Escaping into fiction again

When I left you last week, I was optimistic about reading political nonfiction, specifically the following:

  • White Trash: The 400-Year Untold History of Class in America by Nancy Isenberg
  • Fantasyland: How America Went Haywire: A 500-Year History by Kurt Andersen
  • Tears We Cannot Stop: A Sermon to White America by Michael Eric Dyson
  • What Truth Sounds Like: RFK, James Baldwin, and Our Unfinished Conversation About Race In America by Michael Eric Dyson
  • When They Call You A Terrorist: A Black Lives Matters Memoir by Patrisse Khan-Cullors and Bandele, with a foreword by Angela Davis
  • We Were Eight Years in Power: An American Tragedy by Ta-Nehisi Coates.

I mentioned that “after Trump’s election, I just wanted to crawl under a rock and not come out for (hopefully) the next four years as the world collapsed around all of us.” However, I said something had changed, even though I didn’t know what, and that it “way past time for me to catch up on what’s going on around us and I’m hoping these books will help me on that journey. ” I’m still hoping the books, most of which I now own, will help me on my journey, but after this past week, I am about back to go crawl under that rock. So for today anyway, I’m putting the political nonfiction on the back burner and this afternoon I’m going to try to escape in a fiction book.

At this point, I don’t know what I’ll be reading. Ironically, I picked up one book this week at the library that I thought would be a escape from politics but then when I actually looked at what it was about after I got it home, I discovered that it was political, even with Trump as a character. The book is The Accidental Further Adventures of the Hundred-Year-Old Man by Jonas Jonasson, with this description: “It all begins with a hot air balloon trip and three bottles of champagne. Allan and Julius are ready for some spectacular views, but they’re not expecting to land in the sea and be rescued by a North Korean ship, and they could never have imagined that the captain of the ship would be harbouring a suitcase full of contraband uranium, on a nuclear weapons mission for Kim Jong-un …Soon Allan and Julius are at the centre of a complex diplomatic crisis involving world figures from the Swedish foreign minister to Angela Merkel and President Trump. Things are about to get very complicated …” I was with the description up until Kim Jong-un, then saw Angela Merkel and Trump mentioned, and then gave it a hard pass.

Also ironically for such a lover of fiction, I don’t have many fiction books on my Kindle right now or sadly at least, not many that I want to read. I do have one, Crocodile on the Sandbank, the first Amelia Peabody, by Elizabeth Peters that I might try this afternoon. We’ll see. I’ll let you know next week what I decided upon.

Today, Deb Nance of the blog Readerbuzz has a post about The Sunday Salon and is seeking our input on the group, which for now is on Facebook but with limited participation. She is asking what the direction of the group will be. Check out her blog post or visit the Facebook group page.

How was your reading this past week? What do you have planned for this week?

Snow Day & Valentine’s Day Plans

Today, I have an unexpected day off work, because the library where I work is closed due to snow (we’re getting now as I write this) and freezing rain and ice (expected later). I also took a vacation day on Thursday for Valentine’s Day so I could spend the day with my wife who also is off until she goes to work later that night (11:45 for a midnight shift Friday morning). With Valentine’s Day, we already had plans, starting on Wednesday night, but now I “have to” have plans for today too. Sigh. 😉

So…”what are those plans for both days?” you may ask or maybe you don’t ask, but I’m going to answer anyway.

Today is a little more amorphous than tomorrow night into Thursday since it was unexpected. For me, it might be continuing to read White Trash: The 400-Year Untold History of Class in America by Nancy Isenberg. It might not. It might end up me just staring at my navel. For my wife, it is writing letters as part of International Correspondence Writing Month, which Kim is doing as part of a Facebook group for Goulet pens. Later today, we’re also having tacos, but that already was planned for (natch) Taco Tuesday.

The plans for Valentine’s Day Eve and Valentine’s Day are more crafted than today’s plans, starting with a Letterkenny marathon, “nibblies,” and booze, specifically gin and whatever juice we choose to mix with it. You might ask or might not, but I’m going to answer the question anyway: “What is Letterkenny?” It’s this (incredibly crude at times, NSFW) Canadian TV show on CraveTV (and Hulu). So watch this clip at your own risk:

Then on Valentine’s Day proper, we’re going to be slightly more subdued with a trio of movies: the 1996 version of William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet from Baz Luhrmann, the 1992 movie Orlando with Tilda Swinton and Billy Zane, and the 1987 classic Moonstruck, one of my wife’s favorite movies. I’ll leave you with the trailer for Orlando since that’s probably the one you haven’t heard of, but for some reason, we recently were reminded of it and decided we needed to see it again:

Do you have plans for Valentine’s Day? Any special traditions you have? Share in the comments.

