100 Things About Me

  1. I am the oldest of four siblings.
  2. When I was a teenager, I kinda resented being the oldest — being the responsible one, breaking in my parents on all the things my sisters and brother later had no problems with.
  3. The fact that I did a lot of babysitting and room-sharing largely explains my desire not to have children.
  4. There are some things about which I am fastidious — perhaps even obsessive-compulsive. Among these are stacking dishes in preparation for washing, and organizing the clothes in my closet.
  5. There are some things about which I am lazy and a slob.
  6. I have at least two dozen pair of underwear, which makes it possible for me to go three weeks without doing laundry. My husband thinks this is crazy.
  7. I got married at Walt Disney World. This was one of the best decisions I ever made in my life.
  8. One of the first times I knew my husband was the guy for me was when I saw him fold a tissue in half before blowing his nose. I do the same thing.
  9. As much as I love plants, I am not a green thumb.
  10. My house was built in 1920 and has a yard the size of a postage stamp.
  11. We are a two hybrid family. Mike has a Prius, and I have a Civic Hybrid. I bought mine in 2003 — ahead of the curve.
  12. I’m more likely to dislike a food for its texture than for its taste. I have particular problems with foods that are rubbery (like Jello) and creamy foods that are between solid and liquid (like yogurt smoothies).
  13. I love chocolate. The darker the better.
  14. I love fruit. The tangier the better. Citrus makes me very happy.
  15. Why anyone would ruin fruit and chocolate by putting them together is beyond me. Fruit and chocolate do not belong together.
  16. Carbs are my friends. Unlike the proverbial man, I think I actually could live on bread alone.
  17. At age 26, I became a runner, and yet the only team I ever quit was junior high track.
  18. I started running with the goal of running a marathon. I completed one in 2003. In theory I’d like to do another, but the time committment for training is huge, especially if you’re slow. Like I am.
  19. I tend to do new things on a grand scale. I really got started knitting in 2005 (after learning as a child), and my first project was a cabled afghan.
  20. I have a serious paper fetish.
  21. I have a scrapbook and like adding to it, but I’m not a “cropper.”
  22. If I’m not consciously paying attention when I get dressed in the morning, I have a tendancy to look 8-10 years younger than I am.
  23. When I’m together with my two younger sisters, people who don’t know us usually pick me as the youngest.
  24. My sister, Michelle, is the bridge between my sister, Sarah, and me. Michelle and I look alike, and Michelle and Sarah look alike, but Sarah and I don’t look much alike at all.
  25. I like yoga, but I’m terrible at meditation.
  26. It almost always takes a good half-hour between the time I turn off the light at night, and the time I actually fall asleep. My brain doesn’t shut down very easily.
  27. I’m much more productive when I’m doing two things at once, like writing and listening to music, or being in a meeting and knitting. If I don’t have a secondary activity to occupy part of my brain, I get distracted by thinking.
  28. I have a very visual memory. I often remember a certain word or image based on where I saw it — on a page in a book, on a sign, etc.
  29. I read in a very visual way, too. I don’t decode word by word; instead, it’s almost like a phrase or a block of text instantly imprints on my brain.
  30. Frequently, spoiler alerts and surprises don’t work for me because I’ve already seen and taken in some part of the surprise.
  31. This style of taking in information is very useful in my job. I can quickly scan a list of titles or websites and determine whether or not any of them will be useful.
  32. I’m a librarian.
  33. My hair is in a bun as I write this.
  34. These two things are not related.
  35. As a librarian, I tend to take all questions seriously. My husband exploits this for his entertainment: he’ll ask a question without really needing to know the answer, just to see how far I’ll go to answer it.
  36. I have always been a sorter and organizer. When I was young, I would dump out my mom’s button box just to sort and resort it.
  37. I would like to run a yarn store, if for no other reason than to sort and organize by yarn weight, type, color, dye lot… (It would be an awesome yarn store, I tell ya.)
  38. I love children’s TV. I watch Nickelodeon and the Disney Channel. My TiVo must think a 12-year-old lives at our house.
  39. TiVo is the greatest invention ever in the whole world. Love. It.
  40. I am not addicted to TV; it is my hobby. It’s watching TV, sure, but it’s also reading about shows and the industry.
  41. My favorite shows always seem to get cancelled. Cases in point: Sports Night, Firefly, Arrested Development.
  42. All three of the aformentioned shows have something in common: great writing. I am a pushover for a well-written TV show/movie/play.
