There are people who go with the flow and there are people who make lists. I am sure you can guess by now which one I am, so it is only natural to welcome the new year by writing down some of the PLP’s goals for this year. These are markedly different from my personal goals, which include learning how to use an electric drill, working on my appalling French, and trying to eat only one croissant a week. I am already breaking one of my PLP goals, which is to post when I say I will post – but it was SUNNY in SEATTLE yesterday, which means I spent most of the day just standing on the sidewalk in sunglasses, letting vitamin D flood my weary body. It was amazing.
So here’s a few goals to start the year off. My main goal remains to take part in the political process – and writing these posts keeps me motivated. So thank you for your support last year. It is so much more fun taking this journey knowing there are people out there rooting for me (and occasionally telling me I am full of crap). Both are totally valid responses.
1. Attend a seminar called “What you need to know about running for office” hosted by The National Women’s Political Caucus of Washington. This is goal #1 because it is coming up in the next few weeks. There are many similar opportunities available nationwide – it is a simple Google search away – so perhaps I will see some of you at one of these!
2. Keep in contact with Republican friends so I can try to understand varying points of view. I don’t know if I can stretch myself as far as consuming right-wing media, but if you know of a conservative journalist who also has a sense of humor, I am willing to give it a shot.
3. Attend a school board meeting for Seattle Public Schools. Being part of a school board interests me for many reasons, though the position is unpaid (more on that later). I am not sure exactly what the position entails, though any position that allows me in any way to fight for a better education for my son sounds great. I’ve heard the meetings are incredibly boring – but I really want to see for myself what they are actually doing, or not doing as the case may be.
4. Write my second book. This is both a personal goal and a goal for the PLP, because ultimately I hope this book will change the world. (For the record, this is said tongue-in-cheek, but all writers are deeply egotistical. We HAVE to be, because otherwise, we would quit and be a person who doesn’t write books. And that isn’t an option.)
5. Stay informed. Once you attain a certain level of world knowledge, it is easy to ‘top up’ with a basic scan of news sources. Drop out for a few days, and it’s like ‘What is Egypt up to now??’ My goal is 10 minutes a day, every day. Beyond that, and I start to feel my brain wrinkling like fingertips in a bath.
6. Find an organization to support. This sounds like a vague, ridiculous goal, but it’s not! For years, I supported my students in their various causes and that is how I ‘gave back.’ They found the cause, they milked me for cash, I gave. Now it is time for me to think about how I want to invest my time and resources.
7. Press for change, even if at a very low, local level.
Remember my post about the boys vs. girls assembly? I decided to take my own advice and write into the school newspaper to protest the assembly – resulting in the now-adviser of the school paper receiving emails from staff members saying she should not have printed my letter because it made the kids who came up with the assembly feel bad. Apart from beating people with a First Amendment stick, I want to state for the record that those kids SHOULD feel bad! So should the adults who said it was a good idea. It is important for all of us to remember the adage: Use it or lose it. It is not revolutionary to write into a school paper, but it is a start. I have these rights, and well, I intend to use them as much as possible (um, excepting the second one).
8. Run for office. I will put my name down for something by the end of this year. I’m still not sure which position, but the options are narrowing which is, for once, a good thing.
Happy New Year to all!