Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Thirty-Four Things, Part II

Last week, I wrote out the first half of the list of thirty-four things I knew about myself. Today is my 34th birthday, and as promised, here is the second half of the list. Yorkshire Pudding requested “sex, drugs and rock and roll” in part II. I shall do my best to oblige.

Thirty-Four Things, Part II

18) Sex: I was not impressed by my first kiss (too sloppy). I was not impressed by my second kiss (too aggressive). I was ready to throw in the towel until I experienced my third kiss. It was lovely. I dated the guy for far too long simply because he was such a great kisser.

19) Drugs: The few times in my life in which I smoked had more to do with the boys I fancied than anything else. Each round of cigarette smoking ended up exactly as before: illness a la food poisoning. Eventually, I realized (a) cigarette-smoking really wasn’t for me (b) I needed to have crushes on boys who didn’t smoke.

20) Rock and Roll: When I was 14, I met Joan Jett. Ulric and my mother went with me to the concert, and they were (perhaps) the youngest and the oldest members of the audience. Afterward, I was determined to meet my hero. A newspaper reporter doing a story on Jett had an extra backstage pass, and offered it to me. Not only did I get to go backstage, but the reporter was able to manage it so that my mother and brother could come backstage too. I got autographs for all of my penpals, and Joan Jett gave me a leopard-print bandana.

21) For the first 6 years of my life, I lived in a house in the woods that didn’t have hot running water or flush-toilets. Our house was heated by a coal-stove. I suspect this experience has much to do with my befuddlement over how others find camping “fun.”

22) When I see digital time, I mentally convert it to analog. The numbers don’t mean as much to me as the position of the hands on the clock.

23) I am extremely prone to motion-sickness. As a result, I had mediocre reference skills in grade school and college because I avoided microfiche and microfilm. I am thankful for the full-text articles in databases that became more accessible just as I started graduate school.

24) Before I got together with Bede, I told a friend of mine that I doubted things would work out because Bede “wasn’t silly enough.” At the time, I didn't realize I was just trying to find an excuse for things not to work out, as I had no prior experience with healthy relationships.

25) I decided to become a librarian to save myself from having to train as a teacher. (In my twenties, I would have made a lousy teacher.) Hardly anyone believes me that I didn’t become a librarian because my mother was a librarian, but think about it: how many people do you know these days who actively want to do what their parents did?

26) It’s been two and a half years since my youngest brother died, and I am still incredulous that he’s gone. Some part of my brain is waiting for the joke to be over and the punch-line to be worth it.

27) I don’t tolerate bullies. I don’t have much in the way of brawn or clever, on-the-spot responses, but I do have a long memory and a boatload of patience.

28) Schroeder from the “Peanuts” comic strip and the score for the film “A Clockwork Orange” fanned my love of Beethoven. There was a time when “A Clockwork Orange” was my favorite film. It was incredibly violent, and I didn’t like the violence, but still, I was obsessed with the film. I don’t think I could watch it today.

29) When playing Monopoly, I almost always pick the iron, even though I rarely iron my clothes. I acknowledge the irony.

30) My favorite light reading is spicy historical fiction set in the Elizabethan Era or just before.

31) Although I don’t believe in reincarnation, sometimes I get the sense that I wasn’t always this fortunate.

32) I grew up with three sets of grandparents: my mother’s parents, and my father’s parents who divorced and remarried before I was born.

33) As long as you’re respectful, you can pretty much ask me any question you like, and I will answer it as truthfully as possible (or let you know that I only want to tell you part of the answer).

34) On the calendar of saints, the feast day of Alkelda of Giggleswick is March 28. I gave the name “Alkelda” to a character (Twi’lek Jedi, if you’re interested) I developed as a guest-player in the Star Wars role-playing game.


galetea said...

#30- Ah, I see that we share a slightly embarassing love of Phillipa Gregory, then. :)

Lone Star Ma said...

A very, very, very Happy Birthday to you! May it be a day of joy and blessings!

Nonny said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY! You are such an enigma to me, I think that's why I like you so much. Your honosty and humor is very endearing, as is what appears to be a total self-awareness of your strengths and faults. I totally believe in reincarnation and am convinced I lived during the Victorian era, I am so drawn to all things Victorian that there has to be some connection.