  43. I am also a pushover for packaging. Some examples of packaging I like are the iMac, Super Target basic store-brand staples (like sugar), and the gift wrap on oversized items from Amazon.com.
  44. I rarely buy books for myself. Being at a really great library every day has fueled my frugality.
  45. For a several years I only got my hair cut at Great Clips. It cost $11. It was the first time I went, I my hair hadn’t been cut since my mom cut it for me 8 months prior. It was the first time I had paid someone to cut my hair in 14 months.
  46. I appreciate beautiful clothing, but I hate to pay for it. Before I buy anything, I ask myself whether or not I like it enough to justify the cost. For example, I might find a jacket on clearance for $30. It might look like a bargain until I ask myself, “Do I thirty-dollars-love this jacket?” The answer is almost always, “No.”
  47. The dress I wore at my wedding (not a wedding dress) cost me $20. I seventy-five-dollars-loved it.
  48. Several years ago, I lost a substantial amount of weight, and needed a serious wardrobe update. Everything I bought went with black. With just a couple exceptions, all my shoes are black.
  49. For a long time, I had a cell phone instead of a land line, and rarely carried it with me. Instead, it stayed at home and I only checked messages like I used to on my good old answering machine.
  50. That all changed when I got my iPhone. I love my iPhone.
  51. My wallet is small enough that I can carry it and my keys in my pockets.
  52. I never have cash in my wallet. I have put as little as $3 on my debit card.
  53. I need more sleep than most people, and I rarely get as much sleep as I need.
  54. When I eat multi-colored candy (m&ms, Spree, jelly beans), I plan it out so that I have the same number of each color by the time I’m done.
  55. I hate being taken by surprise. In eighth grade, my mom threw me a surprise birthday party: upon walking in the front door of our house and having everyone jump out and say, “Surprise!”, I promptly burst into tears and ran upstairs to my room.
  56. I have always hated horror movies.
  57. I’m musically suggestable. Seeing the name of a song or artist will prompt me to start singing in my head, and it’s really hard to let it go. For example, I was recently reading a menu that mentioned potatoes, and the song that immediately got stuck in my head was “Hot Potato” by the Wiggles (see #38).
  58. I’m really competitive, but I hate what being competitive feels like. I avoid playing board games and cards with friends, because if I lose, I berate myself for not winning, and if I win, I feel really bad about having done so. It’s a little messed up. I’ve always been keen on games that reward collaboration and cooperation.
  59. I’ve been under anesthesia once. Somehow I bent the bones in my forearm while doing a cartwheel when I was twelve, and they put me under so they could bend the bones back.
  60. There are all kinds of things I’d like to do in another life, including video/film production, web design, baking fancy pastries, and editing.
  61. I do a lot of things at the last minute. I keep waiting for karma to bite me in the ass on this one, but it never does; thus, my procrastination has received a lot of inadvertant positive reinforcement over the years, and I’m sure one of these days someone will find out.
  62. I don’t drink. At all. There are three things I don’t like about alcohol: 1) the taste; 2) the way it makes me feel kinda blech; 3) the idea of losing any kind of control over myself. I have never been drunk.
  63. I have some control issues, but I keep working on them.
  64. In our house, I have my own room. It’s where I keep all my craft stuff, and I have decorated it in exactly the way I want it. It has a white sofa.
  65. I get really cranky when it gets hot outside. I have Reverse Seasonal Affective Disorder. The onset of global warming does not bode well for me.
  66. In order from most to least favorite, here’s how I embrace the seasons: autumn, winter, spring, summer.
  67. My birthday, September 10, always fell at the beginning of the school year. In some ways this was a rip-off, as school clothes and birthday clothes kinda blended together. In other ways, though, it made me really happy. For instance, by the time my classmates would start to think about doing funny or embarassing things on people’s birthdays, mine was always long over with.
  68. Every August and September, I have a strong urge to buy pens and notebooks.
  69. My ears aren’t pierced. I tell people it’s because I don’t want to think about accessories in the morning, or because I don’t want any holes in my body that weren’t there when I was born, but really it’s because I’m a wimp.
