It's almost time to welcome a new year, and for baby boomers -- which means anyone who grew up without cable or satellite TV -- 2014 will be a time that marks some interesting milestones.
I'll warn you ahead of time, as you peruse the following, you will begin to feel even older than you are. The following items will all mark their 50th anniversary in 2014:
º Feb. 9: The Beatles made their historic debut on "The Ed Sullivan Show" on CBS and attracted a staggering 73 million viewers. To put that into perspective, it's 56 million more than watched the season debut of "The Walking Dead" a couple of months ago, a figure TV critics were hailing as "epic."
º Feb. 17: Michael Jordan will turn 50 years old. I'm not sure if that fact alone, or the idea that we're still buying his shoes, is the hardest to accept. I have wondered who is better known around the world -- Michael or Elvis?
º March 9: The first Ford Mustang debuted with a suggested retail price of -- are you ready? -- $2,368. Ford had projected sales of 100,000 in the first year, but by early 1965, the company had sold more than 1 million.
º March 19: Actor Sean Connery, starring as 007 James Bond, begins filming on "Goldfinger," still considered by many to be the most popular entry in the world's most popular movie franchise.
º June 12: Nelson Mandela, the leader of the anti-apartheid struggle in South Africa, was sentenced to life in prison by his native government. Mandela, who was eventually released in 1990, died earlier this month at age 95.
º July 2: President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act of 1964 into law, abolishing racial segregation in the United States. Hindsight is always 20-20, but wouldn't July 4 have been an even greater day for such an event?
º Sept. 27: The Warren Commission's report on the JFK assassination is released and states Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone. Fifty years later, that report is still being questioned. I have often wondered how much different the coverage of the assassination would have been if it had play ed out in the era of the 24-hour news cycle and the all-powerful Internet.
º Nov. 3: LBJ absolutely crushed Republican challenger Barry Goldwater in the presidential election with more than 60 percent of the popular vote. This was the first presidential election I followed as a child, and I wondered if they all would be this lopsided. History always seems to have a crazy way of evening things out, which is probably why we had to endure the hanging chads in the 2000 election.
º Nov. 13: Bob Pettit of the old St. Louis Hawks became the first NBA player to score 20,000 points. To this day, I have never figured out why as a kid growing up in Ohio I was so attracted to Pettit, but while most of my friends thought guys like Jerry West, Elgin Baylor and Wilt Chamberlain were the coolest players, I always looked first for Pettit's name in the box scores.
I'm not sure what's harder to believe, that it was 50 years ago we first saw the Beatles on television or that a new car cost less than $3,000.
Either way, I feel older than I did when I started writing this column.