Tag Archives: wardrobe
April 1, 2014

Progress Report: April 2014

I can’t believe it’s been 2 years since I came up with the idea for this personal project. Which means that I only have 3 years left to accomplish everything!

So, since November 2013 (my last blog post), I have done the following:

Goal # 1 Visit all 50 states in the US

I went to have a very nice lunch with my college girlfriend in Wilmington, Delaware when I went to Philadelphia for the American Library Association Midwinter Conference. The food was good, and we felt really youthful there, because I think everyone else in that restaurant was over 80 years old.

2014-01-28 12.47.24

Lunch in Delaware with Jen. 1/28/2014

Then in February, I went to Salt Lake City, Utah for the Qualtrics Summit. When I got there, I just rented a car drove to the border cities in Wyoming (Evanston) and Idaho (Malad City) and ate at two local restaurants. The waitress at the restaurant in Evanston, WY was fascinated by my story. Or maybe she was just bored. She recommended a fried chicken dinner which was delicious.

I only have 3 states left: Alaska, Montana, and Kentucky! And I already have a ticket to Kentucky that I need to use before August. So, it looks like this goal could be accomplished very soon. It’s quite unbelievable how many states I visited once I set this goal.

Not that I need any convincing anymore, but setting goals does work!

Goal 13. Get tenure

Looks like I have passed my 5th year review. I will go up for the final review in October this year. We shall see.

Goal 14. Give a kickass presentation

I co-presented a kickass presentation on “Persuasion” techniques at the I2C2 Conference in Manchester, U.K., in March. Credits go to my awesome co-presenters, Isabel Gonzalez-Smith and John Jung.

2014-03-08 04.37.33

Interactive Workshop on “Persuasion” at the I2C2 Conference with Isabel Gonzalez-Smith, and John Jung.


Goal 16. Learn Thai massage

Signed up for a one-week Thai Massage course at the Thai Institute of Healing Arts in Arlington, VA in May. Can’t wait!

Goal 29. Mentor someone

This is actually quite exciting. Two people have asked me to be their mentor. TWO! And two of the most awesome people too. Now that I have 2 proteges, I will need to come up with some wise advice. And try not to be like George Costanza.

Goal 34. Create a photo-essay or a video-essay (amended June, 2013)

Ok, this was completed when I made my first travelogue video. But it all started when I decided to make film 1 second of video everyday for a whole year. This project has really taught me patience. I am by nature an impatient person, but the beauty (or the frustration) of this project is, you cannot rush it. You can only add one second each day. It will take 365 days to finish it. It was hard at times, when I felt like it would never be completed. By my god, when it was finally done, it’s a glorious result. I literally love every second of it. And it’s amazing how just one second of video could trigger the memories of so much more. During the year, there were many amazing, happy moments, a few not so great ones. And a lot of yoga, traveling, football, and friends. It’s amazing how just one second of video can trigger my memory for that day. I do not want to forget a single day from now.

And ladies and gentlemen, here is my entire year (41st birthday to 42nd birthday) in one-second moments.

One Second Everyday – My 41st Year (1SE) from 45before45project.com on Vimeo.

P.S. I love my friends. Watching the video really makes me smile.

Goal 37. Be able to do splits

2014-03-24 21.40.06

Top pic: 9/26/2012 vs Bottom pic: 3/21/2014.

It took me over 2 years to finally get into hanumanasana. It really is a great feeling to accomplish a goal after working on it for so long. It’s funny that I had this idea in my head way back in late 2011, that if I could the splits when I was 40, that would mean that I would be in the best shape of my life because I had never been able to do that. My original goal was to be able to do that by the end of 2012, which obviously didn’t happen. It’s funny that it’s this silly desire to get into the splits that led me to yoga, which has transformed my life in so many ways.

2014-03-21 19.18.31

On my 42nd birthday.

Goal 38. Completely revamp my wardrobe

Getting there, getting there.

2013-12-22 12.28.13

Sorted out another batch of clothes.


November 5, 2012

Goal #38 – Revamp Wardrobe (Phase 2): Shirts. 153 of them.

After trying on 32 pairs of pants in phase 1 of revamping my wardrobe, this time is “shirts” day. All kinds of shirts (button down shirts, polo shirts, T-shirts, undershirts, long sleeves shirts, workout shirts, football jerseys, etc.) will be evaluated today.

“Shirts” day?

The good thing is, unlike pants, there is no need to try on every single shirt. I pretty much know how they fit. It’s more about assessing them on their age, condition, and fashionability. So the 1st step is to lay them all out and see how many shirts I actually have.

153 shirts. Spot the shirt for my goal #41. Hold a baby panda while wearing my panda t-shirt.


Here is the breakdown:

White undershirts: 28
Workout shirts: 7
Polo shirts:  20
t-shirts: 34
Long sleeve shirts: 6
Button down shirts: 50
Jerseys: 7
Total: 153

I am not sure how many shirts an average guy owns, but 153 seems to be a rather high number. (But seriously, how many shirts do guys own??)

The whole weeding process did not take as long as I expected. But I must admit it was much harder to let go of shirts than pants. Do shirts have more personality than pants? I actually believe so. Well, they definitely have more patterns and colors than any of my pants! In any case, I still managed to weed out 46 shirts, which leaves me with 107. It still seems a bit much. How do you decide when to part way with your shirts?

October 21, 2012

Goal #38 – Completely revamp my wardrobe – Phase 1

Trying-on-pants Day

I am moving to a new apartment in less than a month’s time. Just thinking about all the packing, moving, and unpacking makes me want to throw everything away and start fresh at my new place. With this mindset, I decided that this would be a good time to begin the revamping my wardrobe project. Originally I was going to wait until I have reached my target weight (still a long way to go, and the huge fried chicken lunch I had at Brookville Hotel today is not helping it one bit), but I figure if the clothes don’t fit me now, they are definitely not going to fit me when I lose 30 more pounds.

Still it is a daunting project. So, today is just Phase 1 – a “trying on pants” day. I gathered up all my pants, and there were 32 pairs. I don’t think I have worn half of those in years. I have a bad (or good) habit of not throwing things away. Some really old clothes keep moving with me from countries to countries. I noticed that some of those pants were actually from the 90’s! Trying them on was actually quite fun.  They are so “laid back” and “relax”, I would look great in a boy band video. On some level, I wanted to keep at least one pair for any future costume parties.

After trying on all 32 pairs, I am keeping 14. The rest are going to Goodwill. I feel better about moving already. Phase 2 is going to be shirts.

I would like to work out a wardrobe system of just keeping a certain number of items for each season, and only buy a new item if I am prepared to throw away an old one. How often do you discard clothes? Or are you an accumulator like me?


%d bloggers like this: