Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Good Riddance

Looks like I started this blog just in time for the requisite New Year's post. I don't know about you, but I'm seriously glad to see the dust of 2007 in my rear view mirror. It seems to have been an overall crappy year for a lot of people, myself included. Not uniformly bad, but coated by a layer of extra-glossy suck that permeated the whole thing.

I'm going to attempt to exorcise 2007 from my psyche by writing about it. Maybe once it's out on the page, it won't be infecting my morale as much.

These are some of the bad things that happened this year:
  • My mother was diagnosed with breast cancer this year. She had a lump and several lymph nodes removed, and is currently undergoing chemo and will soon be doing radiation therapy. Breast cancer is one of the most recoverable cancers, as I understand, and two of her sisters have successfully made it through. Still, the chemo is very hard on her, and she has some very bad days. But we're hopeful. This is one of the reasons we're moving - to be close to her and the rest of my family. To be able to help, and just to be there and spend time with them.
  • In September, we lost our very special cat, Grau. He was at the vet for a routine dental cleaning, and he had to have a few teeth removed. Apparently his heart stopped while coming out of the anesthesia. He was only seven years old. We were really devastated by this. He was about the most interactive and affectionate cat I've ever seen. We miss him tremendously.
  • Nobody assassinated impeached Bush and company yet. What do these criminals have to do to get some repercussions? I thought once the Democrats took over Congress we'd see some action, but they're too impotent to do anything. (OK, that's all the political stuff you'll hear from me.)
  • The less said about work, the better.
As I mentioned, it wasn't all bad. We did have some great times this year. These are some of the good things that happened:
  • Anne and I went on a Goth Cruise in October for our anniversary. This was probably the most awesome vacation I've ever been on. Imagine piling two hundred of your best friends on a ship and cruising around the Caribbean with DJ dance parties every night and a private VNV Nation concert. The best part was, we hadn't met any of these people before, and we came away with dozens of new friends from all parts of the country. Simply amazing. It was really fun scaring the straights. We've already signed up for next this year.
  • To help us get over the loss of Grau, we adopted a new kitten from the shelter. Yes, he's also all grey, but his hair is longer. And he has several extra toes, which make his paws look like baseball mitts. His name is Zwei, being the second grey cat. He's simply adorable - playful, affectionate, curious and fearless. It only took a few days to get him used to the other cats (and vice versa). Very quickly he and Schnurr became best friends, which is really nice, because Schnurr had been moping and whining around the house since Grau died.
Part of what got me through the train wreck that was 2007 was hope. There are some big changes coming down the pike, which I am so ready for.

Some things I'm looking forward to in 2008:
  • Anne and I are moving from California to Pennsylvania in February. We're looking forward to that for many reasons. Not only will we have a huge new house on lots of land with a very low mortgage, but we will be minutes away from my parents and sister, and within an hour or two of lots of other family and friends. We will certainly miss our friends here in CA, but we think this is going to be a very good move.
  • My sister his having her second baby at the end of January. Her first daughter, Alyssa, is five going on six, and I hardly know her, seeing as how I only see her once a year, if that. I'm going to remedy that once we move. We're going to be the cool aunt and uncle that the kids want to hang out with (at least until they're teenagers, then all adults are uncool, right?).
  • Something's going to happen with work, one way or another, this year. Here's hoping it's good.
I've never been one for New Year's resolutions. Mostly it was because I was lazy. But now it's more that I don't feel the need to wait for the new year to set goals for myself. I have an ongoing To Do list, which keeps track of my goals. But, this is a good opportunity to put some of these out there for everyone to see, and to reinforce them in my head. So here are some of my resolutions:
  • One reason I started this blog is so that I can practice writing more. I've been trying to work on my writing for a couple years now, with limited success. I don't think we have many readers at neozaz.com, and if we do, we don't have much of a feedback mechanism, so sometimes it's like sending stuff out into a black hole (which is fine - we're mostly doing that website to amuse ourselves, anyway). I'm hoping that if people start reading this blog and posting comments, I'll be encouraged to keep writing.
  • I've been working on increasing my programming skills for a few months now, and I want to step it up in '08. I have some projects I'm working on, including an iPhone-targeted web app. My goal is to get it to a state where I feel good submitting it to one of the online repositories, like sourceforge or even Apple's iPhone web app site.
  • In general, I want to become more of a producer, and less of a consumer. For most of my life, I've consumed: TV, movies, books, websites, etc. I don't want to be that passive anymore. We got rid of cable TV this year, and it was the best thing we ever did. Now we watch DVDs if anything, and the lack of advertising alone is worth the change. Of course, now I've got an RSS feed list a mile long. Need to avoid getting sucked into that.
  • Relationships. All relationships take work, and even more so if you are separated by great distances. I want to improve my relationships with my family (hence the move), friends (another reason I started this blog), and most especially Anne. We've had a stressful first few years of marriage, due to various things, and I would like to work on improving the situation.
So that's my year-end wrap-up, cat pictures included (as required by section 15 sub-paragraph J of the official Intarweb content rules). What about you? How was 2007 for you? Do you have any resolutions?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I'm glad you're writing in an area with a better feedback mechanism. Also I just have it on my list to check now so that's all easy.

Now go get producing!