doldrum two step

flowers in the window

Some times of the year I feel pretty unexcited about my lack of progress in various things. This time of year it feels like a huge success to just be treading water in place or quite possibly taking tiny incremental steps towards getting some things accomplished. A lot of the people around me have a tough time in the short days of the new year and I feel slightly guilty just being able to say that I’m not in my own personal doldrums.

Some small accomplishments

  • Made a little video of the birds in the snow
  • Kept all my current plants alive.
  • Went out snowshoeing, twice, and got tuckered out each time.
  • Reorganized the shelf of shame on my bookshelf where I’d just been tossing stuff that didn’t belong elsewhere.
  • Ditto the Closet of Boxes which is now empty.
  • Got my copyedits in on time and mostly complete. The incomplete part was all my fault and a technology error. Oh my!
  • Got some headshots taken which has convinced me that I need some sort of haircut. There are a few examples on Flickr (me, me and Jim)
  • Got to the gym once and realized I may not have been running since late September.
  • Got a boomerang in the mail. This is not an accomplishment but pleases me just the same.

That’s the short report. Writing a little blah blah thing here was also on my “to do” list, now completed.

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.