NASA: 2013 Year In Review

2013 was a big year for NASA. Voyager 1 became the first man-made object to enter interstellar space. The International Space Station celebrated its 15th anniversary. Curiosity uncovered evidence that Mars could’ve supported life in the past, and NASA launched its latest Mars mission, MAVEN, to investigate the Martian atmosphere.

Read more about what NASA accomplished in 2013 here:

Year in Review

This year has been an interesting and transformative one:

- I got married in New Orleans, with a full Thelemic, Gnostic Mass ceremony with my family (especially my Evangelical parents, my ex and our daughter), friends, and religious community in attendance
- I got back into therapy, finally focusing treatment on my PSTD which lead to me finding peace on some hairy things, some I’d carried with me since childhood
- I got a raise and promotion at my last job (big personal accomplishments), then was laid off a few month later (right before my wedding)
- I did a 2nd ayahuasca ritual that showed me how much I’ve grown, lead me through a death trip, urged me back into therapy, showing how much more I have to grow
- performed as a officer of several initiations for the first time within my tradition
- DJ’d for several of the biggest parties I’ve ever done, many of them out of state, and for shows of several of my all-time favorite bands (Leatherstrip being one of special note)
- I finally left the food industry after working in it for a full decade, moving into low voltage/telecom work
- I quit the club on good terms, and now that club is closing at the end of this year
- made it onto unemployment, fumbled that after 2 months, made it through many interviews, and finally persevered through the longest hiring process I’ve ever dealt with to have the most stable job I’ve ever held
- got a rescue puppy that has been a very positive influence on and addition to our family
- visited my grandparents for the first time in years, learning much more about our family history on my mother’s side (and insight on how it can take a long time to find the field of work one will eventually settle with)
- small moments throughout the year showed me that I have earned my peers respect and admiration. Basically, I realize that I don’t need to see myself as the worthless kid I have for so long seen myself as.
- I also reached 5 years of sobriety from alcohol

“The most exciting book of fiction I read this past year is Claire Vaye Watkins’s debut collection of stories, Battleborn. Despite her many recent accolades and awards, I hadn’t heard of this young writer – the collection was published in fact in 2012 – and from the moment I opened the first pages I was enthralled, utterly and completely.” Chang-Rae Lee on his Year in Reading.

So, it seems that I am late to the party. Not only am I late to the party, I resisted going because everyone was going and word on the street was so loudly proclaimed, “Best Party of the Year,” that I felt sure I’d be disappointed. But, finally, only one year late (honestly, I am often far more behind than this), I slunk in the door and, low and behold, Jess Walter’s BEAUTIFUL RUINS is indeed bumpin’.

“I went to the National Book Awards ceremony in New York last month for a very simple reason.  I wanted to tell James McBride, in person, what I’m going to tell you now: his novel, The Good Lord Bird, one of five finalists for the fiction award, is the most astonishing book I read all year.  It’s one of the most astonishing, rollicking, delightful, smart and sad books I’ve read in all my life.” Our own Bill Morris on his Year in Reading.

“My understanding of Russian literature and its history was shaken up by Muireann Maguire’s Stalin’s Ghosts: Gothic Themes in Early Soviet Literature; I had never given a thought to that side of Soviet literature, and I doubt many people have, but she convinced me that (as she puts it) ‘The centrality of the Gothic-fantastic to Russian fiction is almost impossible to exaggerate.'” Stephen Dodson kicks off A Year in Reading.