Putting 2012 on the Shelf — Here’s to 2013!

Another year gone, another year where we reflect on what happened, what we wanted to happen, what we wish had happened, and what we hope happens in the next year – our next attempt at getting life right.

I don’t even need to think about it — 2012 stands out as one of the craziest years I’ve had yet. From mountain climbing to cutting loose to bending the very nature of probability, dull moments weren’t something I was really concerned with these past 366 days.

Trippin’: Killin’ Kili and Caribbean Dreamin’

Killin’ Kili

So as you might recall, this year I managed to climb Tanzania’s Mount Kilimanjaro — one of the Seven Summit of the World! Even though it wasn’t initially my idea, once I got there, I knew I couldn’t turn back and learned a lot about myself in the process.

What I didn’t talk about and share as much was the experience we had afterward while on safari.

While I won’t go into elaborate detail in this post on the sights I saw and the things I did while on the dusty trail, I definitely hope to share it all with you someday — nothing you get in the big city  compares to the experiences you can have while on the Savannah!

Caribbean Dreamin’

I’d hoped to write an entry on our Caribbean cruise as part of the November to Remember series, but the holiday season took over and it never happened (which I’m okay with, as I still have 200 photos waiting for post-production from that trip!)

One day I’ll tell you all about it.

One day.

The Man Behind the Camera

I did more photography this year than any before, covering events like Social Media Week Toronto, Toronto Pride 2013 and several tweetups and networking events. Wherever I would go, one of my cameras was sure to follow.

In 2013, I hope to continue capturing the experiences people have around me daily, honing my craft with better equipment, more experimentation and refining my technique.

#TeamTrolling and my Tweeps

2012 would see a group of friends come together that’re unified by a love of laughter, a fiending for food and just being all-around good people to spend time with.

I was very blessed this year to get to know friends like Christine even better, while still developing a number of relationships that I’ve made over the last decade!

Mansformation

Mansformation-short-logo

Sometimes you have to be a one-man army to get things done, and for me that meant blowing the dust off of my graphics tablet and working on the logo for Mansformation in Adobe Illustrator. After a lot of tweaking and input from my wife and good friends, I was able to come up with this — something that I think I’m going to be pretty happy with for a good while!

One of the more unexpected things that happened this year was developing Mansformation — an idea that’d started as a bit of a joke and developed into a project with real potential!

I love everyone who’s supported Mansformation so far, and look forward to all the things I can do with it in 2013! I feel like this year’s will be one for the history books!

Partying Like it Was 1999 Again, Were I Legal Enough at the Time to Appreciate it

2012 had no shortage of celebration going on! Between a private Halloween party, a birthday party that easily went down in infamy and just about any other event that Twitter could throw at us — there’s been no rest for the wicked!

In some ways, I’m surprised that I managed to get anything done in 2012!

Even though the year will likely start slow with people worn out from December and trying to fill the gaping wounds left in their wallets, as the weather warms up, so will the events as they get bigger and badder throughout the year!

Better get that rest while you can!

Dating Lady Luck

A common theme in the later part of 2012 was winning stuff.

To the point where it was ridiculous.

Winning bottles of booze and conference tickets was one thing, but top-of-the-line phones? Trips to Vegas??? Lady Luck was way kinder to me than I could’ve ever anticipated in 2012!

Love & Marriage

A shot of Casey and Sarah at the "Thermae Romae" TIFF premiere!
Thanks to Meg, we were able to check out the premiere of “Thermae Romae”!

And of course, this was my first full year spent as a married man. No more wedding planning, no more trying to figure out honeymoon details — just continuing to learn about each other and figuring out how to co-exist so that we both win.

It was a good year for the both of us to relax, since you never know what the future will bring!

Let’s keep our fingers crossed for many decades yet to come!

It Was a Good 2012. Here’s to 2013!

Most of all, I think this is the year where it all started to click. Where social media became a bit less of just being another place to have fun, and started being somewhere that could help define the future of not only myself, but a whole heap of people who I know!

Have a happy new year, mes amis — something tells me that 2013’s will be amazing!!!

–case p.

A November to Remember, Verse 1: A Close Shave and The Novel That Never Was


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The tree we purchased for Christmas 2012
The tree we painstakingly purchased for Christmas 2012.

Every year. Every year we go through this.

We near the end of the year, wondering where all the time went and lamenting all the things we failed to do over the months. We plan to close out the year with a bang and swear to make a better effort to hit our goals in the next year. Year after year we try, but invariably repeat ourselves time and time again. So while the year’s already seen a lot of awesome in my life, I’d told myself back in January that this would be the year I rocked Movember and NaNoWriMo, earning fame, riches and glory in the process!

