Dear 43 Things Users,

10 years after introducing 43 Things to the world, we have decided we have met our last goal: completing the incredible experience that has been 43 Things. Please join us in giving one last cheer to all the folks who have shared their goals with the world, as well as all the people who have worked at The Robot Co-op to build this incredible website. We won a Webby Award, published a book, and brought happiness to a lot of people.

Starting today, 43 Things users can export their goals and entries from the site. Starting August 15, we will make the site “read only”. 43 Things users will still be able to view the site and export their content, but we won’t be taking any new content from users. We hope to leave the site up for folks to see and download their content until the end of the year. Ending on New Year’s Eve takes us full circle.

It has been a long ride (one of our original goals was to "build a company that lasts at least 2 years” - we beat that one!) While we wish the site could live on, it has suffered from a number of challenges - changes in how people use the site, the advertising industry, and how search engines view the site. We wish the outcome was different – but we’ve always been realistic about when our goals are met and when they aren't.

As of today, you will be able to download your goals and entries. See more about that on the FAQ page. Thanks for 10 great years of goal-setting and achieving.

- The Robots.

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RuthG in Chicago is doing 24 things including…

complete my racial-neocolonial autobiographical poem cycle & get it published

15 cheers


RuthG has written 3 entries about this goal

I'm continuing to work on these off & on

I have two more since the last time I posted, I think. Well, one of them (about my complicated relationships with the young women who worked in our house during my teens) is still in process, but the other (about the time I was assaulted) is done.

This is really getting at a lot of big stuff in my life, & my family’s life.

Two more poems

Following advice from other poets, I smushed the first two short poems into one. I wrote another in mid-June & got good feedback on it last week during my private conference with the workshop instructor. And I wrote two new poems for the cycle that week! A total of four thus far.

As I create individual short poems out of the content of that three-year-old long one, I’m finding that the incidents described take on MUCH more emotional force. Makes sense since now I’m not just mentioning/listing them but delving deep into each. Some are excruciating to read . . . but it feels as if writing about abuse suffered by my dad & his sisters when they were young, as I’ve been doing, honors their memory. I don’t think these terrible things were ever really mourned.

Yeah, I know this is a weird-looking goal

A few years ago, over a period of months I wrote a long poem exploring my “racialized” & “neocolonial” heritage & experiences – my German grandparents (immigrants to the U.S.), including my paranoid grandmother’s vocal anti-Semitism; my family’s social status & relationships after we landed in Colombia as white U.S. missionaries; my relationships with persons of color as a teen & adult, up to the present.

This 8-page poem has not yet been published. At one point I stuck it into my collection of Colombia poems, but last summer M.E. urged me to either cut it way back to make it less “talky” or take it out. He was right; I chose the latter, as several chunks of it aren’t set in Colombia at all.

I have just started transforming it altogether! My thought is to create a series of linked poems, each of which could stand alone, each based on one event or relationship within the larger poem’s narrative. This week I wrote the first two! The first, triggered by hearing a couple of men speaking German behind me on the bus, is about my German grandfather; the next picks up some of the same imagery to picture his abuse of his two daughters, my aunts (who are both deceased now). I’m really happy with these & excited to pursue this project. Yay!

RuthG has gotten 15 cheers on this goal.


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