Today I knocked off work early so I could run into Wenatchee and buy stuff to put in my care package for AnySoldier.com (I've written about this wonderful organization here). While shopping at Target for magazines and snacks, I was reminded that when you do good things, good things come back to you.
Because, OMG... HELLO KITTY GUMMIES!!
They taste totally awesome, even though I didn't get a pink My Melody Bunny in my bag (I would have preferred Kuromi anyway), and all my blue Kitty Bows were a nasty vomit-green color. The good news though? They go great with Little Debbie Chocolate Chip Snack Cakes, and would no doubt perfectly compliment Hello Kitty Pop-Tarts...
Awww, isn't that sweet?!?
UPDATE: Boy was I wrong... Hello Kitty Gummies, as manufactured by Kelloggs, contains DISGUSTING GELATIN as an ingredient. Why the hell they feel the need to put such unnecessary shit in their product is a mystery to me when alternatives like citrus pectin are available. Shame! SHAME ON KELLOGGS! And shame on me for trusting them and not reading the ingredients.
A meme bopping through the internets anew is the SIX QUIRKY THINGS ABOUT YOU meme. You're supposed to post rules and tag everybody and stuff, but I never really play by the rules and loathe tagging people. So I'm just going to post my quirks and be done with it...
I don't drink coffee. Given my proximity to Seattle, many people think this is the quirkiest thing about me.
I hate train whistles to the point of insanity. I live in a small town that has a train running right through the middle. Since there are two road crossings, one at each end of town, there is no place in the city that you can't hear the f#@%ing train whistle every time they blow through town. I have to listen to train whistles all day at work and all night at home and it drives me nuts. Even when I am riding a train, every time the whistle blows I want to beat something with a hammer.
I'll go anywhere on earth at a moment's notice if the mood strikes me. As an example, I once flew to Denmark just to attend a friend's 30th birthday party. Two full days of travel for just 9 hours in Copenhagen that I booked the day before I left. This seems perfectly natural to me, but I can see how people might think this kind of thing is "quirky" behavior.
I watch The View. Well, to be more accurate, I fast-forward through The View each night. It all started when Bill O'Reilly was on while Rosie O'Donnell was still hosting and I was compelled to watch. It's been stuck on my TiVo ever since. But the reason I still watch it is because these bitches are crazy. Barbara Walters and Sheri Shepherd are particularly bat-ass insane, which has high entertainment value. Whoopi is always smart entertainment whenever she plays herself. Joy Behar represents the Liberal end of the spectrum with insightful commentary that communicates her opinions with humor and wit. Unfortunately her counterpart, Elisabeth Hasselbeck, woefully under-represents The Right by doing nothing more than regurgitating popular Conservative propaganda which she passes off as "opinion." If only they would fire her ass and hire a smart Conservative (that leaves Ann Coulter out) with actual opinions, The View might be a good forum for political debate. As it is, however, the show is just a train wreck I can't seem to give up.
I am afraid of clowns. People always think that I'm joking when I say this, but it's no exaggeration... clowns positively terrify me. If I'm taken by surprise by a clown, I will freak out. It would be cool if I could tie my coulrophobia to something interesting, like a Stephen King novel, but I hated clowns from long before I learned how to read. If I had the power to eradicate Ronald McDonald from the face of the earth for the benefit of all humanity, I would do it in a heartbeat.
I'm obsessed with Hello Kitty, for heavens sake. That pretty much says it all.
Eh, that's not so quirky. We'll have to save that for later.
Favorite salad dressing? Italian if I'm eating Italian, Thousand Island if I'm eating Mexican, Ranch if it's a good Ranch, otherwise French.
What kind of vehicle do you drive? A 1999 Saturn SC-2. I bought it because I wanted to support the American auto industry after my previous car was totaled by the railroad. It was purchased sight-unseen over the internet and have hated it since the day I took ownership. I would have gladly returned the piece of shit during the 30-day no-penalty return period, but I was too busy traveling at the time, and lived three hours away from the dealership. It turns wider than a semi truck. It has a gap between sun visors. The mirror adjusters are STUPID. It's uncomfortable for both drivers and passengers. No Saturn dealership could ever fix it properly either in or out of warranty. I could go on and on and on.
Where would you visit if you had the chance? In order... India. Australia. Peru. Cambodia. Antarctica.
Cup 1/2 empty or 1/2 full?1966-1982: half-full.1983-1987: half-empty.1988-2011: half-full. Though, to be honest, it has been very, very hard to be a "half-full" guy over the past decade or so given the horrible political climate in this fucked-up country I live in.
Who do you think will never call you again? Anybody with the patience to suffer through this meme.
Person you expect to call you next? My sister.
Who are you most curious about their responses to stealing? Stealing what? Actually, Bad Robert is who I am most curious about their response to anything. The guy is insane. I mean really insane.
Bird watcher? Not really. Though I have seen some really cool birds in various zoos I've visited around the world.
Are you a morning person or a night person? Absolutely a night person.
Do you have any pets? No. I'd like to have a pet but, given how much I travel, that would be pretty irresponsible.
Any new and exciting news you'd like to share? Yes. Unfortunately, I can't share it right now.
What did you want to be when you were little? At one time or another during childhood I wanted to be a fireman, airline pilot, doctor, and a chef. I ended up being a graphic designer, so I guess none of my career dreams came true. Now I want to be an astronaut when I grow up.
What is your best childhood memory? I had a pretty idyllic childhood, so it would be difficult to pick just one. Probably a Christmas morning or a dinner at my grandparents house or something like that.
Are you a cat or dog person? I like both, actually. I would love to have either if I was around long enough to care for one.
Are you married? Nope. I came very, very close once. Given the kind of person she ended up, I am thankful every single day it never happened.
Always wear your seat belt? Yes. It's the law, and I don't want to pay a $101 fine.
Been in a car accident? Yes. I was stopped at a stoplight, so obviously it wasn't my fault.
Any pet peeves? People who clip their fingernails in public and people who smack their gum. My greatest nightmare is to be eating at a restaurant and have somebody at a neighboring table smacking gum while clipping their fingernails as I try to eat. =shudder=
How many tattoos do you have? Zero. That will hopefully change one day.
How many times have you tagged someone to do a meme? I'd like to say ZERO, but I'm sure I tagged one or two people in my early blogging days... before I realized it's pure evil to do so.
What time did you finish this meme? 9:00pm on the dot.
Coffee Drinker? GACK! No. I have tried many time to try and drink coffee. I just can't do it. I like the smell of it, but can't stand the taste.
Oddly enough, this "Stupid Evil Bastard Meme" seems to have evolved from another meme that I did six years ago. Some of the questions are the same. Many are different. I guess over the years people just changed a question here or there that they didn't like, and this is where we are now. I wonder what it will look like six years from now when it makes the rounds again?
It's at times like this when I have absolutely nothing to write about that I regret having a blog. Guess it must be time for a meme...
ONE OF YOUR SCARS, HOW DID YOU GET IT? I have a scar on my left thumb. I got frostbite as a kid, so my hands don't register pain properly all the time. One day I was using a hack-saw and noticed the blade was turning red... turns out I was sawing into my thumb and didn't know it.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE COLOGNE / PERFUME? I don't wear the stuff, but there is a scent that the ladies wear that drives me crazy... I'm just not sure what it's called. It's kind of powdery and fresh with a light floral edge to it. When worn in "barely there" moderation, it's killer.
WHAT KIND OF HAIR/EYE COLOUR DO YOU LIKE ON THE OPPOSITE SEX? Dark hair and dark eyes.
WOULD YOU RATHER BE SMART OR FUNNY? Smart.
COFFEE OR ENERGY DRINKS? Neither. Though I do like Jäger Bombs, which are dropped in Red Bull, so I guess energy drinks?
WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE PIZZA TOPPING? Cheese.
IF YOU CAN EAT ANYTHING RIGHT NOW, WHAT WOULD IT BE?Puka Dog!
I had a nice long rant written, but decided to scrap it. I just don't need the aggravation.
This left me with nothing to write about tonight, so I went to FridayFive for a meme. Since this felt like kind of a cop-out, I decided to do all ten weeks that were displayed on their home page, which actually makes this a FridayFifty. I'm a total glutton for punishment like that...
Friday 5 for July 29: Public Options
When did you last use a public restroom? That would be at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport two weeks ago on July 17th.
When did you last ride public transportation? That would be MARTA on July 12th in Atlanta.
How far away from your home is the nearest public housing? To my knowledge, there's only one public housing development in our small city... it's about 1-1/2 to 2 miles away.
Which of your public utilities is the least reliable? I couldn't say, as our public utilities are all pretty darn reliable.
What did you last view on public television or listen to on public radio? Hmmm... it would probably have been an episode of NOVA on PBS, but I have no idea how long ago. At least six months.
Friday 5 for July 22: Similes, Part 2
What’s your best advice for someone who’s as drunk as a skunk? If they're doing okay and not bothering anybody, I'd say "Have fun! If they're sloppy drunk or causing trouble, I'd say "You need to take a time out."
What’s your best advice for someone who’s as busy as a bee? Don't forget to smell the roses.
What’s your best advice for someone who’s as nutty as a fruitcake? Don't use your wacky nature as an excuse to be stupid.
What’s your best advice for someone who’s as sick as a dog? See a doctor.
What’s your best advice for someone who’s as ugly as sin? Be as beautiful as you can on the inside where it counts.
Friday 5 for July 15: Long Journeys
What is the longest distance you’ve traveled (in one trip) by foot? I honestly don't know. I love walkable large cities like London and Venice, and have undoubtedly racked up several miles exploring them.
What is the longest trip you’ve taken by car? I've taken several long road trips with family and friends... but the longest I've taken on my own would probably be a 1500-mile Hard Rock Cafe run from Memphis to Nashville to Gatlinburg to Myrtle Beach to Atlanta to Memphis I took in 2000.
What is the longest trip you’ve taken by plane? I'm guessing Seattle to Hong Kong, which is 12 hours.
What is the longest trip you’ve taken aboard a bus or train? I don't ride the bus very often, but I've taken some long trips by train in Europe and Japan. The longest I can think of is a round-trip from Amsterdam to Berlin to Copenhagen to Amsterdam, which is about 1200 miles.
Friday 5 for July 8: Rock Star Treatment
What instructions do you have for your chauffeur this weekend? We'll be driving to Portland. Be sure you use the restroom before we go.
What instructions do you have for your personal chef this weekend? Call Alfredo's Alla Scrofa in Rome for their recipe and cook me their Fettuccine Alfredo for dinner.
What instructions do you have for your errand-boy (or errand-girl) this weekend? Go to David's Pizza in Spokane and get me a large Da Vinci pizza for dessert after my fettuccine.
What instructions do you have for your maid this weekend? Be sure you have plenty of Lysol on hand to clean up all the vomit that's sure to occur after I eat my weight in fettuccine and pizza.
You don’t have a personal handyman, so I’m lending you mine. What three tasks would you like him to tackle this weekend? Hopefully he has carpentry skills. Build me a new entertainment center. Then book shelves. Then re-surface my dining room table.
Friday 5 for July 1: Five for 5′s Fifth
Of the five weekdays, which is the easiest to get through? Wednesday.
Which of the five little piggies is the most bizarrely characterized? The first one who went to market. Kids probably think that he's going to go shopping... but he's a pig. Which means he's going to market to be sold and slaughtered. That's more messed up than the piggy eating roast beef, hands-down.
Of fire, earth, metal, water, and wood, from which do you draw your power? Metal.
Haribo Gummy Bears come in five flavors: pineapple (white), strawberry (green), raspberry (red), lemon (yellow) and orange (orange). Which is your favorite? Orange.
Which of the five basic tastes (sweetness, sourness, bitterness, saltiness, and savoriness) best describes your personality? Savory, baby, savory all the way.
Friday 5 for June 24: Summer Blockbusters
What transformation do you undergo on summer Fridays at midnight? Now-a-days? I transform into bed. Even though I won't sleep much.
What super power do the kids in your neighborhood seem to have?Black Canary's sonic screaming power.
Who (or what!) is your nemesis in these warm summer days? The heat.
What is your trustiest weapon against the evil heat monster? Air conditioning... though my new Chilly Pad is a terrific ally too.
What seems to be invading your life lately, and how will you fend it off? Incompetence. If anybody knows how to fend off THAT (legally), let me know.
Friday 5 for June 17: Around the House
Of the products you use just to keep yourself clean and presentable, what seems to be the most overpriced? The most expensive is Philosophy's "Hope in a Jar" which runs $40 for 2 ounces... but it's not overpriced. It's worth every damn cent, so I guess I'd say my shampoo.
Where in your house is a reliable place to get a few quarters? My bedroom desk.
A rare yes-or-no question on Friday 5: Have you ever dropped your cell phone onto your face? Uh... no.
What did you last take out of your freezer? A frozen veggie corn dog for dinner tonight.
How many rolls of wrapping paper do you have in your house? There's probably a few knocking around somewhere.
Friday 5 for June 10: What Goes In
What goes into your coffee or tea? I don't drink coffee. As for tea? Sometimes honey or lemon. Sometimes milk. Mostly plain with a bit of sugar.
What goes into a good omelet? Cheese.
What goes into your ears on a good morning? Matt & Kim on my car stereo to get me pumped for the day.
