[This is going to get long.]

Most years of this decade, I’ve done some kind of yearly wrap up on new year’s eve while waiting for it to get dark. This year, I’ve been browsing snippets from those wrap-ups/entries. I wasn’t quite blogging in 2000, but by 2001, the internetz started to know all my secrets…

Dec 29th, 2001 — I bought a house. It was a pretty lonely process.

“The phone echoing inside my head woke me up this morning. It was Joan saying the contract was signed. The house is mine.

I asked my father what my first word was today, when I happened to think of it. He replied, “*psht* I don’t remember. ‘Individuality’ perhaps.”

Guess I asked the wrong parent.

And now it’s time for some Johnnie Walker black label and Iron Chef the rest of the night.
Hibernation is where it’s at.”

December 26th, 2002 — I was in the process of leaving the engineering department…a terrifying decision.

“‘With your questionable GPA I’d doubt you could even transfer to another dept again…’
–advisor, Nov 2002

The last of my grades came in last night. Straight As. All hail my “questionable” gpa.


For this is the first time in my extended dance remix of a college career that I have ever done that.

So when you make Dean’s List, do lithe, young, strapping swedish men come to your house and cook you dinner and answer to your beck and call until the next semester? That’s what I was told.”

December 17th, 2003 — Was dating a guy that lived in London, and had happily little to say.

“Nick, stretched out, sound asleep on my couch. Both of our stomachs full of awesome pasta I whipped up.

Hockey on TV.

Full glass of red wine in my hand.

Fire in the fireplace.

Whush of the dishwasher in the background.

Huge stuffed godzilla he bought me today, out of the blue, on top of the TV. (I don’t think a guy has ever bought me anything, ever)




December 31st, 2004 — I had finally finished my degree. I lived with my best friend on the planet. I was making money hand over fist. But I had some serious S.A.D. that pretty much ruined everything.

“31. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you (optional)?
Durrrrrr….man I don’t remember. Uh…OH went to Blue Room and drank cheesy martinis with crew while Jarrett tried to start fights with metrosexuals. I was 24.

33. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2004?
Ann Taylor listens to Metal.
Note: this remains true.

34. What kept you sane?
Running til I puked. Whenever I could. (ok I never ACTUALLY puked)
…as does this.

December 25th, 2005 — I now lived in LA. I was still cranky. Or maybe that’s because I was back in DC for the holidays.

“I made it through the Christmas marathon that started Wednesday night and ended…right now. I’m hoping my throat is sore from being forced to talk constantly and drink heavily for the last 5 days straight, averaging 5 hours of sleep a night, and not because you motherfuckers gave me The Ebola.

…because I will find you. And cough on your NyQuil.

If one more person asks me what I’ve found different about LA, and how the traffic is, I may lose the ability to form coherent sentences. So here’s the answer, so you don’t have to ask:
‘Oh, it’s not that different. I live on the east side of things so it’s a lot like here and everywhere else. Yep, it was 70 degrees when I left. The traffic’s the same, it’s just a little more unpredictable. Yes, Glendale is between Hollywood and Burbank/Pasadena. No, it takes me about 30 minutes to get to work. Yes, they are a large international tax and accounting firm. Yes, like Ernst and Young. Yes, it’s nice to be back. No, I’m not going out tonight. I’d love some champagne. No, your child is a pain in the ass.

I think that covers everything.

Merry Christmas.”

December 21, 2006 — My job had hit a wall…..and damn, I missed home.

“Driving around downtown today after visiting Carrie at work, I realized I miss this city so much that it hurts sometimes. I miss the old Georgetown-style townhouses and the fact that no one’s wearing aviators on the street and the way the Jefferson looks from the bridges when it’s lit up at night. I miss the potomac and the cold and GU campus/cathedral on the skyline. I wonder if just quitting my job and moving into the 14th St corridor would have been enough.

But it’s important to leave where you’re born I suppose, if even just to know how good you had it. I’m by no means done with LA and in no hurry to leave. I would sorely regret not taking advantage of being so close to Portland, Seattle and Hawaii and even just the stuff LA has to offer. But I’m becoming more and more sure that eventually, I’ll be back.”
…still not back. Still miss it.

December 31st, 2007 — I remember ’07 as being incredibly emotionally dark, but full of great music, and a much better job.

“My Year in Music
Damn, this took me forever to put together. In the end it ended up being a top 13 in no particular order…

The National – Boxer
(beautiful, full-length listenable album from beginning to end.)

