TITLE: A Tentative First Post of the Year AUTHOR: Eugene Wallingford DATE: January 04, 2007 3:49 PM DESC: ----- BODY: I was thinking that break time would be a great time to write a bit, both here and in my day job. But as Lance Fortnow writes, the academic world isn't nearly as quiet over the Christmas holidays as it used to be. I spent some of the time between Christmas Day and New Year's Day in my office working on some forward-dated Call for Proposal web pages for OOPSLA 2007 and some other time catching up on administrative and bookkeeping tasks. I also spent some time with my wife my daughters, enjoying family time that is so easily squeezed during the school year -- as much by their schedules as mine! Top it off with a whirlwind trip to Michigan and Indiana to visit extended family over the New Year's weekend, and suddenly I'm back in the office thinking about summer teaching schedules, graduate assistant assignments, and campus IT policies. I'm itching to write but trying to get a lot done, both here and at home, before the new semester begins in earnest. I've noticed a pattern in my blogging. Whenever I go a few days without writing, I find that my first post is likely to be more personal than professional. It's almost as if I need to clear out my system a bit, priming the pump for what is to come. With a semester teaching what is probably my favorite course, Programming Languages, there will surely be plenty to say. And I have entries on the way dealing with people as diverse as Stephen King and Tiger Woods, and topics ranging from science and liberal education to Scheme to a review of my year in running shoes. I'm not the sort of person makes New Year's resolutions. It was never a family tradition, and it never has appealed to me all that much as someone who believes in continuous feedback and improvement (even if I don't often practice what I preach). But I did see a quote this morning, in an inspirational e-mail message from writer Matthew Kelly, that gave me a little resolution buzz:
Preparation and anticipation play a powerful role in our lives; let's stop robbing ourselves of these gifts by doing everything at the last minute.
If I can take even a cautious step in this direction, I think I'll enjoy 2007 more than 2006. -----