What goes into a healthy but yummy lunch? Screw healthy... PIZZA AND CHOCOLATE PUDDING go into a yummy lunch.
What goes into a productive evening? My laptop, because I can't be productive without it in my line of work.
Friday 5 for June 3: Summer!
What was your best summer vacation like? Probably when I was in school it was just goofing off and doing nothing.
What was your worst summer vacation like? I don't get summers off any more, so working.
What food or drink reminds you of a particular summer? A good beer reminds me of many good summer days.
What summer-only activity do you now look most forward to every year? I rarely get activities outside of work in summer, so none, I guess.
What summer movie or summer reading are you most looking forward to this year? I haven't seen Captain America or Cowboys & Aliens yet, and I want to see both quite badly.
Friday 5 for May 27: In the Mood
What puts you in a creative mood? Music I love.
What puts you in a silly mood? Alcohol.
What puts you in a contemplative mood? Death.
What puts you in a competitive mood? Work.
If you’d call yourself a talkative person, what puts you in a quiet mood? If you’d call yourself a quiet person, what puts you in a talkative mood? I'm usually quiet, but alcohol and friends will get me talking.
Last night as my cold was ending and my sinuses were draining out, I was aching too much to sleep. Instead I wrote today's blog post. This morning I went to read it and couldn't understand what in the heck I was talking about. At first I was going to try and edit it into something cohesive, but decided to delete it instead.
When I was a kid, I had to take allergy shots three times a week. I was allergic to all kinds of odd things including dirt, wet cement, and my own body. Luckily, I outgrew my allergies... unluckily they were replaced with something much worse.
I am a fan of watching Magic: The Gathering tournaments. Not only did I attend local tournaments from time to time, but I used to watch the televised championships on ESPN back in the day. As if that weren't enough, I still watch Magic tournament videos on YouTube every once in a while. The odd part? I have never played a single game myself. Back when it was popular, I couldn't afford the good cards. Now-a-days, nobody I know plays it.
Because of my Magic: The Gathering addiction, I'm a fan of Jon Finkel, who is one of the greatest players of the game ever and a World Champion. Back on August 29th of last year, a woman went on a date with the guy and wrote an article ridiculing him once she found who he is. I didn't read the story until a friend told me about it three days later on September 1st. It upset me so badly that this woman could be such a heartless bitch to somebody I admire that it put me in very bad mood. Indeed, it kind of explains the tone of my blog entry the next day.
I can't stand the Harry Potter books or movies. Because so many of my friends like them, I have attempted to read/watch them many times without success. Sorry, but they just suck. This has not, I might add, deterred me from wanting to visit The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios Florida... nor has it deterred me from playing the LEGO Harry Potter video games (which I love).
I still own a VHS videotape player. There's a few shows I own on videocassette that I can't find on any modern format... I may want to watch them one day.
I dislike talking on the telephone so much that I'll often go to great lengths to avoid it. On more than one occasion I've driven for hours to see somebody in person rather than to have to talk to them on the phone.
I used to love cooking and regularly made much of the stuff I eat from scratch. Sometime over the last ten years that all changed and now I can't stand the idea of cooking anything. Yeah, I'll fry up a veggie burger or make a sandwich, but anything more ambitious than that only happens once or twice a month. I really need to start eating healthier, so hopefully this will change.
I own nearly a hundred travel books, many of which were bought after I visited the place they were written for. I find travel books to be a great souvenir for revisiting where you've been... especially the DK Eyewitness Guides with all those nifty photos.
I am growing increasingly obsessed with the idea of visiting Antarctica. Along with India, it's one of those places I mean to see before I die. Every time I read a new story of how the ice covering on the continent is breaking apart, I worry that it will be destroyed before I can make it there.
Even worse, I have absolutely nothing to blog about. Well, except this meme I ran across...
From SoBadSoGood, here's "30 questions that will change the way you think about the world."
How old would you be if you didn’t know how old you are? 32. Maybe 34.
Which is worse, failing or never trying? Never trying.
When it’s all said and done, will you have said more than you’ve done? I'd like to think not, as I usually follow-through and walk my talk. That being said, I do talk a lot...
What is the one thing you’d most like to change about the world? People's complete lack of compassion and understanding towards those who are different from them.
Are you doing what you believe in, or are you settling for what you are doing? A little of both. I got tired of settling for what I'm doing, so I now make it a point to make time to do what I believe in.
To what degree have you actually controlled the course your life has taken? To a pretty high degree. But, like everybody else, I can't control everything.
Are you more worried about doing things right, or doing the right things? I am equally obsessed with both, so ultimately I'd have to answer "doing the right thing right."
If you could offer a newborn child only one piece of advice, what would it be? Don't be controlled by your fear.
Would you break the law to save a loved one? Probably.
Have you ever seen insanity where you later saw creativity? A couple times, but I try really, really hard to not judge people in those terms.
What’s something you know you do differently than most people? See.
How come the things that make you happy don’t make everyone happy? Different strokes and all that. It's more important to know that if you rely on other people to make you happy, you'll never truly be happy. Find your own bliss and follow that.
What one thing have you not done that you really want to do? Visit Antarctica. What’s holding you back? Time and money.
Do you push the elevator button more than once? Sure! Do you really believe it makes the elevator faster? No. But it gives me something to do while I wait, and having an activity makes the time go by faster.
Why are you, you? Because only I have my brain.
Have you been the kind of friend you want as a friend? As often as I can be.
Would you rather lose all of your old memories, or never be able to make new ones? I'm equally horrified at both prospects, but I think I'd rather live in the future than the past if forced to choose.
Is it possible to know the truth without challenging it first? No. Even if you rely on others to challenge it for you, you'll never know for sure until you've found your own answers. If there's one thing history has shown us, it's that people are wrong an alarming amount of the time.
Has your greatest fear ever come true? Not yet. And since I do everything I can to not let my life be ruled by fear, I don't worry about it.
At what time in your recent past have you felt most passionate and alive? Any time I'm traveling to someplace I haven't been before.
If not now, then when? Tomorrow.
If you haven’t achieved it yet, what do you have to lose? Just about everything I hold dear.
Have you ever been with someone, said nothing, and walked away feeling like you just had the best conversation ever? No.
When was the last time you marched into the dark with only the soft glow of an idea you strongly believed in? Every time I start laying out a new issue of Thrice Fiction!
If you knew that everyone you know was going to die tomorrow, who would you visit today? My family.
Would you be willing to reduce your life expectancy by 10 years to become extremely attractive or famous? Not this late in the game.
What is the difference between being alive and truly living? finding your own path.
What would you do differently if you knew nobody would judge you? Drive whatever speed I felt like.
• Scuba dive on Great Barrier Reef, Australia (Wanna do it! Done it!)...I would want to re-up my certification first (it's been a while), but I would absolutely do this. Finally made it to Australia in September 2011, and diving the Great Barrier Reef was on my must-do list. Unfortunately, thanks to massive Cyclone Yasi that struck in February 2011, much of the beautiful corals were wiped out, and environmental factors mean they probably ain't coming back. Such a shame. But it was still a terrific experience.
• Explore Antarctica (Probably not! Wanna do it!)...Uh, why? I might consider it if they built an authentic Hard Rock Cafe but otherwise no. I have no idea what I was thinking. This somehow went from something I didn't want to do... to something I obsess about. I spend a lot of my time trying to figure out how to make this happen.
• Explore the Galapagos Islands (Probably not! Wanna do it!)...This is a preserved area, and only scientists, researchers and such are given permission to visit. Boy do I feel stupid. It's absolutely possible for ordinary citizens to visit the Galapagos Islands, it's just really expensive. Of course I want to go there.
• Ride a camel to the Pyramids, Egypt (Wanna do it! Probably not!)...Absolutely something on my list to do. Uhhh... yeah... went to see the pyramids in 2007 and felt absolutely no need to ride a camel there (I've ridden one before). Instead went inside The Great Pyramid of Giza, which was awesome.
STILL WANT TO DO...
• Walk the Inca trail to Machu Picchu, Peru, South America (Wanna do it!)... My brother and I were going to do this, but he decided to get in an accident and nearly blow his face off instead. Oh well, maybe one day.
• See elephants in the wild (Wanna do it!)... Since I'm sure the elephants at Disney's Animal Kingdom don't count, I do think it would be cool to go to Africa or India and do this one.
• Fly over a volcano (Wanna do it!)... While on the Big Island of Hawaii, I walked over a volcano, which seems much more impressive, doesn't it?
• Gallop a horse along a beach (Wanna do it!)... My riding skills are crap though.
• Watch mountain gorillas (Wanna do it!)... Who wouldn't?
• See tigers in the wild (Wanna do it!)... But don't tigers EAT you in the wild?
• Do the Cresta Run, Switzerland (Wanna do it!)... Heck yeah I would do this! Probably die while trying, but what a way to go!
• See orang-utans in Borneo (Wanna do it!)... Why not? Boy, sure a lot of wild animal watching on this list!
• Go polar bear watching (Wanna do it!)... Why not? Boy, sure a lot of wild animal watching on this list!
So that's like... eleven things from the list I still want to do. Half of them, I probably have a shot at. That's not so bad.
If only I have the time and money to get started...
The latest you've ever slept? Around noon, I'd imagine.
Would you buy a sweater covered in kitten pictures? Would you wear it if someone gave it you for free? No. Probably if I had nothing else clean to wear.
Do you pick at scabs? Not that I'm aware.
Favorite kind of bean? Kidney? Black? Pinto? Black.
How far can you throw a baseball? About as far as a ten-year-old girl.
If you had to move to another country, where would you move? Edinburgh, Scotland.
Have you ever eaten Ethiopian food? Vietnamese? Korean? Nepalese? How was it? I've eaten all of those. They were all fine, but I'd loathe to eat them on a regular basis. Since I'm a vegetarian, my options are usually limited.
Small, liberal arts school or public university? Why?
It wouldn't really matter. Wherever I needed to go to learn what I wanted to learn.
A relationship with love or one with sex? A little of both would be nice... but sexual relationships are usually less complicated, so if forced to choose...
Do you eat enough vegetables? Not even.
Do you like horror movies? How about thrillers? I like most any kind of movie except musicals.
Would you scratch a crotch itch in public? If I had to.
Do you swear in front of your parents? Fuck yeah. They're old enough to take it.
If you could change your natural hair color, would you? To what? Back to Black.
Do you want to get married? Have kids? Not any more.
Do you use a reusable water bottle? If not, you should. I have a reusable cup that I use at work's water fountain. I have reusable glassware I use with my Brita water filter at home. No bottle except when I travel, and then it's not reusable because I wouldn't know where to fill it half the time, and don't really need something else to carry.
City or nature person? City. Mostly.
Have you ever used something other than "makeup" as makeup? (Like paint? Markers?) No.
Can you walk well in high heels? Even if you're a guy? I've never tried. I'd imagine I could.
Post 5 awesome things about yourself. BRAG AWAY! 1) I can draw a monkey. 2) I still blog every day even though blogging is dead. 3) I can drive a manual transmission. 4) . 5) I have a skull tattoo.
And... that's too many bullets. See you next week.
Last Sunday I did a blog questionnaire meme somebody had given me that I have been putting off forever. After posting it, I was told that if I was really ambitious about killing a blog meme, I should answer this Hundred Questions Meme.
And since it was a different hundred questions than I had answered before, here it is...
Are you young at heart, or an old soul? Uhhh... why can't I be both? I'd say both.
What makes someone a best friend? They don't want you to change into somebody you are not.
What Christmas (or Hanukkah) present do you remember the most? Micronauts Mobile Exploration Lab. No joke. This thing was incredible because it was so frickin' unique. And I liked the Time Traveler guy I got with it.
Tell me about a movie/song/TV show/play/book that has changed your life. The book Illusions by Richard Bach changed my life in that it forced me to start looking at the world (and life) in an entirely different way.
Name one physical feature that you like about yourself, and one you dislike. I like my height. I dislike my eyesight.
Would you like to reconnect with any friends you've lost contact with? There are a few, yes. And one in particular.
What's more important in a relationship: physical attraction or emotional connection? Emotional connection.
Name a movie that you knew would be terrible just from reading the title. The most current would be Battleship.
What holiday do you most look forward to? Independence Day. Not necessarily because it's such a great holiday for me... but because I've had some really wonderful Independence Day celebrations in the past.
How is the relationship between you and your parents? Excellent, I think. Probably because I didn't end up being a serial killer.
You've got the TV on, but you're not really watching. What channel is the TV on? Hallmark Channel.
Name a song that never fails to make you happy. Oh hell... most anything by The Beach Boys. I'm not even a huge fan of the band, but songs like Wouldn’t It Be Nice or God Only Knows or Don’t Worry Baby or even Kokomo... the band excels at feelgood music.
You know at least one person named Michael. Tell me about him. I know at least a dozen people named Michael. Believe it or not, they're all really nice guys... I don't know a single bad Michael.
Have you ever read the "Missed Connections" on Craigslist? Have you ever posted one, or wanted to? I've read them for entertainment on occasion. I have never posted one, but there was one time I really, really should have. She was in the Denver International Airport back in 2009 and I remember her like it was yesterday.
If you could pick anywhere to live the rest of your life, where would it be? Edinburgh is my favorite city on earth... but I really want to say Maui for some reason. What an awesome place to grow old.
Can money buy happiness? Without question. It's just that some times it's harder than others.
