Herewith 100 things about me. Inspiration from tequila mockingbird and MyLifeStory.org.
There is a webring that hasn't been updated for several months.
An updated version of this story is here.
- I have been very, very fortunate in my life.
- I have stacks and stacks of magazines stored in my basement.
It doesn't look like the Collyer brothers' place yet, but I'm working on it.
- I have an ugly blue plaid shirt that I picked up on a sale
rack that I might never part with.
- When I was in high school, I would amuse and disgust my friends by eating
an entire Reese's Peanut Butter Cup in one bite.
- For a few years I did small cross-stitch projects. The big ones I never finished,
and they're down in the basement with the magazines.
- I am a trifle acrophobic. Flyovers, any sort of overpasses that take a turn in the middle,
like the Tappan Zee bridge over the Hudson River
or the Bay Bridge over the Chesapeake in Maryland, make me nervous.
- I can manage almost three verb tenses worth of French,
- and two cases worth of German.
- I don't really have any Spanish, but I used to pretend that I did, just to irritate my girlfriend.
- Here are some words that I think are interesting: stanchion, flivver, sap,
beleaguered, rowel, vexed, syrinx, phlogiston, beezer,
bruise, Merovingian, pylon, tendril.
- I am a geek of many colors. I am a fan, not a fanatic.
- I kept a TV diary for Scarborough Research for a seven-day period in 1998.
I was performing over the weekend, so I didn't fill up too many of the diary lines.
- In eighth grade, I was on the wrestling team. My coach put me in exactly
one match, at the end of the season, and I was pinned in about 45 seconds.
- I joined the chess team after that. I was better at chess than wrestling, but
not by much.
- Once in a noisy bar, I said something to someone that was taken amiss.
It wasn't until days, weeks later that I realized that what had been heard
was not what I'd said. I will always regret that I will never have a way
to make amends.
- I was married for about six years. We met in graduate school, and split up
a few years after we moved to D.C.
- After that, I shared a house with a darling girl for a couple of years, and that didn't work out.
That one was my fault.
- I have never owned an 8-track player, but my girlfriend in college did.
- Four things that I wish I understood better:
foreign exchange rates and international monetary policy; how electrical and electronic
circuits work; how to produce and direct a movie; differential equations.
- Five: what goes on in my mother's head.
- My cream cheese goes on a sesame seed bagel. I'll suffer with poppy seed if they're out. But those E.T. things are something for Steven Spielberg.
- I met the publisher of Rolling Stone magazine
with my fiancée's lipstick on my collar.
- In the 1980's, I affected button-down shirts with a polo shirt underneath,
as if I were reliving the preppie upbringing I'd never had.
- Now I wear loud Hawaiian shirts. Improvement?
- John S. told me a dirty joke in high school, and I still don't get it.
- It makes me crazy when people misspell minuscule.
- I cannot roll my tongue,
- but I think I remember tasting that nasty chemical
that they feed you as part of the high school biology genetics unit.
- Some people say that I look like Bill Gates.
- The older I get, the more like my mother I become. Not necessarily a good thing.
- After never living in one place for more than five years at a time, I have now
lived here in the same house for thirteen years. Hunh.
- I find the combination of brown eyes and blonde hair absolutely intoxicating.
- I once had a four-day holiday weekend in college with nothing planned, so I rode the bus from Chicago to
Flagstaff, Ariz. and back. The bus station in Oklahoma City is a happening place.
- I was most active politically in 1972, when I did a little door-to-door work
for George McGovern.
- My wife and I went to a caucus in 1980 for John Anderson. I probably still have
the t-shirt somewhere.
- Now, mostly I just sit and fume.
- The two words that defeated me in spelling bees in the fourth grade were beneficent and misdemeanant.
The first one caught me completely by surprise; the second one I knew how to spell but my mouth got
ahead of my brain.
- My wife and I were married in Philadelphia City Hall by Judge Lisa Richette,
who had been instrumental in keeping the polls open against shady
- My first theater gig was running lights for a show in a church basement. I was put in
a situation where I couldn't say no.
- About a year or two later, my wife put me in the cast. And that was the beginning of that.
She hasn't done theater herself in almost 20 years, I reckon.
- I have resided in six states and two commonwealths. No, there really isn't any difference.
- I have owned three automobiles, the last two for ten and eleven years apiece.
- I was a two-pack-a-day smoker for fifteen years; I quit fourteen years ago.
- I can't swim.
- I would like to go whitewater rafting some time. Go figure.
- My porn star name is T. Petey Williams.
- My favorite typeface is Gill Sans.
