Moving forward into 2021.

Gentle, giant flakes floated down for a few hours last week, resting softly but melting quickly on the dogs’ backs as we walked the neighborhood.

I tried to catch a flake on my tongue. Started thinking about hope.

There have been glimmers over this mostly horrible year, despite the cut-throat political circumstances and actions that have left many of us dumbfounded and in danger. The current president’s election loss. Rulings in court after court, all the way to the Supreme Court, that gave no quarter to his absurd and unsubstantiated fraud claims. Republican state officials who have refused to participate in an attempted coup. Electoral College certification. It’s been irritating, frustrating and even enraging at times, but hopeful, as well. And inauguration is coming.  

Even so, the climate crisis deepens and our fellow citizens continue to be abused, profiled, starved, killed, put down and kept down. We can’t forget them. But there’s even a little hope here; at least the new administration will put a stop to the aggressive worsening we’ve been living with for the past four years. It also will put its faith in science and act accordingly moving forward.

Speaking of which…


Hope come to life.

Set aside for a moment the hundreds of thousands of morons who are going to refuse to be vaccinated against coronavirus and Covid-19, thereby posing all-too-real threats to the health and wellbeing of everyone else. Those of us who trust science and medical professionals will gain a measure of protection from a grim reaper who has taken hundreds of thousands of lives and left hundreds of thousands more dealing with Covid long-hauler effects.

Our chances for survival just improved significantly.

A front-line nurse I know got her first vaccination Monday. On Twitter she shared a simple, straight-forward post: “I got my vaccine today.”

Five words. 

Three million plus views.

Two hundred eighty thousand plus engagements.

Nearly 100,000 likes.

Two thousand seven retweets.

Six hundred forty-five quote retweets.

We’ve been slogging along, going through the motions, making do and getting by for so long. Waiting. Just waiting. And hoping.

I can see it. Feel it. Smell it even. It touches my senses much like the crisp cold and peaceful silence of fluffy flakes falling on a windless day.

We haven’t had much snow yet this winter season, and when we have it’s been so warm it’s melted right away. I don’t recall any non-white holidays over the course of my 52 years here in eastern North Dakota. If my memory is true, we’re probably in for a first. There’s still a slight chance for getting some by next week that’ll stay on the ground, but it’s looking increasingly unlikely.

Despite that, and everything we’ve endured this year, hope moves us forward and we move forward with hope.

Last week, walking with my dogs, I tried to catch another snowflake. No such luck. But that’s OK. 

The joy, the eternal hope, is in moving forward anyway.

Black outlined graphic indicating copyright 2020 Martin C. Fredricks IV

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Martin C. Fredricks IV

Martin C. “Red” Fredricks IV here. I’m husband to an amazing woman who is also my best friend, dad to three outstanding kids, Fargoan (North Dakota, that is), proud introvert, veteran messaging strategist/copywriter, blogger ( nonprofit founder ( and big-time reader. As they say, if you're gonna write good stuff, you have to read good stuff. A ginger, too - ergo the "Red" - although some of it's going white. Cinnamon-Sugar, I call it. Tattooed to boot; seven so far. At age 54, I'm stilling crankin' AC/DC & Metallica, but now and again I spin some Eric Church and Black Uhuru, too. I love hanging out with my (much) better half, spending time with our kids, writing, hiking, riding my mountain bike and reading.


bz · December 17, 2020 at 7:21 pm

As i hear it, you sent your allotted snow to the east coast in ‘extra-large’ amounts.
Generous of you. lol

    Martin C. Fredricks IV · December 17, 2020 at 8:32 pm

    So it seems, Bruce, so it seems. Happy Holidays to you and yours!

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