Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Cherry-Picking Finale: This Should Do, For a While.

If this doesn't cover everything you ever wanted to know about me, well, hey, just ask.

1. I’d rather drive a manual transmission than an automatic, any day. I don’t understand why everyone doesn’t feel the same way.
2. I am a Mac AND a PC.
3. The older I get, the more I like avocados.
4. I’ve had a lifelong dream of getting a pilot’s license. I don’t pursue it because of the expense. At least, that’s my excuse.
5. I believe completely in the power of positive thinking, no matter how trite it sounds. Every time I have ever said firmly, “I will do [such and such activity] someday,” doors have opened, paths have cleared, I have ended up doing it, sometimes long after I forgot I ever made the statement. (This includes moving to Prague four years after I said I would.) So positive thinking works for me.
6. I lived for a year in the former East Germany just after the reunification. I was 16 and spoke no German. I had to learn quickly, because Russian was the second language taught at all the schools up until just before I arrived, so I only knew two people in the whole city who spoke fluent English. I am embarrassed that I no longer speak fluent German (but writing this prompted me to download some podcasts in German, French, Spanish and Arabic).
7. I had to attend English class in Germany, because it was required. The teacher was very critical of my American English and made a point of correcting me on a regular basis.
8. Going to Germany was the best thing I ever did for myself, other than marry my husband.
9. I still believe that I will learn every major language some day.
10. I still believe that I will visit every country in the world.
11. I don’t like to talk on the telephone. I mean, really don’t like it.
12. But I love my iPhone.
13. I think fondly of most of the people I’ve ever known and as much as I try to hold grudges, I have a hard time doing it. (Except for that English teacher in Germany.)
14. I think this is because I have a bad memory and can’t remember why I was angry.
15. I think my bad memory is good for my marriage because I can’t stay mad. On the other hand, my bad memory drives my husband nuts sometimes.
16. I never in a million years envisioned the career path I am on – as a mapmaker and artist – but now I look back and it seems almost inevitable.
17. I am starting to think of myself as a “real” artist.
18. I am intensely grateful to Al for making it possible, literally and figuratively, for me to follow a career path I love.
19. I have clinical depression, in “partial remission.” In spite of that depression, I am an optimist, find lots of good in the world, and consider myself to be reasonably happy. I’ve always felt that something wonderful was waiting around the corner, and I believe that the meaning of life is to find and create joy.
20. I miss California every single day.
21. I believe in God but consider myself agnostic. I don’t see this as a contradiction.
22. I am inclined to take things at face value, and generally give people the benefit of the doubt.
23. I have flown more than 550,000 miles in my life. In fact, 60,000 in one year, thanks to Wedding Story (25,000 of that was on one episode, though).
24. I love seeing the world, but I have done so much traveling in my life that I am beginning to become a really dedicated homebody.
25. I still regret not staying in Prague for a few more years.
26. I hate the concept of “working out” and believe exercise is best worked into daily life by doing cool stuff. Still, easier said than done, and it’s a moot point right now since I have obligated myself to take up running.
27. I like, no I mean REALLY like, bright colors. But I wear mostly brown.
28. I wear cowboy boots almost every day. But as I type this, I’m wearing black Mary Janes.
29. Every day I consider becoming a vegetarian.
30. My favorite time of day is “golden hour.” Isn’t it everyone’s?
31. I think birds are weird. It makes complete sense to me that they are descended from dinosaurs. But I love parrots.
32. I have a really flexible sense of time, and can get totally lost in what I’m doing.
33. But am usually pretty good at telling you what time it is without a watch if you ask me directly.
34. I am a terrible gift-giver, not because I can’t pick out good things but because holidays always sneak up on me. Like I said, flexible sense of time.
35. I like Air Supply. There, I said it. And a lot of other cheesy music, too. And I also love a lot of truly great music.
36. In spite of the fact that I love a lot of “embarrassing” music, and music from almost every genre, I am actually very, very, very picky about what I listen to.
37. I’m scared of the dark. But I’m not ashamed of that. I think my ancestors probably had good reason to be afraid of the dark and the scary things out there.
38. I am a packrat for two reasons 1) I have a bad memory, so my memorabilia ARE my memory or 2) I might need “it” someday.
39. Actually, there was a third reason for a long time. 3) It might be a collector’s item someday.
40. But I am pretty much moving past that. I don’t have space for collector’s items.
41. I am head over heels for chocolate, but I think cinnamon is actually replacing chocolate as my favorite flavor. Don’t tell chocolate.
42. I am a textbook INTJ. Which means I really don’t want to rule the world, but I would if I had to.
43. It also means I really like to be alone. But I don’t think of myself as antisocial. I like being around people, but I hate to be the center of attention, and I recharge best at home.
44. I have a terrible habit of putting my foot in my mouth. This is why I love socializing on the internet. I can proof what I type.
45. If I were going to totally reinvent my personal style, I would be a mix of goth, rockabilly, and Victorian steampunk, with lots of lace and both dark and bright colors.
46. I’d also get a lot more tattoos. I probably will, anyway.
47. I am a member of Mensa, the ACLU, the Smithsonian, National Geographic and Barnes & Noble. And those are just the cards I carry with me.
48. I absolutely love playing six degrees of separation with celebrities’ names, but when I realized that a great majority of the people I know and love are in film/tv/journalism/just live in L.A. Between all of friends and my father, I think am two degrees from everyone in the world. All you have to do to confirm this is read the 25 Things notes of all my friends.
