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Thoughts on Goals

A few years back, I started a habit of setting goals for events and situations that folks perhaps would consider out of the usual range of goal-setting.  Examples: a week’s vacation in Maine, a potentially contentious meeting with a co-worker, family holidays.  I’ve found, if I put thought and intention into how I’d like to behave, what I’d like to  experience, it makes a big difference in my overall satisfaction.

So I set some goals for the first day of this weekend’s WordPresss Wordcamp -my first experience among other bloggers and WordPress users.

  1. Notice people and smile
  2. Embrace awkward
  3. Appreciate
  4. Wear nerdy shoes
  5. Talk to at least one person of color

I find conferences (or camps or tradeshows) a little awkward: all those strangers, spending hours indoors in just a few rooms, all that sitting and listening.  As much as I looked forward to attending Wordcamp, I knew there were some potential pitfalls that I wanted to avoid, hence the first goal.

Goal number two was inspired by a blog post by Berne Brown, the author (speaker?) of my favorite Ted Talk.

Number three is one of my standards, often interchanged with “practice gratitude.”

Number four was just for fun -most of my shoes are nerdy!

Number five is the elephant (in the room): I’ve come to understand that being one of just a few brown faces means I need to actively seek out the other brown faces.  Once upon a time I thought it didn’t matter so much: I like diversity, and all people are equal right?  However, lately I’ve started to wonder if there’s something a little funny about the Northeast (as a Yankee, I can’t really speak for other parts of the U.S.) -I’ve attended many conferences, concerts, and parties where other children of the African disapora keep such a distance from me, I wonder if there’s some magnetic force propelling them away.

So those were my goals for yesterday.  What will today bring?

(Thanks to Charles Williams for the photo snagged from Flickr.)

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July 24, 2011 at 2:26 pm Leave a comment

Fall Showers




Night sky CPL

Originally uploaded by Phobean

Through the windows of the Cambridge Public Library: the sky opened up and poured a bucket or two down upon the toddlers, high school teens, patrons, dog walkers, and others wandering the grassy grounds. Everyone instantly scattered, not unlike a scurry of squirrels racing in that desperate way, abandoning a broken umbrella, trailing bemused smiles. And lucky me, sitting inside, watching.

October 3, 2010 at 12:29 am Leave a comment

Letter Library?

I have long wondered whether there is, somewhere in the world, a letter library.  Like many people I know, I adore personal letters.  I crave, yet rarely receive, them.  When I was a kid, I put forward a lot of letter-writing effort and received many in return.  Hundreds from friends, relatives I goaded into writing me, a few love letters, and the occasional correspondence from a favorite author.  Of course, I never threw them out.  In my closet are two boxes full of letters.  When I pass away, where will these letters go?  To a letter library, perhaps?  Someone, somewhere must keep them, otherwise how would we have such a good account of our collective human history?

And my next question is . . . what about personal journals?  Angst, anger, love, and longing all so inexpertly yet passionately captured in delicate, cloth bound (and probably spiral bound and loose scraps, too) books.  Where do they go?

October 7, 2009 at 2:02 am Leave a comment

The Birthday Gift: In which a good friend reviews her local library!

My original college roommate and very dear friend Deborah (Steiger) Fischer sent me a very wonderful birthday gift -a tour of her local library near her home in Leipzig, East Germany.  I pronounce: Let it be know that Debbie is, in fact, one of my favorite people in the world!  Okay. . . on to the good stuff.

The Leipzig Plagwitz Library is as cozy as any hometown library could be.

Nestled in a quiet part of the city, it hides behind a street corner.  It has a brick facade that many Plagwitzians pass by, missing this secret library gem.  While on an adventure walk one day, I stumbled across this jewel and walked right on in . . . (more…)

July 16, 2008 at 8:06 pm Leave a comment


In which a library-lovin' lady tours free public libraries.

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