It is now a tradition of sorts to name our years in accordance with goals we hope to accomplish, or feelings we wish to cultivate. Boomcat Heather and I started this a few years back, partially in jest, with the Year of Whimsy – or The YOW. Despite its birth in humor, I took the charge of creating more whimsy quite seriously, all the way through the year.
Since then, other friends have joined in and begun their own Year Of – Whatevers, and, while the exercise is silly and fun, it serves as a baseline from which to establish our goals.
In years past, I have written down and worked toward completing resolutions and goals. While this is not an inherently bad exercise, I realized at the end of the year I am left with a list of remaining items that never came to fruition. Instead of celebrating the myriad accomplishments and joys in my life, I was left fretting over the few things I didn’t end up doing. Instead of celebrating countless small victories and copious ass-kicking, I was left feeling as though I didn’t do enough.
2013 was a pretty good year for me. Financially, it was a hard fucking struggle from January 1 all the way through ’til today. As such, I practiced as much charity as I could. My athlete friends may understand that more readily than some; you never know how much you still have to give until you feel you have nothing left, yet, you miraculously make-do with what is left, often with the most beautiful and satisfactory results. When your whole heart and soul goes into an endeavor, be that a mud race, a work project, caring for a friend, or throwing oneself into a project for work or fun, successful results are the ultimate reward…at least for me.
Some highlights of this year include:
- Watching a pilot I helped write air on network television. Hey, you win some, you lose some, but ultimately this one gets counted a success. I wrote some shit and it got on TV. Granted, the script was twelve kinds of craptastic by the time it aired, but it was a very valuable lesson in Hollywood politics, the kind of people I want to work with, and the experience ultimately shone a light on what I am and am not willing to compromise in my work. And I’m not sure, but it might literally be one-in-a-million odds that I actually got to see a script through from pitch to air.
- Music-making. Nate and I did some good work this year, especially for being a continent apart. Pat on the back. What we have isn’t perfect, and it’s not where I want to be in the end, but it’s moving forward and it’s a world away from where we used to be last time we were in a real band together. There is a beautiful thing that happens between us when hit that musical sweet spot, and I look forward to making more of those moments in the coming year.
- Hosting many guests. We did the calculations, and we actually had fewer days alone in our apartment than we did with houseguests. While there was definitely stress involved with sharing our space so much over the arc of the whole year, I treasured each and every visit and every person who passed through The Waystation. We are truly blessed to have so many people we love so dearly in our lives, and to be able to spend time with those people.
- Starting a business. Boomcats, y’all. It started, like many good things in my life, as a half-joke, and turned into something awesome. You’re probably going to hear a lot more about this in the coming year, because we’ve been busy as all hell and only look forward to more clients, more work, and more awesome Boomcattery moving forward. Partner and friend, Boomcat Heather, is a very welcome kitten-in-crime on this journey and has delivered much joy and many good times during these long workdays . I am equally thankful for the multitude of hard lessons and dickhead clients as I am the easy, appreciative clients and jobs that come in under deadline with no hitches; they have all served to build us into more savvy business persons, and have helped us understand how to better serve ourselves and our clients in the future. We got a lot of the daunting administrative work and building phase of our business out of the way this year, and we will be starting 2014 with some amazing regular clients and exciting new projects.
- Getting a second pilot picked up. Holy shit, me and my dazzling good luck. This time around, it looks like the network and studios are largely trusting us, meaning if the show gets picked up to film, it won’t end in an absolute implosion of reason and sanity like the Show That Shall Not Be Named. That said, whether we get all the way to filming or not, this is a script I’m proud to have written. My voice is clearly present throughout, and it’s a good action script and pretty fun read. This one is a total success for me, no matter what comes next.
- While this accomplishment is not my own, the fact that Tytron is now a full-time artist with a publisher and a great gallery repping and selling his work is a major triumph in our household. This has been a long time coming, and I’m thankful my dearheart has found his confidence. It’s taken some work figuring out how to arrange our home in a way that is conducive to his (ever-expanding) spacial requirements, but we’re getting every thing nailed down and solved creatively and effectively.
- Solidifying old and new relationships. For the friends who were an instrumental part of our transformation and growth this year, you know who you were. Thank you for your support and love, and for being part of our lives. We love you.
- Being home. We’re so thankful to be back with our tribe here in sunny Southern California. While striking out and making several cross-country moves was a grand adventure, the feeling of being home at last is incomparable.
- The love that surrounds us. Watching our friends fall in love and find happiness has been immensely satisfying and heart-warming. Love in all its forms is most welcome and beautiful, regardless of how it comes about. I am greatly pleased with the outpouring of kindness, friendship, and love I have witnessed this year.
- Becoming super-awesome at being cash poor. That may sound like a dubious highlight, but now that we’re (painfully) aware of how much we actually need to live, this knowledge will help us manage our lives when we amass all the crazy wealth we’re going to manifest in the coming years. I’m not going to sugarcoat it – it’s been hard. But it’s also been sweet. Our values have been reshaped. Our love has been strengthened. I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that I’m fully aware of the romanticized version of this struggle. It is all good fodder for art, for empathy, and for life lessons. I am grateful for the experience.
Some of the things we did this year were at odds with each other. For instance, all the hosting we did had a dramatic effect on the space-for-art issue. We have a serious task in being able to deliver our respective work in a timely manner this year. It’s good to have a realistic idea of what that entails now. Our work, our time together, the amount of energy we are able to commit to other things we want to cultivate, such as getting more daily structure set up so that we can prioritize things like health, exercise, keeping our space tidy and clean (which has a dramatic effect on how creative we are, since we both work from home) must be a primary focus in the coming year.
We learned how to co-exist in a space that is both our full-time home and work environment, and were able to iron out the big wrinkles in the way we operate. It was a good year for Figuring Shit Out.
The lessons we learned this year helped us better know our needs, and going into 2014, we have all the tools we need to create a successful year — in love and friendship, as well as financial prosperity.
After much deliberation, we have deemed 2014 The YoCCaQu (yes, pronounced “Ya Cock”) — The Year of Creation, Completion, and Quietude. Our goals are outlined in this little acronym on which we’ve settled, and while it may seem terribly nebulous to some, the basic idea is to turn our reflection and focus inward so that we may create the life we have envisioned together.
We look forward to a year of creativity and follow-through, to taking more steps in the direction of our dreams and hopes and triumphs.
So, here’s a New Year’s Eve toast to you, all my lovely friends. Thank you all for being indelible little parts of this amazingly grand life we’re so very lucky to lead.
I wish you the successes you hope to achieve this year, along with wealth, health, and so much happiness that you are made to explode into a frightful mess of good feelings and smiles and puppy wiggles.
Happy New Year.