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New Year-of-my-life Resolutions

I debated whether I wanted to continue blogging or not for a while, but after a brief hiatus I decided to get back to it. It took me a while to get comfortable writing regularly since I first started, but when I was not doing it I really missed it. The real reason for the hiatus was my birthday. I love birthdays. Not only is it an opportunity to get plastered with my best friends, but it’s also when I make my new year resolutions. Yes, I am *that* self-centered that my year starts with ME, not the Gregorian calendar…

The date also coincided with my one year anniversary living in the United States – a good time to revisit and reflect on the age-old question, “What do you want to do with your life?”

Living abroad for the past year has definitely made me see the world from a different perspective. Good and Bad. Living in Philadelphia is great – it gives me a good sense of what living in a US city is like, and yet, it’s not entirely removed from the diversity I am used to. The entertainment options are superb – the highlight of the year has been experiencing a live performance by Chick Corea with a special spur-of-the-moment guest song alongside Bobby McFerrin. It was so unexpected and blew me away in such a way that it made me cry.

It’s immensely interesting to live in a richer country and in a society with less economic disparity between lower and higher income groups. I thought living in Sao Paulo removed me too much from the challenges of the Brazilian class struggles (and it did), but now I have a different appreciation of the issue. It feels as though it’s easier to approach people here because of the narrower gap. At the same time issues like racial and sexual orientation discrimination are appalling and not at all what I experienced growing up in the second largest city in the world (population).

Fortunately, I absolutely love my job (the origin of my north-wide move). Before joining Comcast, I had been consulting (for much too long) and felt I was not serving my corporate clients well enough – I had no experience with large corporations and the intricate mess intersection of processes, technology, money, problems, solutions and everything else that is unique to any self-sustaining group of 75,000 people. I sought an internal position in a large company precisely because I wanted to acquire those skills and knowledge. Now that I’m an innie, I think sucks to be an outtie. The only real benefit of being a consultant is the money, and that has never been a key driver for me, so I’m seriously reconsidering the original plan of going back to the home-office and working in my pajamas at 2:00pm.

Growing a respectable collection of comix graphic novels has been one of my proudest achievements, though that is probably not seen by many as an achievement whatsoever. When I was in high-school I remember picturing myself at this age and wondering if I would still read comics and love Concrete Blonde as much as I did then. The 12” vintage Happy Birthday vinyl I scored from eBay this week tells me I have not changed. Still, I feel I have changed immensely, and it feels great.

It’s been a good year. For the next 12 months my resolution is to take care of myself. I’ll do something healthy and physical (it’s been so long I don’t think I own any sports clothes), read real literature (not just technical books and blogs), draw more and play more guitar, travel to places I haven’t been to, explore different customs and foods, and ultimately enjoy things I really like. This is My Hedonistic Year!

I’m starting this weekend with a field trip to Trenton, NJ to visit the Grounds for Sculpture and see The Lascivious Biddies perform live.

Good times.

Update: I will migrate posts and comments from the previous blog sometime in the future.


agovella said,

December 9, 2005 @ 3:04 am

And why wouldn’t you still love Concrete Blonde?

Congratulations on your hedonistic year. I think one of the best examples set by my father was always living fun. He took care of his general fatherly duties, but he always has fun.

I just finished Master and Margarita. If you haven’t read it and still have a literature opening, it’s a good read.


Livia Labate said,

December 9, 2005 @ 2:10 pm

Thanks Austin, I’ll check it out.

That’s interesting, my father is the same way. He often says I’m way more mature than he is though. He’s a big kid, that’s why he has so much fun he says. :)

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