Tag Archives: Indonesia

The Project Illustrated…

This is a “mind map” of the complete Excess Emancipation Project. The daily habits I am integrating; new beliefs I am creating; and the “broad strokes” of my 101 day journey are depicted here.

I committed to this vision on December 11, 2011 and it will be completed on March 21, 2012. This future I am creating is really an integration of habits I once had and/or things I’ve always wanted to do.

So far, it hasn’t been particularly easy. I see a lot of blogs out there about this person’s great new life on a raw food diet or that person’s successful purging of the possessions and I get a little frustrated. It seems like these things came easy to those people. Maybe I’m not reading far enough. Maybe they just didn’t talk about the crying.

One thing is for sure: As I look at my Dad’s desk from when I was a kid, or his galoshes from when he was a kid, I am acutely aware of tough times ahead. I am so habituated to attributing sentimental value to inanimate objects, it feels kinda like I’m getting rid of him, not just some stuff. Granted, I will be hopefully giving any/all family heirlooms to my sisters and brothers, but I know there will be a few things left over that I will have to face selling or giving away.

And it’s not just stuff from Dad and Mom (like her tin dollhouse from the 50s) a lot of my stuff are things I have picked up during my travels to Paris, Morocco, Indonesia, Costa Rica and more. Or they bring back memories of hijinks or lost loves. I suppose this is the inevitable crux of the issue.

I am committed to getting free of having to “tend” all this stuff, though. It’s so much work to dust, house, store, maintain and care for and about this inanimate menagerie. I have always fantasized about being free of it — about living a life more like Thoreau at Walden Pond — and I am determined to get there.

(Dear Universe, Please don’t infer that I want to be put in a position where I have to build my own house with just an axe and old nails from my neighbor’s shanty.)

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My Top 3 Hobbies

I had a boss tell me once that I needed to find a hobby. I was speechless. Apparently he had not been paying attention. I am a hobby hoarder. I embrace and ignore hobbies every five seconds. Case in point, this plinky site. It’s a hobby tonight, but I’m not sure it’ll stick.

I play the piano about as well as I did in the 5th grade. I was a country singer in Dallas for awhile. I’ve written some decent songs and play an okay rhythm guitar. I was a skydiver. I was a gymnast. Sometimes I’ll still dig out my flute and play a little jig. At times I’ve been devoted to journaling. I used to ride a dirt bike every day.

I’ve been in a roller derby league. I’ve gotten grants to build houses in countries like Indonesia and Southern Sudan. I tried to become a painter. I have literally taken up candlestick making. I spent two months this year refinishing old furniture. I love musicals. I was a small town Parks and Recs director. I took up Muay Thai boxing for about 8 months.

I have tried in earnest to be a better-than-humiliating golfer to no avail. I’ve climbed some pretty tall mountains. I’ve built dozens of websites. I can spend days playing Word With Friends. I love to read about time (what the hell is it?) and dark matter (what the f*&# is it?).

Honestly, I still furrow my brow in confusion over that piece of advice from an old boss and I certainly can’t pick my top three.

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