49. I have written a novel. It’s a terrible novel, but I feel like your first novel should be awful, so you can get it out of the way.
50. If I had a sous chef, I would cook more often, but as it is, I hate food prep, and the whole needing-to-pay-attention-to-more-than-one-thing-at-a-time part, so I don’t cook. Lucky for me, Al does, and very well, too.
51. I like baking, though.
52. I also like hyphens and ellipses. This has nothing to do with baking.
53. If I lived in a snowbound climate, I’m not sure I’d ever shovel snow… I’d just stock up on food and hot chocolate and books and art supplies and plan to be happily housebound.
54. I never missed snow in California, but now that I live in a climate that teases us with flurries, I do wish for real snow.
55. I am constantly making up fictional stories and little dramas in my head. When I was about 5, I pretended I had a twin brother named Christopher.
56. But I don’t think I ever had a true “imaginary friend.”
57. For most of high school and college, I wanted to be a spy. But I think I would have been a terrible spy because I would forget my cover story.
58. My majors in college were international relations and print journalism.
59. I really pictured myself joining the Foreign Service. I decided to become a journalist, instead of a diplomat, because I didn’t want to wear pantyhose to work. On such little things, the future of the world changes (or so I flatter myself).
60. I smoked for more than a decade. I don’t regret having been a smoker, but I wish I had quit sooner. I am so glad I don’t anymore.
61. I am grateful that my family didn’t harass me about my smoking.
62. I am crazy about baseball.
63. I really don’t know all the rules, and can never remember the names of the players, but I don’t care.
64. I own about 1,500 books. I’ve read most of them. But not all.
65. I feel the same way about nonfiction books that I do about watching football: it can be great fun, but I don’t seek it out. Unless it’s USC football, but that’s different. That’s religion.
66. I hate trackpads and would prefer a mouse any day.
67. I used to be really into photography. I still enjoy it, but it’s not my driving passion. I do love looking at other people’s photographs, though.
68. I hate clothes shopping, because I hate the hassle and time it takes to try on clothes.
69. I get strong food cravings. I usually crave textures more than specific foods – creamy, firm, crunchy - but that pretty much means I crave cupcake frosting, Dove chocolate and tortilla chips. I wish it meant yogurt, apples and celery.
70. I miss living in Europe very much. I really miss, for some reason, the twisting, tiny alleyways in old European cities.
71. I miss living in a walkable city.
72. I am not a salad person. I love vegetables. Just not lettuce.
73. Even though I don’t play it often, my piano occupies a very special place in my heart.
74. I am terrified of having children. But I’m also kind of excited, and pretty much as ready as I’ll ever be. When the time comes, of course.
75. I would like to have twins. Two sets. Like the Bobbsey Twins.
76. I would really like to go on a hot-air balloon ride.
77. I miss being in an academic environment.
78. I have every intention of sailing around the world someday. I think Al’s warming up to the idea.
79. My earliest memory is of eating a strawberry candy in what used to be the MGM in Reno, Nevada.
80. I get migraines with all the classic symptoms: aura, nausea, agonizing pain that goes away with sleep but leaves me weak for the rest of the day.
81. I am also so sensitive to light that I wear sunglasses inside, although I try not to wear them in stores, because the employees start to follow me around.
82. I love the desert, the mountains and the ocean.
83. Therefore, I should live in California. (Or I could give up the desert part, and live in Hawaii. But I would still miss the desert.)
84. I am not a shoe girl, and it always amazes me that some people notice other people’s shoes. But I would buy a million coats and purses and hats, if I could.
85. When I’m stressed out, I rearrange my shopping cart. It’s got thousands of dollars worth of books in it. I just keep clicking “save for later.”
86. I think my brother and my sister are two of the most awesome people ever. They’re not related to each other, and they’ve never met.
87. My brother is 13 years younger than I am and my sister is 31 years younger.
88. When I was a kid, I wanted to be a cartographer, a vet, a Navy jet pilot, an architect, a National Geographic photographer, and a teacher in a one-room schoolhouse. Not all at the same time. Part of me still wants to do four of those things.
89. When I was in fifth grade, some kid told me that a giant wave was going to cross California and drown northern Nevada. So, with my friend Jessica’s input, I designed a submarine so we could survive the flood.
90. Now I’m married to a submariner. I think this was fate, and fate has a sense of humor.
91. I am very, very proud of my husband and what he does for a living, and I don’t think I ever tell him enough.
92. And I just realized that the great Northern Nevada floods happened just a few months after that. Now I’m a little creeped out.
93. I can remember smells and tastes just by thinking about them.
94. I love getting mail.
95. I used to be a snobby television watcher and anti-reality TV (of the non-Banyan type, if you know what I mean). But I no longer am, and I really love competition shows, like “American Idol” and “So You Think You Can Dance.”
96. I watch more TV now than I ever did when I worked in television. I spend a lot of my television watching time wondering, “How’d they get THAT release?”
97. I kept scrapbooks before scrapbooking was a verb. Now I no longer do, which makes me sad, but I have boxes of stuff to put in the scrapbooks I no longer make.
98. I like to make up words, and I think languages are living things.
99. But it does drive me nuts when people use the wrong form of “your” or “you’re” or add apostrophes where they should not be.
100. I am definitely a night owl, trying to live on an early rising schedule. I think of myself as being on Pacific Standard Time while living an East Coast life.

