A fun game has been going around Facebook. Someone will post several factoids about themselves, ideally tidbits that most of their FB friends don’t know. Anyone who “likes” the post will then be given a number, for example “7,” and that person in turn is supposed to list seven factoids about themselves. At first I just read, but when I, without thinking, clicked “like” on a couple of lists, I was given the numbers “13” and “8”. I slept on it, and the next day posted a list of 13 factoids about myself (I went with the larger of the two numbers).
At first it was hard – as a blogger I automatically lose some degree of privacy – but it ultimately was a fun exercise. I thought I’d re-post my 13 factoids below, plus another 12, to come up with a better-sounding “25.” Don’t worry – if you “like” this blog posting on FB I won’t give you a number. I do, however, hope you’ll comment about any particular factoids that surprise you. My hobbies are as diverse as my friends, so if it all sounds like a bunch of random potpourri, well…that’s kinda the point. 🙂
Without any further ado, here’s my expanded list. For the original 13, I’ve elaborated on what I wrote. The original FB words are in normal typeface; the additional thoughts are in italics.
25 Things about Me:
1) I am having trouble figuring out where to begin with this FB “biography.” Once I began, however, I found it difficult to stop. Tonight, I could barely stop at 25!
2) I love pasta, but not lasagna. I also don’t care for pasta stuffed with other items, for example meat. Meat can be served with pasta, but on top of please; never inside.
3) I hate bananas in their natural form – just gross – but I don’t mind them fried or in a smoothie. I think it’s the consistency. They don’t have a very long shelf life, and any “bruising” simply grosses me out. I also hate mushrooms.
4) I once hiked 26 miles in a single day – with 4,000 feet elevation gain and loss. This was the South Fork Loop Trail to the summit of San Gorgonio Mountain, in California over 4th of July weekend in 2008. The mega-dayhike included side detours to an overlook and to a small, sub-alpine lake. Helluva day!
5) I have summited the highest mountains in California, Tennessee (not so high, this one), Germany, and on the African Continent. The Germany hike/scramble route – to the cloud-covered Zugspitze – crosses over into Austria for all of three steps, before passing back into Deutschland. The Africa peak – Mount Kilimanjaro, of course – is also the highest free-standing mountain in the world. I don’t think I’m ready for Everest yet.
6) I was a Theatre minor in college for exactly two semesters. My alma mater had a fine theatre program, but as a wannabe screenwriter-director, I was mostly just interested in the chance to take some acting classes so I could learn about the Method and about working with other actors.
7) My longest non-stop flight was 16 hours. The route, which has since been discontinued because of fuel costs, was a non-stop from Bangkok to Los Angeles. It was 18 hours in the opposite direction courtesy of the westerly winds, but I opted for a “round-the-world” itinerary instead.
8) I have never been to Walt Disney World. “Disney World is closed, son,” is what my dad would always tell me whenever I pleaded for our family to take a summer trip to Orlando. I HAVE been to Disneyland in Anaheim as well as to Eurodisney, which I believe is now called Disneyland-Paris. Fun places both – I love rollercoasters.
9) I once wanted to be a professional deejay. Do they even still exist? I haven’t even listened to the radio in over a year, except when riding in cars driven by other people. Ironically, I hate the sound of my recorded voice – to me it’s nasal and whiny.
10) I once went kickboxing on the bottom of the ocean. I am gonna leave this one purposely vague, though I assure you it’s true.
11) I was bitten by a spider several months ago, and the mark is still visible. I think it was a spider – they are common, uninvited houseguests down here. The mark – a large red splotch with a pronounced bump and incessant itching – is now just a medium-sized splotch with a smaller bump and only occasional itching. Yeah, I probably should’ve gone to the doctor.
12) I am liberal on most issues but not all, and am not registered with any political party. Where I diverge from the “left”: I’m not pro-Obamacare like most liberals; I’m not passionately pro-union (though I’m not anti-union, either, but somewhere in the middle); and I have some complex views about the death penalty. That being said, it’s no secret who I voted for.
13) I have written several feature length screenplays, and they all suck. I am a tough critic of the scripts for most movies I watch, yet I can’t seem to be as tough on my own writing. I DO have a horror script with a lot of potential, if I can just somehow trim 30 pages from it….My screenwriting covers multiple genres, in case you were wondering.
14) Even though I’m a guy, I’m not really into sports. I appreciate the strategy behind the game as well as the stakes – especially in a short season sport such as football – but I’m much more comfortable spending my Sunday afternoon in a movie theater than in front of a TV broadcasting “the big game” on ESPN. I haven’t watched the Super Bowl in two years. I am sort of getting into soccer, but I couldn’t name many famous players. Wait, Peyton Manning, he’s soccer, right? 😉
15) I had a hernia operation as an infant. The scar has long since faded. Strangely, I don’t ever remember a scar there. I have no idea what a hernia – or a hernia operation – even is. Did the doctors remove a body part?! Would leaving it unchecked have been life-threatening?
16) I also suffered a middle-ear infection – again as an infant – that almost killed me. I have no memory of this either, but my parents tell me I had to re-learn basic motor skills all over again (this explains a lot, haha). I suffered devastating ear aches for much of my childhood but they dissipated by my pre-teens and I haven’t had one since.
17) I worked in advertising for many years post-college – first as a media buyer and later as a researcher. I worked on both the agency and vendor sides of the business. I loved the first seven years and loathed the last four years. I can’t imagine ever going back, although I will say it pays much better than teaching.
18) I have stuck my feet into the Ganges River, but that was as deep as I dared submerge myself. This was in Varanasi, India’s holiest city for people of the Hindu faith. Varanasi is vibrant, spiritual, and just about the most magical place I’ve ever been in my life. I made friends there that I still keep in touch with today, even if it is only via Facebook.
19) As a traveler and a soul-searcher, I can honestly say that while I find religion extremely interesting, I also don’t understand it. Some of my best travel moments, however, have occurred at religious sites, such as the on the aforementioned “Mother Ganga,” or while inside Berlin’s stupendous Cathedral, gazing at the frescoed dome with my jaw agape. If I can be as generous as possible about the subject, I’d like to quote Tom Hanks’s character at the end of Angels and Demons: “Faith is a gift I have yet to receive.”
20) My family moved a lot when I was a child. Often we did so without having much money, so moving meant downsizing…and then starting over with almost nothing.
21) I haven’t had health insurance in almost five years. I’ll leave it at that. 🙂
22) Everyone has their “guilty pleasure” movie: a film that is bad – and that they know is bad – but that they adore anyway. For me, that movie is Hudson Hawk.
23) My “favorite countries” list is always changing, but at the moment Colombia is at or near the top. Eight months out, I am still on an elated high from my almost-three-week-trip there last spring. There are many places in Latin America that I still haven’t been to yet, but honestly: I mostly just want to return to Colombia.
24) I have eaten some strange things on my travels. Highlights: fried grasshoppers, fat-bottomed ants, camel, kangaroo, stingray, reindeer, alpaca. Lowlights: guinea pig, silkworms, kidneys.
25) I would love to get married someday, but I honestly don’t believe it will ever happen. I have yet to figure out how to make a relationship work.
GringoPotpourri is officially one year old. I hope you find today’s post both amusing and informative. If you haven’t, I need to step up my game. 🙂
Thanks for reading.