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Wednesday, January 01, 2014

New Year's Resolutions

Unlike Phoebe, I have no anxieties about revealing my failings on the internets by posting resolutions, but I skipped some years due to the whateverness of making resolutions to do things that I have to do anyway or are largely out of my control, whereby they become more like predictions of what will happen out of necessity rather than resolute aspirations. I have poor resolve. But Miss Self-Important's low-aiming resolutions are back, to wit:

1. Write all of my dissertation, but probably really more like most of it, since there is no urgent reason to finish early.
2. Get some new ideas so I can stop infinitely repeating things I've already said in my non-academic writing.
3. Read long books, but also short ones, as the situation dictates.
4. Pet cats.
5. Make potato salads.
6. Temporarily escape California, ideally more than once. This may just a different way of saying, "travel."
7. Make progress towards permanently escaping California, with husband and cat and household goods in tow. This is just a different way of phrasing #1. But multiple perspectives on some things are important.

8 comments:

Phoebe said...

These are failings?

But "making resolutions to do things that I have to do anyway or are largely out of my control" - yes. The resolution needs to be something you can just do, and not to rely on what whichever professors/editors/etc. may provide.

Miss Self-Important said...

No, these specifically are not failings, although if I were a Better Person, I probably would be farther along in my dissertation. I just mean that you can make resolutions without highlighting failings, by aiming really low.

Phoebe said...

Oh, agreed it's possible to post resolutions without posting failings, and yours seem quite reasonable. But the resolutions-made-public thing somehow reminds me of this article ages ago, where they interviewed professors about their "guilty pleasures," and it was stuff like "going hiking" or "used bookstores." It wasn't that I didn't believe these professors enjoyed these activities, or that their real guilty pleasures were Toronto-mayoral. It was just that I found it inconceivable that none of them watched "Real Housewives," say. Obviously this goes for all online self-presentation, esp. public and real-name, but resolutions have the potential to go more in this direction than other forms of self-presentation.

Miss Self-Important said...

Yes, well, I suppose that if one of my 2014 goals were to become a secret porn star, I would probably fail to mention that on my blog. But I never claimed that this blog is a perfect mirror of my soul in the first place. Everyone knows that about the internet, right? I also don't post photos on FB in which I look hideous, but I do sometimes look hideous. It's all lies! Lies!

But what people do deign to share is usually still true; it's just not the entire truth, so we can take it for what it is. Those professors probably do hike, in addition to maybe watching Real Housewives. And what if those professors actually listed ALL their guilty pleasures? EVERY trashy show that's aired in the past 30 years. That would be boring in its exhaustiveness.

Phoebe said...

But, there's space between pure, gut-spilling, self-sabotaging confession and using all social media as shiny supplements to one's CV. Which I think you've done here! But with my earlier post, I was reacting to the way the public resolution-list seems to lend itself to one extreme.

Miss Self-Important said...

Is possible, as all things on the internet tend in one of these two directions.

Phoebe said...

To be clear, I meant you'd hit the middle-ground. Which... I try to do as well. But it's tough.

Miss Self-Important said...

Yes, I got that compliment about my persuasive tight-roping walking. I'm pleased to persuade.

Maybe if I were more famous or my blog were more high-stakes, I'd fall off that tight-rope too, but it's hard to imagine what my life would have to be like for that to happen. "This year, I resolve to write three additional back-up dissertations, in case my first one, which is currently being reviewed by publishers, is scooped up by before I even get the chance to defend it."