January 1, 2020
Wow, another year gone. 2019 was a big one: I turned 50.
Professional highlights included a great conference of the NMS, the submission of a chapter for an upcoming Cambridge University Press book Norman Mailer in Context, Works and Days winning the Lucid Award, lots of great work done on Project Mailer and Wikipedia, and a potential shift that will likely have me back in the English department.
Personal highlights: Henry is growing up, and it’s mostly a joy to see. I started intermittent fasting to help with my weight that grows increasingly more difficult to control; it seems to be effective. I’ve been a regular at Orange Theory, so I’m doing HIIT about four times a week. I got a new (used) car that I really like. I started to be more financially responsible. I also read more for myself.
So that leads to the requisite resolutions. Let’s call them aspirations.
- Get back to mindfulness. When I regularly meditate, I think I’m a better person with a healthier outlook on the world. I want to get back to my reading and practicing Buddhist approaches to life. Don’t stress about that which I cannot control. The world is what it is, so stop being so negative and critical. This also includes being more present with my family, friends (like I have those), colleagues, and students. Get rid of distractions and clutter. Simplify my surroundings.
- Continue to be healthy. This includes OTF and intermittent fasting. I’m doing the latter today. Also, I want to cut the drinking way down. I think I’ll lay off the booze totally through January at least (I might try to go longer), and then only drink on Saturday. I think it’s mostly just a habit anyway. I really should just give it up, but I’m not sure I’m ready go there. Also, try to eat better.
- Make progress to eliminate debt. I will have my only credit card paid off by the summer, as well as our two iPhones. I might sell my motorcycle. Then I can snowball that money into paying off the car. I think by 2021, I can have a lot done here. In all, I have to stop making stupid financial decisions. Stop spending money on crap I do not need. Simplify.
- Continue to grow professionally. My research has been pretty solid lately, and I want that trend to continue. I have a chapter on Mailer’s short stories in the works for volume 13 of the Review and Lipton’s Journal already in the works. I also intend to continue to work on Wikipedia.
- Go somewhere. With my family. Somewhere I’ve never been. (We might already have this lined up.)
That’s about it. Nothing too groundbreaking, but definitely five challenging-but-doable goals. I’m going to try to also keep a daily journal again. I did OK last year, but I can do better.
Here’s to 2020!
And Henry drew me a robot today. We’ve been watching the current Star Wars movies. Can you see the influence?