26 Things

Back in 1999, people on the internet were trading the meme called “100 Things” where you wrote 100 things that people might not know about you, and you posted them on your site. I started my list but never got beyond 26 items, so I never put it on my site. In cleaning out some of my old writing today, I found the list, and chuckled at some of the now out-of-date items. You might get a kick out of them, too.

  1. I daydreamed my way through elementary school. I would have done better on the tests, except that I was reading ahead in the book and not doing the exercises, because the story was really fascinating.
  2. Salman Rushdie is one of my favorite authors. So is Jane Austen. I’m not always sure I understand Rushdie, so I have to read the criticism and analysis. I do understand Austen.
  3. As a kid, I took piano lessons and clarinet lessons. The only thing I can play now is the right-hand introductory part of “The Sting.”
  4. I grew up Catholic. I quit going to church in college. I started going back a few years ago, semi-secretly, because I didn’t want my friends & sister to make fun of me. I quit again when the priest scandal hit last year. I’m officially a secular humanist now.
    Unitarian Universalist. Although we never go to church, because we’re not awake that early on Sundays.
  5. I only keep in touch with one friend from high school – Cate. Most of the rest of my friends I met in college or recently at work.
    This is no longer true due to the wonders of Facebook.
  6. I didn’t really understand everything about sex until I was 16. I knew the “tab A, slot B” part, but I didn’t know the “arousal, orgasm” part. I thought that people had sex solely for the purpose of makin’ babies. I found out the truth from my friend Linda Griggy on a sleep-over.
  7. In high school, I joined the drama club not because I wanted to be an actor, but because I had a crush on a girl that was joining and she talked me into it. She ended up being my first real kiss.
  8. The only boy I ever kissed was Doug Knox, a kid from Junior High. I kissed him in Linda Griggy’s basement. This was before she explained the crucial details of sex to me, and I finally understood that it was girls that turn me on.
  9. Years ago, I was in a wet t-shirt contest at The Ten, the lesbian bar in Indianapolis. I was dating Peg at the time. I was very drunk. I didn’t win.
  10. I’ve been single for quite a long time. It feels normal to me. I don’t know if that’s good or not.
    So not true now.
  11. My favorite board game is Clue. Because of the house. I love houses. Also, I love board games.
    Different house, same love of the game.
  12. I am a fan of Amy Grant. Because she’s HOT.
  13. I lived in Canton, Ohio for two years; eight grade and my freshman year of high school. It was hell and the kids at school were evil. Although we lived next to Hershbergers, who were really cool. Mike Hershberger was a retired major league ball player, and a really cool guy.
  14. I haven’t been sleeping well lately. I’m only getting about 4 hours of sleep a night. I don’t know why.
    Wow, that’s stil true, but I didn’t realize how far back the insomnia problem went.
  15. Places I’ve been on vacation: New York City. Tucson, Arizona. Las Vegas, Nevada. Atlanta, Georgia. Madison, Wisconsin. A roadtrip around the mid-west. Washington, D. C. Munster, Germany.
    Cambridge, England; London; Toronto, Canada; Mexico, Route 66, California, Phoenix, Arizona; Durham, North Carolina; Luray, West Virginia…
  16. Places I’ve never been: California. Florida.
  17. I’ve worked for the same company for almost 8 16 years.
  18. I’m not a fan of Mexican food. It tends to make me ill.
  19. I’ve forgotten how to cook. I used to be able to make things, but now I eat right out of the refrigerator and heat everything up. This is ironic because people use my recipes every day, and send me new ones.
    I Still hate cooking.
  20. I’m mostly German, but also Irish, Polish, and native American. I’d like to find out more about my native American ancestors.
  21. I like to collect things. Many of my recent collections are influenced by my friend Doug.
  22. Jobs I’ve had: Baby sitting. Reshelving books at the public library. McDonalds. Chicken restaurant. English Tutor. College food service. Pizza Delivery Driver. Factory worker at Maxon Corporation. Assembly line worker at Vita-Chlor. Ticket sales at a movie theatre. Graphic artist at Laser Graphics. Graphic artist at Western Newpaper Publishing. Graphic Artist at Macmillan Publishing (now Pearson Education). Document conversion at Pearson Education. Web design at Pearson Education.
  23. I “came out” in 1987 in college. I’ve been honest about being gay for 15 23 years.
  24. My favorite movies are the Wizard of Oz, Auntie Mame, and Fight Club. I don’t know what that says about me, but it can’t be good.
  25. I think a great deal of psychology is complete bull.
  26. When I was in high school, I sprained my ankle really badly and had to undergo cryotherapy and walk around on crutches. This was my worst injury.
    Wimp. Nothing compares to having your chest cracked open.
Continue Reading26 Things

3 Things Meme

Copy, paste, delete my answers and type in your answers. Tag a few good friends! The theory is that you will learn a lot of little known things about each other.

