Tuesday, November 05, 2013

It's November Already

November means a lot of things to this blog.

Of course, it signals the end of baseball season, which is the start of a difficult period of five months without any meaningful baseball games. 

On the other hand, the offseason also brings with it Hall of Fame season, the time period which culminates with the announcement of next year's Hall of Fame inductees in early January. Obviously, the ridiculousness of last year's writers' ballot, in particular, and the realization that the entire process is deeply flawed, in general, has made these announcements a little bittersweet, but it still remains one of my favorite baseball subjects to obsess over. 

November also is the calendar year's penultimate month, not that you needed me to tell you that. So, for the past 18 years it has meant the beginning of the time that I try to get my thoughts together regarding my top albums of the year. 

Frequent Spins appears to have gone by the wayside this year, but that doesn't mean I don't have my usual dedication towards the annual best-music-of-the-year countdown. It still remains to be seen what I'll do regarding the outdated CD compilation I've had less dedication to in recent years, but the albums-of-the-year list lives on. 

Last, but certainly not least, November is my son's birthday month. Little Chuck will be two this year, which brings me to my main point for writing this. 

This year has proven to be a bigger challenge than last year, in terms of finding time for my writing hobby. I'm not exactly sure why. I don't necessarily think the second year provides a tougher parenting challenge than the first. 

In some ways I think it's gotten easier, while in other ways, it's been harder. But, I think witnessing LC enter the stage where he's starting to express his own individuality has reinforced my own identity to some extent. That is, I'm simply putting less emphasis on making time for writing and more on my responsibilities as the patriarch of the family, so to speak.

That's not to say I'm phasing out the blog and/or the writing hobby. However, my goal for 2014 will be to decide how better to prioritize my time so I can continue to enjoy this part-time endeavor.

Speaking of which, next month–December 22, to be precise–actually marks the 10th anniversary of this blog.

Part of this refocusing of effort will be an attempt to recapture what it is I love about writing in general and this blog in particular. To that end, given that the blog's first entries were a countdown of my top ten albums of 2003, I'll be celebrating the tenth anniversary by returning to the blog's roots. 

Beginning on December 22, I'll be devoting one entry per day to one of my top ten albums of 2013, starting with #10, of course, and working my way down to #1 on New Year's Eve. 

It's not a major departure from what I've done in past years, I realize. The difference is the emphasis on the top ten, which is what the list was all about when this annual tradition began in 1996, and continued that way until 2004. 


  1. Go easy on yourself. As you note, your responsibilities as a parent have taken priority. That is as it should be.

    Happy Birthday to LC. I does get easier, and harder, as you note. Sounds like you're doing a great job. Enjoy every second with your family. The old cliche that it goes by too fast is a cliche for a reason. It's completely true!

  2. Wow! This is one of my favorite pieces of writing of yours of late. Honest and full of things to come in every way. As usual, I'm looking forward to your top 10 and love that it will begin on the 10th anniversary of this amazing collection of writing.

    1. This is one of my favorite comments ever! Thanks so much, Kumo.