In sports, they call it a building year. At least I think they do — sports analogies don’t really work for this blog, so scratch that. This time last year, I lived in an apartment with my boyfriend and worked in public relations in Columbus, Ohio. None of those things are the case today, and as weird as 2010 was, I am better for it.
This year I decided to start being more honest with people and especially with myself. It has paid off more than I could have imagined. I have stronger friendships, a closer family and the humbling realization that other people care far less about the things you say and do than I ever thought. So here we are again, another Year in Review of The Sleeper Hit. As I did at the end of 2008 and 2009, I present to you the inane, the important: the things I deemed worthy of blogging about this year.
January: Started and quit Couch to 5K. Took an eight week beginner’s improv class. Got asked to be a bridesmaid in Christina’s wedding. The web developer at my office left and I was given her duties on top of my own, pending her being replaced. The apartment Brandon and I lived in began to rapidly fall apart before our eyes, mirroring the future of our relationship.
February: After much thought, back-pedaling, fear and nausea, I broke up with my college boyfriend and took a blogging hiatus. Moved out of the apartment and into my aunt and uncle’s. Suffered even more than usual from paranoia and narcissism. Attended the Columbus Comedy Festival and saw lots of local improv and stand up.
March: Performed in my first and only improv show. While on jury duty and away from work for two weeks, began thinking about moving to Chicago. Having made a mess of my life and being at a job that wasn’t right for me for a year and a half, something had to go. Threw myself the best birthday weekend ever and finally got a hair cut I loved (Lucky 13!); saw Tegan & Sara with Eileen. Started seeing a grief counselor the week my friend Jessie’s dad died.
April: Got to assistant direct a commercial with Plum St. Productions; tried to spend as much time with Eileen as possible after she officially announced her plans to move to San Diego after graduation. Moved back in to the apartment after Brandon moved out; wrote a third of a screenplay. Partied in Cleveland with a newly-single Jessi D. Went to war with my neighbors and attempted to kill them with kindness. Started going to a writers’ group at a coffee shop nearby.
May: Visited my friend Katie at OU. Started doing video and blog work for the Summit Workshop recording studio by the apartment. Brandon emailed me to tell me he had a new girlfriend. Briefly wrote for Shadowbox Cabaret before slinking away in shame. Cat-sat for my brother and sister-in-law while they were in Boston. Went almost a whole weekend without spending any money to kick off my secret savings plan for an eventual move to Chicago. Visited the Windy City with my improv friends. Started drinking Green Monster fruit and spinach smoothies that looked awful but tasted delicious.
June: Started the Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred; got 22 days into it before leaving for California with Liz to help move Eileen to San Diego. Made a fun road trip video. Started reading “Infinite Jest” in an attempt to finish it by Sept. 1; failed miserably. Celebrated my niece’s first birthday. Moved out of the apartment and into Owen and Jamie’s to avoid signing a lease before leaving Columbus in the fall.
July: Started really getting along with Stacey from work which made life infinitely better at the office. Stopped going to my writers’ group. Had a moment of enlightenment when I read this line in “Infinite Jest”: “You will become way less concerned with what other people think of you when you realize how seldom they do.” Aryeh asked me to write a political short and I ended up writing a 30-page script we adapted into several episodes of a web series called “The Candidate”. Went to a man meat market with Stacey and laughed at the absurdity that is a man meat market.
August: Cast and began filming “The Candidate” with work buddies, on location at our office. Actually started to not hate my job just in time to announce I was going to leave it in favor of unemployment in Chicago. Went to Caldwell more times this summer than I had in the entire year prior. Had a blast at B.C. and C’s wedding. Met Brandon’s new girlfriend and liked her. Owen shot the principle footage of the web series and I bought Final Cut Express to edit.
September: Wrapped up filming of the show and edited seven hours of footage in four weeks. Told my boss I was quitting and felt a six-month-long weight lift off my shoulders. Realized this meant I had to actually move to Chicago. Shot some fake campaign ads to promote the show before Election Day. Ended my grief counseling after six months, after actually getting better. Interviewed for a Chicago TV job but didn’t get it. Fell in love with Final Cut and immediately out of love with it after it corrupted a bunch of “Candidate” files.
October: Visited NYC for a week with Christine and ate lots of cheese pizza; contemplated life at a hostel in Chicago. Ten days before leaving Ohio, found out via mass text that Brandon proposed to his new girlfriend. Had a great last day at my job; was given more mix CDs than I had hours of driving to Chicago. Spent an amazing week in Caldwell; said hello to a boy before leaving my hometown for good. Had a rough first day in the city, but met my new roommate and had a fun Halloween with Liz.
November: Moved to the house in Avondale and started working in retail. Got really sick and mourned the loss of my health care benefits. A thoughtful boy mailed me a homemade first aid kit stocked with cold medicine and cookies. Spent the anniversary of my mom’s death with Christina, touring the city and shopping at thrift stores. Went to a taping of the Judge Pirro show. Received a pony in the mail. Steve the Cat died. Got a freelance reporting gig with Patch.com. Spent too much money on a laptop and saw my family at Thanksgiving.
December: Freaked out on the first of the month when I realized I had actually quit my job and moved to a new city with a set amount of money that was disappearing. Dad visited and brought me my bed and belongings. Went to Caldwell for a couple days; said goodbye to a boy. Learned the hard lesson that if someone really wants to be with you, they’ll find a way no matter how crazy it is — and if they don’t, they won’t. Spent Christmas Day at the Lincoln Park Zoo with my roommates and documented the day with a video.