2023: Making

What was the last thing you made? What materials did you use? Is there something you want to make, but you need to clear some time for it?

In 2010, I made xmas photo. In 2011, I made metaphorical thingsthat were intentionally symbolic of relationships and history. In 2012, I made ice cream. In 2013, I made design. In 2014, I made “my room”. In 2015, I made the last line of Ice Cream Travel Guide, literally. In 2016, I made my annual holiday video. In 2017, I made another annual holiday video. In 2018, I made scones (from the Tartine cookbook)! In 2019, I made another holiday video! In 2020, I made some minor things (a chapter and writing prompts), but of course the biggest thing was the annual holiday video! In 2021, it was of course annual holiday video, which was built on little videos that I had made throughout the year. In 2022, it was again the holiday video.

Perhaps it’s always the timing of it. At least I don’t want to say the most significant that I last made was something that I did at work. Like writing an email to a participant. Like completing training (because obviously they’re due at the end of the year). Like writing up a document.

No, of course, it was the holiday video was sent late on Christmas because we had just arrived back from Utah. I had done a slightly similar version of the video on Thanksgiving gathering in responding to an uncle’s question last year during Thanksgiving, “Is living in San Francisco dangerous?”

I was angered by the question, suggesting that the city was a bad place to live. I sputtered at the time, because I knew what he was asking about all the shoplifting and the visible poverty. So as I have done in previous years, I created (along with Chris’ help) a video that played on the Instagram vs. reality. Which was reversed. It felt like a showy response of what we did in a year, but that was the intent for Thanksgiving.

For the annual holiday video, I added more substance and played into the viral trend of showing a mundane day in the life of. As usual, I used clips and photos from the year. I had fretted a lot over the music because when I had no music, it felt kind of dead. Initially, I did Sia’s California Dreamin’, but with our voiceover for Day in the life of…it didn’t seem to work. Chris suggested using a record scratch sound effect as a transition. And it worked. When we did the voiceover, we did it in cuts, because how could we describe everything accurately all in one take. Whenever I would mess up, I would just stop the recording and do the portion again. So easy, especially cutting it up in iMovie. There was no complexity like it was for the parody of doing Tik Tok a few years ago. Then I pulled everything together. Adjusted the sound for each audio and video clip. And done.

Making the 10 things we learned this year was somewhat hard. I brainstormed a list in a Google doc. But for Chris because it was a bad year, it just invited him to ruminate about all the bad stuff. So that took some time.

But then we sent it late evening on Christmas to over 75 people (bcc’ed) and boom done! Were people offended? I don’t know! I did have one clip of a protest. So!

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