rockinlibrarian: (Default)
[Note: I started writing this yesterday, so the dates don't line up. So you should think of this paragraph beginning as "YESTERDAY morning." I'm not going to change it because I'm just like that]

This morning, just before I woke, I was having what seemed at first glance to be a remarkably realistic dream: I sat down to write for you all a yearly-retrospective blog post,* and the date was even today's date-- how often do dreams actually get the date right, let alone remember that this is also the birthdate of one of my best college friends and J.R.R. Tolkien, which it also acknowledged? Good calendar-following, subconscious. "I am sitting in a lovely new house," I typed-- it was, it was gorgeous, and there was a game room and a Jacuzzi and the kitchen was large and warm and homey-- "and I've just discovered an extra bag of Sarris' pretzels I had no idea we had. That about sums it up: 2011 was a pretty good year."

In the light of morning-- or the twilight of near-morning in January, when before the sun had even risen I'd already had my morning journaling interrupted by a small girl wailing about an ear infection and a call from the husband warning me that the roads were awful and I'd need to plan ahead to make sure the driveway was clear before attempting to take small girl to the doctors'-- this dream was utterly puzzling. 2011 a good year? Really? Off the top of my head I would have called 2011 a pretty Sucky year, seeing that I spent over half of it in various degrees of depression and pretty much nothing got accomplished. For the most part, listing what was great about 2011 seems primarily listing the stuff that at least didn't go wrong. We have water. We're all relatively healthy. We're not starving. We're not living in a war zone. No one I cared about died tragically... except Diana Wynne Jones and the unborn child I only knew about for three days... but that tips us precariously toward the "things that outright Sucked about 2011" side of the issue, and certainly isn't helping me figure out what my subconscious was thinking by "pretty good."

So how was what, at first glance, was a pretty crappy year pretty GOOD instead? THIS IS AN IMPORTANT EXERCISE IN POSITIVE THINKING. We'll start with a biggie: the Beautiful New Library. The Beautiful New Library for which I now work COMPLETELY in the children's and young adults departments, my specialty. For which I am now IN CHARGE of the YA collection! Why, this summer I ran delicious teen cooking programs and introduced elementary-school kids to the joys of gory fairy tale retellings! If we ignore the stresses from confused job duties, and the juggling of child care, and juvenile delinquents on my watch, that's a pretty good thing, is it not?

On the homefront, my son started preschool and appears to be thriving. My daughter got herself potty-trained which means I NEVER HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT DIAPERS AGAIN.

And while I'm inclined to put my writer's block on this year's list of Suckiness, the objective truth is I've actually written more THIS year than I did LAST year. Granted, most of that was journaling, and most of that journaling was whining about how I'm too tired to journal. But I did have a bit of fun writing to prompts for awhile, and actually, the twenty-some pages of Pipeweed Mafia Saga I managed to squeeze out (while completely useless and Utterly Wrong in an able-to-share-with-the-world sense, and I've had TWO separate episodes halfway done for months without finishing) were SO much fun to write and in the end brought me so much insane joy-- and I honestly think I MAY be able to turn them into something useful, someday, if I can figure out a way to not tie them so closely to real people, movies, and books (though SOMEHOW I have to keep the Aslan-in-a-Bucket. I MADE MYSELF A DATABASE OF CONTEXTLESS ASLAN QUOTES just to help me write the Aslan-in-a-Bucket. That's dedication for a story that only one other person has ever read), I think that may be one of the highlights of the whole year. It made Andy Serkis admitting his pipeweed problem in the latest Hobbit production video THAT MUCH MORE HILARIOUS (Oh, I have done such horrible fictional things to Andy Serkis. This is why the Saga is not fit for public consumption). Speaking of, HOBBIT TRAILER! Definitely among the year's Awesomeness. Also all the trailers and clips released for Sherlock Series 2! Okay, basically anything I saw this year starring Martin Freeman. Or, just him, period. Definitely part of the Awesomeness of the year, and the Awesomeness of the universe in general for his existence, though the universe is not so Awesome for refusing to acknowledge that we are Soul Mates. Stupid universe. (It's debatable whether having the World's Hugest Stupidest Crush on a movie star is Awesome or Sucky in and of itself, though). *AHEM*

Speaking of Awesomeness Achieved Through Movie Trailers, we'd be amiss not to mention OMG THE HUNGER GAMES TRAILER, which is impossible to refer to without tagging that "OMG" onto the front. Perhaps I'm setting myself up for a Sucky Birthday 2012 (I've decided to celebrate my birthday a week early by going to the movies. Who wants to go with me? We'll make it a PARTY) by getting my EXPECTATIONS SO TOTALLY BLOWN OUT OF PROPORTION, but as far as 2011 was concerned... dude. Did I mention I COULDN'T GET MY HEARTRATE DOWN FOR FOUR HOURS AFTER WATCHING THAT TRAILER?! And yes, that's evidence of "Awesomeness" not "Suckiness" in this case.

Though that brings us back to the subject of books, which has been a freakishly Sucky subject for me this past year. Not that the books were Sucky, just my ability to enjoy them was. But there were SOME moments of glorious book-loving, so we'll be sure to mention Those Good Times here, too.

