November 5th, 2005

tachikoma: celebratory

Penny for the guy.

The fifth of November, here in England, is Guy Fawkes day. Although I don't quite understand the morbid need to celebrate a dude whose plot to blow up Parliament ended with him ratting out his allies and being hanged, drawn and quartered, it is an awfully good excuse to get really drunk, set shit on fire, and (from what I saw last year) throw fireworks under buses.

Marco returns this evening from Paris and he says he's bringing baguettes, cheese and chocolate with him. I'm going to make mulled wine and we're going to watch the mayhem from our windows. It strikes me as a good time to review my life's accomplishments and goals because, after all, I haven't died an ignominious death. Yet.

First, the accomplishments.

  1. Obtain a Ph.D. by the age of 25. Originally it was before the age of 25, but I got it the year I turned 25 so I figured that counted.

  2. Make an important scientific discovery. Well, if you count this in terms of publications, I managed this one several times. But if you count it in terms of the widespread popular acknowledgement of research outside the scientific community, then I didn't. I'll settle for acknowledgement within the community and call this one achieved.

  3. Live in a foreign country. I've been in London for thirteen months and I'm not planning on leaving. Okay, so, it's another English-speaking country, but dude, like, this is so not California. I mean, America. Come to think of it, California isn't America in the way that London isn't England.

  4. Take a huge risk. I haven't jumped out of an airplane or anything, but I think quitting your job, moving six thousand miles away from home and attempting a career switch counts.


Now, the goals.

  1. Become a master draftsman. Working on it. Spending at least five hours a day drawing or painting helps.

  2. Become a Tai Chi master. Again, working on it. I've been taking classes here for nine months and had done about three years of class cumulatively before that. Now I'm practicing every day. (P.S. Donnie Yen is my favorite.)

  3. Write a book. Actually, I wrote a book when I was ten, so technically I've already done this. It's about deaf white cat, told in first person by the cat, and it is fucking hilarious in a very, very bad way. No, I will not share it. Trust me, you're not missing out. I have two novels half-completed. Sadly, sticking them together doesn't count.

  4. Live in a country where English is not the primary language. Spanish-speaking would probably be most feasible.


I see the clock has ticked past 4:00 PM. That means the sun has set (because it's bloody England in bloody winter) and it's officially time to start drinking in earnest. Goodbye and happy Bonfire Night!