As with the two previous entries on my birthday, adding another year to my age holds a kind of sobering mood over me. When I was much younger I used to look forward to my birthday, until I turned sixteen, at which point I underwent some sort of crisis about growing old. How’s that for lame? I had my mid-life crisis at sixteen and so now I think I’m going to die around thirty. I tell everyone I only have two years left, and my friends all tell they’re so sick of hearing about it that if I’m not dead by thirty, they’ll gladly help me along. I’m here at work right now, and I think it sucks that I have to work on my birthday… it means I’ll be sleep deprived after the events of the day are done.

Anyway, the year in review. I went to Anime Expo 2003. I was laid off from PayPal/eBay. I ran a major anime convention. I did another quarter at Foothill. I self-published a book. I was hired on at Walmart.com. I bought a new car. I ended a long-term relationship. I started a band. I got signed to do a weekly radio show.

Okay, so it was not entirely without its ups and down. I’m writing another book. I’ve agreed to run another convention, and as I write this, I’m in the midst of preparations to go back to Anime Expo. This year, though, I am hoping that I can go back to school and finish my transfer unit requirements so I can apply to SFSU for Fall 2005. Having no job right before the fall quarter in 2003 really put a stop to continuing my education. All I can say is that I was grateful I spent enough money beforehand just to get through the fall quarter without falling on my ass. It was signing up for winter and spring that essentially owned me, when the fees got jacked up over the summer and instead of paying seven dollars a unit, it ended up being twelve. Those extra five dollars, when multiplied by twenty units, add up to a hundred dollars more than I had, so school fell by the way.

How am I doing? Emotionally, I think I’m a lot better than I was before. Physically, I am feeling my age and realizing right at this moment how much I can no longer do graveyard shifts anymore. Not only because I need more sleep, but because I appear to have something of a social life and I’m missing out on a lot of the events I would like to take part in. If I want to participate, I either have to arrive late or leave early, depending on the time. It sucks because I hate it when work becomes life. I want the more enjoyable aspects of life to be life, tempered by responsibility of course, but I think some sort of balance would be nice. It had gotten to the point that during the three or four days I work, it is pretty much impossible to even talk to me or do anything with me… and that’s a little sad. Hopefully, they will hire a permanent graveyard guy and I’ll be on a much better daytime schedule that’s somewhat normal. … I had to pause to laugh because if my twenty year old self read this, he would probably just wonder what the hell happened to me that I would want to work days. At 20, I was so much a night person, even when I wroekd swing my body tried to keep me up nights. I used to pride myself on working nights and volunteering for nights. Now, I work 8 hours a night and all I want to do is sleep when I get home.

I gained some new friends this year, as well. I met some people with similar interests; I started going to a hell of a lot more ballgames… I’m not complaining, just trying to figure out how many I can go to in one month. I wish I could spend more time with them sometimes, because I have come to enjoy the conversation and self-exploration that comes with sharing the same general area. There is one person in particular, who shall remain nameless, who reminds me of myself when I was their age; but with a majority of the life lessons that took me a divorce and serious emotional strife in order to gain wisdom. I think that this person is so far ahead of the game that only great things are waiting for them in the future. If such a relationship is maintained, I think I would enjoy watching that play out for them, and it is my sincere hope that they acheive their goals. Any support I can offer toward that end would probably be given without hesitation.

My love life stands still. I feel a great deal better about no longer being in a relationship. The decision to end it was best for both of us, and given her current state of affairs, it was a even better move for her. Where do I go from here? I stay single for at least six months to a year. I know I’ve said this in the past, but this time I have to stick to it. I want to get used to being by myself for a while, enjoy the fits of loneliness that get tempered with the happiness that comes from being dependant on no one else for emotional support. I have my friends, I have my interests, I keep busy. I may at times say stupid things like “I’m unattractive” or whatever… that’s just me being stupid. The romantic in me states that fate might smile. The realist in me wonders who the hell this fate person is. I don’t really beleive in fate, except when it suits me, but I’d like to think that we make our own fate (to borrow a phrase from T2). I also hearby decree no more finding women on the internet and then moving in with them within 90 days. You would think after the first three times I would learn my damn lesson already instead of being blinded by my emotions. I’ve been called a cold-hearted bastard so many times, you would think that part of me would step in and play the role I’ve been assigned.

About the book and the radio show. The book was put out by CafePress some time ago; it’s not a “real book” so to speak, but it was really something to see my name on the cover of a book, with my words on the inside (albeit slightly mispelled and grammatically scary at times). Say what you will about it, it’s something I can say I did. The radio show is potentially awesome. I finished the scripts for the first episode and I’m almost done with the second. It will premeire on June 26th at 7:30pm Pacific, and a press release is going out about it on Monday, to promote it and gain listeners. I’m excited about it, to be honest. We did the rundown meetings last week and edits to get the final script ready for recording tomorrow night. It’s nice to actually be part of a professional production team. Who knows? It might actually pay in the near future. I wouldn’t want a career in broadcasting, but it looks like a lot of fun.

This year ends on a cautiously optimistic note. I look forward to the next year, and maybe in that year, I will build enough momentum to look forward to turning twenty-nine.