Wednesday, December 31, 2008

"So now what?"

As the year draws to a close, and, well, some other things happen that have happened on December 31, 2008, I think back to some of the words in my life that pain me the most: "So now what?"

It's not important the negative meaning they have and the memories from May of 2004 that they bring with them, what's important is what I've done with them since.

I've taken it from: Well, now that it's over, what...; and I guess that's it; to: I've done all of this, so what's the next step? How can I better things?

And that's how I'm going to look at 2009. (As much as I hate to be reflexive on new years and birthdays, I guess it happens to all of us...)

I look at 2008: I conquered depression, I had the best academic semester of my life, I had my last -- and most successful -- year of camp, I started a podcast, I became an integral part of a 3-man production team in a long-term radio documentary project, I got them to hire me as a temp to PAY me for that work, I embedded myself in an office at school and got over $1,000 for the work I did with them that I would have done (and will continue to do) for free, I started a podcast, and so much more.

So now what? How can I make sure I only build on that?

I guess we'll soon find out! It all starts...


Year in Review -- in pictures!

Courtney did this last week and I absolutely loved it, so I'm stealing it!














I got promoted on my last day of work before the holiday break.

Sure it wasn't much -- from intern to, well, temp -- but it's something. (And from $8.50-$10 a DAY to $10/hour...that's a pretty good percentage!)

More than anything, it's nice to be appreciated. The promotion was followed by a toast with bubbley (clear, diet soda that was actually quite good!) and then lunch on the radio station at a Vietnamese restaurant. (Quite yummy, I must say!)

I guess this is the first step to getting real employment after graduation -- a paid job that I pay taxes on.

I guess this is what they call: moving up in the world...

Watching the Snow Fall

I went to bad last night (ok...3 in the morning...) knowing that I would wake up to a snow storm. (Ain't weather forecasts fun?)

I was disappointed when I woke up to no snow. (I woke up at 8; too early for the snow.)

But then when I went back to sleep and woke up again at 10:15, the snow was coming down in full-force with hefty winds behind it. I realized that I could watch this snow for hours on end.

Back in my days when I wrote all the time -- before I spent my creative energies on musical composition -- I would sit up at night and watch the snow fall in the aura of each streetlight and house lamp. No light, total blackness, but in the light, a sphere of white forms outlining the reach of each light, dancing in and out of visibility.

Yes each snowflake is different, but truth is, when they're put together, there are really only 3 or 4 different kinds of snow storms.

The first real snow of this season, though, was a fun one.

I was at work at WNYC. Very large flakes. Pringle-sized isn't a stretch. I came inside from buying my lunch and said to the associate producer I work with, "Noel; look at how huge those flakes are!"

So he, Courtney (a producer for Radio Rookies), and I stood at the window and watched. It was as if we'd never seen snow, yet we are from Colorado, Minnesota, and Massachusetts respectively. We clearly know from our share of snow.

I guess it wasn't the snow that caught us but rather the nostalgia that comes with snow for us. I'm sure we all had our own memories of snowball fights and snow forts and snow men and catching snowflakes on our tongues -- a pastime I tried on my walk home from work that night, not remembering how truly hard it is.

Or maybe it's just because it was beautiful...

Holiday Season

This year, the holiday season came way too early. I do not want to hear Christmas music on November 1. I do not want to walk through Little Italy and be wished a Merry Christmas in lights above the street (in Italian, no less) on October 29. I do not want to see Santa in the TimeWarner center on October 20.

I'm not a curmudgeon, though; I promise. On December 1, I like it all.

The music is contagious -- for better or worse -- and there is nothing more amazing than the smell of trees being sold on the corner. (Okay -- maybe one thing: the look of the street-corner tree-stores after a light snow.)

But the best thing about the holiday season is that no matter when it starts, it always has a set end-date: January 2.

And we all know that the best thing about a tunnel -- even a cheer-filled and song-infested one -- is the light at the other end.

Welcome back, normal life. I missed you. (Though I will miss that tree smell...)

