if I write what I feel, it's to reduce the fever of feeling

  • Why do you feel the way you do right now? the combined effects of weather, holidays, loneliness, extra sleep, good surprises, and the sounds of my neighbor playing with his dog
  • What's the most illegal thing you've ever done? I am absolutely certain that it would be inadvisable for me to answer that question
  • Did you give anyone their first kiss? probably not? But there were other firsts that were pretty damned memorable.
  • Where's the farthest place you have traveled? ORD to LAX is 1743 miles, and that is the greatest literal distance that I've flown
  • Are you more likely to under-eat or overeat? at this time of year, over-eating is more likely. Under general circumstances, probably the other.
  • How close are you to your ideal height? I've been at this height for more than half my life, so I think I'm pretty well reconciled to it. It's one physical fate that I cannot effect in the slightest.
  • What or who do you love to hate? there is a group of people in the organization by which I am employed which seems to persist in doing the absolute minimum, and even that they do badly, slowly, and reluctantly. For a business that (excessively) prides itself on striving toward excellence and providing not just service but something beyond, that group of people is excessively mediocre. (As an example of my distaste, their monthly accuracy was measured, shortly before I started working with them, at 17%. They had an error rate of 83% and somehow manage to go on working!)
  • For what would you be famous? I wouldn't argue with a pseudonymous bestseller...
  • Do you wear a watch? nope. I'm thinking of making a sort of display out of the collection.
  • When was the last time you saw your father? about four hours ago
  • Can you use chopsticks? I can, though not in the manner for which they were intended. I'm more of a 'stabber' than a 'grabber', but my preferred function for them is as swizzle sticks.
  • Do you believe in yourself? RenĂ© Descartes (1596–1650): Cogito ergo sum (in French, 'Je pense, donc je suis') I think, therefore I am. (Found in part IV of Discourse on the Method [1637])
  • Do you treat yourself well? in some ways, yes. I generally get almost enough sleep (at least, average over the course of a week or so). I don't over-indulge to any great extent, rarely drink, never smoke, and many of my other vices have cooled significantly.
    In some other ways, though, I'm a complete mess.
  • Is there an adult you confide in, or if you're an adult, does a teen confide in you? I have friends whose teen daughter talks with me sometimes as if I'm somehow both adult and trustworthy. It's a mind-boggling and awesome prospect, and one that I try not to take for granted. I respect her and her parents greatly, so it's a fine line that I walk there.
  • If you could have any animal as a pet, what would it be? just a cat
  • What if you found out you had another sibling? laugh myself sick. That would require some significant alteration of the moral balancing of the family.
  • Do you have friends living in other countries? I know some people, yes
  • What's your ultimate comfort food? depends on the situation. I usually just want what I want, and don't want to have to fight or work too hard to get it.
  • Would you rather live by yourself or with a randomly chosen roommate and why? by myself, obviously. I can't imagine much that would be worse than a randomly chosen roommate.
  • Are you in therapy or have you ever been and should you be? I am not, at the moment, though I probably should be. I have been before. I would benefit from it now. Everyone would benefit from it, if they get a good fit with a therapist and give it a real chance.
  • Are you a good dancer? ha! No. It doesn't stop me, but I'm not very good at all.
  • What's the most random word that comes to your head first? 'simian'
  • What's "God's greatest gift to Earth", even if you're not a believer? language
  • Should you ever have gone to the hospital but didn't or vice versa? yes, I've broken a bone twice but did not have it treated. The same bone, in fact.
  • Do any of your interests break gender stereotypes? my academic career was not traditional; I didn't want to teach, was repulsed by women's history, American history (except very brief periods), and anything approaching minority history. I have a professional degree that I do not "use". I worked in a relatively unrelated field for several years without gaining the education first. And then I started over, doing something totally removed from all of the above. None of that is standard for my gender.
  • Who do you miss the most? Chris.
  • What do you miss the most? besides all about him? Lazy weekend days at the K-brook house. Watching random TV, reading, eating, and talking a lot.
  • What do you do when you're stressed or anxious? the same things that I do when I'm not, only with the headache enhancement
  • What's the last dream you remember having? last week, I dreamed that one of my coworkers was dating Taylor Swift. They'd been together for some time, and finally felt ready to spring their relationship on the rest of us. She was all things delightful, very sweetly letting each of us know that she knew who we were--he'd obviously told her all about us--and dangling off of him like a spangly barnacle. Because he is quite tall, they looked statuesque and freakin' wonderful together. It was a very detailed, amazing dream, which has turned into an unfortunately ridiculous ongoing inside joke for this coworker, who henceforth shall be known as "Swifty."
  • About what are you most passionate? love, I suppose? Or creating, which is just another form of love.
  • What's your music library's most recently added song and first added song? I'm too cozy in my blanket and with the laptop propped up to go and check the first added, but I can say that the most recently added was the Sheepdogs' new album, Future Nostalgia
  • When did you last go to an amusement park? high school. I'm not a fan of that sort of thing.
  • Who do you think is the best-looking person of the same gender? Paget Brewster? I don't know, it's not something I consider, really.
  • On a first date, what would the person have to do to make you walk out? oooh, not much. I think I would be a tough audience for some poor soul who tried to "date" me in a traditional sense, out of the box. My tolerance for any sort of bullshit is practically zero.
  • What do strangers often think about you that is completely wrong? well, maybe that I'll tolerate any bullshit before walking out?