It’d all started so well.

I’d thought, “Grow a moustache and raise money for charity — that’s not so hard; I grow facial hair all the time anyway. And write a 50,000-word novel? I write, like, every day. I can do this.”

I knew it wouldn’t be easy, but I had the drive, determination and direction to make it happen — I was convinced that if anyone could do it, someone who was so used to juggling multiple things all the time was the perfect person to do it!

It’s funny, the things we can convince ourselves of and yet be so utterly wrong.

Movember, or “Why Did I Grow This, Again?”

The facial hair that I DID manage to grow by the end of Movember 2012
Not a double-forked goatee by ANY means, but distinguished, nonetheless 🙂

In the end, I was able to do some good, raising $175 toward preventing prostate cancer and supporting men’s mental health, and another $430 through the team I’d created for the initiative — the Central Agency Clustachios (a play on the name of the place where I work).

While a pleasant outcome, I can’t help but feel that I could’ve done more. Being honest, 70% of the money I raised came in the last two days of November, after I’d received enough pestering at work to rally some troops for one last go at getting donations. Between events, trips and a hefty workload, I lost sight of the goals I’d originally set and — as can often be the case in our lives — tried to make up for lost time.

If I learned anything from Movember, it’s two things:

  1. It’s impossible for me to be everywhere. Life is full of opportunities and responsibilities, but I also need the energy to take them all on. Prioritization and being realistic are skills that will be necessary to being successful in my life; and
  2. No man is meant to grow facial hair for 30 days straight. You just get to a point where it’s itchy as hell and you wonder why you started doing it in the first place.

Better luck next year, right? Hopefully I’ll be able to go the way of friends like Amanda Blake and help organize events for the cause!

Putting the “No” in NaNoWriMo

A view of the mess that's on our table right now as I try to sort through literally PILES of stuff.
And they ask why I didn’t pull NaNoWriMo off…

Even though I wrote a ton of words in November, none of it really looks like a novel.

NaNoWriMo is an ambitious little initiative, and these sorts of things need dedicated time to make them happen — even more so when creativity needs to come into the mix!

With being away half of the month and at events almost every other day, I thought I could still pull it off. But I forgot to account for work and the huge things they needed me to do this past month. I forgot to account for the fact that one can only work so hard before fatigue catches up with them. I forgot to account for the fact that life goes on with or without the blog posts I put out!

So, my dear NaNoWriMo, unfortunately you’re gone ’til next November, ’cause this one wasn’t your time to shine! In fact, NaNoWriMo, let’s play you out:

The Lesson

So what did I learn? I learned that November is not to be underestimated!

It may not be the flashiest month. Not nearly enough people look forward to celebrating the sacrifices that war veterans made to keep us free and keep us safe, so most people treat the month like a write-off and just buffer time before they get to Christmas. It’s not usually even wintery enough for the ski and snowboard types out there.

But, you’ve gotta learn to treat November with respect. It has more than enough to keep you busy if you’ll let it, and when you finally reach December and everything doesn’t look the way you expected, don’t say I didn’t try to warn you.

Because honestly, is there really anything else that one can learn from November?

–case p.

Next Verse: We’ve all gotta get rest sometimes, but even the best plans to get our sleep on can go awry!

The 2K11 24/7 LX: The February Wrap-up

It occurs to me today that I should’ve posted this yesterday, but hey – you live, you learn. 
February wrap-up – what did we learn in the shortest month of the year?

All this and more! Feel free to go back and check if you don’t believe me 🙂
I’ve been looking at making the blog less theoretical and giving more tips that you can apply more readily to your lives – small changes that’ll improve your lives if you make them habits. As I collect ideas, I aim to get more of those types of posts out. 
Examples include:

  • From “Coulda, Shoulda, Woulda” to “Will”: Changing How We Approach Opportunity
  • Posts on Practical Personal Finance
  • Posts on How to Improve Your Interactions with Others
  • Etiquette in the oddest of places (such as bathrooms and threesomes — oh yes, I went there)
  • And of course, more of just trying to live life a little better with each passing day!

So there’s a lot more where all that came from (i.e. my brain), and tons to look forward to! We’re 16.7% through the year (rounded up and inaccurate since the year doesn’t cleanly divide into 12 equally-sized months), leaving 83.3% for getting up on the good foot!
Get those shoes ready — lots coming your way!
Happy March, guys!
–case p.
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