Do you drink? Smoke? Do drugs? Why, or why not? I drink socially because I enjoy it and deserve it. I smoked for about nine months years ago when I was going through a very bad time, but gave it up because I was sick of the smell and all my food tasting bad. I don't do drugs because I question the health risks and my addictive personality.
Is there anyone close to you that you know you can't trust? You don't have to give names. Unfortunately, yes. If I had a choice, they would not be close to me... but I really don't have a choice. Yet.
Where was your favorite place to go when you were a little kid? The library. The place was absolute magic to me. Or maybe my grandma and grandpa's house.
Have you ever spent a night in the hospital? I could swear I once had to when I had an infection while having my adenoids removed, but my mother says I haven't.
Do you enjoy being with only one or two friends, or with a large group of people? Depends on the friends. Usually I like a larger group, but there are some friends I like so much that I don't need more friends when they're around... and wouldn't want to share them if there was.
Do you like the type of music your parents listen to? Do your parents like the type of music you listen to? Not with my dad, both ways. A little bit with my Mom, both ways.
Have you ever been bullied? Have you ever bullied anyone else? Not really... at least not to the extreme that people think of "bullying" now. I have never really "bullied" somebody either, but there have been things I've said which probably hurt people and I regret having said them.
If you could only eat one thing for the rest of your life, what would it be? Cheese pizza.
If your partner wanted to wait until marriage before having sex, would you stay in that relationship? This will probably get me some hate-mail, but no. Sorry, but sex is a very important part of a relationship, and I think it's just being responsible to make sure you are sexually compatible with somebody before committing to spend the rest of your life with them.
Do you believe in a god? Yes. But probably not in the same way most people do. Without getting into a long conversation about it, I believe in something "more than us." I choose to call this "God," but don't think of it as an all-powerful being filled with petty human failings like rage and jealousy.
Of all the social networks in the world, why use Twitter? I honestly have no idea. Except there are some famous people using it that I like keeping up with.
What's your favorite hashtag to track? #IDon'tGiveAShitAboutHashtags.
Would you call yourself/your family "middle class?" Probably.
Name a TV series you didn't enjoy until after it ended. Hmmm... that's a toughie. Perhaps Six Feet Under? That was one of the best endings to a show ever.
Have you ever bought a product from an infomercial? No. But that's not to say I haven't wanted to.
If you could give up your car and never have to drive again, would you? MY car? In a hot minute because it's a piece of shit. If I had a nicer car? Probably not. I like driving and the area I live in kind of requires it.
If you go back to one point in time to give advice to yourself, when would you go and what would you say? Back in the pre-Return-of-Steve-Jobs era of 1997. "Don't buy all that useless crap! Buy Apple stock with your money!"
What's your "quirkiest" habit? Not tying my shoelaces.
What is "normal?" Are you normal? I don't really know how to define normal, but it's probably not me.
Someone close to you is dying. You have the choice to let this person live for 10 more years, but if you do, you cause the death of 10 strangers. You don't have to see them die. Do you take the offer? No. As tempting as that would be, I can't interrupt the natural process of somebody dying to kill ten people.
What is one thing you could never forgive? People who cause mental or physical harm to children or animals.
Would you rather be in a relationship after the honeymoon period ends, or be single? A part of me has experienced so much pain in a relationship that I don't mind the idea of being single for the rest of my life. But, if the right person comes along, I would change my mind, I'm sure.
Is it possible for guys and girls to be just friends? Yes.
Where do you and your friends go to hang out? I like bars. Bars that have darts are best.
Write the first sentence of your obituary. Internationally beloved billionaire playboy David Simmer II passed away today on his 100th birthday when a pile of his money fell over, smothering him.
What is the best TV theme song ever? I am guessing Human by The Pretenders, which was the theme song for Jeremy Piven's Cupid. But probably because it's my favorite show of all time. If I were being honest, it would probably be either the theme from Mission: Impossible or Perry Mason.
When you were young, what would you dream you would be when you grew up? At one time or another during childhood I wanted to be a fireman, airline pilot, doctor, and a chef. I ended up being a graphic designer, so I guess none of my career dreams came true. Now I want to be an astronaut when I grow up.
When you're alone in your own home, do you walk around naked? No.
What gets you out of bed in the morning? My job.
Do you want to have more friends than you have right now? I wouldn't refuse a new friendship. Can you really have too many friends?
What part of the past year sticks out in your mind? Getting a tattoo. Seriously, I love it more than I ever thought possible, and can't wait to get another one.
You win a scratch-off lottery game that gives you $2000 a week (after taxes) for the rest of your life. Do you keep your job? No. I would be traveling non-stop. But I would probably help out remotely if they needed me.
Could you be in a long-distance relationship? If you're in one, what makes yours work? As in serious relationship? I've tried it. It didn't really work out.
What's the best route to your heart? Acceptance.
Have you ever met someone through the internet, then met them in real life? Absolutely. Several times. It's the best part of the internet.
What is your favorite sport? Hockey.
What has been troubling you lately? So many things.
Did you enjoy your high school prom? If you haven't gotten there yet, do you look forward to it? If you didn't go, why not? It didn't suck as much as it could have. But... not really.
What do you use more often: your intuition or logical reasoning? Logical reasoning.
Do you know what makes you happy? I really don't. My friends and family, certainly... but I can't think of any overreaching "thing" that will ultimately make me happy.
Where do you live? Be as general or specific as you want. I live in my home.
Do you believe in giving kids medals and trophies for participation? I am incredibly torn about this. On one hand, I think it's absurd that everybody has to be a "winner" because then nobody really is. On the other hand, too many things are a competition that really shouldn't be.
What was the longest car ride you've ever taken? I took a very lengthy trip where I drove to all the Hard Rock Cafes in the American Southeast.
Would you ever use an online dating service? Never say never. But probably not.
What is your ethnic heritage? I think it's probably something like Dutch and German with a hint of English and Scottish.
Describe a person that inspires you. Somebody who works hard for all that they have.
If you earn minimum wage doing what you love, would you? If I could survive on it, sure.
Do you believe in luck? Not really. But I consider myself "lucky" nevertheless.
Describe the last time you were very angry at someone. They were unapologetically ignorant about a subject, but professed to know everything about it anyway. Nothing makes me quicker to anger than ignorance.
Do you want to live until you're 100? If I have any semblance of a quality life, then yes. If not? Absolutely not.
Do people change? If so, how do you keep a relationship together when both of you start to change? Of course people change. But that's not to say you can't change to appreciate their growth.
Have you ever risked a friendship by telling someone you liked them? No. And that's a regret I probably won't get over.
Would you rather be alone doing something you enjoy, or doing something you don't like with your best friends? While being with a best friend is always a treasure, I think it's always more fun to be doing something you love.
Do you practice what you preach? Not always. But boy do I ever try.
If you take precautions to stay safe, do you ultimately act more recklessly? No. If I am taking such precautions (usually while traveling) there is good reason for it, and I take it seriously.
What do you value more in a significant other: Attractiveness or intelligence? Intelligence.
Are you hard-headed? Some might say that I am, but I really try not to be.
Have you ever laughed uncontrollably when it was socially inappropriate? Yes. That's alcohol for you.
When have you felt most alive? Skydiving. You never feel more alive than when you're doing something that could result in your death.
Would you prefer to live? A city? The suburbs? The countryside? The mountains? The city... if it was the right city.
Do you often skip breakfast? Mostly, yes.
How do you know what true love is? You use the love formula. "Add up the number of times that you think about the lady each day. Subtract from the total the number of times you think about yourself each day. If the remainder is more lady, and less yourself, then it's love." I learned that from Peter O'Toole in one of my most favorite movies, Creator.
Would you want to know the exact date and time you were going to die? No.
Where is "home" for you? I'm here right now.
What song best describes your life right now?Work Hard by Depeche Mode.
Do you want to be perfect? Nah! What fun would that be?
What have you never tried, but would really like to someday? What's holding you back? Visiting Antarctica. Time and money.
How do you express your creativity? In just about everything I do... my work... my hobbies... this blog.
Describe your neighborhood. Residential. Quiet.
Name something you only liked because it was popular.The Macarena.
Give me the story of your life in six words. Listening. Learning. Trying. Traveling. Doing. Growing.
The "Things You Don't Know About Me" meme is going around yet again, and so here's my list.
Hopefully I didn't repeat stuff from the old lists I've made, but there's been so many of them that I make no promises
I trained to become a certified skydiver. A long time ago when we were bored, a friend and I decided to go tandem-skydiving (where a professional is hooked to you for the ride down). My family was pretty freaked out, so I didn't tell them when I went back to take classes so I could become a licensed skydiver... but I did. I went through all the classroom training, did my static-line jumps, then completed my first solo freefall skydive... then decided I was done. I toy with the idea of jumping again from time to time, but never have. Travel is my adventure now.
I have a complete set of INFOCOM "grey box" packaging for every one of their text adventure games. If you don't think this is a big deal, you weren't a computer geek in the 1980's. You also don't know how expensive these games were for a kid in high school.
When I was a kid trying to earn summer spending money, one of my many jobs was mowing the lawn of an elderly couple in town. For the three years I did his yard work, the guy would pay me to accompany him on occasional trips up to the mountains so I could help him collect water for making pickles. He was convinced that you couldn't make pickles with tap water, which was great for me because it was easy money. A couple years after he died, I read of a drowning that took place where we used to go for water. When I mentioned it to somebody at work, they told me that people die or get hurt there all the time because there are undercurrents in the swift water that suck people under when they fall in. If ever there was a shining example of money not being everything, here it is. Lesson learned, and all that.
There are a lot of things that I want to learn to do before I die. Learning how to blow glass is at the top of my list. Learning to create stained glass is a close second. I'm mesmerized whenever I visit a church with beautiful stained glass in it.
I have spent years researching world religions because I find the best way to understand the people I meet around the world is to understand what they believe when it comes to matters of faith. This has led to numerous awkward conversations when it turns out that I am more knowledgeable about somebody's religion than they are. With this in mind I can state with complete confidence that the people who know the least about their religion are the people who are most likely to use it as a tool of bigotry or hate. They may be familiar with the words but the true meaning and historical context of those words are missing.
I have designed graphics for many, many, many things over the years. The one thing missing from my resume that I most want to design is a map for a theme park or museum.
I can add "professional musician" to my resume even though I can't sing worth a crap, can barely read or write music without a computer, and have long-since forgotten how to play an instrument. Despite all that, I compose music for video projects and have been in a band (where I "sang" backup vocals and played keyboard... which I do by smashing on all the keys until I figure out which notes sound closest to what I'm supposed to be playing, then memorize which keys to hit). In my heart, I think I probably have a talent for music... but any hope of making use of it was crushed years ago.
In high school band I wanted to play the saxophone. Bad. But my band teacher said he really needed talented people in the clarinet section, and promised that I could move to saxophone after a year once he got the arrangements figured out. I hated the clarinet, but wanted to be a good student, so I agreed. After a year of clarinet where I was in first-chair more often than not, the band teacher said I was too good in clarinet to give it up, and he'd really appreciate it if I stuck it out one more year. I wasn't going to agree, but he promised that he would spend extra time with me after class to get me caught up with the saxophone the next year. Encouraged, I finished year two on the clarinet, then rented a saxophone and practiced all summer. On the first day of year three, I sat in the saxophone section... only to have the band teacher say "I notice you're in the saxophone section, David... I need you to move back to the clarinet section!" I was going to argue the point, hold him to his promise, and refuse to move... but ultimately decided that I didn't want to spend one more minute in a class run by a lying piece of shit. So I packed up my sax, said "No. I quit" then walked out the door. It is possibly the most angry I have been in my entire life, and yet I'm really proud of myself for handling it so well, which was not typical at the time. The hard lesson I learned about how some people keep their promises was more valuable to me than my desire to learn to play saxophone ever was, and I am really grateful I learned it before I graduated and entered "The Real World." So thank you very much, Mr. Johnson, you lying asshole.
Over the years I have become a much less angry and vengeful person thanks to my study of Buddhism. Sure, I still have my moments (seriously, don't do something to really piss me off), but I can honestly say I am a completely different person than I was fifteen years ago. Looking back, however, I think I was on the path towards Buddhism long before I even knew what it was.
Back in the mid-to-late-80's I volunteered to teach adult computer literacy classes for people in danger of losing their jobs (or unable to get a job) because their work was being computerized. Many of the people I trained had used typewriters and filing cabinets for years, and had never even turned on a computer before. It was a job requiring a great deal of patience and calm because PCs were nowhere near as friendly back then as they are today. Unfortunately for me, I had neither patience or calm, and it was a horrible struggle to endure two hours without screaming at people for being idiots. All that changed when an older woman approached me after class and thanked me for my efforts, but said she was going to have to quit because she felt stupid that everything was going over her head. Without even thinking about it, I said "That's not your fault, it's my fault... please come back for a few more classes and I'll see if I can do a better job, because you're not stupid." She agreed, and I congratulated myself on being so clever. Until I was driving home and suddenly realized what I had said... and how every word was absolutely true. It was my fault. My class wasn't filled with idiots... they were people so desperate to keep their jobs or find work that they were giving up their free time and trying their best to learn something new and challenging. I needed to figure out a different approach to teaching the material that actually worked, and so I did. This was a defining moment in my life, and accepting the truth of it all has paid off again and again... both professionally and personally.
