Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Hate the ones you love?

Every few months I get "that" e-mail.

Fwd: Getting to know you [insert year].

One of the last questions is "Who is the person least likely to respond?" I always e-mail back and tell my friends to answer "Mike" next time they get this thing. But my friend Jane seems to find ways to twist the dance just enough to entice me. She flipped the script on "Getting to know you" by sending the questions and having me try to come up with the answers. That was honestly fun, b/c guessing a friend's middle name and religion and eating habits (when you haven't seen each other in literally 12 years and haven't ever had a real verbal conversation is fucking hard). And I love things that are difficult, hence why I read books about quantum theory and string theory for fun.

Well, this time she has "tagged" me. I have been instructed to write five things about myself that no one knows. She confessed that this might be very hard for her, since she's a blab, and oh man is he (that's about the biggest compliment I could give in this case, Janey). She's, in that way, very much like me. So I am going to try my best, but I tend to keep no secrets: my Debbie Gibson obsession is front and center, along with love of musical theater, marching band, star trek and action figures (OK, maybe not everyone knows that). This might be a little Jane-centric, b/c there's no way I could come up with five things no one knows about me in a blog that my students read.

The only reason I said that I hate Janey for this is because I was on this kick to start sleeping earlier, but now um, yeah, no ... not gonna happen.

1. When I play video games that allow you to choose a character, I always choose a female character. I am not sure why, but given that Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Alias are two of my favorite shows ever and Hermione is my fave Harry Potter character, that seems to track. Maybe it's an unusual manifestation of my feminist ideals? Ironically, I was quite the chauvanist until high school, when the other clarinet players in our band (and in my grade) who were all girls learned me the ways of gender equity.

2. I save jars of Inglehoffer's Mustard and other Inglehoffer's spready products and have them in a row on top of the television in my bedroom. Like most humans, I'm attracted to round shapes. And I harbor the idea that someday I am going to incorporate these into some decorative theme in the first place I live alone.

3. I buy often beers based on names (Shark Bite, Fat Tire, Rasputin). A few people know this though. :(

4. I used to talk to myself A LOT. When I was a paperboy delivering newspapers for the Buffalo News from 6-9th grade I listened to a walkman almost every day. But I also talked to myself, out loud. Very quietly, mind you. Just under my breath, but I carried on conversations about what I was going to do with my life, like become a rock star and open for Guns N Roses and then get recruited to be a secret agent. Man, middle school was beyond the beyond of being fucked in the head?

5. OK, I've been sitting here for the last 25 minutes trying to come up with a fifth. I've entered one and erased it and just about entered probably five or six others. But here goes.

I'm still sorta scared of the dark. Not in a I-need-a-nightlight-to-sleep way. Or everytime-I'm-alone-in-my-apartment-I-must-have-lights-on way, either. But every so often, I'll shut the lights out and head to bed in near pitch blackness and I'll get a sense like something's chasing me. (It was much worse in my old apartment with the long hall that had two turns.) It starts out as a slight sense of unease. And I'll try to calm myself by playing the rational card: No one is in the apartment except people who are asleep in their beds. And I saw them go to bed and the door has been locked .... But, that only works for about .1 seconds. Then the unease grows, as my still-locked-in-childhood-horror-movie mind says "it's the irrational things that can happen that ought to make you scared." Then my bodies internal sensors kick into high-res mode. I notice my breathing has stopped. Or that my heart rate has quickened ever-so-slightly. Then I start to walk faster, even though inside I want so desperately to sprint like it's the Olympic 100m finals. As my walk quickens, the unease becomes dread and if the path is long enough morphs into an almost literal terror. By the time I near the door, I'm usually reaching out in front of me across the threshold flipping the light on before my body enters the room. Immediately, my breathing relaxes and I admonish myself for being so irrational, even as the smallest part of me relishes the tapping into my pre-mammalian brain.

Now, the game goes that I'm supposed to "tag" other people. But I'm not "that guy." However, I invite all four (?) of my readers to try this little experiment. But don't try it before you're thinking of going to bed, b/c it can be quite vexing. Typically, if you're the type of person who would play, you're probably already an open book.

The weirdest/coolest thing in Janey's list: she had five (5) wisdom teeth! That's whack.


krazybarrister said...

hate you too. thanks for playing. next time i see ya, i'll buy ya a beer.

krazybarrister said...

oh, and candle holders. that's what those round mustard jars are for. if you're really nice, maybe i'll even knit up some beads for them. ;)