Reading Black and White

I’m not a nonfiction reader, but this year, I’m trying to be. So far, four out of the six books I’ve read have been nonfiction:

  • The Library Book by Susan Orlean
  • Shale Play: Poems and Photographs from the Fracking Field by Julia Kasdorf and Steven Rubin
  • Born A Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood by Trevor Noah
  • Calypso by David Sedaris.

Now the next five I have planned also are nonfiction:

  • White Trash: The 400-Year Untold History of Class in America by Nancy Isenberg
  • Fantasyland: How America Went Haywire: A 500-Year History by Kurt Andersen
  • Tears We Cannot Stop: A Sermon to White America by Michael Eric Dyson
  • What Truth Sounds Like: RFK, James Baldwin, and Our Unfinished Conversation About Race In America by Michael Eric Dyson
  • When They Call You A Terrorist: A Black Lives Matters Memoir by Patrisse Khan-Cullors and Bandele, with a foreword by Angela Davis

As I write this, I also have on my shelf a physical copy of We Were Eight Years in Power: An American Tragedy by Ta-Nehisi Coates and I really need to read it, so I’m adding it to the list.

I borrowed White Trash and Fantasyland from the Free Library of Philadelphia, so I will be reading them first. I own the other four, after buying the three pictured on the bottom as part of a Kindle sale. We also have Fantasyland at our local library so I know I can get a physical copy of that, if I need.

I don’t talk much politics here on the blog, if at all. To be honest, after Trump’s election, I just wanted to crawl under a rock and not come out for (hopefully) the next four years as the world collapsed around all of us. I have had the Coates book for more than a year, but just couldn’t bring myself to read it.

What’s changed? I don’t really know, but I know it’s way past time for me to catch up on what’s going on around us and I’m hoping these books will help me on that journey.

Have you read any of the books I plan on reading? What did you think?

The Big Game’s On Read-a-thon For Me


Tomorrow, I’ll be participating in The Big Game’s On Read-a-thon, sponsored by Jenn from Jenn’s Bookshelves. The “rules,” such as they are, are simple:

  • No rules, no guidelines, just read
  • No start/end times, just read at your leisure.

Jenn also has mini-challenges, but they aren’t mandatory. If interested in participating, visit Jenn’s blog (link above).

My plan is to start at 11:30 a.m. when the pregame coverage (officially) starts on TV and to read as much as I can right through the Big Game. What will I be reading? I think I’ll start where I left off for My January 24in48 Readathon: All Things Bright and Beautiful by James Herriot. Others that I might read include Inspired: Slaying Giants, Walking on Water, and Loving the Bible Again by Rachel Held Evans; Convictions: How I Learned What Matters Most by Marcus J. Borg; Spiritual Direction: Wisdom for the Long Walk of Faith by Henri J.M. Nouwen with Michael J. Christensen and Rebecca Laird; and Calypso by David Sedaris. Borgen and Nouwen both were theologians. Convictions was written in 2014 before Borg died in 2015; Spiritual Direction, compiled from lectures and other writings from Nouwen by Christensen and Laird, who were students of Nouwen.

As for food, my wife is making grilled cheese and tomato soup for dinner. Throughout the day, I’ll probably have “nibblies” in keeping with the theme of The Big Game. No wine, but I’ll be fine. I do have something for a nightcap later.

I’ll be updating here and on Instagram with the read-a-thon hashtag: #biggamereadathon.

The Game

It is now 4 p.m. as I write this first update. I started my readathon at noon, a little behind my own schedule, but I’ve been having fun and already have dipped into three books. I finished one, All Things Bright and Beautiful, which I already was three-quarters of the way through. I then started another, the Spiritual Direction book by Henri J.M. Nouwen, and after about getting halfway through, I switched it up for some Sedaris, which I am enjoying immensely.

When I put a link to this post in The Sunday Salon Facebook group, another blogger commented about how she prefers blogs to other forms of social media because of the conversation. Interestingly, since then, I have more comments on Instagram about the books I’m reading and more discussion there than I do here (so far). I found that true with last week’s readathon too, with people commenting and discussing with me books more there than here.

