Friday, February 20, 2009

25 Random Things

I was tagged for this exercise by Barry and by Becky, and blog-bud Buck's are up as well. So here goes. Here are the instructions (this will have a life both on the blog and on FaceBook, where both tags and the exercise originated):

Rules: Once you've been tagged, you are supposed to write a note with 25 random things, facts, habits, or goals about you. At the end, choose 25 people to be tagged. You have to tag the person who tagged you. If I tagged you, it's because I want to know more about you.

(To do this, go to “NOTES” under tabs on your "PROFILE" page (you may have to add the tab by clicking on the + sign), click on "Compose New Message" and paste these instructions in the body of the note, type your 25 random things, tag 25 people (in the right hand corner of the app) then click publish.)
25 Random Things About Me. Here goes:
  1. Like most military aviators, I have a call sign. It's "Doc." Most of my skydiving friends don't even know my first name. Most of my non-skydiving friends have never heard of Doc. It's still funny to me to watch either group say, "Who?" when someone refers to me by the name they're unfamiliar with.
  2. When I sneeze, I'm pretty sure the neighbors' (upstairs and through the side wall) china rattles. I know that you can hear me from at least one car back--my family makes a point of reminding me.
  3. I shave with a mug and a brush. Back in the late 70's, hot lather dispensers were the newest gadgets. I've had hot lather virtually every shave since the first time I ever pretended with a plastic razor and Dad handed me down his brush. Some things technology can't improve.
  4. But whipped cream out of a can is just fine. That I've been known to mainline.
  5. The last time I wore my uniform was the day I gave my last final, last semester at the Citadel. If it stays the last time except for some future official ceremony, I will not be sorry. Thirty-one years is long enough.
  6. I make kick-a** guacamole. It's the one real debt I owe my former mother-in-law. "People mess it up by complicating it." I complicated it tonight with cilantro, jalapeno, and powdered red savina peppers--but those are merely tonight's enhancements to the basic recipe Peggy taught me and that I've treasured for 25 years.
  7. I haven't read anyone else's 25 things because I wanted mine to be pure. I'm looking forward to that later tonight.
  8. I've performed onstage as "Curly" for two production runs of Oklahoma: Goldsboro, NC, in 1985, and Merced, CA, in 1987.
  9. The funniest opening to an essay I think I've ever read was, "The subject of my S. A. is . . ." I don't remember anything from it after that. I was sitting in the auditorium watching others audition for Oklahoma when I graded it, and watching my future wife lose her role as Laurie by merely reading Ado Annie's part. She was freakin' awesome. The producer looked back at me from one row ahead, and I just said, "I know, I know. Now I'll have to kiss some other girl onstage." :-D
  10. And in 1985, after moving to Merced and taking a role as a member of the chorus in a three-weekend run of Camelot (because I'd had the musical memorized since age seven and by the time I arrived in town, auditions were over and the principal roles filled), I filled in the second weekend as Lancelot because the principal had laryngitis. I had six hours to rehearse. I never missed a line.
  11. I am not gay. Mom liked musicals.
  12. I serenaded Tammy Bost with "If Ever I Would Leave You" at the ripe old age of seven, while her older brother and sister held her captive. I was a sucker for a pretty face from a very young age. Someone should have warned me.
  13. I was 27 years old before I learned that my grandmother took her own life and older still before I really understood why Mom liked Camelot in particular.
  14. My father is the closest thing to King Arthur I will ever know, and a better man than I expect to ever be.
  15. The best grade I ever earned on an academic assignment was for my final paper in a technical writing class at the Academy. It was on hunting with a bird dog. The instructor put an A in the middle of the last page and plusses out to the margin. I think he liked it.
  16. I believe in destiny,
  17. because I've rolled a Spitfire with the top down,
  18. thirteen days after cartwheeling an aircraft through the treetops.
  19. And I've been struck by a water mocassin (leaving only two perfect holes, a slight scar and bragging rights, but no venom),
  20. while I was trudging through a swamp to find the main canopy I'd cut away below a thousand feet less than an hour earlier. But I'm still here.
  21. I had the highest IQ among those tested in my high school class. I was tested for admission to the Cullowhee Experience in 1974 because Ms. Strawser said, "I knew you had to be a genius because you have no common sense at all." At the time, that was accurate.
  22. I met most of my best male friends in high school because we were pursuing the same girls.
  23. I'm afraid of heights. But only when I'm below about 500 feet and not wearing a parachute.
  24. I don't often drink alone, but tonight, I had a Vesper and a bowl of guac and chips to keep me company during this post. A textbook Vesper, right down to the champagne goblet. Vesper and guac alike are gone, and I'm done, save one final not-so-random thing:
  25. I've felt like just about the luckiest guy in the world for almost a year now. She knows why I think that. I wish the same for all my friends.
And I'm not tagging anyone with this. My inbox is the equivalent of the dead letter office for chain mails and memes, but if you feel like sharing, you know I'd love to hear it.

Peace y'all.