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Friday Afternoon Confessional: New Year’s Eve

I confess that this has been a good year. I moved in with The Girlfriend, I taught interesting classes, and I published two books and a translation. It was the first year of my life when I’ve had a steady, full-time job with benefits.

I confess that The Girlfriend came up with a good idea for New Year’s resolutions: instead of resolving to do something new, resolve to continue doing some positive thing you already do. Such resolutions seem easier to achieve.

I confess that my two resolutions from last year met with mixed success. I did succeed in polishing my shoes more often, but my resolution to “be reading” both a novel and a non-fiction book outside my field proved difficult to maintain. Continuing with novel-reading was particularly tough for me, as my job requires massive amounts of reading and so reading for entertainment often seems less appealling than watching movies or TV.

I confess that The Girlfriend’s visit to Flint for Christmas was successful. We even got to share a room, which is something we were unsure my parents would be up for. Bringing The Dog proved to be a brilliant move, as his interactions with my parents’ three little dogs were endlessly entertaining for everyone and he provided an easy conversation topic. I confess that I satisfied my months-long hankering for a true Flint-style coney dog and also made the requisite visit to Halo Burger. I confess that for the first time, I spent more money on gifts and travel than I received back in gifts — surely a hollow victory, but seemingly a sign of adulthood.

I confess that I probably overpaid for the insurance for the rental car, which I thought was required since I don’t have a car and therefore don’t have car insurance, but apparently credit cards cover accidents to some degree? It looks like my go-to card (Discover) isn’t as generous, but I do always carry a Visa as well.

It’s still cheaper than owning a car, though, something I hope to avoid for as long as practicable, because I confess that driving stresses me out. It’s never been clear to me why no one apparently thought it would be a bad idea to structure society such that every Joe Schmoe is individually piloting around a huge, deadly piece of machinery day in and day out. I guess it’s because cars seemed cool. Someday someone will probably look back and ask the same question about cell phones.

I confess that I don’t have any ideas for a New Year’s resolution this year.


December 31, 2010 - Posted by | Friday Afternoon Confessional


  1. I confess that I began reading Awkwardness in bed this morning, and not only enjoyed it but had an intriguing conversation with Mrs. K-sky about it, who also plans to read it.

    I confess that I went to see Tangled this afternoon and then snuck into Harry Potter afterwards.

    I confess that I resolved in 2010 to try stand-up comedy, and I further confess that late in the year, hardly a month ago, I complied with said resolution to neither resounding success nor mortifying failure. Apropos to this post, I resolve to continue developing an act in 2011. I’m already making notes about unexpected advances in electric hand-dryer technology.

    Comment by k-sky | December 31, 2010

  2. I confess that this year has been a good year for me too. I was published thrice in national intellectual journals/magazines in Japan. I visited the United States for the first time and lived it up in Tompkins County. I taught two well attended undergraduate courses as well as three invited lectures. I also met many famous names this year.

    I confess, however, that I still haven’t really done enough academically to get a decent job. Still no book. One long paper at the moment hopefully being considered by the editors I have sent it to. This time in English. Will not know if I have a job after March until the end of January. Hence are our precarious times I tell myself. 2011 begins with a trip to Hawaii to present at a conference. This is also at the end of March. Why are the research and university responsibility sides of our jobs so at odds? I have a research grant! But not job?!!

    I confess I’m fed up living in Tokyo in this situation when my girlfriend of seven years is now fully employed in Seoul.

    I confess that I didn’t do enough to learn Korean this year, as the last…

    I confess my discovery that I have one of those bodies that can shed and/or put on weight very very easily in short periods of time. This is useful.

    Comment by Amish Lovelock | December 31, 2010

  3. I confess that the hours between 11 p.m. and 3 a.m. have lately been my most productive. Last night I cleaned all the floors and worked on my Bach inventions; tonight I’ve read cantos 1-3 of Pinsky’s transl. of The Inferno, made substantial headway on a knitted cat-shaped hat for a friend’s baby, and listened to Ambrosia’s “Biggest Part of Me” about twelve times straight. I confess I’m kind of obsessed with this song.

    I confess I’m experimenting with not going to sleep until I am drop dead tired based on a post I remember having been linked by Unfogged like five years ago. The result so far is that I’ve been pretty fucking tired all day, but never so tired that I absolutely need to go to bed at night. I confess I think this experiment has been a failure.

    Comment by jms | December 31, 2010

  4. A Happy New Year to all!

    Comment by read | December 31, 2010

  5. Oh, wow, old school joint jms.

    Comment by k-sky | December 31, 2010

  6. I confess too, that this year has been a success. I kept my one resolution to wear colorful tights more often, I got my own place and continue to be content living alone, I drank all the beer in the land and learned a lot about them, I balanced the beer consumption by returning to a moderately athletic lifestyle and kicked the shit out of a bunch of boys at the triathlon.

    I outlived Tupac and Brad Renfro.

    Comment by ebolden | December 31, 2010

  7. I confess that I envy Adam, that lately I have been slothful, that despite everything I had a conversation at the APA’s smoker (of all places) that caused me to be prideful, that I am lustful, and that my right foot hurts.

    Comment by ben | December 31, 2010

  8. I confess that I liked your piece in the Guardian, Adam, and liked your foray ‘below the fold’ to argue with the insane troll people. They never seem quite sure what’s hit them when people actually start taking their opinions seriously.

    Comment by RobDP | January 1, 2011

  9. I confess that my favourite weblog posts are quite old and that I just spent quite some time to find a certain posting from Sovereignty Week. I confess to feeling depressed not being able to find:

    Any help?

    Comment by Olaf | January 3, 2011

  10. I don’t remember why I moved it to blogspot, but it broke all the URLs — sorry about that. Substitute “” for “” for all the old posts.

    I confess that at this point, probably everyone’s favorite Weblog posts are pretty old.

    Comment by Adam Kotsko | January 3, 2011

  11. Much obliged, Adam.

    Wow, not quite what I remembered it to be.
    (But then, I don’t even remember what Sovereignty Week was about.)

    Never mind, just wondering what made me start reading the weblog. Still sticking around.

    Comment by Olaf | January 3, 2011

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