Now, granted, that's probably all stuff you didn't know about me that you didn't want to know about me... but you'll have to blame the people who keep reviving this meme for that!
Despite all the wonderful opportunities I have to travel and all the amazing jobs I am lucky enough to work on and all the cool stuff I've been fortunate enough to see and do... I still think that everybody else has more interesting lives than I do, and often feel like I'm missing out.
I loathe both grapefruit and coffee, but wish I didn't because it seems like it would make for the perfect vegetarian breakfast.
Laziness bothers me and I have a hard time respecting people who don't work hard at something in their life... and it doesn't necessarily have to be a job.
I have a near-pathological hatred of Jonah Hill as an actor, which upsets me because everything I read about him and every interview I've seen paints him as a cool guy that I'd totally like to hang out with.
I have hundreds of Hard Rock Cafe T-shirts I've collected of the years which are piled in plastic storage tubs and have never been worn.
I was once slapped in the face on a date... not because I said or did anything inappropriate, but because she was drunk and I took her car keys. I drove her home while she screamed at me the entire way, returned her keys as she screamed at me some more, and volunteered to drive her to her car in the morning as she continued screaming. Not surprisingly, we ended up going on a second date... because I just never learn.
I've been to Disney World so many times for work-related projects that I thought surely I was sick of the place and didn't care if I ever went back. But, much to my surprise, when my annual trip was cancelled last year, I found myself genuinely upset. I guess Disney is an addiction you can't ever truly shake.
I have the first season of Three's Company on DVD. I have no idea why. Sometimes I buy things just to have them, and this is a flaw I desperately wish I could correct. Games I've never played. Books I've never read. Movies I've never watched. Comic books I've never looked at. Stuff like this drives me nuts. And yet... it still happens from time to time.
I wish I embarrassed more easily and cared more about what people think of me. Alas, I don't embarrass easily and honestly don't give a flying fuck what people think about me. Not even a little bit. Which means I'll sometimes say or do things which, in retrospect, I shouldn't have. And probably wouldn't have... if I worried about how others would perceive me for it.
A lot of great songs have good stories behind them, but I'm kind of obsessed with the tale behind Robbie William's brilliant song, She's Madonna. Apparently the lyrics are based on Guy Ritchie's ex-girlfriend telling him how Guy broke up with her by saying "Look, you know I really love you, but she's Madonna." The first line of the song, "I don't miss you, just who you used to be." is printed out and posted to my wall as a reminder of the Buddhist precept that everything changes. And also to remind me that even a person you consider a close friend can become somebody you don't recognize given enough time.
I was also tagged in a "Ten Things You Don't Know About Me" meme having to do with books, television, and movies, which I didn't quite understand... but here is my attempt anyway...
Now that Veronica Mars has been given a new lease on life with a movie and some novels, I am obsessed with the idea of getting to see more Wonderfalls, a shamefully underrated and wholly amazing television show that I re-watch twice a year.
And when it comes to movie sequels I pine over most, Strange Days is at the top of my list. The universe that Kathryn Bigelow and James Cameron created is begging to be explored.
My "stranded on a desert island" books would be Jonathan Livingston Seagull and Illusions by Richard Bach, Noble House by James Clavell, Dune by Frank Herbert, Lightning by Dean Koontz, Curious George Goes to the Hospital by Margret and H. A. Rey, Watchmen by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons, and as many Edgar Rice Burroughs books as I could get my hands on. Most of these I have read several times and never get tired of revisiting.
While I love the original Star Trek television series, I hated every Trek TV show that followed, including Star Trek: The Next Generation, Deep Space Nine, Voyager, and Enterprise. This bothers a lot of Star Trek fans I'm friends with.
I will never forgive 20th Century Fox for canceling The Finder. Not just because it was an incredible TV show, but because it deprived the world of seeing more Michael Clarke Duncan before he died.
I have been disappointed by a lot of television shows... but Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is the biggest by far. I hate the show. This kills me because I positively love the Marvel movies, and think that Clark Gregg and Ming Na Wen are brilliant actors.
I have read Catcher in the Rye twice in an attempt to appreciate it for the literary genius everybody says it is. Didn't work. I still hate the book, though rarely admit it because people chide me with the old "You didn't like it because you didn't understand the symbolism that makes it so powerful!" bullshit. Nope! I just think it's a crappy book. And don't get me started on Steinbeck.
I always put movies on while I work because it masks the outside world. I always choose movies I've seen before so they won't distract me from getting things done. The three movies I play above all others are 1) Marvel's The Avengers, 2) Undercover Blues, and 3) Wimbledon... which I finally bought on iTunes because I got tired of having to load the DVD over and over. I have no idea why these titles win out over others. I guess it's because I never tire of them.
If I had to pick the book I most want to see made into a movie or television series? Isaac Asimov's Foundation. The book I least want to see made into a movie or television series? Isaac Asimov's Foundation. The story has so much potential to be adapted... but my gut tells me it's just not going to be possible. Especially when the latest rumors have Roland Emmerich at the helm, which has to be one of the worst choices possible.
I have seen every feature film Samuel L. Jackson has ever appeared in (of which there are over a hundred!) except his first two... Together for Days and The Displaced Person. Needless to say, I want quite badly to find them so I can finish off my checklist. There have been more than a couple movies I have watched only because Mr. Jackson has appeared in them. And I don't care how bad the film, he is great in all of them, and one of the most versatile and talented actors the world has ever known. Picking my favorite Samuel L. Jackson role is near impossible but, if forced to choose, I'd have to go with Mitch from The Long Kiss Goodnight. Not because it was some kind of Oscar-worthy performance, but because nobody else could have played that role. Period. Nobody.
It was a crazy day but none of it is really blogable, so I guess I'll finally answer this list of "Fifty Original Questions For You" that a reader sent to me... which they found at Liz From The Internet.
And here we go...
When you have a container of Neapolitan ice cream, what flavor do you leave for last? Strawberry. Not because I don't like it, but because I don't like it blended with my vanilla and chocolate.
Would you rather be caught in a thunderstorm without an umbrella or a snowstorm without boots? Thunderstorm without an umbrella... I actually enjoy that. The last time it happened was when I was in Vietnam. I got very, very wet from head to toe. But had a great deal of fun taking photos.
Let's say you have access to a time machine, but it can only go either backward or forward. One or the other. Which do you choose and where do you go? Forward. I can only hope that this world eventually develops into something better than it has been throughout human history, and I'd really like to visit Tokyo hundreds of years from now.
If you could choose to have any superpower ever, what would you pick? Flight.
Tomorrow morning, you wake up in the body of a celebrity, like in a '90s body-swap movie. Who is it? Chris Evans... aka Captain America. How do they react to your life? He would be incredibly bored by my life, I'm sure. What do you do when you're "them"? What do I do when I'm young, good-looking, rich, and talented? With women falling at my feet everywhere I go? Where I can afford to do anything I want? Wow... let me think on that for a while. Would you choose to switch back? Hell no.
Any allergies? When I was younger, I had a myriad of allergies, but outgrew them. Now I only seem to have problems when the seasons change. As we move into summer from Spring, I'm feeling a bit allergetic right now.
What would you be more embarrassed to buy: sex toys or adult diapers? I wouldn't be embarrassed by either. I've been the caregiver for an elderly person and didn't even think twice about having to pick up their adult diapers. And of course I've bought sex toys (alas, mostly as gifts) with no embarrassment... it's not like you're shopping for them at Wal-Mart.
Did you get enough sleep last night? Lord, no. I never do. Such is the life of a chronic insomniac.
You're the sole witness to a Mafia murder. Witness protection has to set you up with a whole new life in a totally new country. You have to leave everything behind, but you can pick where you move to. Where do you go? Edinburgh, Scotland.
If you could star in a biopic about any famous person ever, who would it be?Sir Nicholas Winston. Not because I think I'd do the job justice, but because his story is screaming to be told. He should be famous, but oddly isn't for some reason.
What's the biggest animal you've ever killed? Bugs count. I've never killed anything but bugs. And don't even do that any more if I can avoid it.
Would you rather have millions of dollars but always feel nauseous when you go outside, or be dirt poor forever but never get sick again in your life? This is confusing. Would I be nauseous if I were in a plane? In a car? Or is it any time I left my house? If it's the latter, what good is money if you can't use it? I'd take the health, please.
A wizard offers you immortality in exchange for your two front teeth. Do you take it? Hell yeah. Having two fake front teeth in trade for immortality?
Could you win the Hunger Games? No. In fact, I would undoubtedly be killed immediately.
What was your favorite Halloween costume as a kid? How about as a teen/adult? As a kid? Batman. As an adult? Batman.
Do you bite your nails? I couldn't if I wanted to. They are way too tough.
What was the first movie you remember seeing in the theater? Either Pete's Dragon, Blackbeard's Ghost, The Cat from Outer Space or Herbie the Love Bug... it's hard to tell because Disney re-issued movies all the time back before there were VCRs.
Do you prefer music with male or female vocalists? Male.
You and the love of your life are having a baby, and you get to choose the name! There's only one catch: your partner INSISTS that it be the name of a place, real or fictional. What do you name your baby? Lucia for a girl (after St. Lucia) and Ellis for a boy (after Ellis Island).
If you could reboot or remake any movie, what would it be and who would you cast? That would be John Carter... based on the amazing Martian books by Edgar Rice Burroughs. It was completely and totally fucked up by Hollywood and made into one of the worst films ever. As for who I would cast... I honestly don't know. Preferably somebody who can actually act after holding auditions. Hopefully unknowns.
If you could automatically know how to speak any language or play any instrument, which would you choose? Japanese (language) and piano/keyboard (instrument). I actually learned Japanese and played keyboard in the distant past, but have forgotten most everything about them. Use it or lose it.
For you, would getting amnesia be a good thing? Probably not. But I wouldn't be upset at starting over.
If you curse loudly and then realize that there are children nearby, what is your reaction? To not make a big deal out of it so they wouldn't make a big deal of it.
Of what animal are you most afraid? I'm not really afraid of any animals. More bugs than anything else.
Pizza or oral sex? Since eating pizza while having oral sex would be like... the best thing ever... I'm not going to choose between them.
Without looking them up, can you explain the rules of football? The fundamentals, sure. How about Quidditch? Not even a little bit, as I can't stand any of the Harry Potter crap. What do you think that says about you? That I probably shouldn't play football or Quidditch.
You're in the car, switching channels on the radio when you hear a song that makes you go "OH SHIT, THAT'S MY JAM!" What song is it? Wow. People are People by Depeche Mode? I dunno. Probably something by Depeche Mode or The Pet Shop Boys.
Have you ever paid to see a Step Up movie? If not, how much would someone have to pay YOU to see a Step Up movie? No. I don't even know what that is. But I'd probably see any movie if somebody paid me $500.
If you were being executed tonight, what would you choose for your last meal? Fettuccine Alfredo, but ONLY from Alfredo alla Scrofa.
Have you ever bought an item of clothing because it reminded you of something a fictional character would wear? No?
If you were invisible for a day, what would you do? Go to Washington D.C. and get incriminating evidence on as many shitbag politicians as I could so a scandal could erupt and they could be replaced by more shitbag politicians.
Have you ever been punched in the face? Kinda. I was hit in the face while in a tussle... but it wasn't like somebody teed off and punched me square in the face.
How do you take your ramen noodles? With veggie broth and some peas and carrots.
Do you ever rehearse or plan conversations before you actually have them? Not really conversations... but if I'm doing some public speaking I'll absolutely plan out what I'm talking about.
How much black do you wear on a regular basis (not counting funerals)? Not much at all. I'm too pale to pull it off.
Do you have any tattoos? Yes. Five in three places. Do you want any? Any more? Gawd yes. I love my tattoos and need more.
If someone offered you a free pet snake, would you take it? It's not dangerous or really big or anything. They're just moving to a place that doesn't allow pets. If it meant saving the poor thing from being put to death, then sure. But I have no real desire to own a snake. Not that I don't like them, I would just hope for a more interactive pet.
Do you know how to pronounce the word "pinochle"? The card game? Yes. PEE-KNUCKLE.
Can you think of anything more boring than birdwatching? I've been in many meetings that would make birdwatching seem like an action movie.
Are you better with numbers or words? Earlier in my life, I'd absolutely say numbers. Now? Definitely words.
At the movies, do you stay for the credits? Only if I know there's going to be something "extra" there... like in the Marvel films.
Is morality universal or relative? Relative.
Let's say you're getting married to someone you absolutely adore. The only catch is that you met them through a Craigslist hookup ad that was supposed to be just for one night of casual sex. Would you tell your friends how you and your fiancé met? Absolutely. I think that's an awesome story of how you met your spouse.
What's the worst name you've ever been called? "Faggot." Not because I was offended at being mistaken for being gay... but because that's a hateful, awful word designed to torment somebody because of their sexuality, which is repugnant.
Would you eat human flesh if it had been harvested and prepared humanely? (Say, from someone brain-dead who had marked him or herself down as an organ donor - same difference, right?) I'm a vegetarian, so no. But I'd like to think I'd make an exception for some fucking asshole like Pat Robertson or Rush Limbaugh... assuming the flesh was collected as inhumanely as possible.
At what age did you stop believing in Santa? No clue. But I was young. 1st grade maybe? Alternately, if you never believed in Santa, did you ever ruin Santa for anyone else? Not that I know of.
