I am not the person I was when this year began. My life has shifted in different ways, ultimately resulting in this transformed Brian that exists today. I really like being the new Brian, even if the old one is missed from time to time.

{david eugene & the demise of cloves}

I started hanging out with David last December. I had met him when he worked in the cafe at Borders over the summer and was instantly a fan. When he mysteriously left the store, I became obsessed with what turned out to be the memory of someone I didn’t even know well. In an act of silly desperation, I confessed my love for him. My confession was ignored and all future attempts to discuss it have been rejected. That was a great blessing; over the past year I have had one of the best friendships with David. He is often crazy, sometimes reclusive, but always there when I need him. When I was about to find myself homeless in September, it was David who immediately offered a place to stay. When I needed to get a new place of my own, it was David who hooked me up with a great deal on an apartment. When David decided to quit smoking a year ago, I also gave him support for his decision and try to encourage him. He is still quitting. 2007 is defined mostly as the year of David to me.

{heather, the gay monkey, the rock star, and the world}

Oh, Heather. 2007 has not seemed like her year, but maybe it really has been. Heather’s boyfriend moved back to town halfway through the year. Previously, he had been in town 10 days per month. I think they both felt that they wanted that to happen; however, as their lives had progressed over time, neither knew what to do with one another being around so often. What seemed like a sudden burst of elation quickly fizzled and the two parted. It was a really sad time, as I liked both of them as individuals. But this is not a story with a sad ending. This freed Heather to pursue another option, the greatly more suitable John. Those two make so much more sense than I could have imagined. I miss my Heather, but I’m glad she is happy now. Heather also got a new place to live out of the break-up — well, okay, she was semi-forced to move.

{satan’s hamster runs amuck}

If asked a year ago, I probably would have told you that I had the best job I could imagine for myself. And I did. I so enjoyed office and HR work with Borders. It almost felt like my calling in a way and the experience has shaped the path I am choosing in all future retail jobs. But it wasn’t meant to last. In April, after my whining that I needed a second job had prompted David to nag me about applying to Michaels, I finally started a new job. Honestly, I barely took it seriously at first, being that this was my second job, a way to make a little spending money. It was supposed to be fun. They decided to promote me after a month and I’ve since been a lot better about being an adult at work. I had gone on vacation just before this promotion at Michaels and my return marked the end of my time at Borders. In my absence, a lot of assumptions were made about what amount of work I was doing. The manager directly above me, who had spent almost no time learning what my day consisted of and having no knowledge of my filing system, decided that I did not know what I was doing. Simultaneously, I had chosen to not allow this manager to run me over anymore. That would be the mistake I would come to regret. Crossing certain people can lead to one’s downfall and it was headed there with me. Every minor mistake or item left for the next shift was recorded and used in an effort to get me fired. Things that were common for others in my position were used as my failings. I gave my notice at the end of June. Michaels was eager to give me hours and I was soon working full-time hours. In September, I was officially made full-time and promoted to a position at the new store in town. We spent the month of October setting up the store, where I am now employed. I like this sort of work just fine, but I still miss my position at Borders. I think this will end up being a very good thing for me, regardless of where I end up in the future. I learned a lot at Borders and made a lot of friends and contacts. In such a small town, these contacts will certainly be helpful to me later. I look forward to the day that the manager who made my life so difficult at Borders is no longer working there.

{get that sheep out of my mouth}

It was January 2007 when a traumatic experience during a Greek pizza resulted in the eradication of meat from my diet. I don’t crave it. Making the decision to not ingest animals was one of the most positive things I’ve done in my life. Although I still maintain that this is what works for me and is by no means the right thing for everyone, I think the control it has given me over my own life is very rewarding. I no longer feel guilty for enjoying a meal. The lack of meat in my diet — and dairy (in December 2006 I stopped digesting milk, as often happens) — has lead me in various culinary directions. I have discovered a world of soy foods and have embraced Indian food greatly. I’ve found that when I am forced to read every label before buying food, I often no longer want to eat things that are completely meat-free. Not eating such things is better. Going forward, I hope to eat even healthier foods.

{nomadic life}

Relying on the generosity of relatives I hardly know, I was able to stay in Alaska and get back in the black financially. That time came to an end, when I was ushered out of the apartment I was living in. This is hardly a tragedy. I hated that place and my life there was lonely. My family next door seemed as far away as the one’s I speak to regularly and people rarely visited. Last winter, there was no heat until mid-January, making it unbearably cold. I was more than happy to leave. I did not have anywhere to go and David took me in, allowing me to stay until mid November. At this point, I got my fourth Alaska address in two years, more than I had in seven years in Tulsa. I am living in David’s old place and it really suits me. It is small, but not confining. Although I know I will have to move in another year, I will enjoy my life here while I can.

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