"Around here, however, we don't look backwards for very long. We keep moving forward, opening up new doors and doing new things...and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths."
---Walter Elias Disney

Thursday, January 7, 2016

So, How'd Those Resolutions Work Out?

Last year about this time I wrote a post about some New Year's resolutions I planned to make stick. It's fun to look back to a year ago and see what you expected or hoped to happen. It's kind of like a mini-cyber-time capsule of sorts. Cracking this one open might make for a fun post to begin 2016, so here we go.

So that's what I'm resolving to do. I'm going to spend more time watching TV. It sounds like an anti-resolution, doesn't it? But it's symbolic of how this year will be different from last. I'm not a huge television guy, but there are amusing things on there I'd like to enjoy, things friends watch that I'd like to be able to discuss, things our whole family can sit and get into together, things Lisa and I can experience as a couple. It starts Sunday night with ABC's Galavant, which looks hilarious and Lisa and John have both expressed interest in. No more writing press releases or answering a dozen inane emails or updating the website or editing and sharing photos or balancing the BLT checkbook as first priority. I'll get around to the things I agree to continue to do, but it won't be as fast or as consistent. It won't be first on the list, and I regret that it ever was.

I DID watch some TV last year. We saw all the Galavant shows (and watched the season 2 premier Sunday night, it's soooooo good). I discovered Star Wars Rebels on On Demand and Clone Wars and Daredevil on Netflix. But the TV watching thing was really kind of tongue in cheek. What it represented was spending more time in the living room and less in the office with the computer. As far as that went, mission accomplished.

The theatre board involvement sort of worked itself out, though not in a way I'd have expected this time last year. As 2015 began, it fell to myself and another board member, my friend Melanie, to do all the behind the scenes organizational stuff that allows a show to become reality. From Winnie The Pooh (which turned out to be one of my favorite shows ever) to a murder mystery party, to Godspell JR to a "directors' challenge" comedy show, to a Broadway revue in the park, to Shrek the Musical, Mel and I kept insanely busy making sure i's were dotted and t's crossed, making sure publicity happened and tickets were sold and rooms for rehearsals were assigned. There is A LOT beyond the jobs you see in a show's program that needs to happen, and Mel and I made sure it did. Then, about halfway through the year, we were each told to consider what roles we wanted to pursue in Brunswick Little Theatre. We were told that maybe being on the board wasn't a good idea as involved in shows as we were. Basically, we were told we were too involved in community theatre to serve on the community theatre board. We both resigned. I mean, who wants to be a part of THAT sort of thinking, right? If the board was no longer to be in the business of theatrical performing arts, I really had no interest.

Where that leaves the organization as a whole remains to be seen. This year they've scaled back considerably, choosing to drop the popular park show and the Big Summer Musical in favor of a slate of small-cast, small-crew, inexpensive-to-license, simple-set and -tech shows that can be easily produced in the converted church they rent as a home base. Those shows will all likely sell out (everything in there does, no matter what it is), but even so will reach fewer audience than just the park show and big summer musical alone typically bring in, which is a shame given their desire to raise enough funds to purchase the space they currently rent. Fewer souls with be reached, either as participants or audience, this year than any year in BLT's recent past. Be that as it may, it's no longer my problem, and that is liberating.

I'm also going to read. I am part way through about 8 books and I'm going to finish them all. Stephen King's "Revival" is gripping me right now, and I've devoted time to it the last week or so, so I have a head start on that one. I'm going to buy a new handheld GPS and begin geocaching again. It gets us out of the house together, it shows us the world and it leads to paths full of roses to smell. I'm going to walk on the beach again. I'm going to play our new Disney Infinity game. I'm going to take naps, dig out the computer room and plan weekend or day trips to new places. I'm going to write on this blog much more. 

The reading thing was middling successful. I loved "Rivival." I finished the rest of Bernard Cornwell's Saxon Chronicles (though I see the next is out right about now), I read a new Star Wars novel. I pecked away at several Disney-related nonfiction books. I'm sitting on quite a few of them still, plus some new ones and this year they WILL get read, along with more fiction. I love to read and need to do it more.

I did buy that new GPS unit but have used it very little. This was a very inactive Geocaching year, something I once again hope to change in 2016.

I played a good bit of Disney Infinity in the first couple months of 2016. I did not get to the beach much at all. I didn't nap much, did clean out the computer room and did take a good number of day trips (even if many of them were band parent-related). I had the least productive year ever writing on this or my other blog.

What's this year have in store, you ask? Or you don't, it doesn't matter, I'm gonna tell you anyhow.

Even though BLT isn't doing anything that holds any interest for me, I've not left theatre behind. I'm organizing a BLT contingent to travel to Raleigh and participate in a marathon reading of all of Shakespeare's plays in conjunction with the NC Museum of History. I didn't give BLT any choice in the matter. Well, in my defense I DID forward the email to the board president and simply took lack of a "no" response as an endorsement of the idea and went ahead. That should be fun.

I'm also joining the Shrek creative team in exploring ways to keep the kinds of shows BLT did in the past but no longer seems (for now at least) interested in pursuing alive in Brunswick County. Can't say much more about that, but it's been fun brainstorming with two men who I admire so much. I'm really excited about the possibilities.

But it will be, I think, mostly groundwork-building. It certainly won't be devoting months of my life and my family's lives to a show this summer. It will leave time for the beach, something we tend to sadly neglect during "show summers." We'll be making trips to visit colleges, a sort of bitter-sweet thing as we prepare to send John off into the world. In the fall, Halloween to be exact, we'll be indulging in one last family trip to Disney World, including a behind the scenes tour, something I've wanted to share with Lisa and John for years.

Who knows what else lies in store. I certainly hope (once again) to be writing on this blog more and to begin again writing on Liberty's Harbor (I mean it IS an election year and all). I'm curious to know what this will look like in hindsight as I read it in January 2017, but I'm not so excited I want to rush it. 2016 could be a year of giving ourselves the time to enjoy simply living the Stites Life, and that would be perfect.

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