the hazy blur of the brand new day

Usually this space at about this time is the Mystery Hunt wrap up where I talk about all the stuff we did and how we still didn’t come in first place anyhow. This time is no different except I was less helpful than usual. For some reason — planetary alignment, bad juju, overconfidence — instead of being a rock-solid team member for the Codex gang, I was struck down early with “I don’t feel so good.” I headed back to my sister’s house on Saturday evening via a subway ride I barely remember. I helped her move some stuff around at her place (inhaling nasty attic gasses) and then headed speedily and feverishly back to Vermont Sunday evening in order to teach a few in-service classes at the high school on Monday. The puzzle hunt didn’t end until late late Sunday night/Monday morning. We came in second, again. It was not my best planned weekend. As 2009 goes, it’s certainly been the worst.

I taught two classes on Monday which went pretty well and then came home and crashed and have been sleeping pretty much on and off since then, watching my fever eke down from 100.9 to 99.2. It’s now Wednesday lunchtime. I’m mostly awake. At about 9:30 pm last night water started to come through the roof of my bedroom and puddle on the floor. I don’t quite understand the mechanics of ice dams except that they can be relied upon to inflict distress at the least convenient times. I called my landlady, moved my bedding into the living room, and went quickly from the “woe is me” outlook to the “this is so over the top it’s approaching comedy” perspective. As someone said as I was mentioning this in my facebook status “If a raccoon gets in your house, then you’ve got all three acts covered.” Indeed.

I slept through the Inaguration and all of the attendant hubub, though I managed to read Obama’s speech and a lot of running Twitter commentary. I know he’s the president, the rest is details. I know many people are having a worse January than I am. I can feel the dull thuds of the guy knocking the ice off the roof and I’m thinking now might be the time to go down to the post office and see what else has been happening in the world outside of my rainy treehouse.

the secret is not to breathe


One of my pseudo-resolutions was not really to update this any more than I generally do. Once a week, maybe more if something big is happening. And yet, I feel that I’m really trying to avoid BIG things to the extent that I can. Last night it snowed. This morning I was out on the porch getting birdseed and noticed the snowflakes were big, and all their little points were visible. Neat! Grab the camera!

I also haven’t done the booklist update yet, I’m still in a bit of denial about the precipitous decline of my book reading last year. The swim update got eaten by the hard drive crash, but I’m swimming more at a maintenance level than a “get across the lake” level and that’s okay by me. I went to a MetaFilter meetup in Barre last night and checked out a cool brewery only to learn that it was closing that evening. I haven’t been out to see a band that wasn’t Jim’s in a long time.

This coming weekend is the Mystery Hunt and my massive team is slated to win. I have complicated matters by signing up to teach an in-service day in Vermont on MLK Day which is not a good start to what I’m hoping will be a less-complicated 2009. Then I have a weekend off. Then I go to Toronto where my MeFi couch surf got disrupted by my friend’s landlord selling his place. Know anyone with a comfy guestroom in Toronto? This is a money-solveable problem, so I’m not in a jam, but it would be nice to stay with humans not with hospitality corporations.

my year in cities and towns, 2008

Places I stayed in 2008. Again, I’m heading in an upward direction. I think this will change this year. However I said that last year. Here’s a picture and a list. Here’s the list for 2007 of places I stayed that were not my house. As before, stars indicate multiple visits to the exact same place. Numbers indicate number of distinct guestrooms at each location. I started adding the photos to the map, but I sort of gave up. Seems a little weird to geolocate my friends’ houses and it’s a LOT of places. Back of the envelope calculations are 106 or so nights away from home, though many of them happened the month or so when I was moving. 2007, 2006, 2005

[all the guestrooms I stayed in, in 2008]

Bethel, VT (early 2008 home)
Randolph, VT (late 2008 home)

Manchester, NH *
Somerville, MA (2) *
San Francisco, CA (2)
Boxboro, MA *
Montreal, QC
Austin, TX
East Lansing, MI
Amherst, MA *
Regina, SK
Latham, NY
Saratoga Springs, NY
Burlington, VT (2)
Lacrosse, WI
Randolph, VT
Westport, MA *
Farmington, CT
Los Angeles, CA
Anaheim, CA (2)
Portland, OR
Washington DC
Ballson, VA
Braintree, VT
Belmont, MA *
Kittery, ME
Hoboken, NJ
East Village, NY
Canton, NY
Sacramento, CA
Marquette, MI (2)
Damariscotta, ME
North Chelmsford, MA
Lawrence, KS
Overland Park, KS
Hayesville, KS
Manitou Springs, CO
Denver, CO
Albany, NY

what 2009 means to me

A day late and a few words short. I was snowshoeing. New Years wrap-ups will be late this year. I do have a few resolutions which can be summed up easily.

1. The internet neither smells nor tastes like anything. Make up for this by making the rest of the world smell and taste awesome [this is a nice way of saying cook at home more and get in the shower more and make sure the kitchen doesn’t smell like compost and the bedroom doesn’t smell like socks]
2. Have people over more often, otherwise there’s no point in a nice apartment because I’d be just as happy in a box under a bridge most days.
3. Save receipts, don’t become an IRS statistic. Otherwise travel more, charge more, be more awesome
4. You like that boyfriend, make an effort to keep him around, Rainman.

What’s your New Year bringing you?