    In all seriousness: that I'm "nice." A girl at work took time out of her day--and therefore mine--to call me on the phone and let me know that she thinks I was rude to her last week. What I did was to (at the direction of my boss) return an item to her that was processed (by her) incorrectly, let her know that it needed to be reprocessed (by her) correctly, and also how it should be done. Because of all that, I got a, "um, yeah. That was very rude, and I think you were very rude to do that." I didn't say anything for a full minute as I retrieved the reins of my temper and conscience, and then replied, "I am sorry that you feel that way." I offered to let her speak with my boss, which would have been hilarious; my boss has the potential for rudeness that I don't even approach, particularly where this child is concerned. She must have realized that she'd reached the end of her options, though, because she merely repeated her tiny little rant about rudeness and hung up.

    The part that's funny is that she thinks that I was upset by this, and she thinks it will change anything for her
    for the better. I have the opportunity to affect her work life in myriad tiny ways, and from here on out, it's not going to be positive. She's too small-minded to realize that she's burned a bridge. That is the thing about me that strangers don't get: that I forget nothing.
  • Have you had a church confirmation, bar/bat mitzvah or something similar? yes
  • What's your ideal birthday cake? shared.
  • If you became homeless, would you accept charity or turn to crime? crime, probably
  • How're you in arguments? sneaky, mean, and ruthless
  • Why do you hate your ex? the one who comes to mind when considering that question went out of his way to earn it
  • What're you listening to right now? furnace clanking, fingernails on keyboard, and the neighbor's dog toys bonking off the inside of their patio door while he croons her name. He is gorgeous, the dog is ancient, lovely, and decrepit, and their relationship is tender and sweet. This game makes me warm & fuzzy inside.
  • Who was the last person you talked to on the phone? my last 12 calls were misses, from telemarketers or robo-callers. That does not include their subsequent calls, which would have been blocked and therefore wouldn't show up on my missed-calls list.
  • Do you wear make-up? yes, though not very much
  • When’s your birthday? a little past mid-year
  • Do you look your age? I don't know, maybe?
  • Does anybody hate you? at least one person does, yes
  • What animal did you last pet or hold? see picture..
    the last animal I held--and petted
  • Do you have trust issues? who doesn't?
  • What’s your hardest class? Physics (in high school). There was a math thing in college that I tried and dropped a couple of times. In grad school, I didn't do so well in Historiography, though I loved the subject. And law school was just one hard class after another, but Torts was the big loser. (Civ Pro wasn't great either, I admit. There wasn't much that I understood about either of those two.)
  • Do you have a best friend to lean on? in lots of ways, yes
  • Are you in a relationship? not romantically
  • Who's the last person you texted? my friend with whom I used to live, talking about books
  • What color's your hair? "more blond"
  • Do you hate the last person who called you? the last person that I actually talked to on the phone--on my phone--is my coworker, Daphne. I don't hate her. We're actually getting along very well. I think it took getting a new coworker with whom neither of us has anything in common (and who drives both of us up a wall) to help us realize that we're doing pretty darned well together.
  • What were you doing at eight AM today? sleeping!
  • What will you be doing in three hours? sleeping!
  • Did anyone tell you they’ll always love you and left? yes, that's happened more than once. Some of it was childish hyperbole, some was blatant lying, and some of it was tragedy.
  • How often do you straighten your hair? exactly never, since it can't get any straighter than straight
  • What're you currently looking forward to? dinner on Sunday with the boys
  • Have you dated the person you texted last? the last guy-person that I texted (actually, FB messaged) was a person that I have dated, yes
  • Are you satisfied with your life as of now? with the addition of that last question and its answer, I am less satisfied than I had been, thanks
  • Who was the last person you texted before you went to bed last night? a friend from high school
  • In the next six months, what're you looking forward to most? I'm not sure yet. Life's changed a lot in the last six months, so I'm not looking too far ahead.
  • Have you ever gone out of your way to make someone happy? sure
  • Does it bother you when people respond with one word texts? nope
  • Have you spoken to any of your exes today? not verbally, but electronically--yes
  • Are your parents divorced, still married or separated? still married
  • Does anyone call you "babe"? a couple of female friends do. From one of them, it's endearing. From another, it's enough to make me want to knock her teeth in.
  • Could you cry right now? not at the moment, no
  • Do you like the color orange? not really
  • Does it take a lot to make you cry? lately, it takes almost nothing at all
  • If you were pregnant, who would you tell first? the father, mysterious as he is
  • Do you believe that there’s good in everybody? no
  • Have you ever stayed up at night waiting for someone to call or text you back? yup
  • Do you feel your life is at its best? no
  • Have you ever let someone be your everything? though I've said that that was true, it never really was accurate. That's not real, it's not life, and it's not sustainable.
  • Do you bite your nails? no, but I break and snag them all the time
  • Whose hoodie did you wear last? my own. Is mutual hoodie-wearing really a thing?
  • Are you a forgiving person? it's a matter of extremes. I can get past almost anything of someone that I love...until something happens that is simply unforgivable. I'm going through that with/over someone that I used to spend a lot of time with. It would be wrong to say that "we" were friends, because it's more like I had been a friend for her. She's finally done something that shook me out of my comfortable oblivion where she's concerned, and I'm just done with it. She hasn't figured that out yet, but she will.
  • Have you ever intentionally made someone jealous? naturally. It's even worked, a time or two.
  • Do you think that you’re good enough for the one you love? "good enough" has very little to do with it--but, yes. I am.
  • What do you usually do right when you wake up? wish for more sleep, and get out of bed
  • Is it easy for others to make you feel awkward? I don't need others for that
  • It's midnight and you’re crying, so who do you call? no one. Not that I can't call anyone at midnight, but, seriously: my friends are asleep by then. Whatever's got me crying will either still be there by morning or it's too big a deal to be just crying over. I might send an email, or write a letter, or occasionally send a text, but I'm not going to call, particularly not in full blubbery mode. What's the point?
  • Have you ever been called heartless? no, that is one thing that I've not been called, at least not that I know of
  • Do you love someone older than you? I have, though it didn't exactly work out and it's been a while
  • Is there anyone you cannot go a day without talking to? yes, but I'm learning to live without it
  • Did you speak to your father today? I did
  • Have you ever fallen asleep in someone's arms? yep
  • Can you honestly say you’re okay right now? I can say it, and eventually it'll be honest
  • Do you like winter? I don't love it, but we're on the upswing
  • Has your heart ever truly ached for somebody? yes
  • Where’s your cell phone? on the coffee table
  • Would you curse in front of your parents? not intentionally. They've heard a very occasional "damn" or "Hell" since we've been living in the same town. It hasn't rocked their world too badly.
  • Is any part of your body sore? my eyes are achy and a little itchy
  • Are you watching TV and if so, what’s on? no. Though, it's the subject of an inside joke at work, it's actually true: I don't watch TV.
  • Are you hungry for anything? no, thank you. I had some poufy Cheetos earlier.
  • What's the last thing you drank? decaf blackberry sage tea
  • What time is it? 23:37
  • Are you waiting for someone to come online right now? I've glanced at FB a couple of times to see if I've gotten any messages. Does that count?
  • What's the last movie you watched? "Blue Valentine", which I absolutely hated
  • What grade are you in this year? I think I'm through with school
  • Are you old enough to vote? indeed
  • Have you ever had to clean a cat box before? I have, the last time being this summer when I was house-sitting
  • Do you have any pets? no, not anymore
  • Who or what do you miss right now? I miss feeling absolutely necessary to the life of another person.
  • Do you have any vacations planned for anytime soon? not specifically, but there is a vague intention to go East sooner, rather than later.
  • Do you think skunks are cute? cute in the abstract, yes. Want to spend time with, no.

