Saturday, March 27, 2010

2010 - Pre-emptive "It Was a Very Good Year" Post

I like to plan ahead. That said, come New Years 2011, I expect to be reminiscing about how incredible 2010 has been for me.

The first three months, unfortunately, have not been. In some respect, "stagnation" would be an apt word for some areas of my life. Up until a few days ago, I had been seriously struggling with feelings of "How did I get here? How do I work this?"(ala Talking Heads "Once in a Lifetime" lyrics).

Winter was about work for me - I started to expand my t-shirt empire... More aptly, my t-shirt anthill. But it's MY anthill! It ain't much, but Ive spent the last few months building a second shop for ClimbAddict, and also an umbrella shop called

I am still looking at this thing, this entrepreneurial baby of mine, and thinking "Sheesh, yer an ugly little runt...." But - I keep pecking away, adding new designs and hoping something will come of it. Something sort of NEEDS to come of it, for this is to be my replacement income for my animal care service, a healthy chunk of which I am letting go of as we spea...errr, write. And read.

Outrageous Tees seems to be a pretty redneck t-shirt shop. That's going to have to be okay, since the largest market of t-shirt wearing people do sort of tend to fall into that category... Just because I think up these designs, just because I commit them to pixels, doesn't mean I would actually wear them myself! And some of them aren't so awful...and maybe some better ones will come. But like I said - this winter was a weird one, and what came out of it, came out.

Partly, I was waiting on someone. Someone I thought had romantic interest in me. Guess not..... And that is sort of sad, because that someone had some characteristics that I greatly admired. I don't meet many people who have characteristics I would consider greatly admirable. There was also a slight blip on the health radar. Well, actually there still IS that blip. And I don't know what it means yet. Very likely it is nothing, as in benign, if you catch my drift. But I won't know for another few weeks. If it's not nothing - well, them my pre-emptive Fabulous 2010 post will have been written pre-emptively. But I digress...

This post is about how AWESOME 2010 is going to be for me, now that winter has subsided and new life is springing up all over the place. The BIG really very big! I am going to be living on the Mohonk Preserve again. In a cabin, acting as a caretaker. My job description is: Open the gate in the morning. Close the gate at night. Pick up any litter that litterers leave. Keep an eye on things.

In return, I get to live in a cabin in the middle of the woods. A twenty minute walk from the cliffs. I will be there from about May 1st through November. I TOLD you it was awesome!

No electricity, nor plumbing. A quarter mile walk to drinking water and a mile to cel phone service. Eight miles to town - no car.....I did this last fall, for three month, so I know what I am getting into. Several people - guys, even - have told me they are surprised; that they don't think they could handle this. I don't understand why....

So - during this wonderful period, I have some creative projects to work on. I'll be doing pen & ink studies of the various trees and other plantlife, and also illustrating the various stanzas of a children's poem wrote several years ago, called "Patrick the Fir Tree." I'll just have to find out which of the spindly little firs in my massive yard is Pat, and see if he'll pose for me.

I also intend to do more writing than I did last year, though there is some issue with this. I enjoy typing on the computer. I'm pretty good at going stream of conscious - I don't really edit any of these blog posts, for instance. But I LIKE the fact that when I recognize a typo or make a poor word choice, it's easy to fix. FIX - not cross out and scribble the correction. And I like how I can go off on a tangent, only to see I went off on a tangent, and simply insert a smooth transition on the spot, rather than have to...well, I don't even KNOW how to do that on handwritten paper....

The issue is no electricity. My computer will go 2 hours until it needs to be reheated. I'm considering getting an old typewriter, sort of as a compromise.

I have another book - a big one - that I have started a couple of time over my adult life. In the last several years I thought maybe it didn't need to come out after all. It is not a pretty story. it is, tapping at my window again, for the last few months. I think it's trying to tell me something....Or get me to tell someone else something.... It is not a pretty story. That is not a writing misfire; it bore repeating.

And of course I will CLIMB! I will climb, climb, climb! During the 3 months I was here(there) last season, I lost TWENTY POUNDS, and went from being timid on the lead on 5.3 to being solid and ready to go for the lead on High Exposure. From flailing following 5.8, to being able to focus and follow 5.9 onsight. AND it was hard going, in the star, finding climbing partners. But by the time I left - I HAD found some. And we have kept in touch over winter and will be back climbing together again.

That is enough - this glorious gift. But I don't think it is all that is in store.

For the last several years I have wanted to go west for the winter, but each time winter comes, I am unable to do so, because of financial constraints. I am not sure HOW this year will be any different, but I just somehow KNOW it will be. Getting those t-shirt shops standing on their own may prove futile, but I hope not. I sure as hell don't see how I could get a a...j.o.b.

There. I typed it. Forget the fact I DO spend hours each day actually working - real work - on these t-shirt shops. It's just not the same damned thing. It's FUN! Well...the marketing isn't fun. I suck at the marketing. But every day I try to suck less, and little by little, put myself out there, hoping some of those little put-outs will take root and grow into a viable message that someone will hear.

In a few days I will be off to Joshua Tree for my annual spring climbing trip kick off. Some of the locals I've come to know won't be there, unfortunately. But others will be, and I will have a great time. Hopefully I will take lots of photographs, and them take the time to edit and post them for the viewing pleasure of others. Then, I come back and bear the bad news to some of my clients - that I am leaving. For most, it will be the seven months, with my assistant handling things. But for three of them, it is permanent(one has already been taken care of). But - the future is now, and I've got to step into it!

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