Visiting Camp

In my week on the Cape, I went into camp. I walked around and saw the new pool and new archery range. On the one hand, the range is too close to society and will no longer be a recluse for my successor and their staff and kids. On the other, I'm incredibly jealous that whoever comes after me will get to shape this range in his (or her) image and set things up in a way that will leave a physical mark on the camp in ways that I never had the opportunity.

In the hour-and-a-half (ish) that I was there, I must have been offered a job 10 times. And with every offer, it got harder to say that I can't. (Partially because I am scared of "real life" employment and the prospect of real-life UNemployment, and partially because I miss it terribly and cannot imagine what it will be like without having camp in my life.)

Yes, home is where the teddy bear is, but home is also where you're name is written 10 times in various color markers and bright orange spray-paint in an archery shed.

I can't wait to go home for another visit...

Winter Sky

I just spent a week in relative seclusion on Cape Cod. I've spoken before about how much I love that place, even specifically getting into the sky before. But there is something about the Cape Cod night sky in the dead of winter that is even more amazing.

The wind howls -- even more than in the warmer months -- and yet the air has a calmness to it. Everything is peaceful and the feeling of being both part of something greater, integrated in to the world around you and being the ruler of the domain around you is unparalleled when more people are around.

I had hoped for snow that didn't come until I left, yet it's probably better that way; I have no shovel there to dig my car out in the event of snow. But wind, a large Christmas tree, and incredibly stars were more than enough.


I'm get to 100 posts on the year. (This post brings me to 93.)

That was a goal I set out for myself in June. If you count my Blog by SMS posts, I'm there already. But I'm only going to count that if I can't make it there today. (I may backdate if I finish by 3 am on the 1st...don't tell.)

But since that doesn't count as a legit post to me, I'm now going to talk about goals and resolutions.

I made a resolution a few years ago never to make New Years Resolutions again. It's the only one I've ever kept -- and even exceeded my own expectations on.

Tom tried to get me to make one last night to perform this year more in public. A nice goal that I can get behind, but I will not resolve to it for a new years resolution.

I was speaking about resolutions last night with Elisa last night, and she mentioned a resolution to be happy. To me, that's not a New Years Resolution, it's a daily resolution. I wake up every morning and tell myself that I'm going to do my best to be as happy as I can be. It's a lofty goal sometimes. And it's work sometimes.

It would be easy to give up on it and stay in bed on days when it is real work, but where's the fun in that?!

So yeah -- no resolutions for me, at least not of the 12-month variety. I'll stick with taking it one day at a time.

(And one blog post at a time! 7 more!)

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Gargling Geshwin

This is probably the great thing I've ever seen...

it's from the Star Wars episode of the Muppet Show. (Season 4, Episode 17)

Friday, December 12, 2008

Winter on Cape Cod Bay

I'm going up to Cape Cod for Christmas -- since, hey, Jews can get Chinese food and watch a movie anywhere, right? But I'm looking forward to it.

I've been on the cape in the winter only a few times, but one of them was during a blizzard, and I hope that happens this year. Why? well, let me paint you a picture...

Low tied on Cape Cod Bay, the water is nowhere to be found for 2 miles except for small streams here and there between the sand bars. When it snows, everything that is sand is pure white, everything that is water is pure black. So under moonlight, the snow glows in a way that almost requires sunglasses with these streams of complete nothingness running between them with the undertones of waves in the distance echoing from miles off splashing against rocks -- small bay waves, a small hush of ebb and flow, not ocean waves of crash and boom.

Just thinking about it makes me smile...

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Recipe for Success

I'm editing poems for poetry class and someone int he class wrote one "how to make friends." I got excited that I was going to read a recipe. (He didn't write a recipe.) But it caused me to write this:


A Recipe for Success

One-half cup of softened butter
Two squares of baking chocolate
One cup of sugar
Eggs, Flour, Salt, baking powder
Mild contempt and impatience
Drive, determination,
One-half cup of miniature chocolate chips
in a 9-by-9 square pan.

Don't over bake.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Blog by SMS

So after my philosophical discussion by text message, I decided it would be fun to blog by SMS, as well.

So I am.

Blog by SMS

For when I feel the urge to post some kind of short thought.