1. What did you do in 2008 that you’d never done before?
- Went to Lebanon (which also included: swimming in the Mediterranean Sea, seeing lots of awesome ruins and other sites, etc.)
- Saw my book in print.
- Applied for tenure and promotion and was recommended to receive it.
- Baked kolatchkies.
This year was to be the year of the F - Fitness, Finances, and Fun. Fitness? Not so great. Finances? I've paid off about 10K in credit card debt and by summer's end I'll have finished with that project. Who knew being a responsible adult could make a person feel so good? Fun? You know, I totally did have more fun in 2008. It's not like I did much special to make that happen, but because I was expecting fun, I feel like it kind of happened naturally. Note to self: must always expect fun and then it will materialize. And yes, I will be making more resolutions for this year. Nearly all will be fitness-related.
3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
No one especially close, though some babies have indeed been born.
4. Did anyone close to you die?
Two people in my department died suddenly, and my father and my uncle are terminally ill. 2008 is like the Year of Death. I'm hoping for a Year of Life in the '09.
5. What countries did you visit?
6. What would you like to have in 2009 that you lacked in 2008?
I think what I want most is for things to be less... up-and-down. I'm not saying that I'm seeking "balance" or something, because I think I've come to the point where I just don't believe such a thing is achievable. I think that we do the best we can, and that "balance" is not really possible if one is doing lots of things - something will have to give. BUT. I do think that not being over the moon and then dramatically in the depths of despair would be positive.
7. What dates from 2008 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
I totally suck with dates. This will be my stock answer in all coming years if I continue to do this meme on the blog. Because dude, I'm not a "memorable date" person.
8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Everything tenure-related. Also the paying down of debt.
9. What was your biggest failure?
I think that my biggest failure probably has to do with the fitness stuff. The first thing to go for me when things get overwhelming is any sort of self-care, and that is a definite failure. And this is the biggest thing on which I plan to focus in the coming year.
10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
11. What was the best thing you bought?
My Knives of Tenure! Oh, and also my new little car this June (although does that count since I've got a car pay't?)
12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
FB more than anybody. Sure, like anybody, he has his moments where he's less than fabulous, but he has been so patient with my crazy moods and so lovely both when things have been awful for me and when things have been great. He is absolutely stupendous and merits celebrations of all kinds.
13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
In the political world: Sarah Palin.
In my personal world: This sounds shitty, but my biological dad. I just wish that things were different between us, and they aren't, and likely never will be.
14. Where did most of your money go?
To evil credit card companies.
15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Seeing FB, Lebanon, the tenure letter, seeing the book in print.
16. What song will always remind you of 2008?
"Womanizer" by Britney Spears; "Skinny Love" by Bon Iver. (How's that for range?)
17. Compared to this time last year, are you:a) happier or sadder? b) thinner or fatter? c) richer or poorer?
a) happier b) the same c) richer.
18. What do you wish you’d done more of?
Taken better care of myself, in terms of the fitness crap.
19. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Cried. I hate crying. It's been one emotional fucking year.
20. How will you be spending Christmas?
I spent Christmas with mom and G., saw my sweet little 90-something Aunt Sis, visited with the Lebanese relatives, and had a quality night of wine-drinking with A. and J. All in all, a totally great Christmas.
21. Did you fall in love in 2008?
Did I fall in love? Well, no. But I've got lots of love, both coming in and going out. The falling in love question is a tough one, ultimately, if one isn't loving 'em and leaving 'em with relative frequency. Oh, but no! I did kind of fall in love! With Sweet Mr. Stripey!
22. How many one-night stands?
23. What was your favorite TV program?
Mad Men. Even though at first I thought it was diabolical and deeply misogynistic. I've got many thoughts about the show, some of which will be featured in a piece of Ridiculously Fluffy Scholarship that I plan to present at a conference this spring.
24. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
Nope. I'm not much of a hater, really.
25. What was the best book you read?
Hmmm. Let me see.... I read a lot of crappy (though enjoyable) books. Including the Twilight series. In the "best book" category, I'd probably put one of the following: Miss Webster and Cherif, The Map of Love: A Novel, and Martha Quest.
26. What was your greatest musical discovery?
Kings of Leon. Bon Iver
27. What did you want and get?
So many things. Visits with FB, going to Lebanon, my Knives of Tenure, the food mill and mandoline from my mom, lots of great conversations with friends, nice meals both cooked by me and out, great students, just lots of things. This was a year where I felt very lucky for lots of things in my life, even though there's also been a lot of crappy shit.
28. What did you want and not get?
Money for copyright permissions. Grrrr.
29. What was your favorite film of this year?
I don't know. I feel like this wasn't much of a movie year for me this year.
30. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I turned 34, and I don't think I really did much of anything, though I was happy just to chill since my summer was so jam-packed with things. I'm officially an old person :)
31. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
You know, my year was satisfying. Obviously there are always things that one might think of to add, but on the whole, this was not a year in which dissatisfaction reigned. The only thing that would have made it more satisfying I think would have been if the fitness stuff had gone better.
32. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2008?
Meh. And long sweaters.
33. What kept you sane?
34. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
Thomas Jefferson in the John Adams mini-series. And no, BFF, he is not your boyfriend. I don't care what you say. (Actually, nobody really stands out, though I did have quite the crush on that TJ for the weeks of the mini-series. I'm kind of over him now, though.)
35. What political issue stirred you the most?
The election. Duh.
36. Who did you miss?
BFF! Though actually, not very much because we talk as much now as we did when she lived here.
37. Who was the best new person you met?
All of the Lebanese relatives in Lebanon.
38. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2008.
Good friends make both the bad and the good better. It's not that I didn't appreciate my friends before this year, but this year really showed me how lucky I am to have the ones I've got. My friends are the absolute best.
39. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.
"I don't complain I got much to gain so they keep testing me
And I keep feeding their face
But they could go off and hit the road and what would I care
Hell I ain't going nowhere
I got the reigns and courage I was made of
And they've got fake love
So I know I must show it's my show
I must go with my soul"
- "McFearless" by Kings of Leon