The End of the Year Meme

Boosted, lovingly, from Kizz.

1. What did you do in 2008 that you’d never done before?
I taught at a “real” university, as opposed to a tiny community college – and found it quite to my liking!  I met four blog friends in real life.  I visited Alabama.  I had a cyst and two wisdom teeth removed.  I went on a whale watch where I actually saw whales!

2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?

I made a list of 108 things for 2008 – I’ve not checked the list lately, though, so I’m not sure how I did.  I’ve changed my attitude about new year’s resolutions, though, and while I’ll be trying to be mindful of establishing and maintaining good habits, I don’t think I’ll issue a formal list this year.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?

No, and given that most of my friends are in their forties, I’m thinking that’s just as well.

4. Did anyone close to you die?


5. What countries did you visit?

I’ve not left the country since Mr. Chili and I visited Bermuda in ’94.

6. What would you like to have in 2009 that you lacked in 2008?

A permanent teaching gig, even if it is part-time.

7. What dates from 2008 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?

I have events rather than dates, though Labor Day weekend will be recalled fondly for many years to come.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?

I kicked ass as a college professor.  I completed my fellowship at the Holocaust center.  I completed a 200 hour yoga certification.

9. What was your biggest failure?

I can’t bear full responsibility for them, but a couple of my friendships tanked this year.  In each of them, the other party chose to terminate the relationship, and I know that I have no control over the decisions of others, but I wish it would have been otherwise.  All those doors are only closed on their sides, though; I remain open and unlocked.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?

Not really.  Aside from being laid up around my birthday last year with a back strain, a nipped-in-the-bud case of shingles, and a minor cold or two here and there, I was remarkably healthy this year.

11. What was the best thing you bought?

I bought Mr. Chili a camera for Christmas this year.

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?

I’m going with Kizz’s answer here; anyone who voted.  Additionally, I celebrate the people who go out into their world and practice kindness and compassion and work to make their little corner a safer, more welcoming place.  Great things don’t have to be huge things.

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?

Anyone who used the election season as a reason to treat others poorly.  People who don’t recognize that fear or resentment are not excuses to lash out at others.  People who prefer their anger and ignorance to the work it might take to overcome them.

14. Where did most of your money go?

Fuel, both for vehicles and for heating.  Food.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?

I was pretty excited about the election.  I also got pretty worked up about spending a weekend with Mr. Chili for our anniversary; it was the first time we’d been away without the kids since Dudley’s wedding, and it was a wonderful time.  I was also really, really jazzed to meet blog friends.

16. What song will always remind you of 2008?

I don’t think there is a song that stands out for me this year.

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
 a) happier or sadder? 
b) thinner or fatter? 
c) richer or poorer?

a. Definitely happier.  Seriously; it just keeps getting better

b. About the same, though probably a bit fatter (it IS the holiday season, after all.  Ask me again in February).

c. Again, about the same.  The increase in fuel costs and the crappy economy have had an effect, but I was working last term as a real college professor and was earning far more than I ever have.  Of course, that’s about to change again as I’m not working for Local U. next term – ask me again in September when I’m hired back.

18. What do you wish you’d done more of?

Spent more time with my old people.  One of the things I’m planning on reestablishing is the weekly grandparental visitation.  I’d also like to see my mom more.

19. What do you wish you’d done less of?

Fret about what other people do, especially as concerns me.  I need to remind myself that I only control myself.

20. How did you spend Christmas?

2008 was, perhaps, the best Christmas in recent memory.  The only thing that could have made it better would have been having the Bowyer family around, though I don’t begrudge them their vacation at Disney one bit.

21. Did you fall in love in 2008?

I’ve been crazy in love since 1992.

22. What was your favorite TV program?

There really wasn’t much “must-see t.v.” for me this year, though I really, REALLY enjoyed Sons of Anarchy.

23. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?

I don’t “hate,” though there are several people with whom I no longer actively seek discourse.

24. What was the best book you read?

I’ve read quite a few books this year, and I’ve loved several of them quite a lot.  Three Men in a Boat (to Say Nothing of the Dog) was fun, and I liked The Brief History of the Dead. Memoirs of a Geisha was also quite enjoyable, as was The Good German.  I’m going to admit here that I really liked the Twilight series, though I offer that accolade with the caveat that it really IS young adult fiction and, as such, lacks a certain depth and richness.  Regardless, it was wonderful for what it was.

25. What was your greatest musical discovery?

I’m not sure that I made any musical discoveries this year.  Huh.

26. What did you want and get?

A new president.  A university gig.  A year of healthy family and happy marriage.  New friends.

27. What did you want and not get?

For some people in my life to get better.

28. What was your favorite film of this year?

Wow – that’s a hard one.  I enjoyed the most recent Batman outing quite a lot.  I was surprised by how satisfying Twilight was.  Beyond that, nothing really stuck with me.

29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?

I was 39 and I spent the day (and the week surrounding it) on the couch in excruciating pain from a back strain.

30. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?

Though I’m not sure about the “immeasurably” part, getting a permanent teaching gig would have been cool.

31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2008?

Comfortable, understated, tasteful, classic.