Do you get along better with old people or little kids? I get along equally well with both.
If you had to choose, would you rather become a nun/monk or a drug dealer? Monk.
What's your best bodily feature, objectively speaking? Height?
Who is your favorite late night talk show host? I'd like to appear smart and say Craig Ferguson (who I do like and will miss when Joel McHale replaces him)... but it's Jimmy Fallon. He's clearly just having fun night after night, and that's what I need to wipe away my day.
Back in the olden days there was an activity called blogging. This was where people wanting to share their experiences, knowledge, and observations would create a website and, using a content management system, would post such experiences, knowledge, and observations for all the world to see.
Blogging was not always easy. Especially if you were a blogger that blogged every day. Because, unless you're an astronaut or Hugh Hefner, eventually you run out of blog-worthy things to blog about.
In order to generate ideas for blog content, bloggers started developing quizzes, challenges, questionnaires, and all kinds of other idea-generating material to blog about. Not everybody appreciated memes... many people downright abhorred them... but when it's 11:55pm and you're desperate for something to blog about, memes could be your best friend.
One of the most popular meme generators on the internet back in the day was The Friday 5. Every Friday they would post five questions for you to answer in a blog post, which was an easy way to get it over with and move on to your weekend. Unfortunately The Friday Five was eventually discontinued, and there were many sad pandas across the blogosphere.
And so I decided to do something about it.
I created a new Friday meme generator and called it FridayQ.
It ran a little over a year from June 4th, 2004 until I got tired of doing it and shut it down on July 22, 2005.
For years after it died, the FridayQ lived on as hand-coded pages here at Blogography. I never deleted them because I had a lot of blog posts that referenced FridayQ and I didn't want to go back and have to change 52+ entries. Alas, when I converted my blog to WordPress back in February all the FridayQ pages were lost and, for reasons unknown, were never backed up. After 8 years, 6 months, and 22 days, the FridayQ was finally dead for good.
Yesterday I was updating the web code for my blog stats and noticed that somebody was trying to reach FridayQ. This got me curious as to how many other searches it was getting, so I checked. Turns out there were dozens of them throughout the year. Mostly from my own blog, but there were other surviving blogs out there still linking to the site as well.
Maybe I should look into restoring FridayQ then?
And so this morning I did just that.
I visited the Internet Archive Wayback Machine to see what I could recover. None of the graphics were there, but all of the pages had been saved. Sure, the archives were out of date by a few months, but that was an easy fix. All I had to do was go through my Blogography archives and copy the original questions. Easy.
But what about the missing graphics?
Time to pull all my old hard drives out of storage.
Surprisingly, every drive I tried actually worked. And I found a backup of the FridayQ images on my fifth drive...
Good thing I'm a packrat who doesn't throw old tech away, huh?
I uploaded the pages to Blogography, updated all the links, and voilà... FridayQ is served!
If you want to read all my crazy answers, you can check out my "meme" archive for 2004 and 2005. They're solid gold, people. Solid gold.
And now I just need to decide what to do with this box of old hard drives. They're probably not going to stay working forever. Hell, half of them require a FireWire port which doesn't even exist anymore (thankfully I have a FireWire to Thunderbolt converter!). Two of them are SCSI drives that would require pulling one of my old Macs with a SCSI interface out of storage to read. Hmmm... perhaps I should back them up to the cloud or transfer them to modern hard drives or something? They're all ridiculously small by today's storage standards... I could probably fit all of them on a single terabyte external drive no problem.
Blergh. One more thing added to my list that I don't have time for.
Do you collect anything? If so, what? If not, what would you collect if you had the money/resources? I used to collect comic books and still have them despite buying all new comics digitally for the past three years... so I guess I'd have to say "comic books." If I had the money to collect exotic sports cars, that would be my jam.
What's your favorite video game console and your favorite game for that console? Wii. And my favorite game for it would be just about any LEGO game... but probably LEGO Batman 2, if forced to choose.
Yogurt or pudding? Pudding. Duh.
If you could get one tattoo without any pain for free, would you? What would you get and where on your body? Depends on who was doing the tattooing. If it was a good artists, then I'd absolutely get something new and piratey on my left arm. Though I never seem to feel pain when getting tattooed, so that's not a big deal.
Do you still talk to the friends you had when you were a child? Not really.
If you could take over a country, what country would it be? Either my beloved Scotland... or Friesland, since I'm the rightful heir to that country anyway.
Do you prefer your Ramen as a pasta with less broth, or more like a soup with more broth? Less broth. And only if it's vegetarian.
Do you have an accent? If so, what kind? To more easily communicate with people whose native language is not English in my work, I speak with as little accent as possible and enunciate my words as clearly as possible. I'm told that this makes me sound like I have some kind of European accent, but I don't hear it.
How do you pronounce pecan? Peh-Khan.
Did you have a blankie or stuffed animal you carried everywhere as a toddler? Both. The blanket was an old raggedy mint-green thing. The stuffed animal varied. I remembered having a duck and a frog, among others.
Sunrise or sunset? Sunset.
Are you good at card games? Better than some, not as good as most.
Favorite kind of Poptarts? Strawberry.
Rainy weather, snowy weather, or sunny weather? Mostly sunny. Sometimes rainy. Never snowy.
Are/were you in any after school activities in school? If so, what one(s)? 4-H for a while.
At what age did you develop your first crush? Share a story about it if you wish. I have no idea. I was pretty young when I remember having a serious crush on Lynda Carter (Wonder Woman). A little older when I had a serious crush on Lindsay Wagner (The Bionic Woman). And a little older still when I had a serious crush on Erin Gray (Wilma Deering from Buck Rogers).
McDonalds or Burger King? McDonalds. I positively loathe Burger King. Though, being a vegetarian, I'm probably not the best to judge.
White chocolate, milk chocolate, or dark chocolate? MILK CHOCOLATE IS THE ONLY TRUE CHOCOLATE.
Coffee or tea and what kind? English Breakfast Tea (black tea) with milk and sugar. I despise coffee.
Favorite memory from a sleepover with your best friend? While I know I had sleepovers with friends, I have no memory of it.
Favorite brand of chips? (i.e. Doritos, Lays, Tostidos). Bugles. Followed by Chili-Cheese Fritos.
Favorite scented candle fragrance? Vanilla.
What's your favorite place to eat out at? Johnny Rockets.
When you go to the mall, where's the first place you always seem to go to? Uhhhh... I avoid the mall whenever possible, but I'm guessing it would be an art supply store of some kind? Maybe a candy store or a game store? Probably a Johnny Rockets.
Do you enjoy mosh pits? I did at one time. Can't fathom enjoying one of them now.
Favorite sound track from any video game or movie? Probably the movie soundtrack for About a Boy.
When Blogography broke down (again) on Monday, I was half-way tempted to just leave it broken.
This was just the excuse I needed to hang up blogging once and for all, as lately it seems more like a chore I have to do rather than an activity I want to do. But I've gone through rough patches like this before and have always cone around, so I thought it best to get things running again. If I'm going to quit, it should be a decision I make instead of a decision I'm forced into.
So here I am.
Guess there's no better reason to do a meme than that...
There's something about you. What is it? A sense of adventure.
You know the way you do that thing? What is it? It's all in the wrist.
What grey areas of your life scare you the most? None of them. I accepted long ago that things are rarely black & white, and am perfectly content with that.
What is something that you wish you knew the answer to, but would never try to find out? What it feels like to free-solo climb Half Dome in Yosemite.
Everyone has that 'thing'. Their 'it'. What is yours? Not being afraid to step outside my comfort zone.
What is that one thing you just can't seem to put your finger on? How people can hate something so vehemently that they have made no effort to understand.
If you could leave this world discovering one thing, what would it be? Extraterrestrial intelligence.
Why do you love them? They earned it.
Why do they love you? I earned it.
This time of the year makes you... Bored.
The way to your heart is... which way? By showing kindness to others.
It gets under your skin when...? People behave badly or stupidly or rudely in public. By clipping your toenails in a restaurant or letting your kids run ape-shit in a grocery store or talking on your phone during a movie or whatever... you're infringing on other people's peace and making it hard for everybody to just get along.
Why did you leave? It wasn't my choice. I was forced out.
What is something you stopped believing in? American justice.
What is something you'll never give up on? Humanity's ability to eventually sort itself out... as unlikely as that may seem.
You forgot what they said, you forgot what they did, but what feelings do you remember? Rage.
Open up. About anything. I have no desire...none whatsoever... to be in another romantic relationship. Ever. I have been so much happier since I've stopped trying. Friends, family, and occasional kindness of strangers are all I need to feel complete.
Whenever you smell it, what does it remind you of? Maui.
Close your eyes and smile. What memory did you think of? Africa.
You'll never understand why... There are people who have absolutely no regard for others. And usually they are politicians who are supposed to be doing exactly that.
What was the moment when 'it' hit you? Bangkok, Thailand, 1998.
What's keeping you from moving on? Responsibilities.
No one likes to dwell, but if you could go back, what would you change? I would not have wasted my precious time on those who ended up undeserving of it.
If you could predict your future, you'd want it to look like...? Like Back to the Future II... THE FUTURE IS NOW, BITCHES!
If the eyes are the windows to the soul, if I looked in yours, I'd see...? Hope.
Do you ever doubt the existence of others than you? All the time.
On a scale of 1-5, how afraid of the dark are you? 2.
The person you would never want to meet? Any piece of shit politician who makes bigoted legislation their life mission.
What is your favorite word? Upgrade.
If you were a type of tree, what would you be? Apple.
When you looked in the mirror this morning what was the first thing you thought? I could use another four hours sleep.
What shirt are you wearing? A Hard Rock Cafe Paris T-shirt.
What do you label yourself as? I don't.
Bright room or dark room? Depends on what I'm doing. I'd prefer a bright room for most things.
What were you doing at midnight last night? Working.
Favorite age you’ve been so far? 30.
Who told you they loved you last? My grandma.
Your worst enemy? Anger.
What is your current desktop picture? The four desktops on all three of my Macs are the various Apple Yosemite images that came with OS X Yosemite. They are so beautiful that I can't bring myself to change them out... even though I usually always do something custom from my own photos.
Do you like someone? I like many people.
The last song you listened to?Goodbye by Who is Fancy... it was on my DVR from Fallon the other night.
You can press a button that will make any one person explode. Who would you blow up? Sarah Palin. I don't ever want to hear another stupid word from her idiot mouth.
Who would you really like to just punch in the face? Rush Limbaugh.
If anyone could be your slave for a day, who would it be and what would they have to do? Really? This is a question?
What is your best physical attribute? (showing said attribute is optional) My brain.
If you were the opposite sex for one day, what would you look like and what would you do? Elizabeth Hurley. Stare at myself naked in the mirror all day.
Do you have a secret talent? If yes, what is it? Not really.
What is one unique thing you’re afraid of? Don't know how unique they are, but clowns and heights.
You can only have one kind of sandwich. Every sandwich ingredient known to humankind is at your disposal. Falafel with hummus, lettuce, tomato, feta cheese, onion, and tzatziki sauce in a wrap.
You just found $100! How are you going to spend it? Buying new bed sheets.
You just got a free plane ticket to anywhere in the world, but you have to leave immediately. Where are you going to go? Maui. Or maybe Krakow, if I'm feeling frisky.
An angel appears out of Heaven and offers you a lifetime supply of the alcoholic beverage of your choice. “Be brand-specific” it says. Man! What are you gonna say about that? Even if you don’t drink booze there’s something you can figure out... so what’s it gonna be? Jägermeister.
You discover a beautiful island upon which you may build your own society. You make the rules. What is the first rule you put into place? THOU SHALT HAVE NO OTHER GODS BEFORE ME!
What is your favorite expletive? Shit.
Your house is on fire! You have just enough time to run in there and grab ONE inanimate object. Don’t worry, your loved ones and pets have already made it out safely. So what’s the one thing you’re going to save from that blazing inferno? Since all my photos are backed up outside my home, I guess my copy of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, anniversary edition, signed by Douglas Adams.
You can erase any horrible experience from your past. What will it be? Something I am not divulging on a blog.
You got kicked out of the country for being a time-traveling heathen who sleeps with celebrities and has super-powers. But check this out... you can move to anywhere else in the world! Edinburgh, Scotland.
The Celestial Gates Of Beyond have opened, much to your surprise because you didn’t think such a thing existed. Death appears. As it turns out, Death is actually a pretty cool entity, and happens to be in a fantastic mood. Death offers to return the friend/family-member/person/etc. of your choice to the living world. Who will you bring back? Steve Jobs.
What was your last dream about? I don't really dream. At least not like I understand most people dream.
Are you a good....[ SWIMMER ]? No. And I really wish I was.
Have you ever been admitted to the hospital? Yes. I had my adenoids out when I was a kid.
Have you ever built a snowman? Yes.
What is the color of your socks? White.
What type of music do you like? 80's Synth-Pop.
Do you prefer sunrises or sunsets? Sunsets.
What is your favorite milkshake flavor? Chocolate.
What football team do you support? Could not possibly care less.
Do you have any scars? There's one on my thumb where I cut through it with a hacksaw because I don't feel pain in my hands very well.
What do you want to be when you graduate? ??? Errr... an astronaut?
If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be? My insomnia.
Are you reliable? I certainly hope so.
