. . . 1983 was the year of the pig; a good year for selling Hitler’s diaries and Michael Jackson’s stupefying ass-backwards moonwalk; the year light flashes were first seen on Jupiter and Dave Winfield killed a seagull while warming up to bat before the 5th inning in Toronto – portending doom for the Yankees that season and following, by just a few weeks, the great pine-tar controversy; the very same summer a sanitation worker in the Bronx pricked innocently his thumb with a bloody syringe and someone named Drury Gallagher set the then-fastest swim record ‘round Manhattan (6 hours 1 minute 35 seconds); Johnny Ramone caught a beat down in a jealous brawl over some girl and wound up in brain surgery, and we (the U S-of-A) set off another nuke somewhere in Nevada while sweet 12 year old Samantha Druce swam the English Channel and transit cops stomped Michael Stewart to death for spraying a little graffiti on some trains; there was also Return of the Jedi and Scarface, Reading Rainbow and Wheel of Fortune, “is it live or is it Memorex?” and oh yes – Klaus Nomi dropped dead of something we were starting to call AIDS . Should I do five minutes of stand-up on how very fitting it was? The year of the pig – the water pig, to be exact. According to the Chinese zodiac, water is the natural element of the pig, commonly associated with emotions and intuition. The pig was the last sign to be added to the earthly branches. He was late. He overslept and almost missed the party . . .