Of course the Awesomest book-related event of the year was probably Michelle Cooper sending me an autographed, personalized book. From Australia. For no reason other than she thinks I'm Awesome. This actually has been a fun year for interacting with authors, period. Partly this is the result of Twitter. Hmm, Twitter. Where can I put you on the Awesome-to-Sucky continuum? On the one hand, you are so dang addictive. On the other hand... you are so dang addictive. *AHEM AGAIN*

But this reminds me that I have made a lot of very nice online friends-or-at-least-acquaintances this past year-- particularly [ profile] elouise82, @easyqueenie, and @beckiezra. The Internet is nice in the Virtual Friendship department, and it has been very nice indeed this past year.

Finally... I got awesome Christmas presents. Is this worth listing? Probably. Whatever it takes to highlight the Pretty Goodness of 2011.

So in the end, this is a rather long list of decent-to-Awesomeness found in 2011. And whatever the true Awesomeness value of the past year, it's this NEXT year that matters, anyway. And we all know that, at least on this blog, 2012 will be a VERY GOOD YEAR INDEED, because it's THE YEAR OF THE TESSERACT!!!!! I'm halfway done with next week's post, and I do believe it rocks. At least, I think it rocks. And if I am the only person who actually enjoys The Year of the Tesseract, well... I WILL HAVE THOROUGHLY ENJOYED MY YEAR.

So all is well. Have a Virtual Sarris' pretzel.

*(Do you remember when every year people would post a survey that was supposed to be your yearly retrospective post? I miss surveys, but looking at this one it's clear what I have done here is a much more interesting and productive retrospective. Who really needs me to waste space on how I continued to not hate people and have no one-night stands?)

Date: 2012-01-04 08:42 pm (UTC)From: [identity profile]
Sarris pretzels!!!!! Wantwantwantwantwant. I think I may have a few of the solid little chocolate Christmas balls hiding out in the kitchen, but now I *really* want a pretzel.

oh, and Happy New Year! ;-)

Date: 2012-01-05 12:14 am (UTC)From: [identity profile]
When I linked to the pretzel page, I realized that the bag in my dream was at least twice the size of the real bags. AND in the dream I already HAD two bags from Christmas, this was just an ADDITIONAL bag I found! So I have LOTS of imaginary pretzels I can share with you!

Never mind the imaginary part.

Date: 2012-01-05 03:28 pm (UTC)From: [personal profile] sal_amanda
sal_amanda: (Default)
I read this originally last night, but just wanted you to know that I was watching the pilot of Freaks and Geeks while reading it. :)

Date: 2012-01-05 05:58 pm (UTC)From: [identity profile]
Gah, I want to click "Like." Stupid Facebook habits.

I was probably watching episode 4 or 5 while you were doing that! I can't get over how Real Person-like all the characters in that show are. The fact that many of them have gone on to bigger and more famous things sometimes breaks the illusion, though it's more like "Hey, doesn't that kid look like James Franco? Oh wait."

Date: 2012-01-05 06:52 pm (UTC)From: [personal profile] sal_amanda
sal_amanda: (Default)
I was just commenting to John last night about how that show wound up launching some major careers.

Date: 2012-01-05 10:51 pm (UTC)From: [identity profile]
I admit I had trouble in the months leading up to the new Muppet movie trying not to think of Jason Segel as "Nick."

On the other end of the Famous Faces spectrum, I read an awesome interview a few months back with the guy who played Bill. He's had a pretty good career since, but as none of his new characters look ANYTHING LIKE Bill, it would be hard to spot 'im. But he sounded like a pretty awesome guy.

Date: 2012-01-05 06:42 pm (UTC)From: [identity profile]
Okay, so I had to COMPLETELY STOP the Hobbit production video because I was laughing too hard at Andy Serkis. For all of you Amy fans out there, just trust me when I say that I wish you all could be as priveleged as I am to read the Saga of the Pipeweed Mafia (not to mention also get to be a major character and have my own ASLAN-IN-A-FREAKING-BUCKET, which I fervently hopes makes it beyond the sphere of fiction-about-me-read-only-by-me). And what have I ever given Amy in return (besides some terrible sonnets, the shared experience of eating bananas given to us by a priest on a train to Krakow [true story], and run-on comments plagued by too many parentheses)? I love this girl.

Date: 2012-01-05 10:52 pm (UTC)From: [identity profile]
And I love YOU for your too many parentheses! And the fact that I have warped your perceptions of Andy Serkis forever AND YOU'RE HAPPY ABOUT IT!

Date: 2012-01-11 08:17 pm (UTC)From: [identity profile]
Oh, silly me forgot to say: I am totally in on the Hunger Games Birthday Movie Extravaganza (since your birthday is only two weeks before mine, it counts for me too)! Let's make a plan!

Date: 2012-01-12 12:23 am (UTC)From: [identity profile]
YES! Megan (nee Dunlap) wants to go, too, we can allow her even though her birthday is in December. I think Liz would also want to be in on it (regardless of birthday), but haven't heard from her. That's everyone who lives in the general area who might be interested, I think. Will cross that bridge in March!


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