I've had a 100 Things About Me post linked in the sidebar forever, mainly as a resource for people discovering this blog for the first time. I actually re-read that post a short while back, and...well, a lot of it is really, really out of date. So I have retired that post in favor of this one. Here are 100 Things About Me, version 2.0 (revised 4-2013). Maybe I'll revise it again in 2021!
I had the items on this list numbered, but that was kind of a pain in OpenOffice Writer (because I wanted to include categories), so I just went and chucked the numbers. Needless to say, given that this is me we're talking about, there are more than a hundred here!
I live in the Buffalo, NY area.
I was born in Pittsburgh, PA, on September 26, 1971.
Famous people who share my birthdate include George Gershwin, Olivia Newton John, and Jim Caviezel.
I studied at Wartburg College in Waverly, IA. I graduated with a BA in Philosophy and a minor in Music.
I met The Wife at college. We were in band together.
I played the trumpet, and I was actually pretty good at it.
I toyed with writing my own stories all through my childhood years, but only adopted it as my primary passion in life in the mid-1990s, after college.
My first paid job was as a Technical Services Assistant at the Friedsam Library at St. Bonaventure University. This was back when library books still had cards and pockets, and you found books by looking them up in the card catalog. I was the person who put the cards and pockets in the new books and helped maintain the card catalog.
My first car that was my own, registered in my name, was a Plymouth Colt. We drove that car on our honeymoon.
We were married on May 17, 1997. It was cold and rainy all that month, including that day. On May 18, it was warm and sunny. Go figure.
We have a daughter.
We had a son, Little Quinn. His life was hard, and short. (There are blog posts about him here...see the listing "The Saga of Little Quinn", in the Notable Dispatches page.)
We tried for a third child, and failed.
Politically, I am liberal. I do not like to discuss politics in general, though.
A brief (but not exhaustive) list of things which make me happy.
Pies in the face (including my own!)
Science fiction in general
Space opera in particular
J.R.R. Tolkien (my favorite dead writer)
Guy Gavriel Kay (my favorite living writer)
The Bard of Stratford-on-Avon
Peter F. Hamilton
Nathan Fillion (swoon)
Hector Berlioz (my favorite composer)
Hot Pepper Jelly
Rum! Rum! Rum!
Apples (with one exception – see below)
Coconut cream pie (like to eat, love in my face)
Firefly Cupcakes (bakery in East Aurora, NY)
Salads of dark greens
Summer fruit: white peaches, nectarines, plums
The Buffalo Southtowns (Orchard Park and East Aurora, specifically)
US Route 20
US Route 20A (especially in fall -- this is my favorite road ever)
Ithaca, NY (we go there yearly for their Apple Harvest Festival)
Neil DeGrasse Tyson
A brief (but not exhaustive) list of things which I find to be a drag
Highly windy weather
Red Delicious apples
Pies in the face when the 'pie' is made of shaving cream
Coughing fits in the middle of the night
Jogging (I've tried, and I just can't get myself to liking it)
Polo shirts (I have to wear them for work, but in general I do not like them)
Neckties (I hate these)
The degree to which our society, and humans in general, fixate on sports
I have stood in the spot where Abraham Zapruder stood to film the JFK assassination.
I used to be a Bills and Pirates fan, but have largely come to see sports as a very silly thing to be passionate about.
I used to default to cynicism, but of late I've sworn off the whole 'negative thinking' vibe. It wasn't working for me anymore.
It has taken me several years to figure out what the word 'hipster' means. I still don't hate them.
I was five years old when I first saw Star Wars. I did not like it the first time, because I was five and had seen nothing like it before. My distaste did not last long.
I don't remember a time when Star Trek wasn't a thing. One of my earliest memories is Dr. McCoy going "Oochie woochie koochie koo" to the baby in the episode "Friday's Child".
I could drink Diet Pepsi every day, at every meal, for the rest of my life. I don't, because diet stuff is cold carbonated chemical soup, and I rarely indulge it anymore. But I really like the Diet Pepsi. Other diet drinks? Ugh!
I became a coffee drinker in the mid-1990s. My conversion began in college with Coffee Haagen-Dasz ice cream.
States to which I have never been: Rhode Island, Connecticut, Delaware, Kentucky, Tennessee, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Alaska, Hawaii
Countries to which I have been, other than the USA: Canada, Mexico. (Although I have a hard time counting Mexico since I have no memory at all of it, having been too young. I only have my parents' word that I've been there. Not that they would have any reason to tell me I've been there when I haven't, because...why do that?!)
The number one thing I tended to get in trouble for as a kid was not handing in homework assignments.
The number two thing? Lying about the homework assignments that I'd already forgotten.
I'm not proud of either one of those things, and I never ever EVER miss a deadline or blow off an assignment from my bosses now!
I had a cell phone briefly in 1999 and 2000. I didn't have another one until 2007. I still do not have a smartphone.
I do have a tablet, though: a 7-inch Samsung Galaxy II. I love it!
I'm on my second laptop. My first was in 2007. Both are Dell Inspiron's. (I still have the first, actually, and wonder what to do with it...it's slow, but it's probably serviceable for a pure writing machine.)
I started this blog in February, 2002 as an outgrowth of my posting history on Usenet newsgroups.
If I had to live someplace else, I'd likely choose Ithaca, NY. I love that city and its environs.
I formed a deep emotional attachment to the Buffalo Bills during their run of four straight Super Bowl appearances, because the first three of those years coincided with my final three years of college. I was 800 miles from Buffalo, so the Bills were my main touchstone with home.
I wilt in really hot weather.
I cannot, for the life of me, remember the name of my favorite video game in college. It involved popping bouncing balls. You pop a big ball into two smaller balls...and those, each, into two smaller balls, each...and one more level of this until they disappear. The screens got successively more difficult. I got really good at that game, to the point where I could beat the game on a single quarter. And I have not remember the name of that game since.
My love of science fiction comes from Star Wars and Star Trek. My love of fantasy started with Lloyd Alexander's Prydain Chronicles. My love of horror springs from John Bellairs's The House with a Clock in its Walls and sequels.
My mother used to punish me when I did stupid shit by giving me a book and ordering me to read it before I was allowed to even think about watching teevee again. This resulted in some of the most treasured reading of my life, and only one real dud (a book called The Fledgling).
I swear too much and am trying to cut down.
You had to know that I was going to go over a hundred anyway.
As I write this, it is raining.
As I write this, I am dreaming.
As you read this...well, I don't know. What are you doing as you read this?