"Ah, Storms..." 2006 in Review

"Rain likely with possible rumble of thunder..."

What better forecast for the last morning of the year? Have you ever heard of a description that is more applicable to 2006 in your life? ever? huh? have you?


All in all, a good year. I notice as you grow older, the temptation to let time sort of muddle together becomes greater and greater. You begin to want to let your "time at work" just all blend into one. You begin to want to let your "time at home" do the same. The spark of each individual moment starts to fade, as memories occupy larger and larger portions of your brain, and you want to start celebrating the type, the kind, the class, the category and the form.

I would like to say that I am railing against that dying of the kind, not going gently into the great simplification of the mind, but of course I am not. Life is an indefinite series of wondrous, horrible, muddy specks of brightness and eventually you have seen it before, done it before, and a dozen times to boot, and it is neatest of all in how familiar it is.

My year has largely been dominated by my work. Preparing, since May, for a move that has yet to occur but should soon occur. Preparing a website since February that was sometime around July before I could sink my teeth into. Losing all my older employees, save one, and gaining new ones. The realization that I can do retail, but will never quite love it. I get excited on days that we meet our sales goal, and thrill to excede them, but this is not something that sustains me enough to drive me to work my self into exhaustion, as it does to some of my retail friends.

Outside of work, the domination has been reading. Quite likely I have read more this year than nearly any year previous. Final count? I would say that I have read about 50 novels, about 5 non-fiction books, about 15 graphic novels, two collections of poetry, a dozen or two short stories, hundreds of magazine/journal articles, and pretty much every blog entry that friends have tossed my way. I have enjoyed a good dozen new writers, and began to honestly understand a lot more about the craft of transmission through words. There have been three Dickens novels, about six from Dick. I never did reread Moby Dick, alas, or we would have the trifecta in play. Other writers I have went through this year include Stephen King (short stories and a novel or two), Cormac McCarthy, Jules Verne (with 6 novels of his read), Christopher Moore (3 or so). I have started, then put aside, Madame Bovary. I have read some of the quaint essays of Mark Twain. I have both fallen in love, and of love, with Alan Moore (in love with V and Watchmen, though something about Extraordianary Gentlemen got on my nerves).

I have purchased a handful of good RPG sourcebooks: True20, Gurps. My own RPGs have finally stalled out completely it seems. Not sure why that is, but its a goal for next year to get them going again.

I have a dozen short stories started but left to the wayside. It is hard for me to finish writing projects as of late. I have no idea why. My poetry has been only rare this year, but some good ones have cropped up.

I have taken my generally life long interest in tea and increased it to a whole new level. Though the business of the Christmas shopping season has sort of stopped me, lately, from being to enjoy it as much, I have taken the time to learn a good deal about regions, storing, companies and the like. If anyone wants, you are always welcome at tea time.

I have kind of given up the pipe smoking. Some of the same reasons as above. I also see the "writing on the wall" as far as that goes, where the average smoker consumes tobacco by the pound instead of the "afternoon smoke" and the average non-smoker considers the smell of smoke to be destructive like the plague, filled with cancer and musty hair. My current plans is to sporadically smoke down the stores I have, and then let it go.

My website -- http://www.wyrmis.com has returned. I also have another one started, which my wife makes me update regularly. Cheers to that.

I have played only a couple video games to fruition this year. Most I just sort of dawdle at. The exceptions have been replays of older Final Fantasies.

And so, as we dwindle down to brief reflections, I'll pull this to an end. Knowing, next year, that things will be even a little more muddled and that I am going to group things together a little harder.

But here is to the individual. And here is to the storm.

Written by W Doug Bolden

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