Here are some photos so far, a gallery to which I will add throughout the day:

The Finish

So for this year, all the books I have finished have been five stars in my estimation:

  1. The Library Book by Susan Orlean
  2. The 7 1/2 Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Susan Orlean
  3. Shale Play: Poems and Photographs from the Fracking Fields by Julia Kasdorf and Steven Rubin
  4. Born A Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood by Trevor Noah
  5. All Things Bright and Beautiful by James Herriot
  6. Calypso by David Sedaris

How are you spending this Super Bowl Sunday? Big party with neighbors or just family at home, watching the game? Or going out to a movie? Or reading like me?

Pushing Forward Back January/February 2019

January started well. I chose My First Book of the Year. I set 10 Goals As I Approach, and After I Turn, 50. I selected My One Word for 2019. The first Saturday of the month, I took my father out to lunch for his 75th birthday. The first Sunday of the month, I wrote The First Sunday Salon of the Year. By the end of the second week, I read My First Two Books of 2019. Then after a long absence, winter returned — with a vengeance. First, we got a foot of snow and then “dangerously low” wind chills for the fourth and fifth weeks of the month (when this post is published, we are expected to be in the worst of it).

The last weekend of the month, though, was a good one too as I participated in 24in48 and read 2 and 3/4 books over 11 hours. And all four books that I read this month were excellent. They were The Library Book by Susan Orlean, The 7 1/2 Lives of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton, Shale Play: Poems and Photographs from the Fracking Fields by Julia Kasdorf and Steven Rubin, and Born A Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood by Trevor Noah.

My wife and I continued to revel in Canadian TV as we watched more Corner Gas (on Amazon Prime) and more Letterkenny (on Hulu). We really didn’t watch a lot of movies, with probably the highlight of the month being a rewatch of Monty Python and the Holy Grail. As for music, I haven’t found a lot of new music, with only one highlight, the new album by Deerhunter, Why Hasn’t Everything Already Disappeared?

February begins tomorrow with more of the same: cold, cold, cold. But then the weekend shoots up to 30 degrees (Fahrenheit) and by Sunday, the high is expected to be 42. I looked at the forecast for the month ahead and the highs are in the 30s and even 40s at times, which I’ll gladly endure, but Spring cannot come soon enough at this point.

On the reading front, I start right out of the gate this Sunday with The Big Game’s On Read-a-thon. My wife works two 12 hour shifts on the weekend (Saturday into Sunday and Sunday into Monday) so since she’s sleeping during the day on Sunday, it’s the perfect time for me to read. I did get invited to a Super Bowl party at a neighbor’s, but since I hate the Patriots and I can be honest that I really don’t care for football, I declined. I don’t know yet what I’ll be reading, but I’m going to try to keep the streak of all five-star books alive. I’ll keep you posted here and mostly for the read-a-thon on Sunday on Instagram.

TV and movies? I took a vacation day for Valentine’s Day and Kim and I already have planned the night before as a “drink-a-thon” with a Rifftrax movie or two and maybe a new Mystery Science Theater 3000 and some random TV (probably more Letterkenny) and some other random TV thrown in. Why we’re doing it that way is because she has to work Thursday night into Friday morning, as usual.

As for the rest of the month, who knows? I’ll let you know what I’m doing when it get here.

So how was your month of January? Read any good books, seen any good movies and/or TV shows, listened to any good music? What was the highlight of your month? What are you looking forward to in February? Share in the comments.

Update, Wednesday night, Jan. 30, 9:12 p.m.: Just received a text about half an hour ago from the director of the library where I work that we’re closed today because of the dangerously low wind chills.

My January 2019 24in48 Readathon

Today and tomorrow, I am participating in the 24in48 Readathon (read for 24 hours over two days). I am keeping most of my updates on Instagram. However, I also will be updating here from time to time over the weekend. Above is a photo of the books I am starting with.


Check-In No. 1

I plan to check in every four hours except when I’m sleeping tonight for a planned 8 hours. So here is my first check-in after starting at 8 a.m.

  • First Book Started: I started with All Things Bright and Beautiful by James Herriot, which I started last year, but didn’t finish. After reading about more cows’ “lady parts” and blood than I wanted for the morning (or really any time), I decided to take a break and read the January 2019 edition of Harper’s. No less disturbing in some ways, with its political rhetoric (with which I agree), but still a reprieve from Herriot’s bloody (literally, often) musings on being a veterinarian. Out of the four hours, I read about 2.5 hours.
  • First Meal Eaten: Burger (apropos after reading about cows – and how cute they are? Hmmm) with Muenster cheese on a croissant, onion rings, with a side of Sir Kensington’s Special Sauce on the side.