32. What kept you sane?

My husband and my friends (especially O’Mama and Kizz and Sooza and Gerry!).

33. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?

Is this like a celebrity crush question?  I didn’t know people, other than geeky English-teacher types, still used “fancy” as a verb anymore!  I’m going to go with Barack Obama here, I think.  While I don’t crush on the man, I do admire him and am excited about the possibilities he represents.

34. What political issue stirred you the most?

I don’t think I need to mention that equal rights is my primary issue. Secondary to that is, I think, reproductive choice.

35. Who did you miss?

Xena and WeedWoman.

36. Who was the best new person you met?

I got to meet four blogging buddies in 2008; Seester and Bo together in the spring, and Michael and Gerry separately in the summer.  I had profoundly wonderful experiences with each of them, though especially with Gerry and Honey who, after spending a single afternoon with Auntie and me, offered their time (and their home) to my family for the Labor Day weekend.  We went, we had a singularly marvelous time, and I can’t wait to see them again.

37. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2008.

People are going to hear what they want to hear, regardless of what I am trying to say.

38. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.

I’m going to go with Dave Matthews Band’s Best of What’s Around here:

See you and me / have a better time than most can dream / have it better than the best / so we can pull on through / whatever tears at us / whatever holds us down and / if nothing can be done / we’ll make the best of what’s around.

Turns out not where / but who you’re with / that really matters / that really matters / and hurt’s not much / when you’re around / when you’re around / and if you hold on tight / to what you think is your thing / you may find you’re / missing all the rest



Filed under admiration, Blogroll, books, celebration, compassion and connection, concerns, Dark and Stormy Book Club, doing my duty, dumbassery, fiction, Friends, frustrations, fun, GLBTQ/Ally issues, health, holiday, Holocaust Study and Outreach, Home and Family, learning, Little Bits of Nothingness, meme, movies, music, My husband rocks!, my oh-so-exciting life, Parenting, Questions, randomness, reading, remembering, road trip!, ruminating, social issues, teaching, television, the jobs, vacation, Worries and Anxieties, yoga - theory and practice

14 responses to “The End of the Year Meme

  1. I must vehemently, yet politely, disagree with your assessment of YA fiction. The Twilight series did lack a certain depth and richness but that’s the fault of a pretty green writer with a killer feel for plot but not a lot of technical expertise. YA fiction is one of my greatest loves and there’s a lot of really great stuff out there. Some easy to read and relatively light and others a lot more than that. The Harry Potter series would be the most widely known but there’s a shit ton of other stuff that goes toe to toe with HP with EASE.

    As far as I know “fancy” is still pretty regular British slang for “makes me wiggly.” Which does mean that it’s mostly only used by nerds, geeks and the like over here in the Colonies. You know, like Americans calling their country the Colonies. 🙂

    Oh! Which makes me realize that neither of us mentioned the John Adams series and that was, likely, some of the best writing and film work that came out this year. Huh, can’t remember everything.

  2. Happiest of New Years Mrs. Chili!

  3. I am so boosting this!


  4. Oh, RIGHT! The John Adams series DID kick t.v. ass! Add that to my list (oh, and I DO use fancy as a verb; I just didn’t know anyone ELSE did…).

    I stand corrected about YA fiction. I really did love The Book Thief, but other than that and Harry Potter, I’ve not come across much that really jazzed me.

    Mrs. G., RIGHT back atcha, my dear. I’m looking forward to another year with you in it.

    Alison, you are more than welcomed to it, and I’m looking forward to reading YOUR answers!

  5. I loved reading your answers. It was like a Mrs. Chili 101. I must come visit you in Boston. We will not have seafood — although I may stop and grab some on the way back home.

  6. I can’t remember ever having a better Christmas.

    Best of What’s Around is one of my all time favorite songs.

    Happy New Year!

  7. A very Happy New Year to you! Jersey and I are sincerely planning to come your way in October, and we’d love to meet both you and Auntie (and have you possibly witness a certain little ceremony).

  8. I love YA. I’ve read a LOT of YA since before I was old enough for YA. Which is why I was infuriated at myself for not being able to come up with an example besides the HP books. TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD! Whew! I’ll come up with others, I’m sure but I’ll keep them to myself.

    Is The Book Thief classified as YA? Yikes.

  9. Organic Mama

    Yay sanity, although to be equitable, you kept me from barking madness fairly often!

    I’ll agree about John Adams and entreat you to watch the last few with me as they’re on pause in my brain… Also, Band of Brothers…

    I love this meme and as Kwizgiver above, am SO boosting this.

  10. Organic Mama

    Oh, to chime in on the YA discussion, there are some books – Robin Mckinley’s Blue Sword, Hero and the Crown, Sabriel, by Garth Nix, etc, that both belong in the category of aimed at teens, but ably transcend it.

  11. liv

    you summed it up beautifully.


  12. Oooh, we did the same meme!

    Happy New year!

  13. twoblueday

    I stole the meme, too.

    Happy new year.

    Thanks for all the nice things you said about me and mine. Likewise.

  14. I can relate to number 9. Don’t sweat it, at least you know who your real friends are when these things happen…

    have a great new year!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s