanna (happy 5770 everyone!). The Scots have a solution to this conundrum. Happy Hogmanay, everyone!
I realize that it is of very little import, but this blending of "New Year's Eve" and "Happy New Year" just gets my goat. I've even done it myself, asking "what did you do for New Year's?" Beginning the year with a dangling something-or-other is as inauspicious a start as any. Maybe I should resolve to be less pedantic, more gracious in the face of a pleasant greeting, but there you have it.
Have a wonderful twenty-ten, and in case I don't get the chance to say it in the future, Happy New Years!