If you could ask your future self one question, what would it be? Should I go for this or am I making a huge mistake?
Do you hold grudges? Despite my best efforts... yes. Yes I very much do.
If you could breed two animals together to defy the laws of nature, what new animal would you create? PuppyCat!
What is the most unusual conversation you’ve ever had? Probably one of the times I've talked to self-proclaimed hardcore Christians who know less about The Bible than I do.
Are you a good liar? Not really.
How long could you go without talking? Forever. Verbal communication is not my favorite. Especially on the telephone which I hate hate hate.
What has been you worst haircut/style? All of them. My hair is terrible.
Have you ever baked your own cake? Sure. I love cake.
Can you do any accents other than your own? I like to think I can.
What do you like on your toast? Loads of butter and seedless strawberry jam.
What is the last thing you drew a picture of? A robot.
What would be you dream car? Porsche 911 Carrera 4S Cabriolet. Or a Corvette Stingray Convertible 3LT with Z51 Performance Package. Latest models.
Do you sing in the shower? Or do anything unusual in the shower? Explain. Nope, not really.
Do you believe in aliens? Yes.
Do you often read your horoscope? Hardly ever.
What is your favorite letter of the alphabet? D.
Which is cooler: dinosaurs or dragons? Dinosaurs.
What do you think about babies? They're okay. But I don't think I'd want one at this point in my life.
Freebie! Ask anything interesting you can think of. How much longer until I've done every meme in existence?
I had a great idea for a post today, but had forgotten what it was by the time I sat down to actually write it.
If that's not an excuse for a meme, I don't know what is...
What's your favorite candle scent? Vanilla.
What female celebrity do you wish was your sister? Sigourney Weaver.
What male celebrity do you wish was your brother? Samuel L. Jackson.
How old do you think you'll be when you get married? One billion.
Do you know a hoarder? Nope.
Can you do a split? Oh hell no.
How old were you when you learned how to ride a bike? I have no idea, but it was fairly young.
How many oceans have you swam in? Pacific, Atlantic, and Indian oceans... so, three I guess.
How many countries have you been to? Fifty-One... including this one.
Is anyone in your family in the army? No.
What would you name your daughter if you had one? Olive.
What would you name your son if you had one? Jake.
What's the worst grade you got on a test? F.
What was your favorite TV show when you were a child? Oooh... that's a toughie. Knight Rider? Or perhaps The Six Million Dollar Man? Oh... I know... MANIMAL! Heh.
What did you dress up as on Halloween when you were eight? No clue. Probably a robot or something.
Have you read any of the Harry Potter, Hunger Games or Twilight series? I tried but couldn't really get into Harry Potter or Hunger Games. And no, I haven't touched the Twilight crap.
Would you rather have an American accent or a British accent? British!
Did your mother go to college? No. She went to the Navy.
Are your grandparents still married? I only have one grandmother left, so... no.
Have you ever taken karate lessons? No.
Do you know who Kermit the frog is? WTF? Of course I do.
What's the first amusement park you've been to? Disneyland.
What language, besides your native language, would you like to be fluent in? Japanese (again) or Italian.
Do you spell the color as grey or gray? I prefer "grey" but switch it up from time to time.
Is your father bald? Completely? No.
Do you know triplets? No.
Do you prefer Titanic or The Notebook? Oh gawd... Titanic, I guess.
Have you ever had Indian food? Many, many times. I love the stuff.
What's the name of your favorite restaurant? Alfredo alla Scrofa in Rome.
Have you ever been to Olive Garden? Yes.
Do you belong to any warehouse stores (Costco, BJ's, etc.)? Just Costco.
What would your parents have named you if you were the opposite gender? I have no idea.
If you have a nickname, what is it? Don't have one.
Who's your favorite person in the world? I couldn't choose between my family and friends, so I'll say Betty White.
Would you rather live in a rural area or in the suburbs? Neither... give me the city.
Can you whistle? No.
Do you sleep with a nightlight? No.
Do you eat breakfast every morning? No. Practically never.
Do you take any pills or medication daily? No.
What medical conditions do you have? That's a bit complicated... though it could best be described as a side-effect to the cure for a side-effect that I got from taking a prescribed drug when I was younger.
How many times have you been to the hospital? For myself? Once that I know of (outside of being born in one). As a vistor? Dozens.
Have you ever seen Finding Nemo? Of course.
Where do you buy your jeans? Online.
What's the last compliment you got? I honestly don't know.
Do you usually remember your dreams in the morning? I don't dream. At least not how I understand other people dream.
What flavor tea do you enjoy? Sleepy-Time Tea.
How many pairs of shoes do you currently own? Eight.
What religion will you raise your children to practice? If I were to ever have kids? None. They can grow up and decide for themselves what religion works for them... if any.
How old were you when you found out that Santa wasn't real? HOLY SHIT! SANTA ISN'T REAL?!?
Why do you have a tumblr? I have no idea. It's not like I ever use it.
This is the meme I was GOING to do yesterday... before I found out I couldn't get my blog editor to work after updating WordPress. Again.
It asks the same questions multiple times, but what're you gonna do?
Grab the book nearest to you, turn to page 18, and find line 4. "Ship now entering the plane of the ecliptic of the third planet." (Fourth non-sound-effect word balloon on page 18 of "Thor by Walter Simonson Omnibus."
Stretch your left arm out as far as you can, What can you touch? My Apple Time Capsule.
Before you started this survey, what were you doing? Eating a sandwich.
What is the last thing you watched on TV? "The Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore" (from DVR).
Without looking, guess what time it is 11:30pm.
Now look at the clock. What is the actual time? 11:22pm.
With the exception of the computer, what can you hear? The television. Rain.
When did you last step outside? What were you doing? 7-1/2 hours ago. Returning home from work.
Did you dream last night? No.
Do you remember your dreams? I don't really dream.
When did you last laugh? Earlier today.
Do you remember why / at what? Watching "The Daily Show."
What is on the walls of the room you are in? Diego Rivera posters.
Seen anything weird lately? Every day.
What do you think of this quiz? So far, so good.
What is the last film you saw? "The Avengers: Age of Ultron."
If you could live anywhere in the world, where would you live? Maui or Edinburgh.
If you became a multi-millionaire overnight, what would you buy? A house.
Tell me something about you that most people don't know. I could eat Amy's Mexican Casserole Bowls for breakfast, lunch, and dinner every day and probably never tire of them.
If you could change one thing about the world, regardless of guilt or politics, what would you do? Eliminate guilt and politics.
Do you like to dance? Not even a little bit.
Would you ever consider living abroad? Oh yes.
Does your name make any interesting anagrams? My favorite is "Advise Dim Mr."
Who made the last incoming call on your phone? A co-worker.
What is the last thing you downloaded onto your computer? A PDF with technical specifications for an upcoming job.
Last time you swam in a pool? Years.
Type of music you like most? Synth-Pop.
Type of music you dislike most? Country.
Are you listening to music right now? No.
What color is your bedroom carpet? Ugly brown murk.
If you could change something about your home, without worry about expense or mess, what would you do? Move to a new one.
What was the last thing you bought? "Avegners: Age of Ultron, Art of the Film."
Have you ever ridden on a motorbike? I used to own one, so yeah... lots.
Would you go bungee jumping or sky diving? I've already done both.
Do you have a garden? No.
Do you really know all the words to your national anthem? Yes.
What is the first thing you think of when you wake up in the morning? What new hell is waiting me THIS time?
If you could eat lunch with one famous person, who would it be? Alive? Morgan Freeman Dead? Steve Jobs.
Who sent the last text message you received? A co-worker.
Which store would you choose to max out your credit card? Restoration Hardware.
What time is bed time? Midnight-ish.
Have you ever been in a beauty pageant? Lord, no.
How many tattoos do you have? Six.
If you don't have any, have you ever thought of getting one? Always.
What did you do for your last birthday? Went to Memphis.
Do you carry a donor card? It's on my license, I think.
Who was the last person you ate dinner with? Myself.
Is the glass half empty or half full? Depends on the day. Today half-full.
What's the farthest-away place you've been? Australia perhaps?
When's the last time you ate a homegrown tomato? Last summer.
Have you ever won a trophy? Yes.
Are you a good cook? Not so much any more.
Do you know how to pump your own gas? Uh, yeah.
If you could meet any one person (from history or currently alive), who would it be? Steve Jobs.
Have you ever had to wear a uniform to school? Nope
Do you touch-type? Yes.
What's under your bed? Travel souvenirs.
Do you believe in love at first sight? Oh yes.
Think fast, what do you like right now? The dream of leaving.
Where were you on Valentine's day? Work. Home.
What time do you get up? 4:30am.
What was the name of your first pet? Midnight the Cat.
Who is the second to last person to call you? A client.
Is there anything going on this weekend? Work. Work. More work.
How are you feeling right now? Meh.
What do you think about the most? Escape.
What time do you get up in the morning? 4:30am, sheesh.
If you had A Big Win in the Lottery, how long would you wait to tell people? 0.6 seconds.
Who would you tell first? The internet.
What is the last movie that you saw at the cinema? "Avengers: Age of Ultron." Are you paying attention to these questions you're asking here?
Do you sing in the shower? Not really.
Which store would you choose to max out your credit card? RESTORATION HARDWARE... STILL.
What do you do most when you are bored? Draw.
What do you do for a living? Draw.
Do you love your job? I love parts of my job.
What did you want to be when you grew up? Astronaut.
If you could have any job, what would you want to do/be? Carpenter.
Which came first the chicken or the egg? Egg. Chicken. EGG!
How many keys on your key ring? Seven.
Where would you retire to? Edinburgh or Maui.
What kind of car do you drive? Piece of shit Saturn.
What are your best physical features? My brain.
What are your best characteristics? Honesty and hard work.
If you could go anywhere in the world on vacation where would you go? Today? India.
What kind of books do you like to read? Science Fiction.
Where would you want to retire to? YOU JUST ASKED THIS SIX QUESTIONS AGO!
What is your favorite time of the day? Dusk.
Where did you grow up? Central Washington.
How far away from your birthplace do you live now? About 1,200 miles.
What are you reading now? Thor by Walter Simonson Omnibus.
Are you a morning person or a night owl? Night.
Can you touch your nose with your tongue? No.
Can you close your eyes and raise your eyebrows? Kinda. I guess.
Do you have pets? I'm not allowed to have pets.
How many rings before you answer the phone? Two.
What is your best childhood memory? Summers at the lake.
What are some of the different jobs that you have had in your life? Janitor, Sales Clerk, Shipping Clerk, Waiter.
Any new and exciting things that you would like to share? Nothing comes to mind.
What is most important in life? Friends and family.
Another meme. It's like 2004 all over again up in here.
Talk about the first time you watched your favorite movie. When I first watched Field of Dreams I remember being haunted by it for days. The film came completely out of left field (heh heh) and I couldn't stop thinking about how weird and wonderful it was. It didn't hurt that it had epic performances by James Earl Jones, Kevin Costner, and Amy Madigan.
Talk about your first kiss. Her hair smelled like green apple shampoo. Her lips were covered in strawberry-flavored Lip Smackers. We were eating lunch outside and the air smelled like the banana she was eating. I was having my first kiss in the middle of a fruit salad.
Talk about the person you've had the most intense romantic feelings for. She liked being adventurous and creative and I couldn't get enough of her. I didn't need or desire anything outside the world we created for ourselves. I was consumed by her fire and felt alive in a way I didn't think possible. It ended badly. Something that intense couldn't have ended any other way.
Talk about the thing you regret most so far. Any time I lashed out in anger... regardless of whether it was deserved or not. Giving in to hatred never improves things for anybody... especially yourself.
Talk about the best birthday you've had. My 30th. It was so good that I haven't felt the need to celebrate my birthday ever since.
Talk about the worst birthday you've had. The one where I was told one of my closest friends had died.
Talk about your biggest insecurity. Trust. Once you've been screwed over... badly... it's really difficult to trust people again.
Talk about the thing you are most proud of. Being a hard worker who gives 110% to everything I take on.
Talk about little things on your body that you like the most. My tattoos. I regret that I didn't start getting inked much earlier in life.
Talk about the biggest fight you've ever had. Nothing comes to mind. I guess big fights are not my thing.
Talk about the best dream you've ever had. I don't dream. I don't know that I ever have.
Talk about the worst dream you've ever had. It's not that I dream and forget that I had been dreaming, it's that I don't dream. At least not like I understand everybody else experiences dreaming.
Talk about the first time you had sex/how you imagine your first time. I was in New Orleans... seventeen years old and completely unsupervised. A lot of first times happened that trip. She picked me up in the bar of my hotel after I acted all cool and bought her a drink late in the evening. She was at least five years older than me... perhaps ten years older than me... but that didn't stop me from chatting her up. To this day I think she was a working girl who felt sorry for me being alone in a strange city. She couldn't get a client and had nothing better to do so she did me. Or maybe her place was being fumigated and she couldn't afford a hotel room of her own. Her name (working name?) was Cyndi. She said I could call her Cyn. The irony is not lost on me.
Talk about a vacation. I do that a lot on this blog. I don't know what I might ad. Except to say I am dying to vacation in India. After visiting India and Antarctica, I can probably die happy.
Talk about the time you were most content in life. The fact that I am never content is what keeps me going.
Talk about the best party you've ever been to. Any party my sister throws. Always fun and she invites the best people.
