Friday, January 1, 2010
quote lyrics du jour:
"Oh, lover, I’m lost. Because the road I’ve chosen beckons me away. Oh, lover, I’ve done you wrong. And now I’m fighting words I never thought I’d say. But I remember what we said as we lay down to bed. I’ll forgive you all if you just come back home."

- Ray LaMontagne, "Duet" (with Rachael Yamagata)


   So, how have you been? If we pretend for just a moment that Deadline Pressure hasn't been sitting dormant for the last two years, we might realize that it will turn 10-years-old six months from tomorrow. To me, that's almost unbelievable. At age 22, I'm not sure I thought I'd live to see age 32 -- much less have the experiences, travels and interactions that I've managed to have.

If we're going to celebrate the journal's anniversary this summer, it's probably only proper to bring it back to life. I can't promise that this will be a permanent thing -- after all, I've done most of my writing behind a friends-only lock at LiveJournal and old habits are hard to break. I've been told that what you do on the first day sets the tone for the rest of the new year. I figured posting an entry that takes a look at the last 12 months might set a somewhat decent tone.

Happy New Year.

I. Is there any song you listened to back to back to back to back this year? Of songs purchased on iTunes this year, "Duet" by Rachael Yamagata with Ray LaMontagne got the most play on my desktop computer.

II. What was the single most beautiful physical, geographic place you found yourself in? Alaska. Hands down.

III. Who is a delightful person you met this year? I met Alison and Jenifer in person for the first time. Both meetings were unique in that I've known them onlien for what seems like forever. So to see them in person was a mix between meeting up with an old friend and spending time with someone brand new as well. 

IV. What was the biggest point of upheaval or change in your life since last December? 2000 saw the start of the journal. With 2001 came 9/11. 2002 had graduation and the start of a career. Alex issues took the spotlight in '03 and '04. Everything turned upside down in '05. I was engaged and married in '06. I sort of operated on cruise control in 2007 and 2008.  Considering all of that, 2009 may still go down as the year of the most change in all aspects of my life. The biggest single change of the year? I'm not sure yet. But I'm guessing I will know that sometime before the clock rolls around to 2011.

V. What was a really, really good time in which you had a lot of fun with people? The Alaskan cruise rocked. We were assigned to a table with two pairs of women -- one pair from California and the other from New York. On the first night, I was leery of the demographic... but dinners were so entertaining that that we made a point to dine together every night -- even in port.

VI. Who do you think you talked with the most over the last year? The Wife. In the last four months, we've had several good, long conversations in strange places like the garage or my truck while it's parked in the driveway. We've have some good conversations in more conventional places, too. Regardless of venue, this is a good thing. Conversation is what brought us together in the old days (circa the first Clinton administration).

VII. What is your favorite material belonging you acquired over the past year? I started the year without a laptop or a smart phone. Now I have both. If I had to pick a favorite of the two, I'd probably go with The Droid... But I think they both deserve the honor.

VIII. Did you fall in love this year? Say something about it? What about your hobbies? I'm still married and running briefly became a hobby -- or, at the least, a masochistic pastime.

9. What food item / beverage / illicit drug was your most characteristic this year? At work, we've got a lunch place we frequent. My order is always a grilled chicken breast and curly fries. I don't even have to ask for it with some servers as they just know. It's half healthy and half junk. I'd call that pretty characteristic of me.

10. What was your best blooper reel moment? I struggled with this one... until I stabbed myself in the head with a butcher knife while taking a pill on New Year's Eve day. That has to count for something.

11. Describe a conversation you had this year that you will never forget. August 27th. But I'm keeping that one to myself for now...

12. What was the funniest ‘inside joke’ of the year? Yeah, I don't really have any inside jokes. Besides, if I did and then shared them with you guys, they wouldn't be inside jokes any more, eh?

13. What was your most expensive purchase of the year? Siding for the house takes the cake on this one since there are five figures involved in that. It looks good, but I don't get to play with it much. The Alaskan cruise would be the most expensive "fun" purchase, but it's sort of intangible. So, I'll give honorable mention to the laptop I picked up in September.

14. What was your favorite live performance (a play, a band, an orchestra, the ice capades) that you attended this year? I really enjoyed the symphony's Christmas pops concert. Interestingly, it was the third live performance from three different acts in three different genres at two different venues I saw in a 24-hour span. That's the most music I've thrown at me almost at once in a long time (maybe ever).

15. What song will always remind you of this year? I don't know yet. I think I need some separation from 2009 to know for sure.

16. What is a ‘big lesson’ you learned this year? You can't live life on cruise control... if you try, you're probably going to crash into a ravine.

17. What was the phone number you called most frequently this year? Either The Wife or Frank. Truth be told... probably Frank.

18. Describe one instant this year in which you were giddily, grinningly happy. The first day I ditched my interval training and just ran 5k without stopping -- and, more importantly, without anyone (or anything) chasing me.

19. What place, thing, person, creative outlet, etc. did you turn to when you needed cheering? During the last four months of the year? Food. That, of course, explains why I gained back a few of the many pounds I lost in 2009. For the record, food makes a poor source for lasting cheer.

20. What did you do this year you’d like to do more of in the future? Lose weight. I lost a bunch of it through the first half of the year and then gained a few pounds back. If I could lose the same amount in 2010 and not gain it back, I'd be perfect. (Well, at least according to that little chart at the doctor's office.)

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