No better time

Today’s the 11th anniversary of the first post of Virtual Memories. I usually forget my blogiversary, because my life’s gotten way too hectic. In recent years, it’s been a matter of work, reading, podcasting, and being a good husband and dogfather. Not much time to write, and not a lot of time to think.

Last night, I confirmed a podcast session with D.G. Myers, a professor, writer and critic who will be dead within 18 months from prostate cancer. We’re planning to get together in late March or early April, to talk about books, the academy, and mortality. I’ve interviewed guests in their mid-80s, but never someone who clearly sees the terminus up ahead. I don’t know why he’s consenting to do this; if I was in his boat, I’d be a gibbering wreck or I’d be bungee-jumping in New Zealand (again).

Of course, we’re all in his boat. I’m sure he’s making the best of the time he has left. (Myers just tweeted, “I don’t understand why people are so afraid of death. The day after, they won’t remember a thing.”)

I’m in the middle of trying to change my life. I’m about to leave the job I’ve had for almost 15 years — and the company where I’ve worked for nearly 17 years — so I can start a related business. I might be the only knucklehead who’s quitting a secure job for the great unknown in this job market, but there it is. This new gig might mean I spend a lot more time in D.C., so perhaps I’ll get to writing on train rides, even if I’m a lot older than David Gates was when he wrote Jernigan in legal pads on the LIRR.

When the “farewell to Gil” issue of my magazine comes out next month, I imagine I’ll hear from readers who enjoyed my work, my editorials, our conversations at conferences over the years. E-mails to that effect have already trickled in as the news of my departure has started to spread.

As gratifying as those notes are, it’s here at Virtual Memories that I’ve been trying to build something — in text and in my podcasts — that’ll outlast me. Thanks for sticking around.

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