Check-In No. 2

I’m about halfway through my first book and am enjoying it immensely. Unfortunately, I also have been reading from time to time the Wikipedia entries about Alf Wight, the real man behind James Herriot, and the other “real-life” inspirations for his characters (his stories were semi-autobiographical). Sadly, the inspiration for Siegfried, his mentor veterinarian, committed suicide in his 80s, because among other things, he was depressed after Wight died from prostate cancer. However, that doesn’t take away from Siegfried or from any person who committed suicide. He and they still could have inspired others. Just because they committed suicide doesn’t take away their good qualities.

I also was inspired by Wight that he didn’t start writing until the age of 50, the age I am turning this year. It reminds me of the late George Sheehan, who was a former doctor and who started running when he was 45. He then went on to write several books about running that helped inspire others, including myself, to get into running, which I did when in my 30s and 40s (yes, I no longer am a runner, but my goal is to get back to walking regularly this year). This quote from Sheehan also is the inspiration for the title of my original blog “An unfinished person…in an unfinished universe” and this blog, by extension.

‘We live in an open universe,’ said William James, ‘in which uncertainty, choice, hypothesis, novelties and possibilities are natural.’  But if the universe is unfinished, so are we. Each one of us is, in fact, an open universe. Each one of us is a microcosm of uncertainty, choice, hypothesis, novelties and possibilities. Each one of us is an unfinished person in this unfinished universe. And each one of us feels an infinite and mysterious obligation to complete ourselves and somehow contribute to the completion of the universe.” 

George Sheehan, “The Ends,” The Running Life

In the last four hours, I read about 1.5 hours, which puts me at 4 hours in 8 hours so far. I hope to make up some time reading tonight after 8 p.m. as my wife goes to work. She is a 911 dispatcher and works 8 p.m. Saturday to 8 a.m. Sunday and then 8 a.m. Sunday to 8 p.m. Monday every weekend, along with Fridays and Saturdays, which allows me to be able to do readathons on weekends without taking away time with her. She is off Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays each week and since I work a job with later hours most days, I get to spend time with her earlier — and later after work– on those days.

Check-In No. 3

I am continuing to read All Things Bright and Beautiful, but now am taking another break with Shale Play: Poems and Photographs from the Fracking Fields by poet Julia Spicher Kasdorf and photographer Steven Rubin. I picked this one up at our local library, where I work. It caught my eye because where we live in northcentral Pennsylvania has been affected, and continues to be affected, by the natural gas industry.

I read the same amount of hours, 1.5, within the last four hours. During the previous four-hour stretch from noon to 4 p.m., I ended up napping part of that time, like our cat, Seamus, pictured above. This last four-hour stretch from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m., I called a friend whose birthday was today and talked with him for an hour and had dinner with my wife. We also watched a couple of episodes of a Canadian TV show Corner Gas that we have been enjoying on Amazon Prime Video.

Check-In No. 4

I am putting my last check-in for Saturday up at 11 a.m. instead of at midnight, at an interval of every four hours, because I am going to bed. I finished Shale Play, which I will talk about more tomorrow or another day, but I will say this: It was very good. I ended up reading for 1.5 hours again, finishing with reading again from the January 2019 edition of Harper’s Magazine. I will continue that tomorrow as well as All Things Bright and Beautiful, which I probably am about three-quarters of the way through. I also plan to start, if not finish, Born A Crime.


Check-In No. 1

I got a full night’s rest and started at 8 a.m. this morning. Yesterday, I started at 8:30 a.m. and finished with 7 hours of reading. I think my record with any readathon is a maximum of 8 or 9 hours, so I should shatter that record. Of course, I now am on a CPAP and am getting good rest too so that is helping. Since I finished with 7 hours of reading yesterday, I will set my goal for 7 too today.

As planned, I have started with Born A Crime by Trevor Noah. I’m already about 75 pages into it and it’s great. I know that many have expressed that I should listen to this in audiobook, but I just don’t do audiobooks. I can read quicker than I can be read to. I have heard Noah speak before, on a comedy special so know he pronounces the Xhosa words, which adds to the experience. I just rather would read the book. I appreciate those of you who have commutes to work and enjoy listening to audiobooks. My commute is five minutes so it doesn’t work for me.

