Mike‘s trying to start a year-in-review meme and tagged me, so here’s my accounting of the year. Based on what Mike wrote, the guidelines seem to require twelve points, one for every month, but not necessarily in chronological order. I think I am going to go chronological and identify points by month, just because it will be easier for me.

  1. January: It’s been a rough year that’s been marked by a struggle with depression. Bipolar disorder runs strong in my family, but that’s not my problem. Mine’s a temporary thing, although it’s been an issue all year. Janurary was a bad month. Bad enough that I only remember snippets of my campus visit to Creighton, although I seem to have done well since they hired me.
  2. February: A night-time visit to the beach to watch the lunar eclipse. (I was in Wilmington, NC, so this wasn’t a big trip or anything.) It was a spur of the moment and not planned well, so it was brief. The wind was a bit too strong, there were far too many drunken undergrads, and there was a drum circle that was, well, annoying. This month also saw Cthulhu Week here at Machina Memorialis. I believe there was much tea consumed in Michelle’s office. (Well, much tea was consumed in Michelle’s office the whole time I was in Wilmington, but it was much needed this month.)
  3. March: I got stuck in Charlotte, NC because the airline decided to cancel my flight for reasons that are unclear. Because of some sporting event, the airlines weren’t putting people up in hotels. Unlike the hundreds of people who spent the night at the airport, I did find a hotel room. I mention this because it seems to be a good metaphor for my time in NC: there was plenty to be thankful for but it wasn’t where I wanted to be.
  4. April: I got to visit with Dan Anderson, who gave the keynote for the UNCW Graduate English Association’s annual conference. I wanted an Adventure, so Cara and Justine took me to one of the scariest places in America: South Carolina’s South of the Border. I also learned that while in North Carolina swamps are dismal, in South Carolina they are water features.1
  5. May: By far, the happiest and best month of the year, but marked by some sad leave-takings from good and dear friends.
  6. June: Moved to Omaha and reunited with dear friends.
  7. July: I had a birthday. I enjoyed coffee and conversation with Gina, a ritual we’d begun in graduate school and now get to revive since we are both at Creighton. I think a lovely iMac showed up to grace my temporary Creighton office.
  8. August: Moved to a better office, which I’ve decorated with projects from last spring’s Rhetorical Theory from 1900 course. School starts. Teaching is good for me.
  9. September: A trip to Colorado, which is always good, and relief that I could ignore the MLA job list.
  10. October: Sought help for the depression and a lovely MacBook arrives. Teaching goes well.
  11. November: A month, I guess. You’d think I’d have more to say about a month that just took place. Hmm…On Nov. 10, I got a rejection email informing me that I was no longer being considered for a tenure-track position I’d applied for. Since I’d interviewed with said university at MLA in Dec. 2007 and since the position was to start in August of this year, the email was a bit surreal, especially when I realized they did indeed mail it that day. I’m not sure why, but this email seems to sum up the month well: I’m where I want to be but the past keeps rearing its ugly head.
  12. The semester ends with a whimper rather than a bang, which is okay. (Well, technically, I need to go to campus today to pick up six final projects, grade them, and submit grades before 9:00 AM tomorrow, so I really don’t yet know the semester will end with a whimper.) Winter arrives with real winter weather that includes sub-zero temperatures and snow on the ground. (As far as this Colorado boy is concerned, coastal North Carolina doesn’t have winter, it just has a period of time with shorter days.) Nothing makes me feel alive like cold weather, and every once in a while it’s nice to step out into temperatures so cold it momentarily takes your breath away.

Okay, I’m supposed to tag some people. Mike tags eight, I think, so…

  1. Cara and Justine were two of the four people who made my time in Wilmington much better than it could have been. (Michelle and Tony are the other two.) While fully acknowledging that in making such a pronouncement I am neglecting many good people whom I miss, I want to thank them here for all they did. []