- I love fresh berries: strawberries, blueberries, blackberries. I feel sorry for people who are allergic.
- I think the tissue box holder built into the countertop in motels is the coolest thing.
- Cindy Sherman is my favorite photographer.
- If I had to do it all over again, I would: Skip the expensive, useless
job search counseling that I went through
when I lived in Minneapolis.
- I don't have a favorite pre-20th century novelist, and
I have too many favorites from the 20th century.
- My favorite short story is "The Topaz Cufflinks Mystery," by James Thurber.
- I share a birthday with Alfred Hitchcock, Bert Lahr, and (as Leta likes to point out) Danny Bonaduce.
- By the way: favorite film director? Sir Alfred, by a mile.
- I am not a success with facial hair. I grew a beard for one show, and the results
were a scraggly mess.
- I had a mustache for a while, and then when I shaved it off, my girlfriend didn't even notice.
- I've had one broken bone set, a bone in my left arm when I was about nine.
- I've had stitches taken twice that I remember, maybe more.
- I have a tiny scar on an eyebrow from a childhood accident that I don't remember,
- and an inch-long one on my hand. Oh, I remember that one.
- I have never spent the night in a hospital, nor in jail.
- There is one two-hour period during a party senior year in high school that I can't quite account
- No more eggplant for me, thanks!
- Favorite active playwright: Tom Stoppard.
- For business, I have travelled to: Newport, R.I., to a shipyard, which closed in the middle of my trip
because of a snowstorm;
- Bartlesville, Okla., to a federal agency; I discovered Frank Lloyd Wright's Price Tower;
- Irvine, Calif., for training; I got caught by a rolling blackout;
- a bunch of other places in New England;
- Tidewater Virginia, to a government contractor; day trips by puddle-jumper;
- Hartford, Conn., to two different customers, for two different employers;
- Toronto, Ont.; when you're a consultant, you learn how to explain yourself to immigration officials.
- Though each was a possibility, I did not travel to Paris, Korea, or Detroit.
- For pleasure, I have traveled to: Fort Collins, Colo.;
- Key West, Fla.;
- Seattle, Wash. The best trip I've ever taken was those two weeks in the Pacific Northwest.
- The closest I've come to being directly threatened by disaster was living in Philadelphia downwind
of the ruined reactor at Three Mile Island.
- I am a minor subway nut. When I was eight years old and I visited the New York World's Fair with
my mother, I tried to convince her to take the 7 train instead of the non-scary bus that she put us on.
- Since then, I have used the subways in New York (including the PATH trains), Chicago, Philadelphia, Boston, Washington, and the San Francisco Bay Area.
- My favorite National Park is Shenandoah, maybe because it's so easy to get to.
- Reality television is neither.
- I inhaled.
- I regret: That I never had a chance to see the Dodgers play at Ebbets Field.
- These days, my favorite color is aluminum. Expect that to change.
- If my mother could do it over again, she would: Pay for piano lessons for me; and Make sure
that I confirmed in the Lutheran church.
- I was looking through a file drawer and found three videotapes that I'd saved.
These were profiles of creative people that I thought might turn into web page project of some sort:
Ernie Kovacs, Ida Lupino, and Björk.
- I love other people's pets, especially cats.
I don't like cleaning up after them, so I don't have any pets of my own.
- I have a three-shelf bookcase that is always half-filled with the backlog of books I mean to read.
Books come and go from it, but Jonathan Franzen's The Twenty-Seventh City has been stuck there for sixteen years.
- If I'm learning to do something new and I don't meet with almost immediate success,
however modest, I lose interest quickly.
- Would you like my share of the artichoke and spinach dip?
- Andrew Lloyd Webber or Stephen Sondheim? Sondheim, emphatically. I took my fiancée to the Uris Theatre to see the preview of
Sweeney Todd for Valentine's Day.
- When I was very small, I would read the road signs on I-75 in Dayton, Oh., on which were posted MINIMUM and
MAXIMUM speeds. I was a little fuzzy on the concept of a "maximum," so I figured this was the sound your car made
when you were going 65 mph.
- Yes, I do have a favorite active painter: Gerhard Richter.
- I wish that I had paid more attention in shop class.
- When Roz Chast has a New Yorker cover, it's an extra good week.
- My first act as benevolent dictator will be to establish mandatory remedial workshops on the concept of sharing.
- I hate those oversize cupholders that movie theater seats have sprouted. I'm always banging
my knees into them.
- I love fruitcake. Yes, really!
- I think that writing meta items (like this one) to pad the list out to 100 is cheating.