[from The Cat, who got it here; the title quotation is by Fernando Pessoa, from The Book of Disquiet]


  1. I had to open a Notepad to get my responses:

    17%? What the hell?

    Being the confidante of a teen and a friend of the kid's parents isn't that hard. You do it well, and you know when to cross the line appropriately.

    "Simian" lol--stop talking about my great-nephew!!

    None of your description of your interests is normal for either gender, to be fair.

    The Taylor Swift dream is AWESOME!

    Paget Brewster is lovely, but her nose is huge. In a good way, but yoicks.

    Your coworker...omg. Is she part of the 17%?

    I think I'm copying/pasting the "sneaky, mean, and ruthless" Q/A and posting it in LARGE LETTERS in my cube. As a warning.

    I love your description of your neighbor and his dog.

    Who hates you?? Anyone I know? Or is this the 17-percenter?

    Finally, PLEASE tell me I'm not the person in the "forgiving" answer! Crap. I hope it's not me. I've felt terribly insulated/insular and self-involved for a year or more, and I hate it. So. I'm sorry. For ... things.

    1. * Yeah, 17%. They're really very crap.
      * There was quite a bit more to Swifty's dream, including a fairly miraculous pregnancy (not theirs), a fancy car, an unlikely dress--and the whole thing took place in a 4H barn. Dreams are funny.
      * PB does indeed have some extra nose, but if she didn't she'd be pretty much perfect, which would be annoying.
      * The coworker who Daphne and I have nothing in common with, who drives us batshit, is right in our group. She laughs like a little braying donkey, asks questions and then interrupts with "I KNOW! YOU ALREADY TOLD ME THAT!", and tends to leave right on the button of her assigned time (rather than finishing the task she'd begun). I think she's literally untrainable.
      * The neighbor with the dog is the one about whom you recommended the Kent Haruf book....
      * The person who hates me (that I had in mind, anyway) is the wife of the ex-boyfriend from high school, with whom I've had a couple of notorious run-ins. There are probably others, but she's the tops.
      * As for the "forgiving" bit--it's so not you.