I woke up this morning to an unexpected snow. We were supposed to get an inch and we already have a couple of inches, so I had to go out and help our neighbor shovel our shared driveway. As I’m writing now, it’s still snowing, but I don’t think it’s supposed to accumulate much more today (I hope). The good thing is I’m in for the day, reading.

Check-in No. 2

Sooo…my grand plans to read today? Um, yeah, I’ve read a total of three hours in the last 8 hours, but I’m almost finished with Born A Crime and I will finish that tonight. Also at 10 hours of reading in, I already have eclipsed my reading numbers for any readathon I’ve participated in previously (to the best of my knowledge) and I still have hours to go and get my goal of 7 hours in today. If not that, I’ll be happy with 12.

The main reason for my not reading is because I distracted myself with a run to get winter boots at Goodwill and wine at the wine and spirits shoppe. I only planned to grab boots at Goodwill, but couldn’t resist looking for pants and shirts. I found one good pair of pants and two nice long-sleeved shirts. Likewise, I went for one bottle of wine, but “found” two other bottles of wine plus a discount bottle of tropical flavored vodka. No, it will not be drunk tonight (some is for The Wife) but as you can see from the photo, I did partake of at least one bottle.

Now the plan is to finish Born a Crime and I think I’ll end with finishing up things All Things Bright and Beautiful since I have been enjoying that. At the end, I’ll report in on how I finished.

Check-In No. 3

It is 8 p.m. and I am in the homestretch now. I finished Born A Crime, another excellent book, which I will talk about later, and now am working on finishing All Things Bright and Beautiful, which earlier I called erroneously (twice, no less in this post) All Creatures Bright and Beautiful. Oops. Now that is corrected, and I’m on to finish my third book for the readathon and should end with over 12 hours which was my initial goal.

Check-In No. 4

If you are participating, let me know how you are faring and what you are reading in the comments. If not, let me know how you are faring anyway and what good books you’ve been reading lately.

24in48 next weekend

Next weekend, starting at 12:01 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 26, until 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 27, I’ll be participating in the 24in48 Readathon. The goal is to read 24 hours out of the 48 hours, splitting it up however you’d like. According to the official website, that can mean: “20 hours on Saturday, four hours on Sunday; 12 hours each day; six four-hour sessions with four hour breaks in between. You can pause as much as you need, enjoy regularly scheduled weekend activities, nap, stop for dance breaks with your kids or pets or neighbors. Whatever works for you.” My goal usually is at least 12 hours, to be honest, and probably will be the same again this time, including naps and just general goofing off.

So what am I going to read? My goal is five books as that’s what I usually have read for most of those readathons in the past.

First up is Astrophysics for People in a Hurry by Neil deGrasse Tyson, which I started for last year’s January 24in48 Readathon and had as a goal to finish in the July 24in48 Readathon. It’s not that it was bad, but I tried it in audiobook for the July readathon and deGrasse Tyson’s sonorous voice put me to sleep to be honest, so this time I’m just going to read it on ebook as when I started it.

Next up is The Year of Less: How I Stopped Shopping, Gave Away My Belongings, and Discovered Life is Worth More Than Anything You Can Buy in a Store by Cait Flanders, which my wife recommended. This year, she is a no-buy regimen for many things, including books, and I think that might be a good idea, so I want to see her, andFlanders’, rationale.

Next up is finishing another one I started last year, but didn’t finish: All Things Bright and Beautiful by James Herriot. Last year, I bought three of Herriot’s works on ebooks about his being a veterinarian in England: All Creatures Great and Small, All Things Bright and Beautiful, and All Things Wise and Wonderful. I’m actually not sure where I left off, but I’m sure I’ll figure it out by next weekend.

The final two will be books that I have checked out in print form from our hometown library where I work:

  1. Born A Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood by Trevor Noah
  2. The Brutal Telling, the fifth in the Chief Inspector Armand Gamache series by Louise Penny.

I’ve been wanting to read Noah’s book for a while and I started the Gamache series last year. While I don’t know if I love the series, like some other book bloggers I know, I am not opposed to continuing to read it…so far.