Talk about someone you want to be friends with. Jimmy Fallon seems like he'd be an entertaining friend to have on your quick-dial list. He's always doing something interesting.
Talk about something that happened in elementary school. I loved my elementary school teachers, and they had a big influence on my formative years. Mrs. Beck in kindergarten was sweet and kind in a way that only somebody with infinite patience dealing with a kindergarten class can be. My first grade teacher, Mrs. Jones, has to be one of the most dedicated teachers I've ever encountered. She spent massive amounts of time outside of class (not to mention loads of personal money) caring for her students, and became a good family friend for many years. Mrs. Green, my second-grade teacher was fanatical about learning and pushed students to their limits. Despite a bit of dyslexia, I was an avid reader, and I remember very well Mrs. Green giving me book after book to push my reading comprehension and vocabulary. Mrs. Cummings in third grade... Mrs. Kenoyer in 4th grade... both amazing as well. I was very lucky.
Talk about something that happened in middle school. I was not a fan of middle school because I was incredibly bored throughout. I remember almost nothing from this time of my life.
Talk about something that happened in high school. High school was both the best of times and the worst of times. I liked my classes and teachers okay. I had plenty of friends. I was fortunate that my school provided access to early personal computers, which would change my life. I remember many good times. But it felt as though every day was spent wanting to get the hell out and I'm not quite sure why. I just didn't want to be there, felt out of place, and longed for graduation even though I had no clue as to what I wanted to do afterwards. For whatever reason, high school was something I didn't enjoy, but endured, even though I really have no reason to feel that way.
Talk about a time you had to turn someone down. I have turned down more than one job because it conflicted with my personal convictions or didn't seem compatible with where I was at in life. The biggest was turning down a job at Microsoft. Which sounds like sheer stupidity, but it didn't feel right at all and actually ended up being a good thing since the project I would have been joining went on to be a massive failure.
Talk about your worst fear. That I won't be around when somebody I care about most needs me. It's a common fear for people who travel a lot, I'm told.
Talk about a time someone turned you down. I asked somebody I was seeing if she wanted to go to Cabo with me. She turned me down... but only after she initially agreed and I had bought tickets. This was back at a time where I most definitely didn't have money to be tossing away like that, and the thought of going on a romantic vacation by myself was too big a waste. I ended up selling the tickets to a friend, but still lost money because I had to pay a reticketing fee. I still haven't been to Cabo, despite there being a Hard Rock there for many years, because I never got over being burned.
Talk about something someone told you that meant a lot. I maintain the most romantic gesture I've ever known was my girlfriend showing up at the airport before my flight so she could tell me goodbye for a second time that day... and to give me a new pair of shoelaces. She had noticed mine were looking a bit worn and ragged. By paying attention to such small details in my life, she made me feel as if she really cared about me.
Talk about an ex-best friend. Not that they were a "best" friend... but a close friend I trusted ended up being complete fiction and not at all who they made themselves out to be. It was horrible to have been lied to, lied about, and betrayed by somebody you considered a "friend," and the experience has made me very wary about trusting people ever since.
Talk about things you do when you're sick. Stay in bed as long and often as possible. And take every over-the-counter drug I can find in the hopes they'll fix whatever is wrong with me.
Talk about your favorite part of someone else's body. I am a sucker for a beautiful smile. And dark hair.
Talk about your fetishes. I had many, but that's all in the past. Mostly.
Talk about what turns you on. Honesty and hard work.
Talk about what turns you off. Lying and slothfulness.
Talk about what you think death is like. The beginning of something much stranger.
Talk about a place you remember from your childhood. My entire childhood felt like it was leading up to a vacation at Disneyland. And I remember a great deal about being there once we finally got there, despite it being a long, long time ago. Disneyland was still using the A-B-C-D-E ticket concept, for heavens sake! The rides, while fairly tame by today's standards, were absolute magic at the time... even though so many of the ones that left the biggest impression are long gone... Adventures Through Inner Space with that big eyeball at the end... America Sings with that massive cast of animatronic characters... CircleVision Theater... Skyway between Tomorrowland and Fantasyland... I remember them all.
Talk about what you do when you are sad. Watch the last ten minutes of the movie Millions or listen to music I like.
Talk about the worst physical pain you've endured. Having kidney stones is about the most painful thing you can endure outside of childbirth... or so I'm told.
Talk about things you wish you could stop doing. Buying things I won't ever use.
Talk about your guilty pleasures. The 80's... in music, movies, and culture. I'm truly a child of that era, and slipping back to the things that made it such a great time to be alive is about the best guilty pleasure I could have.
Talk about someone you thought you were in love with. She ended up screwing me over in the worst possible way, but it was a beautiful train wreck that I don't entirely regret. I've certainly never felt that "high" in love again, so I guess the agony of thinking I was in love with her was worth it? I honestly don't know. Upon reflection, it wasn't "real" love at all. Probably more like lust wrapped in a blanket of desperation.
Talk about songs that remind you of certain people. Hmmm... People are People, by Depeche Mode seems the obvious choice.
Talk about things you wish you'd known earlier. I wish I had stopped giving a shit about other people's opinions of me much, much earlier in life. I also wish I had known that fear is a shackle that's avoidable once you realize that worrying about something is rarely worth it. If you worry about something happening and it doesn't, you worried for nothing. If you worry about something happening and it does happen, then your worrying did nothing to stop it. It takes years of practice to get over worrying, but it's time well spent, and will change your life.
Talk about the end of something in your life. Well, this is the end of this meme that's gone on for way too long now...
Your ex's car is on the side of the road, on fire. What do you do? Depends on the ex. For most of them I would absolutely stop and help out. I'd be an asshole not to, regardless of how it ended. For one of them though? Probably throw gasoline on it.
Your best friend tells you she is pregnant. What is your reaction? Uhhh... congratulations?
When is the last time you wanted to punch someone in the face? Yesterday afternoon. It was a stranger. She was being an ass without cause.
What is the last thing you spent money on? Bathroom fixtures at Home Depot. All my money goes to Home Depot now, it seems.
Do you think you gained or lost weight this past month? Lost.
Crunchy or Puffy Cheetos? Puffy.
The first person on your friends list just called you a bitch. What do you do? Move them to the bottom of my friends list. If I actually was being a bitch, then I would still move them to the bottom of my friend's list... I'd just feel a little bad about it.
Congratulations! You just had a son. What’s his name? Jake
Congratulations! You just had a daughter. What’s her name? Olivia
What are you craving right now? A Qdoba burrito.
What was the last thing you cried about? Something I shouldn't have.
When you buy something and your change is 2 cents, do you keep it or tell the cashier to keep it? If it's being handed to me, I take it and see if there's a penny tray to dump it in. Under no circumstances would I say "keep it" for that tiny of an amount.
What color is your tissue box? Blue and grey.
Do you have a ceiling fan in your bedroom, and if so, is there dust on that fan? I do not, but I really wish I did.
What was the last voicemail you received about? Somebody confirming a meeting for next year.
Have you ever blocked someone on Facebook? Oh hell yes.
Scariest thing you've experienced in the last year? Nearly running into a car that was stopped in the middle of a pitch-black highway while driving from Portland, ME to Boston, MA. I still have flashbacks that terrify me.
Do you wear a name tag at work? Nope.
What kind of car do you want? Porsche Convertible. Or a Corvette. The right Corvette.
What do you order when you go to Burger King? Seeing as how I loathe their food and swore years ago I would never step foot in another one? N-o-t-h-i-n-g-! Maybe a lemonade. Fries, if I'm desperate... even though they can't hold a candle to McFries.
Have you ever had a garage sale? Nope.
What color is your cell phone? Black in a blue case
What is the last alcoholic beverage you had? A beer.
Are you happy right now? Not as much as I'd like to be... but it's okay.
Who came over to your house last? A friend of a friend.
Do you drink beer? Yes. Not so much in the winter, but I love it in the summer.
Have your brothers or sisters ever told you that you were adopted? No.
What is your favorite key on your key chain? One I should have discarded long ago, but can't for some reason.
What was the last movie you watched at home?Ant-Man. Still love it.
What is in your pocket? A key. A quarter.
Who introduced you to your bf/gf/husband/wife? My last one? I introduced myself.
Where do you hurt? All over. Seriously
Has someone ever made you a build a bear? No, but I've made one for somebody else.
What's something fun you did today? Painted a wall.
What is your favorite aisle at Target? Video games.
When is your birthday? March 24.
Is there anything hanging from your rear view mirror? Nope.
How many states in the US have you been to? All but one
What kind of milk do you drink? Not-Fat... or perhap almond milk.
Do you ever doubt the existence of others than you? All the time.
On a scale of 1-5, how afraid of the dark are you? 0
The person you would never want to meet? President Trump.
What is your favorite word? Exacerbate.
If you were a type of tree, what would you be? Douglas fir.
When you looked in the mirror this morning what was the first thing you thought? I really need to clean this mirror.
What shirt are you wearing? Orange T-shirt.
What do you label yourself as? Human.
Bright room or dark room? Bright room to work. Dark room to sleep.
What were you doing at midnight last night? Watching Bonding on Netflix.
Favorite age you've been so far? 36.
Who told you they loved you last? My sister.
Your worst enemy? Time.
What is your current desktop picture? Yosemite.
Do you like someone? I like lots of people.
The last song you listened to?Stop Kicking My Heart Around by Dead or Alive.
You can press a button that will make any one person explode. Who would you blow up? If I said his name the Secret Service would probably arrest me.
Who would you really like to just punch in the face? If I said his name the Secret Service would probably arrest me.
If anyone could be your slave for a day, who would it be and what would they have to do? I would never have a "slave."
What is your best physical attribute? Fingerprints.
If you were the opposite sex for one day, what would you look like and what would you do? I'd look bad. I'd eat pizza.
Do you have a secret talent? If yes, what is it? I give good kitty belly rubs.
What is one unique thing you're afraid of? My cats getting hurt.
You can only have one kind of sandwich. Every sandwich ingredient known to humankind is at your disposal. Deep-fried grilled cheese.
You just found $100! How are you going to spend it? Lumber for my kitchen remodel.
You just got a free plane ticket to anywhere in the world, but you have to leave immediately. Where are you going to go? India.
An angel appears out of Heaven and offers you a lifetime supply of the alcoholic beverage of your choice. What's it gonna be? Jägermeister.
You discover a beautiful island upon which you may build your own society. You make the rules. What is the first rule you put into place? Be kind. Or treat others as you would want to be treated, which is pretty much the same thing.
What is your favorite expletive? Fuck.
Your house is on fire, holy shit! You have just enough time to run in there and grab ONE inanimate object. Don't worry, your loved ones and pets have already made it out safely. So what's the one thing you're going to save from that blazing inferno? Jake's favorite toy, Mufasa the Lion.
You can erase any horrible experience from your past. What will it be? Listening to Sam Smith "sing" literally anything.
You got kicked out of the country. But you can move to anywhere else in the world! Edinburgh, Scotland.
Death appears. He offers to return the friend/family-member/person/etc. of your choice to the living world. Who will you bring back? My mom.
What was your last dream about? I don't dream.
Are you a good...[insert anything you'd like here]? Please don't insert anything into me.
Have you ever been admitted to the hospital? Yes.
Have you ever built a snowman? I'm from Central Washington. Of course I have.
What is the color of your socks? Always all white.
What type of music do you like? 80's Pop.
Do you prefer sunrises or sunsets? Depends on where I am. Usually sunsets, especially at a beach facing West. But maybe sunrises if I'm facing East on top of Haleakala or something.
What is your favorite milkshake flavor? Light Chocolate
What football team do you support? I don't do football.
Do you have any scars? Yes. On my left thumb.
What do you want to be when you graduate? An astronaut.
If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be? My age.
Are you reliable? To a fault, yes.
If you could ask your future self one question, what would it be? Got any stock tips?
Do you hold grudges? I try not to, but if the offense is great enough I hold onto that fucker until I die.
If you could breed two animals together to defy the laws of nature, what new animal would you create? Puppygator.
What is the most unusual conversation you've ever had? It was with my ex-girlfriend.
Are you a good liar? Not even a little bit. Easier to just tell the truth.
How long could you go without talking? If I could still text or email? The rest of my life.
What has been you worst haircut/style? Bowl cut.
Have you ever baked your own cake? Um. Yeah.
Can you do any accents other than your own? Not convincingly.
What do you like on your toast? Loads of butter and a little seedless strawberry jam.
What is the last thing you drew a picture of? A window.
What would be you dream car? 2019 Corvette Stingray Z51 3LT Performance Package in Long Beach Red.
Do you sing in the shower? Or do anything unusual in the shower? Explain. No.
Do you believe in aliens? Sure.
Do you often read your horoscope? Never.
What is your favorite letter of the alphabet? W.
Which is cooler: dinosaurs or dragons? Dragons.
What do you think about babies? They're okay if I can give them back after a few minutes.
Freebie! Ask anything interesting you can think of. Do you really have nothing better to do than answer these 65 random questions?
Back in the late 80s when my friend Doug and I were in Kauai, we looked at a map (yes, this was before Google Maps because I'm old) and saw a massive beach on the Western side of the island called "Barking Sands" and decided to go. Little did we know that Barking Sands Beach is a part of the Barking Sands Naval Base, home of the Pacific Missile Range Facility. We were (of course) halted at a fence and told to turn around and vacate the premises. Then were told that there was a public beach north of the facility if we wanted to go there. It was called "Polihale Beach" and we decided it was better than nothing after having driven all the way across the island.