HitManJ said...

I hate working on a borrowed computer, so I'll keep this brief. Just stopped in to let you know I'm alive and miss you terribly!

I hit the headlines, but maybe I'll find time to get all caught up!!

Alkelda the Gleeful said...

Galetea: Yup! I actually just picked up (used) three out of four of Robin Maxwell's Elizabethan novels. I didn't pick up Virgin: Prelude to the Throne, but the others definitely made it into the pile.

Lone Star Ma: Thank you! Can you believe it was almost 20 years ago that we started writing to each other?

Nonny: Thanks so much! It's been a happy, mellow birthday. I'd like to hear more about the Victorian connnection. Do you like Edith Wharton's novels? (And by the way, the highly melodramatic BBC production of her last novel, The Buccaneers is finally coming out on DVD in April. I can hardly contain myself.

Hitman J: I miss you too, obviously, since I was trying to visit "Hitman Enterprises" in my dreams.:)

Lone Star Ma said...

No, I cannot believe that. It doesn't seem possible!

Lady K said...

From the bottom of my heart, Akelda, HAPPY BIRTHDAY! May you be blessed with MANY more stories, as well as many more years. XOXO!

Yorkshire Pudding said...

A few things:-
1) Kissing isn't sex.
2) I have been to Giggleswick near Settle in the Yorkshire Dales. There's a famous private school there for rich kids.
3) The Warthog was suspended from school for five days and now is on two weeks' work experience - probably on a local pig farm! He'll be back after Easter, snuffling around in the mud and shit.
4) Wow! The first six years of your life - at one with Nature - and this is in America which we see on the TV every day - the cars, the huge refrigerators, the Hollywood lifestyle that of course everybody enjoys!
5) Cigarette smoking is not drugs as such - sorry to disappoint you on this point.
6) Have a nice day! Sorry to hear about the party killings in your great city.

Darth Phil said...

Belated Happy Birthday!

I've had a role playing character called Fray Bentos. The name is actually that of a company that makes fine meat pies.

I also went (eventually) into the same career as my mother. She is also a librarian and has been since she left school. I took the long way round and did stuff in between.

Alkelda the Gleeful said...

Darth Phil: Thanks so much! And boy, do I miss meat pies. I'd be interested to hear what you did on your "long way round."

Yorkshire Pudding: Re: Sex and drugs, I decided to take the more wholistic view of the subjects. Did you ever see Monty Python's "The Meaning of Life?" I won't quote the whole thing, but I will say this: "What's wrong with a kiss, boy?" :)

As far as drugs go, I think cigarettes are drugs. Tobacco is more addictive and long-term harmful than marijuana. I won't go into the debate over the legalities of the substances, but at least marijuana has some medical benefits.

Thanks for the condolences about the shootings in Seattle. The neighborhood where it happened is not too far away from where I live. I feel the worst for the parents. All I have to do is look at Lucia and imagine her at 14 years of age.

Phil said...

Regarding point #24, you clearly didn't know Bede well enough yet.

I totally did not send you any kind of happy birthday message! I am a bad bad friend. This has been an obsess-about-my-own-little-problems week. I hope you had a lovely time.

goddess of clarity said...

Happy belated birthday! Anyone who loves both Joan Jett *and* Duran Duran deserves a happy one!

Alkelda the Gleeful said...

Phil: It's okay! I'm not letting you off the hook for 35 though. :)

Goddess: Thanks so much!

I wish that I'd seen Duran Duran in concert when I was a rabid fan. I suppose I made up for it by seeing Joan Jett in concert 3 times (4 actually, if you count Bumbershoot 1995).

P.S. My word verifier is voterdbo. Is this a clue to the next candidate, or am I a "voter dobo" for hoping for brighter futures?

lesa said...

I'm behind on reading blogs and journals, so I missed both of your "34" posts. Happy belated birthday!

I like how you added a brief description for each of your items! I rather enjoy the "life in review" listing on birthdays, and I think I might do it every year from now on. (If I remember, that is. One of the things that I should have put on my list is that I have an awful memory.)