I got my hair pinked up a few weeks ago. I like how it turned out. It’s fun having long hair, for the most part, but I get tired of hair being in everything all over my house. It’s not something that is well-known about me, but I don’t have long hair because it’s my perfect style choice (I think this one might be), and I don’t have long hair because I am lazy, I basically have long hair because the get-a-haircut? decision tree is too complex and fraught with peril for me, so it’s easier just to grow it out. I live my life with intention in so many ways, but not this one.
I’m sure everyone has these little quirks about some part of their personality, this one is mine. I manage my anxiety pretty well most of the time. I decided that since this haircut decision paralysis is true about me, I may as well rock the long hair I have stuck myself with. Even that took almost a year of planning and preparation. Not preparation like psyching myself up, more like finding the right place, making sure it didn’t cost too much, making an actual appointment (thank you Bliss Salon for letting me do this over Facebook) and then getting my ass there, describing what I wanted (this is close, I was looking for something more orangey, they didn’t have that and I am still a little bent out of shape about it) and sitting in a chair talking to a (very nice!) stranger for hours.
When I used to do the MetaFilter Podcast with both Josh and Matt, we’d often spend the first five or ten minutes of every pre-tape session just bullshitting about either how much we hated Skype or how much we hated getting haircuts. It’s a thing I weirdly miss about the three of us getting together, feeling like the normative state of at least one community was “Oh yeah, haircuts amirite??”
I do have a few other internet friends who feel like I do, one of them encouraged me to write this.
Last year I spent a lot of time away from home but it wasn’t great for travel per se. I spent nearly two solid month’s at my mom’s place before and after she died. I can’t quite say that I enjoyed it, but being in one place, in that place, was useful for me. 2018 is going to be a year of less travel I think. I’ve got two airplane trips planned and I’m not planning to add any more.
Here are all the places. Seven states. Three provinces. Stars indicate multiple visits to the exact same place. Past years: 2016, 2015, 2014, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 2007, 2006, 2005.
- Niceville FL – a great way to kick off the year with some sunshine and friendly librarians
- Cambridge MA* – Deb’s place is always good for the soul
- Toronto ON – a weird AirBnB and a great visit
- Toronto ON – Gabe’s duplex was a better resting place
- Stow MA* – chilling post-Superbowl at Kate’s
- Westport MA* – planned to spend more time here than I actually did
- Montreal QC – a catsit and a trip that was supposed to be a vacation with Jim
- Crystal City VA – a fun library conference and a chance to see a lot of library friends
- Washington DC – MeFites put me up and showed me the town, so lovely
- Brooklyn NY* – wound up here twice, the couch is fine but the love is great
- Brooklyn NY – hamsters!
- Weir’s Beach NH – Fun Spot was one of the year’s highlights
- Cambridge MA – another catsit, another funny little bed
- Concord NH – I spent a lot of time sleeping not far from home
- Boxboro MA* – moved in and did not leave for a while
- Edmonton AB – a great conference center
- Edmonton AB – the swank apartment of an old family friend
- Baraboo WI – place was as weird as it seems but the conference was grand
- Saratoga Springs NY – Liked this Hilton, loved this conference
I came home from the annual New Year’s Eve Party with a sore throat and it’s now the 4th and I’ve been dressed for about four hours of 2018. On the mend though, today I am just pretending it’s a snow day even though the weather has been fine. No bomb cyclone here. Working on my end-of-the-year lists.
I got a physical which says that, despite my high level of health anxieties, I am fine. Cholesterol is a little high. Mammograms always require an alarming do-over before getting the all-clear. I’ve got some grief weight to lose. The weird shoulder pain I’ve been having went away entirely when I quit sitting at my desktop computer all day.
I’m going to put my new calendar up today (I get them from NeuYear and they are quite good) and that will probably be it. Everything I thought was going to be a hassle about the holiday season in this Complicated Year really was not. I often feel like I’m coasting when things mostly work, like somehow I’m not working hard enough at being alive, that there’s some harder work I should be doing. This year, I’m just trying to take it as it comes to me, if at all possible. I’m dialing back on my travel (only going to Toronto and Hawaii this year as far as airplanes go) and ramping up on my back-burnered projects. Every year I pick a word or two to be my little re-centering mantra a quickie reminder of the things I want, or that I want to work for. The past few years have been FREEDOM, ANTI-RACIST, LET THIS DAY BE GOOD. This year I’m working from a few angles. My word is WAY, for three reasons
- Get out of my own WAY. (i.e. take myself out of spaces where I don’t need to be, stop tossing up obstacles to things I want)
- Find a WAY. (work on goals not problems, I’m a constant problematizer which is great for troubleshooting, less great for life)
- Give things aWAY. (self-explanatory, I am starting with this little stack of old iPhones I have)
Simple. Three letters. Attainable by me. Best wishes for whatever you’re trying to get out of this year, may it be easier for us than last year was.