If you look at it on a map, you can see what the deal was...
Map From Google Maps
Problem was... our map was pretty vague about the area. We ended up taking a very wrong turn and ended up headed inland. When we tried to turn around using a drive into a sugar cane field, we were met by a guy with a gun who told us to get the hell off his property.
And so we did. Quickly.
Just one of many bizarre misadventures we we got into on that trip.
Once we got back to the road we needed to be on, we eventually spotted a road that looked like it maybe kinda possibly wouldn't get us shot... so we headed to the beach. This was an undeveloped off-the-beaten-path situation, so once we saw water we just pulled off the road and parked in an area where it looked like we might be out of the way.
This Google Maps satellite image may or may not be where we actually ended up, but you can get an idea of what I'm talking about...
Map From Google Maps
After parking, we headed to the beach.
Just as we turned the corner, we ran across a couple who had attempted to drive their rental SUV ONTO THE BEACH.
Needless to say, they immediately became stuck. Then they made things worse by slamming down on the gas pedal, which only dug the car deeper into the sand...
Map From Google Maps
Apparently they didn't get the memo on why you don't want to drive on sand with a vehicle not designed for that purpose.
As we approached we saw that a woman was seated in the passenger side of the SUV fuming. A man was attempting to dig it out with a frisbee. A futile effort if there ever was one, because the SUV was sunk up to the floorboards. The only way he was ever going to get off that beach would be if somebody parked off the beach with a winch and pulled him off of it.
As we passed, the guy looks up at us and says "Hell of a day, isn't it?" And Doug was all "Um. Yeah." Because the only thing going through both of our heads was how we were going to escape if this guy asked us to help him dig his car out. But he never did. So we walked up the beach, which was quite nice. Beautiful golden sand with turquoise waters and hardly any people...
One of the (many) things I love about Google Maps is that you can literally pinpoint where I took the above shot...
Satellite View From Google Maps
It's not a great beach for swimming thanks to the waves, which were rough, but pretty to look at otherwise...
I did not take a photo of the guy digging his SUV out. This was before the days of being able to sneak a shot with a mobile phone, and I really didn't want him to get pissed at me for exploiting his misfortune if I were caught... so I restrained myself. In the shot above, he is just to the left out of frame.
Wow. These shots I took really are from the 80's. Just look at that film grain when I zoom in...
Anyway... After twenty minutes of bumming around, we walked back to our jeep. The guy was still there attempting to dig the SUV out. A part of me wanted to ask if we should call a tow truck for him when we got back to civilization, but I didn't want him getting more pissed than he already was. Instead we took a long loop around him. We were on vacation, after all. If he had shouted out to us as we walked by, we absolutely would have called AAA for him (or whatever) but, well, you know...
Once we made it back and climbed into the jeep, Doug turned to me and said "Hell of a day, isn't it?" And then we both laughed our asses off because we're mean that way. But, hey, at least we know better than to try and drive in sand, amirite?
Fast forward to a couple years later. The movie Total Recall had just come out. It featured a scene where Arnold Schwarzenegger wakes up in a cab being driven by a robot. After some confusion as to how he got there, the Johnny Cab robot says "Hell of a day, isn't it?"...
I don't know if Doug was with me in the theater when I saw Total Recall. I'd like to think that he was. He probably was. Or maybe he wasn't and I talked to him about it later after we had both seen it. I honestly don't remember. What I DO remember is laughing my ass off when Johnny Cab said "Hell of a day, isn't it?" Because that's exactly how the guy digging out his car said it. The people in the theater probably thought I was insane, but it was damn funny in a "You Had To Be There" kind of way.
Over the years, every once in a while when we saw each other, one of us would inevitably say "Hell of a day, isn't it?".
Last week I ran across a story about a car that had been driven out onto the beach, then abandoned in the face of Hurricane Dorian because it got stuck...
After it was discovered, social media happened. Because of course it did. Then #JeepWatch2019 took over. The meme was popping up everywhere...
Now, as you can imagine, the minute I saw this my first instinct was to create my own meme and text it to Doug...
That's one of the worst things there is, isn't it? Having a shared experience that only one other person on earth could possibly relate to... but for them to no longer be around to share it with? Not even the guy who was trying to dig his SUV out of the sand with a frisbee that day can possibly know what it that moment was to us. My writing this long-ass blog entry can explain what happened, but it's not the same as having lived through it. There was only the two of us.
And now there's just one of us.
And while it's a funny memory for me... knowing that I will never again have that one person to laugh about it with is a weight that came crashing down on my head like a ton of bricks. And it's weird, isn't it? How I never heard about a car getting stuck on a beach when it could have meant something hilarious... but now that it can't, I'm probably going to be hearing about it happening all the time? Because isn't that the way these things go? Maybe it's just how The Universe likes to dick with us. Or maybe it's how our brains like to dick with us by noticing things only after they've become more hurtful than hilarious? Heaven only knows that a Google Image Seach for "Car Stuck on Beach" sure turns up a lot of photos of it happening.
Today I found out that they were finally able to rescue that SUV from the beach after the hurricane passed. I still have no idea how the guy at Polihale Beach, Kauai ever managed to get his SUV off the beach.
The news has been anything but cheerful lately, but hang in there... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...
• U-S-A! U-S-A-! U-S-A-! But before we get started... this video is two minutes long. I encourage you to take a hard look at every second of it. This is what happens when you call the coronavirus a "Democrat hoax" and don't take things seriously early on. And, for us here in the USA, we're not even at peak coronavirus yet because there are still states which are refusing to do anything because "We don't have many cases here." Well, yes, you dumb-fucks, the whole point is to KEEP IT THAT WAY...
Stay healthy everybody. You could end up breaking a hip or having a heart attack or chopping off a finger only to find that you can't be seen at a hospital because it's been overrun with coronavirus patients. You may consider yourself able to survive COVID-19... and that's great. But your actions could infect others who end up taking up hospital space you might need for other emergencies. It's in everybody's self interest to keep hospitals from piling up. Let's all pray it's not too late already.
• Trump Is Risen! Thank heavens that President Trump actually listened to people who know shit and reevaluated his plan to cancel quarantine by Easter. But before that happened, there was this, and if you close your eyes...
God only brought one guy back from the dead on Easter. Trump is here to bring back the whole economy on Easter 2020. Enjoy this clip (possibly, like, the best ever), share and be sure to subscribe to Making Podcasts Great Again (@TrumpPod) - new every week! pic.twitter.com/aUifVWRzfh
• Warz! If you don't know who Max Brooks is, you really should. His book World War Z is sublime apocalyptic zombie-fiction which reads so realistically because his research into pandemics was brutally extensive. He's so well-studied and important to the field of disaster preparedness that he has lectured at the U.S. Navy War College, for heaven's sake. Which is why his viewpoint on current events is worth noting: 'All Of This Panic Could Have Been Prevented': Author Max Brooks On COVID-19. This is some scary shit, and goes to show just how buffoonish the Trump Administration's handling of a crisis of this magnitude has really screwed us.
• ACCESS! Just in case you aren't watching Star Trek: Picard... and you absolutely should be... here's your chance to do so for free. I did not like Star Trek: Next Generation that much, but am loving Picard. I loved Star Trek: Discovery even more (especially the first season), and this freebie unlocks all of CBS All Access, so you can take a look at that one as well!
• Live! There was a meme running through Facebook where you are asked if you can name a band you've seen live for every letter of the alphabet and one that starts with a number. I did pretty good...
# - (The) 1975
A - a-ha
B - B-52's
C - Cheap Trick
D - Depeche Mode
E - Erasure
F - Foster the People
G - Green River
H - Heart
I - Idol, Billy
J - James, Etta
K - Ke$ha
L - (The) Local Strangers
M - Matt & Kim
N - Nirvana
O - Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark
P - Pet Shop Boys
Q - Queens of the Stone Age
R - Rogers, Nile (and Chic)
S - (The) Shore
T - Thompson Twins
U - Ure, Midge
V - (The) Vapors
W - Wrabel
Y - Yanni
Z - ZZ Top
Many of these letters could have had multiple answers. I'm fairly certain I saw at least one band with a name starting with "X"... especially some of those indy bands that were playing during the whole "grunge" movement in Seattle when I was hitting the clubs... I just can't think of any.
• Museum Project! People are getting way creative in finding ways to spend their quarantine time. One of my absolute favorites are those who are recreating famous paintings. Some of them are absolute gold, and there's a terrific Instagram feed where they showcase some of the best ones...
A lot of creative use of toilet paper in that Insty-feed!
And there have also been some professional reimaginings that are absolutely sublime. My favorites by a wide margin are those that popped up by Dutch photographer Jenny Boot. Here is Pearl inspired by Vermeer's Girl with a Pearl Earring (housed at Museum Mauritshuis in The Hague)...
• Disneyland-ish? It's not just fine art which is being recreated while people are in quarantine... people are recreating Disneyland and Walt Disney World rides at home! Some of them are just beyond cool...
Yo ho yo ho a quarantine’s life for me! My family’s Disneyland Staycation! — Brooke (@Brookie_disney) March 20, 2020
I guess if you can't visit in person, this is the next best thing? Kudos to those who are using their alone-time to be so creative!
A new era may be dawning, but some things will never change... because an all new Q&A Edition of Bullet Sunday starts... now...
• Does the stair shelf you built for your cats work?
Yep! No falls since I installed it! Jenny has never been a banister girl, so she just walks along it on occasion. But Jake still lays up there all the time. Especially in the Summer when the sun shines on it. Since the catwalk I built adds a couple inches to the width, he's a lot more comfortable laying on it, and like to prop his head on the ledge to watch me and Jenny on the stairs. This, along with the catio, are two of the best things I've made to keep my cats safe and healthy.
• Which meal service do you like best?
Are you talking between Martha Stewart & Marley Spoon and "Hello Fresh," the two I am currently using? That's actually a very good question! Both of them allow you to skip weeks (which I do often because they are expensive) so when I do order, I have been bouncing back and forth. Comparing them in a face-off is actually a good idea for a post. I'll do that sometime in the coming week!
• Japanese knives RUST... they are NOT stainless steel!
Yes. When I reading up on knives, this was brought up many, many times. I made my purchase with my eyes wide open. I expected for rust to appear. But it was still the best knife for what I would be cooking, and I just made a mental note to be sure and wash the blade after every use. And I've never seen rust. Until one day I did! I went into a Google panic, found out the easiest way to deal with it was a Rust Eraser, ordered one, and then found out it wasn't actually rust before the eraser ever arrived. It was a piece of food that I didn't get wiped off and only looked like rust. Since I first got it a year ago, I've never seen a speck of rust and my Rust Eraser hasn't even been taken out of the wrapper. My MAC Chef's Knife and Bread Knife are from their "Professional" series which is "rust resistant" but will still rust if you don't wash and dry them immediately after use. I also have some "Original" series knives which are supposed to rust more easily but, as I said, I've never seen any rust on them because I keep them clean and dry.
• Are you still playing Animal Crossing? Sadly, no. I haven't had time. And I'm scared to look and see how many weeds I'll have to pull in order to get my island back. It's a great game and helped a lot when we were first under quarantine, but I was spending 2+ hours a day playing it and had stop because there were other things I need to do with my time. Might pick it back up one day and just force a time limit so it's not consuming me like it was. Now I've got TikTok for that!
• Where's your Bernie meme?
Ummm... right here!
My house is kept fairly cool in the winter in order to save on heating costs, so Bernie judging me for the temperature... along with Jenny (and Jake, who has clearly turned his back on me)... seems appropriate.
• Are you finally happy now that Biden is president?
No. No I am not. As I have said quite a few times now, Biden was never my guy so I'm not "finally happy" that he's president. I am, however, elated that Trump is no longer president. So there's a big difference there. I won't be truly "happy" until all the career politicians and other assholes who exploit their office for personal gain at the expense of the American people are out of office. I will also be happy once all the pieces of shit who have so severely divided this country are out of office. Alas, what this would take is the American people WAKING THE FUCK UP and realizing that they are being majorly played. But that takes thinking for themselves, and we all know that this is not something we seem to be very good at right now. So... here we are.
• Where's the first place you'll go once you can travel again?
Well, odds are I won't be traveling for work or for volunteering again... at least not any time soon... so it will likely be a personal trip. My guess is it will be one I've been planning for over a year with friends to Maui. We have unfinished business there that we need to take care of. Otherwise? Not entirely sure. It will take a while for the world to get back to normal and I have no idea where my life will be by then.
And that's the last of my answers to questions I've been asked.
It's always sobering when you find out that the something you've enjoyed... or even mindlessly acknowledged... has a dark story behind it. Songs that are rooted in racism. Movies built around homophobia. Books written with misogynistic undertones. The list goes on and on. And most times you never know about these stories because it's well-hidden or omitted.
Take, for example, the Woman Yelling at a Cat meme. It's everywhere on the internet, and many of them are hilariously funny...
But, like so many things, what's behind it isn't that funny. I never watched The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills so I never even knew who the woman is in these things.
Well here she is, and her story is triggering for domestic abuse...
Which just goes to show... you never know.
All I know is that I won't look at these memes the same way again.