Starts and Stops

Part of why I like the #500wordsaday challenge is that I’ve done it a few times now, and have seen it all the way through. The first time I was convinced I wouldn't make it, since I tend to start things and fade out. Quietly but all at once like I never meant to try it at all. 

Now that I have proven to myself I can get through 30 days of this, let me cheat for a day and give you a listicle. 

Things I Have Started and Did Not Finish:

  • Modern Dance, 1986 (no rhythm)
  • Playing the Violin, 1987 (hated practice)
  • Basket Weaving, 1998 (supplies were fairly limited)
  • Handmade Paper Dolls, 1989 (artistic talent paled in comparison to existing dolls)
  • Pen Pal in California, 1990 (liked stationery more than actually writing)
  • Girl Scouts, 1991 (not a good salesperson, had to buy almost all cookies)
  • Pen Pal in Spain 1992 (enthusiasm waned post-Olympics) 
  • Handmade Cards, 1993 (see also: 2007; difficult artist’s market)  
  • Babysitter’s Club Business, 1994 (more work and less friends than the book series)
  • Collecting Basketball Cards to Sell and Get Rich, 1995 (did not get rich)
  • Basketball (Playing,) 1996 (as it turns out, I’m quite short) 
  • Learning to Drive a Stick Shift, 1997 (frustrated by the failure rate, seemed inefficient)
  • That Marble Game Where You Try to Get Down to One Marble, 1998 (might be ready to tackle this one again) 
  • Trying to Be Cool, 1999 (shrug emoji)
  • Step Aerobics, 2000 (more shrug emojis)
  • Singing, 2001 (couldn’t afford voice lessons anymore, wasn’t getting discovered fast enough to warrant debt) 
  • Keeping a Diary, 2002 (tried a Bridget Jones-type narration and hated myself for it) 
  • Cooking Anything of Value, 2003 (see also: 2011, 2015, 2018; have very little patience to wait for food when hungry) 
  • Not Eating Sugar, 2004 (this was dumb; remembered the existence of cookies)
  • Spin Class, 2005 (huge quads, made me hungry all the time)
  • Reading All the Classics, 2006 (made it through Lolita, panicked that the list of books is longer than I will be alive to read; gave up from existential dread)
  • Drawing Sketches of Everyone I Know, 2007 (creepy)
  • Hanging Frames in Just the Bedroom, 2008 (no explanation; hung frames in every other room of the apt)
  • Watching “Lost,” 2009 (just couldn’t)
  • Teaching Myself Russian, 2010 (didn’t have money for Rosetta Stone, would go to Borders and read “Russian For Dummies” in the cafe; ran out of time for this)
  • Writing a Children’s Book, 2011 (and every year since)
  • Fashion, 2012 (thought could pull off “teal pants” and “scarf-as-shirt”; could not)
  • Writing On a Set Schedule, 2013 (lol routine)
  • Making Jewelry Out of Found Four Leaf Clovers, 2014 (bead shop closed, fell adrift)
  • Pinterest, 2015 (think I’m not alone here)
  • Plants, 2016 (see also: now)
  • Not Panic-Reading the Internet, 2017 (super shrug emoji; see also: The New York Times, 2017) 

In related news, I renewed some Etsy listings, and I have over a hundred four leaf clovers if anyone has any suggestions.