Three Names I go by:
1. Steph
2. Electrasteph
3. [secret blog name redacted}

Three Jobs I have had in my life:
1. page in a public library
2. factory work at Maxon Corporation (college job)
3. Website Designer

Three Places I have lived:
1. Ankeny, Iowa
2. Canton, Ohio
3. Indianapolis, Indiana

Three TV Shows that I watch:
1. The Closer
2. The Mentalist
3. The Rachel Maddow Show

Three places I have been:
1. Münster, Germany
2. Route 66 from Chicago to California
3. Toronto, Canada

People that e-mail me regularly:
1. Stephanie
2. Chi
3. The Gap

Three of my favorite foods:
1. Buffalo Chicken
2. Pizza with capers
3. Olives

Three friends I think will repost:
1. Stephanie
2. Chi
3. David (if he hasn’t done it already)

Things I am looking forward to:
1. vacation week!
2. container gardening on the porch
3. finishing up some furniture refinishing

Continue Reading3 Things Meme

Oh! that my young life were a lasting meme!

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Maxine Dangerous has tagged me with a meme! Oh, noez! Here’s the plot:

1. Link to the person that tagged you and post the rules on your blog.
2. Share seven random and/or weird facts about yourself.
3. Tag seven random people at the end of your post and include links to their blogs.
4. Let each person know that they’ve been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.

Hmmm. Given that I talk about myself endlessly, I can’t think of seven things I haven’t already disclosed. So, lets ask the little woman. Hey, honey, what are seven weird things about me? She’s got nuthin’. Damn, I have to do this all myself.

  1. I have a weird obsession with buttons, dating back to my childhood, when I would play with the pearl-like buttons on the pillow cases my grandmother made while I tried to fall asleep. I now have a giant jar of buttons that I bought at a flea market and plan to do something with. Every now and then I open the jar and play with the buttons. (hey, you asked for weird. We’re in Proust/madeleines territory here.)
  2. One of the highlights of my day is watching my dog poop – he balances on his front feet, and his back feet come up off the ground. It’s hysterical. (I think technically this may be a weird thing about my dog more so than me.)

  3. For the past ten years or so, my underwear are boxer shorts. They’re just more comfortable. And I have some gender identity things I don’t talk about much.

  4. I love tapioca, cottage cheese and lumpy mashed potatoes because of the lumpy texture. I can’t stand tomatoes, grapes, or peaches, because biting them makes me think I’m biting human flesh.

  5. The other day, I had the Metal Typer Souvenir Coin site make me a good luck coin that says “you are the master of your fate” because the irony was just too much not to.

  6. I’m very particular about how the icons are arranged on my desktop, and I constantly realign them so they’re straight in line with one another, and arranged alphabetically by category.

  7. I’m also very picky about how my sheets are arranged at night, and if the sheet hangs down further than the comforter, I’ll lay awake at night worrying about it.

Tagging seven people? Oh crap. That will be as hard as writing this. And I’ll bet some of them won’t do it.
Stephanie. Lisa. Matt. MJ. Lori B. Davodd. And Marti.

Continue ReadingOh! that my young life were a lasting meme!

A Partial List of My Pet Peeves

Posted today for your amusement/irritation, to be updated as necessary on future occasions.

People who walk up escalators
…especially when they ask you to move out of the way. Seriously – go take the fracking stairs, Sporty. I’m using the escalator for a reason. I don’t come over to your treadmill at the gym and hit the stop button. Don’t pester me to move on the escalator.

Passive Aggressive Bloggers
I’ve already written at length about this.

When someone paints over wallpaper
I’m invariably on the wrong end of this phenomenon – the “trying to take the paper off the wall later” end. It blows. Just buck up and remove the wallpaper first, lazybutt, for the good of humanity. Yeah, I’m talking to former house residents.