  70. I’m terrible at small talk.
  71. I’m about as introverted as a person can be on the Myers-Briggs test.
  72. I got food poisoning at my junior Prom, and went home by 11:30 pm after getting sick in the restroom.
  73. I was — and still am — a major geek, so the fact that I got asked to the prom was not insignificant.
  74. Growing up, my dad worked for the Catholic Church in town, doing religious education stuff. That made me as close to a preacher’s kid as a Catholic can get, which didn’t improve my popularity at all.
  75. I hated high school, and couldn’t wait to get to college.
  76. College rocked. I found the rest of the geeks.
  77. Friends in college were shocked to learn that I was a high school cheerleader.
  78. They also found it hard to believe that I competed in, and won, the St. Lawrence Seaway Festival Queen pageant. (I really did it just so I could sing onstage, and was a little bitter that I then had to make all kinds of stupid appearances.)
  79. I have very few phobias. The biggest one is melissophobia, the fear of bees (and other stinging insects).
  80. I also get weirded out by extremes of scale. Thinking about the height of the new Freedom Tower in New York freaks me out a bit, as does the size of a Super Wal-Mart (which is scary for all kinds of other reasons, too). When I’m sick, my fever dream usually involves me shrinking down to infinite smallness and being overwhelmed by pieces of furniture I can’t even see the tops of.
  81. I’m not a big fan of risk, either. You won’t catch me jumping out of an airplane, bungee jumping, or riding a motorcycle. I’m not one to take my life into my own hands.
  82. I love lilacs.
  83. I was an English major in college. I love reading, and writing, and reading about writing, and writing about reading. I’d choose writing a paper over taking a test any day.
  84. I learned to read very early, and I’ll read pretty much anything there is to read. It took a little while for my mom to figure out that it wasn’t punishment to sit quietly in a chair if the newspaper was sitting on the footstool.
  85. There are certain books I’ve read over and over again, and that I like to have with me as security blankets. These books include Dicey’s Song by Cynthia Voigt, Einstein’s Dreams by Alan Lightman, Possession by A.S. Byatt, and A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle.
  86. When I was a kid, I used to think the best sci-fi power to have would be teleportation. I still do.
  87. In spite of my verbal affinity, standardized tests always show my greatest strengths in rational and spatial thinking.
  88. I’m awesome with maps and directions. You put together spatial reasoning with my visual memory and quick reading, and I can navigate just about anything. Once, my sister and I were visiting a relative who had moved to a town we had lived in for several years when we were young. The last time I had been there had to have been at least 10 years prior, and I had never driven a car there at all, but I totally remembered a short cut and got us there like it was something I did every day.
  89. I have a not-so-secret crush on Alton Brown. Science is cool.
  90. I made a poor choice when I picked a band instrument in 4th grade. I played the flute all the way through high school, but I never really liked it, and practiced as little as I could get away with. I don’t know why I chose the flute. We lived in Vermont, and at the time, the “girls can do anything they want” message was coming on strong, so I don’t think I was pushed into it.
  91. I wish I’d played percussion.
  92. In a folder at home, I have all the paperwork required to emigrate to Canada.
  93. Some things I like about Canada: their anthem, universal health care, ketchup-flavored potato chips, the weather’s cooler than it is here, they don’t go in for wars and whatnot.
  94. To pay off our mortgage and other debts, to fix up the things we need around the house, and to put a decent chunk of change into savings, I’d only need a windfall of $175,000. That’s pretty reasonable, I think.
  95. I have no desire to go on a reality game show to obtain said windfall. Except maybe The Amazing Race, what with my navigation skills and all, at least as long as there are no objectionable foods (#12), forced alcohol consumption (#62), stinging insects (#79), or risk-taking activities (#81). In other words, I have no desire to go on a reality game show.
  96. I bite my nails.
  97. I also have a bad dipping habit — listening in other other peoples’ conversations in restaurants, movie theaters, etc.
  98. I also have a bad habit of underestimating people who aren’t demonstrably as smart as I am. Sounds terrible, doesn’t it? That’s why it’s a bad habit.
  99. When I die, I don’t want to be buried or put in a crypt at a cemetary. I’d rather be cremated, and if my loved ones want somewhere to “visit” me after I’m dead, they should put the casket and headstone money into sponsoring a seat or performance space in my name, and enjoying art while they remember me.
  100. I have a really good life. I have a spectacular husband, health, good friends, a comfortable home, a job I enjoy, a supportive family, and the means to do the things I enjoy doing. It’s nothing fancy, but it makes me happy.