So long, 2020!

A cold December night

Someday, 2020 will make sense. As the year draws to a close, there are a few pre-pandemic “lasts” to remember.

  • Last movie at a movie theater: “1917” on Feb. 2 — Glad I saw it in a theater on a big screen. At the theater I often go to, there is rarely a big crowd for the movies I want to see (and by then “1917” had been out for a while).
  • Last meal in a restaurant: Le Colonne Restaurant at the Hilton Hotel at Leonardo da Vinci International Airport on March 11 — The food was fine — I can’t remember what we had, but tables had been spread apart for social distancing, and there were diners at only about four other tables. We were only there to be sure to get our morning flight out of Rome, leaving the country early as more and more flights were being canceled, including our flights out of Genoa.
  • Last workout at the gym: Feb. 29 — I did some warmups and cooldowns, with a 5K run on the indoor track in between at a time of 33 minutes and 22 seconds
  • Last day working in person at the office: Tuesday, March 3.
  • Last time I had a cold: Maybe sometime in 2019
Continue reading →

2018 Year in Review

I’ve had better. So see you later 2018.

2017 in Review in Music


gamelan-yir-webThat’s me on the right with some of my museum colleagues playing the gamelan, which was installed in an exhibition. This was my first time playing the gamelan since I was a member of the nascent Pitt Gamelan Ensemble in the fall of 1996, when I was a grad student at the University of Pittsburgh and the Ensemble was a class taught by a grad student and before it became what it is today. I tried looking for any record of that class or the performance we did in December of 1996 at Heinz Chapel, but it seems to have been erased from history. Continue reading →

2017 Year in Review in Photos



February Continue reading →

2016 Year in Review with Photos

Wall of Masks hanging at a store called Nim Po't in Antingua, Guatemala

Masks at Nim Po’t, Antigua, Guatemala

Fuego Volcano erupts near Antigua, Guatemala, with clouds turning black with ash and red with fire

Fuego Volcano erupting, Antigua, Guatemala

Deborah Zlotsky and Crit Streed at La Tortilla Cooking School in Antigua, Guatemala

Learning to cook, Antigua, Guatemala

Michael and Deborah in front of Robert Indiana's "Love" sculpture at Sixth Avenue and 55th Street in Manhattan

Valentine’s Day, New York City

Signs on a hike for Snow and Wolf Jaws trails, and Deer Brook Trail, and the High Water Route

Hike near Lake Placid

Michael and Deborah in Lake Placid

Lake Placid

Deborah and Max swap their faces in an image using the Snapchat app

Deb and Max play with Snapchat

In a subway car in Seoul, nearly everyone is one a mobile device, except for one man who is reading a Bible

Subway, Seoul, South Korea

Deborah Zlotsky speaks to a group of Samsung Art and Design Institute students in the shade of a tree, Seonyudo Park, Seoul, South Korea

Samsung Art and Design Institute students, Seonyudo Park, Seoul, South Korea

A tour guide in traditional clothes and straw hat leads visitors toward the Main gate of Changdeokgung Palace

Changdeokgung Palace, Seoul, South Korea

Lily pads in a pond amid traditional buildings in the Secret Garden, Seoul, South Korea, of the Changdeokgung Palace

Secret Garden, Seoul, South Korea

A wall of screens at the Samsung D-light Store, Seoul, South Korea, shows names and faces of visitors, including Deborah and Michael

Samsung d’Light, Seoul, South Korea

Two young women in traditional costume visit the traditional Hanok Village in Jeonju, South Korea, and take selfies with a selfie stick

Young visitors to the traditional Hanok Village in Jeonju, South Korea

Vesta, Deb and Michael on the rocky coast of Maine


Deborah Zlotsky wears white coveralls before picking poison ivy

Poison Ivy eradication prep

Low water and worn rock at Buttermilk Falls, Ithaca, New York

Buttermilk Falls hike, Ithaca, NY

Max Seiler, Michael Janairo, Deborah Zlotsky post outside voting site in Delmar, New York

Election Day 2016

Glasses raised in a toast with Janairo family at Mitchell's Fish Market at the Galleria in Mount Lebanon, Pennsylvania

Thanksgiving Dinner

2016 Year in Review

Fifty-six blog posts published so far this year

Number one, most-read blog post: Review of Justin Cronin’s “City of Mirrors”

Number one, most-watched videos: Sun Yuan and Peng Yu’s “Can’t Help Myself” from the Guggenheim Museum

Two poems published: “That Day in Assisi” and “For Your Own Safety”

One short story published: “Auntie Lovely Says Goodbye”

Two countries visited: Guatemala, South Korea

Twenty-four books read



Twenty-one seconds: Best completion time of the NYTimes mini puzzle


Patronus: Fox



Participation Award: La Tortilla Cooking School, Antigua, Guatemala


2015 in review

The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2015 annual report for my blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 2,900 times in 2015. If it were a cable car, it would take about 48 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

My 2014, by the numbers

Some random metrics about my life in 2014.

Number of blog posts on 73
Most read blog post: Readercon wrap-up: ‘You don’t look Filipino’

Number of jobs left: 1
Number of new jobs started: 1

Writing career
Number of short stories published: 3
Number of writing conferences attended: 1 (Readercon)

Top Spotify artist: Bruce Springsteen

Number of countries outside the US visited: 1 (Guatemala)
Number of cities outside the US visited: 7 (Monterrico, Antigua Guatemala, Panajachel, Santa Catarina, San Antonio, Santiago Atitlan, Guatemala)
Number of US cities visited outside the Capital Region: 14 (NYC, Pittsburgh, Providence, New Haven, Boston, Cambridge, Williamstown, North Adams, Freeport, Prospect Harbor, Lincoln, Omaha)

Social media
Number of tweets: 512
Most impressions on one tweet: 40,461
The tweet:

Most looped Vine: Dance @yaleartgallery

Number of new FB friends: 89
Number of lost FB “friends”: About 200
FB year in review: Here

Most liked Instagram post: Found at work today.
Instagram year in review: Here