Are you planning to participate in next weekend’s readathon? If so, what are you planning on reading? If not, what are you reading lately? Anything good? Anything bad? 😉

This weekend, we’re supposed to get anywhere from a foot to 20 inches of snow between today, Saturday, and tomorrow, Sunday, so I’m just hanging out at home all weekend. My wife is a 911 dispatcher and even though we live near where she works, she’s staying all weekend at the communications center, so I’m “bach-ing” it. Luckily, she left me a pot of chili and hopefully the power will stay on. If not, I’ll be sleeping and reading. For more on my weekend, visit my Instagram account, where I’ll be updating on Instagram Stories.

My First Two Books of 2019

My first two books of 2019 were:

  1. The Library Book by Susan Orlean
  2. The 7 1/2 Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton

Both had been recommended by various bloggers, including Chris and Emily from The Book Cougars, in the case of the first, and Michelle from That’s What She Read, in the case of the second. However, I was reluctant to read them, because:

  1. with The Library Book, I thought it was all a true crime book and I really didn’t want to read a true crime book as I prefer my crime fictional.
  2. with The 7 1/2 Lives of Evelyn Hardcastle, I thought it had too many narrators.

But I learned that there was more to The Library Book than true crime (a lot more) and that The 7 1/2 Lives of Evelyn Hardcastle really has one narrator, who inhabits eight different bodies to solve a murder. And two patrons at the library where I work recommended each book, and while I don’t always listen to patrons’ recommendations, I did these two times and I wasn’t disappointed that I did.

The Library Book ostensibly is about a fire at the Central Library of the Los Angeles Public Library on April 29, 1986 that destroyed 400,000 volumes and damaged another 700,000 with water and smoke, but it is more than about just that. It is about the history of the L.A. Public Library System and a treatise on the importance of libraries in every age.

Likewise, The 7 1/2 Lives of Evelyn Hardcastle ostensibly is a classic whodunit in the style of Agatha Christie with a dash of Downton Abbey tossed in, but it is more than just that. It is also a mix of Quantum Leap (as the author himself describes in his Q & A at the end of the book) and Groundhog Day (as another author describes in a blurb on the back of the book), as the main character sees the murder of Evelyn Hardcastle through eight different characters, witnesses, and possible suspects over eight days.

I highly recommend both as Orlean, the author of several books, and Tarton, his first, are both brilliant writers. Their two books no doubt will be among my favorite books read this year, which on one hand is good, to start the reading year so fortuitously, but on the other hand is bad, because now all other books might seem a disappointment in contrast. Or it might be like any other year, a mixed bag.

Have you read either book? What did you think? If not, what was your first book of the year and was it a good one or a bad one?

The First Sunday Salon of the Year

Reading: Nothing yet, but I have selected what will be my first book of the year.

Watching: The highlight of this past week was a rewatch of Monty Python and the Holy Grail, so much of which I had forgotten.

Listening. Nothing new. I’m still listening to my top 25 albums of 2018

Blogging: A lot:

Celebrating: My dad’s 75th birthday (yesterday). We went to lunch at a place near where he lives. He had cheesesteak macaroni and cheese and I had a maple bacon cheeseburger with sweet potato fries and cinnamon honey. The food was amazing; the company was good too. 😉

How was your first week of 2019? Read, watch, listen to anything good?

My One Word for 2019

I’m not sure when I started doing this or who got me started. I probably have it somewhere in my old blog (which unfortunately is gone). I did find a few notes on Evernote from previous years so I can tell you that in 2015, my one word actually was two words: “Focus” and “equilibrium.” The equilibrium part of it was because I had just discovered that year that I have tinnitus. In 2016, the word was “Reinvigorate.”

Without further ado, this year’s word is:

This morning, as many mornings, I was talking to my wife at a mile a minute and she said as she often does: “Breathe!” As it is New Year’s Day, I realized that this would be my One Word, because it seemed and seems so apropos. In late October, I was diagnosed with sleep apnea and have been on a CPAP ever since. I won’t rehash everything that I said in all the previous posts on the subject, but I will repeat this line as to why I don’t let the face mask bother me: “Because the way I look at it is that…um…breathing is better than NOT BREATHING AT ALL!”

So this coming year, as I turn 50 and focus on my 10 goals for the year, I am going to allow myself to:

  • breathe as I walk and talk.
  • breathe as I sleep.
  • breathe as I relax to start the day and end the day and remain chill in the times in between, from Matins to Compline.

After all, from what I hear, breathing is good.

Do you have a One Word for 2019? If so, what is it? Share in the comments or with a link to your blog post on the word.