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Archive for December, 2009

2009 in Review

There are 6 hours left in 2009. So how has this year been?

I’m still working at the same place. I’ve installed some new servers but am still having trouble porting all our software. I officially stopped doing the freelance project that I wasn’t really doing. I considered enrolling in the University of Redlands’ part-time MBA program but decided not to do it for now, although I’ve already been accepted. I pondered my life and came to some conclusions, but nothing definitive. I started learning economics and investing.

Now on to dancing: My ballroom dancing has improved. I did well in a competition for the first time at UCR’s competition and also at Caltech’s Dance of the Roses. My partner and I only placed in International Standard (we do both Standard and Latin), but I’ll aim for Latin next time.

In West Coast swing I continued to get last place, shared among 20-30 other dancers, at the Palm Springs conventions. However, I won second place with my partner at Soul n Blues, a local dance venue, now defunct, run by Doug Silton. It was not a large or accredited competition, but it was a start. I also managed to get one mark in the Jack and Jill at the High Desert Dance Classic.

I danced on stage twice. Technically, it was more than twice. I performed in the Ceroc Formation for the Caltech Dance Show. I performed in three shows plus a dress rehearsal. In the fall I danced a rumba with my partner on stage to attempt to recruit freshmen.

I’ve been getting a bit burned out with dancing. At a certain point my ballroom dancing probably won’t be able to progress without frequent lessons, which cost money, and at a certain point I’ll have to spend money on costumes. My financial situation is fine, but I just don’t like spending that much money. Competitively, my West Coast swing has not been progressing, and it costs money, too.

I continued doing tai chi, which I’ve been learning since 2003. For a while (2 year?) I haven’t felt motivated to practice tai chi regularly, but in the latter part of this year, I feel that my interest has been somewhat rekindled. I learned a Shaolin staff form. I also  refreshed my memory of two Shaolin forms, basically re-learned a third that I had either completely forgotten or never finished learning, and am in the process of learning another form.

I traveled with my parents to very scenic but little known locations in the West — South Coyote Buttes, the White Pocket, Fantasy Canyon among others. I also revisited Antelope Canyon, Zion National Park, Arches National Park, and Bryce Canyon National Park. Over the holidays I visited my parents in New Jersey, got stuck in snow,  played piano for the first time in forever, visited Longwood Gardens, and explored Shenandoah Caverns and Luray Caverns. The bacon and fried egg formations are sights to see!

I’ve seen some movies this year, but I don’t remember most of them. Over the holidays I watched Avatar 3D and Up in the Air. Both were good. If you see Avatar, watch it in 3D to get the most out of the awesome visuals. I also saw 2012, Up, and 9 this year. The day I saw 9 happened to be the day of the taping of a Lionel Ritchie tribute in the Pasadena Convention Hall right across from the movie theater.

Books i’ve read: Time Management for System Administrators, Mental Management, And Then the Roof Caved In, Twilight. I’m currently reading The Brothers Karamazov. I used to read many, many books, but until this year, for years I had hardly been reading any. I should get back into that.

Miscellaneous stuff: I’ve been cooking more, and I no longer take forever to make a simple dish. I tried out an Athenaeum membership.

Finally, tonight my web server started making a loud humming noise.  I don’t know how much longer it’ll last.

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