Saul Williams – The Rise and Fall of Niggy Tardust
(I think I’ve worn a hole in the CD.)

Calla – Strength in Numbers
(great album, also in the running for the best live show I saw all year.)

Interpol – Our Love to Admire
(sneer away critics, but I played the shit out of it.)

Digitalism – Idealism
(officially the summer ’07 jam)

Sage Francis – Human the Death Dance
(long, poignant, intricate, excellent.)

Radiohead – In Rainbows
(beautiful, period.)

Black Rebel Motorcycle Club – Baby 81
(a carving-through-traffic staple…the show was also a great time.)

Pharoahe Monch – Desire
(“And if I got it straight/shit would’ve been straight/cause after a couple of those, you start to relate.” “Bar Tap” and “What It Is” are among my favorite tracks of the year.)

They Might Be Giants – The Else
(this album is straight-up good times brilliant. See “The Cap’m.”)

The Chariot – The Fiancée
(Tied with P.O.S., Jesu/Isis, and Calla for show of the year. Thick, angry, perfectly balanced, rock yer f’n face off jams…Josh Scogin’s vocals are the best in the genre. PS: They’re playing The Ottobar in Baltimore Feb 17. GO.)

Jesu – Conqueror
(like getting punched in the face with a very heavy, very beautiful and intricate pillow of noise.)

El-P – I’ll Sleep When You’re Dead
(I have to admit I’ve played this album to death and have gotten somewhat sick of it, but that makes it no less a viable release for my year. Ya heard?)”

December 31st, 2008 — …weird, I really just….don’t have anything to say about ’08.

“1) Firsts this Year:
-unassited pull-ups (can I mention that again?)
-taking care of a dog completely on my own and keeping it alive, (mostly) happy, and not letting it eat any cats or squirrels. (“YOU ARE NOT READEEEE!”)
-Really, for real fearing losing my job…I’ve never worked for an employer going through layoffs. (The government…it does not fire people.)
-Choosing the important, meaningful Christmas over the fun, sexy one
-Dates AND bacon! BACON N’ DATES.
-Completing a 15k on a whim at the gym one night, for no reason whatsoever

8.) Bad Idea That Seemed Like A Good Idea At the Time
HA…multiple basketball happy hours on Wednesday and Thursdays that ended at 1AM instead of 8PM. Vegas last July…what a stupid clusterfuck. Many a drunk, antagonistic text.

20) Plans/Goals for Next Year

-More wing-women / assembling a wider crew of people willing to leave their houses for something other than a goth event
-More shows
-Beach vacation
-Less heartbreak, more record-break. 🙂 ”

I am proud to report I accomplished all of those things.

As for ’09, here we go:

1) Firsts this Year:
-blind dates (not a bad experience, but uh…no need to do it again.)
-Being sought out and consulted as a specialist in a work capacity. And being paid for it.

2) Song for 2009
This will take me weeks to decided. Will update later after thoroughly sifting through iTunes.

3) Movie for 2009
It Might Get Loud

4) Restaurant of the Year
*My* restaurant of the year? Palms Thai baby. Thai Elvis!

5) Book of the Year
The entire Sookie Stackhouse series. Like candy. I couldn’t stop.

6) TV Show of the Year
So You Think You Can Dance? 🙂 YEAH, RUSSELL!!!

7) Best Decision of the Year
Demanding and pursuing forward progress in my career architecture…that or my 5 day vacation in Oregon in October.

8.) Bad Idea That Seemed Like A Good Idea At the Time
Mexico. It was just too close to the OBX beach trip.

9) Best Relationship of 2009
How about best NEW relationship of ’09? My co-workers.

10) Most Memorable “WTF?” Moment of 2009
Michael Jackson. Or “we suddenly have to prepare for a parade for a basketball team by Monday”

11) Newcomer of the Year Award
http://www.paper-source.com (well, new to me)

(12-17 are unnecessary)

18) Low Point of the Year
The heat this summer was intolerable. Not getting back east for the holidays.

19) Biggest Change of the Year
Becoming dramatically more career oriented. Somewhat at the expense of my health…will balance that out for ’10.

20) Plans/Goals for Next Year
Better life structure. More senior title/responsibilities. A little more financial solvency. A heeyuge milestone birthday blowout. Taking a full two weeks off around Christmas.

21) High Point of the Year
The weeks around and right after Festival of Books were really good. But I think the winner is the week at the beach in North Carolina.

22) New Year’s Resolution(s)
No resolutions. Just do it!