Monday, December 29, 2014

Day Zero Project #Whatever: The odds and ends.

It's the end of the year and, sadly, I didn't finish everything on my list. But don't stress it too much. It's almost 2015 and there will be a whole new list to try and accomplish.

I've posted everything that I finished, but I wanted to do one last post for all of the other goals that were in various states of completion so that those are listed here for posterity.

#9: Learn how to play a song on guitar - I pretty much pick up the guitar that is sitting right next to my monitor whenever I get bored with looking at pictures of kittens on the Internet so, while I didn't learn a full song per se, I learned enough parts of enough songs that I'm willing to call it 75% done.

#14: Join a writing group - I started off November by signing up for the St. Pete chapter of the NanoWriMo competition, which is a group dedicated to getting 50,000 words down on paper during the month of November. It just so happens that November is, historically, one of the busiest months around this household and I ended up getting something like 5,000 words down and didn't participate with the group as much as I wanted. On the bright side I do have a title and a start to my debut novel coming to you. at the current pace I'm going, in 2020

#19: Eat a meal cooked by a famous chef - This one was difficult. Every time a famous chef came around Tampa/St. Pete it was for some special event with a fixed menu that included mostly things that people who don't eat meat find gross. Not willing to give up my pescatarianism so easily, we never did find ourselves seated with a famous chef.

That said, we did eat at a number of restaurants with regionally "famous" head chefs such as Bern's, Black Pearl, Rococo, and others I'm drawing a blank on, so we at least ate some great food this year. Close enough for me!

#21: Take guitar lessons - Guitar lessons are not fun. Trust me, I know. I've tried taking them a number of times in my life, but I have had no luck in finding an instructor that I like and doesn't talk to me like I'm a five year old who has never picked up a guitar before.

But I found a Groupon for an online guitar instruction site and so I dropped the $20 on that to see how it was and sat through a few of those lessons. They were decent, but without a live person to jam with I found myself lacking motivation to practice enough.

Needless to say, I'm still not in a famous band.

#40: Pick 5 people who changed my life and write each of them a letter - I couldn't ever decide how I wanted to tackle this one. At first I was going to get real serious and write letters to the people that I love the most. I wrote one for Katie and while I was waiting to pick who the other four lucky receivers of a letter would be I decided that it might be fun to switch up the project.

My new task was to pick five authors who wrote books that meant a lot to me and see if I received any responses back. I mailed one letter to Lucia Perillo who wrote a wonderful collection of short stories called "Happiness is a Chemical in the Brain" and appeared to be someone who really "gets" what it's like to suffer from a disease that hurt in a way that people can't always see (She has M.S., but the writing works for things that affect those around me like Rheumatoid Arthritis, as well). It was very touching and worth letting her know that .

She didn't write back, but that's okay since I'm assuming she's quite busy writing things like excellent stories.

I never got around to writing any more letters, but 2 out of 5 isn't terrible.

#50: Learn watercolor painting techniques - I bought the watercolor stuff and read a book. Does that count?

#100: Complete a coloring book - I started this by thinking that if I had to color I was going to do so with an adult coloring book. I found one called "Hot Wax" by Tyson McAdoo and got to work.

All was going fine, but using colored pencils with the amount of detail (and tattoos) in this book was taking FOREVER. I didn't think I was going to finish in time, so I switched to something easier.

And you know what? I didn't finish that, either.

And just so I close this book with full disclosure, here are the things that I did not finish in time for inclusion in this book:

Go deep sea fishing
Learn to ski
Go a week with no cellphone, computer or TV
Take a CPR class
Create an emergency preparedness kit
Go a day without talking
Eat with chopsticks for a week
Take a bartending class
Have a homemade ice cream party
Work out with a personal trainer
Learn to ride a horse
Learn a card trick
Send a secret to PostSecret
Take a Young Me, Now Me picture
Don't spend any money for a week
Learn to ice skate
Go for a run every day for a week
Attend a yoga class

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