Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Eight Meme

Tram tagged me for this and I said I would respond, so, coming very late, here are eight pieces of trivia about your friendly blog author.

1. I'm basically punctual. Generally if I'm supposed to be somewhere at 7:30, I'll show up by 7:25. This applies to where my person is supposed to be at a given time; it doesn't always apply to email correspondence or sending out packages or giving birthday cards. It definitely doesn't apply to responding to meme tags.

2. I was on C-SPAN once. For about two seconds. It was their coverage of the Washington Nader Rally. (I voted Nader in 2000. I have no regrets or shame about this especially as I was in Virginia and not a swing-state.) Michael Moore showed up; Cornel West gave the final (rousing) address of the night if I recall--he showed up late, after Nader got there and spoke. In probably 2002, it was at another Nader-headlined rally, down in the Financial District that I heard Phil Donohue speak and I got quite disillusioned with the Greens and the liberal Democrats (not that I considered myself one of them, but I put a lot of hope in their project--naively). I realized that at its base this was all still capitalism with a prettier face, a self-congratulatory bit of deception of oneself and others. For a few years after this I was relatively apathetic about politics altogether, and certainly I was under the mistaken impression that "the Left" was dead or beyond repair in this era, even though I still called myself "far left" if asked.

3. About ten years ago, my favorite novel was Frank Herbert's Dune. Make of that whatever you will. I never read the sequels although I've always wanted to go back just for completionist reasons. Several months ago I actually took one of those online quizzes to see which famous sci-fi writer I was. Well: Frank Herbert.

4. I don't like driving. Sometimes it's fine. But factor in heavy traffic or city blocks and I hate it. And I've just never been a car person--I don't know much about them, never have, and I don't really care one way or the other. (In the earlier, more insecure years of my adolescence, I had a hard time being "one of the guys" whenever cars came up. I knew fuck-all.) Whenever I leave NYC, life without driving will be one of the things I miss most. A walking city is an optimal one, though not always the best (as we see today here in the Big Apple) when it's raining.

5. I've never had a broken bone. A good thing in theory, but retrospectively I wish I'd at least gained the experience of a broken arm in a cast, having all the kids at school sign it, knowing what it feels like, etc.

6. TV Shows I Inexplicably Love: Just Shoot Me and Bernie Mac. I think there was one other show I sometimes group with these, but now I can't remember which one. At any rate, the point is that I'm half-mesmerized by these two sitcoms whenever they come on (only in reruns these days, I think), and can't ever put my finger on their particular appeal. The first one's kind of shit, I can't even stand David Spade, yet if this ever comes on a TV and I'm nearby, I'm caught in a trance and have to watch it. Wendie Malick is fantastic but I otherwise don't know what draws me to it. Bernie Mac is a higher quality work, but like Just Shoot Me, I don't know what it is that keeps my eyes glued to the screen. (I didn't "follow" these shows when they were on; there are relatively few TV series that really do to me what they are precisely designed to do, i.e., get me returning to see more and more, on a weekly basis. But once these are actually on the screen...)

7. I've lived in six states (Idaho, Kansas, Georgia, California, Virginia, New York) and one other country (Germany). Strangely I wasn't born in any of those places.

8. I spent a summer working at Papyrus. The stationery store. It was my second retail job, and certainly my last if I have anything to say about it. My friend got me the position working with him as a sales associate. It was actually an incredibly entertaining gig for the summer (my last spent living with my parents), all the quotidian retail woes aside. The assistant manager was only a few months older than I was at the time (20) but she looked much older; I found out after she skipped town (on the pretext of her grandfather's untimely death back in Belfast, with $150 curiously missing from the safe) that her boyfriend--who managed a shoe store down the way--was abusive. They also supported a couple of habits. The assistant manager was a fun, nice, unreliable guy who would go out and party on the club scene until dawn, and then show up (late) to open the store sometimes, occasionally passing out in the back room to sweat off whatever pills he'd popped. There was a student, a young Somalian woman, who was torn between trying to adhere to stricter Muslim prohibitions on music and loving the Doors (imagine this tall beautiful woman in a headscarf singing "The End" and swaying around as she restocked greeting cards). That's just a start for the people who worked there. My friend and I probably spent 60 hours a week in each other's company and it never got old; we'd frequently work the same shifts and then go out to one of our places to drink. I think I only saw a total of about twenty movies that whole summer.

Moving on, I'm hoping to get some posts out very soon that have as little to do with yours truly as possible.

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