Sci-fi or Fantasy fiction novelists who deliberately don’t wrap up major plot points so they have a built in sequel(s)
There’s nothing more irritating than a deliberately unfinished story. Like I’m going to give you more cash for keeping me waiting. Just because every other writer in the genre writes a trilogy that turns into 10 volumes doesn’t mean you have to. Especially if, like Robert Jordan, they might die before they finish the series.

This is connected to another pet peeve – that practically all fantasy fiction is formulaic (farm boy turns hero, meets wizard, goes on long journey to dark mysterious mountains, defeats evil, discovers he’s really an orphan king, blah, blah, blah, Joseph Campbell, blah. Snooze).

The euphemisms “in the closet” and “outing”
I’ve written about this at length, too.

When a person uses a picture for their social networking profile that has more than one person in it.
I can’t tell if they’re trying to obscure who they are, if they’re trying to prove they have friends, or if they seriously don’t know how to crop a photo in this day and age. None of these potential explanations speaks well of them.

People who get shitty when I call my girlfriend on the cell phone from the store
Oh, I know, you’re probably one of those folks who’ve blogged about how irritating this is, so I’m probably just poking a stick right in you eye with this one, but I don’t give a shit. Get the hell over it. If there’s one time I absolutely need to call my girlfriend other than in an emergency, it’s in the damned grocery store. She’s standing next to the fridge and can tell me if we already have mustard or not. Please stop bitching about this; it’s the reason why cell phones were invented. God knows, we don’t need extra jars of mustard in our house, and although I’ve done due diligence and made a list, there’s always something I didn’t think of. I’m trying to be energy efficient in avoiding a return drive to the store.

Seriously, I don’t know what the effing problem with this is. If my girlfriend were with me in the store, I’d turn around and ask her if we needed mustard. Would you object to this, too? You just don’t like to hear people talking in the store? And if that doesn’t bother you, why does it make a difference if I’m calling her instead of talking to her next to me? You just don’t like me having a conversation with a person invisible to you?

One common bitch about this seems to be “people just aren’t present anymore; they’re preoccupied with something going on somewhere else.” Sorry to burst your bubble, Narcissus, but before cellphones, my mind wasn’t present with you when I was shopping, anyway. I was probably daydreaming about riding a unicorn in Narnia, actually. What kills me is that we have this same conversation with every new piece of technology. People said shit like this back when they invented the telegraph: “oh, woe, people just don’t write letters to one another anymore.” Try and keep up, grandpa.

Yeah, I actually considered closing the comments on this post. I might still do it, so don’t be a jackass.

Continue ReadingA Partial List of My Pet Peeves

Big List of Things I Like

Posted for no apparent reason, except that I needed a pick-me-up because it’s been a crappy week. Feel free to add your own list in the comments.

My Girlfriend

The Spikel Monster

Monkeys, especially:
– Curious George
– Hanuman
– King Kong

Board Games, especially:
Dave, the Computer Table
– from Ikea, this laptop table is awesome.
Big Things
Volkswagen Microbuses
Tinfoil Hats
Paper Craft
View-Master Viewers

Old Advertising Murals

Zoltar, and other Fortune Teller Machines

Victorian Houses
The Winchester Mystery House

Food and Drink

Diet Dr. Pepper
Bengal Spice tea
Caesar Salad from Bravo
Crab Rangoon from Mandarin House
Chicken Piccata/Chicken with lemon butter and capers
Crab Cakes from Oceanaire
Prime Rib from Colorado Steakhouse (its all about the perfect horseradish sauce)
My Mom’s Lasagna (which is really Better Homes and Gardens)

Words and Authors

Books in General
Jane Austen
P.G. Wodehouse
Georgette Heyer (a guilty pleasure)
Umberto Eco
Good Slash Fiction (oooooooooo la la)
Bad Fan Fiction (like watching a train wreck where nobody gets hurt, but there’s lots of noise and smashing)

Geek Things

Kinetic Sculptures
Old Clocks
Weather Vanes
Lightning Rods
Windmills and Wind Turbines

The Internets
Apple Macintosh
Think Geek
American Science and Surplus
Action Figures

Sports Stuff

Water Aerobics
Adult Tricycles (I have no idea why)


Auntie Mame
Fight Club
Alfred Hitchcock
Jimmy Stewart
Cary Grant
Audrey Hepburn
Kate Hepburn


Veronica Mars
Grey’s Anatomy


I hate to even get started, the list is too long

Continue ReadingBig List of Things I Like