Bonus (101): My favorite color is red. And blue. And green. And orange. And...

And since I never tag people but #102 might be "I like to be unpredictable," I'm going to tag Sarah, Jeannine, Crashie, Tinker and Vusova (because you asked for seven and got 100, and now you have to return the favor! Okay, you don't have to, if you don't want to).


carolyn said...

Goodness me it must have taken you ages to write all that. There were several me too's along the way. But I never had a German telling me my English was bad, just as well really as I am English and hostilities could well have broken out again over that!

paintandink said...

Carolyn, I've never heard your voice, but she probably would have LOVED you and your English! She just didn't like my American-ness.

Rowena said...

That was fascinating, but I particularly wanted to agree with how much I LOVE SYTYCD. It's probably the five year old wannabe ballerina in me. That was my first career ambition, but I have never so much as taken a tap class.

James said...

Karma is still working, I'm sure, and that is how your very interesting page popped up on my computer.

I love your writings! As pilot, engineer, world traveler, writer and senior citizen I am still looking for new mountains to climb. Writting down my thoughts, in the wonderful that you have, might be a great new goal!

Thank you for sharing you work.

paintandink said...

Thank you so much, James.

Rowena, I think that's why I love SYTYCD so much, too! I LOVED ballerinas when I was little, but I did take ballet and the teachers all told me I was too tall to be a dancer, so I just let it drop...

tinker said...

That is a WONDERFULly, fascinating list! Now I'm feeling both flattered and intimidated...(I love ellipses too). I feel like I know you so much better now.

I will go ponder for a bit, and see what I can think of...

The Blonde Duck said...

Just had to pop in and say love your illustrations!

Holly said...

i'm somewhat amazed by how much we have in common on your list here. specifically, the reading, the languages, the traveling, the love of things fantastical, the foreign service, the submarines... :)