January 01, 2012

this way madness lies

I've been doing this since 2004, and see no reason to stop.

1. What did you do in 2011 that you'd never done before?

I travelled a lot, to the point that I spent something like a solid month out of town. I had the same job at the end of the year that I had at the beginning, shot a bunch of weddings, got promoted twice, got a phone number over Twitter that turned into a texting crush that's since turned into a baffling/delightful relationship (albeit a long distance one,) I met someone else's parents as the boyfriend, mailed cookies all over the place, and started making serious exit plans.

2. Did you keep your new year's resolutions, and will you make more for next year?

get out of debt: partially
reduce the amount of clothing I own: yes.
wear clothing that would pass without comment any time in the last 60 years: not so much?

2012 is pretty simple: leave. the city, the closet, the nonsense.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?

4. Did anyone close to you die?
Thankfully, no.

5. What countries did you visit?
I went to Portland, once, but I also went to Montreal, Saltspring Island, Nanaimo, Kelowna, Montreal again, and then Toronto.

6. What would you like to have in 2012 that you lacked in 2011?
debt freedom, a Belleville address, fewer hours spent in flight.

7. What dates from 2011 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
montreal trip #1: bits of Nash, the Johnnies, exploring the city, jokes about daggering; constant furious texting.
valentines day, the godspeed concert two days after, the morning after the concert.
phone calls from fernie (the city), train trip to portland and all that entailed, weekend visits and seeing the Mountain Goats, sneaking out of post-reception madness in Nanaimo to see the dude, inadvisable three-day overnight greyhound trips (gigantic waffles! goats-milk gelato! being judged on hugs!) montreal trip #2 and seeing Wilco. A whirlwind tour of Toronto, seeing people I hadn't for far too long (Jess, Goh, Hayles, Jake,) and the growing realization that it was a place I could live.

also: all of the weddings.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
ten months of a long distance relationship, two promotions at work, eight weddings survived. Also I grew a sweet beard.

9. What was your biggest failure?
my debt load isn't as small as I'd like, somehow.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
not really?

11. What was the best thing you bought?
delegate fees to Nash 73 and a plane ticket to Montreal. honourable mentions: new phone, train tickets to portland, hot-wire.

12. Whose behaviour merited celebration?
They know who they are.

13. Whose behaviour made you appalled and depressed?
They know who they are, too.

14. Where did most of your money go?
debt, travel, wedding gifts, single malts.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
travel, concerts, Aidan.

16. What song will always remind you of 2011?
James Blake, "The Wilhelm Scream." or The National, "Wake Up Your Saints."

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:

a) happier or sadder? happier.
b) thinner or fatter? fatter, which I'm working on.
c) richer or poorer? richer; I got promoted twice.

18. What do you wish you'd done more of?
Admitting, working.

19. What do you wish you'd done less of?
waking up alone.

20. How will you be spending Christmas?
At home, getting ready for Boxing Day madness at work.

21. Did you fall in love in 2011?
yes. [insert expletives here] yes.

22. How many one-night stands?

23. What was your favourite TV program?
Community, Good Eats, Avatar: The Last Airbender. TV's not something I consume a whole lot of anymore.

24. Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year?
Nobody new.

25. What was the best book you read?
man I did not read nearly as much as I used to, but The Pale King is probably at the top of the list for obvious reasons. Photo-book-wise, I was surprised that Annie Leibovitz At Work was actually fairly informative, and I still want to make basically everything out of the Baked cookbook.

26. What was your greatest musical discovery?
I'd seen Wye Oak a couple of times previously, but I got my hands on the My Neighbour/My Creator EP and then Civilian, and they were both really, really good.
The Rural Alberta Advantage, while not new strictly speaking, acquired serious playtime, and somehow I left it until 2011 before getting into Elliott Smith.

27. What did you want and get?
I fell in love, found a viable-though-not-ideal career, and some technological bullshit.

28. What did you want and not get?
A little more freedom, knowledge that things will function at home in my absence.

29. What was your favourite film of this year?
Drive, since I didn't watch anything.

30. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
26; I went out on the Saturday after for dinner/karaoke/beers and then went to Portland with Aidan the week after that.

31. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
being able to find myself next to Aidan more frequently than once every six weeks.

32. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2011?
more cardigans, chambray, and fuck-you chinos, better ties, more texture.

33. What kept you sane?
I'm not really sure.

34. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
Tom Hardy, with Chuck Hughes (yes, the chef) a surprisingly strong second.

35. What political issue stirred you the most?
Occupy, SOPA/Access Copyright, Jack Layton's passing.

36. Who did you miss?
I ran into a lot of people I hadn't seen in a while via the eight weddings I attended and while part of the experience left me missing people, part of it also made me realize that we're not so much growing apart as we are carving our own ways, and that's actually pretty alright.

37. Who was the best new person you met?
Aidan's the obvious one here, and I can see him rolling his eyes as he reads this, so I'll exempt him for obvious reasons.

new kids: John Cameron and Emma Godmere from CUP, Camille and Calvin and Mike from work, Ginny from the Ubyssey, and Aidan's friends Jake, Ryan and Jess.
people I got in touch with again, which don't count as new per se but are noteworthy: A bunch of people in Toronto, Thor, Keltie, and my on again/off again nemesis Chris Berube.

38. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2011:
Twitter: who knew it would get you a boyfriend, a couple paying gigs, and a place to actually connect with friends?

39. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year:
the cities love is cold and the cities love is hard

locked into our veins from the first September's frost

January snap and the April winter thaw

rough and tumble summers underneath the midnight sun

— The Rural Alberta Advantage, Good Night


I'll make a living telling people what they want to hear

It's not a killing, but it's enough to keep the cobwebs clear

Cause it's not a perfect plan

It's not a perfect plan

But it's the one we've got.

— St. Vincent, Champagne Year

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