Continuing to answers the questions from Ask Me Anything! August 2011 (yeah, I'm going well into September with the answers. At the rate I'm going, I'll still be answering when Ask Me Anything! February 2012 rolls around!).
Anyhoo, as always, Roger has a bunch of good queries.
Do you tend toward melancholy or depression? If so, are you aware of what triggers it? And what do you do to overcome it?
Depression? No. Not that I know of, anyway. Melancholy? Sometimes. Maybe I tend toward melancholy a bit more often than most other folks, but I'm not sure if that's the case. One thing I've learned through the years is that it's really not that easy to know what other people are feeling. It seems that every time I hear about a suicide, some close friend or family member of the person will say something to the effect of "He/she always seemed so happy."
I don't dislike melancholy, per se, but for me, I tend to get into quiet, meditative moods where I'm just thinking about all kinds of stuff. Not particularly deep thoughts, per se, but I do tend to easily get involved in my own thought-world...and one thing I've discovered about myself is that my face, left to its own devices, tends to default to an expression that looks...well, sour, or annoyed, or sad, or miserable, or any similarly negative emotion. I wish I had a nickel for every time someone asked me "Hey, what's wrong?" or "Wow, you look pissed!" when I was not feeling anything remotely like those things.
And that leads me to another thing: the expectation that people have to look happy at all times, or there's something wrong. It's like there's an expectation for people to be grinning all the time. I smile plenty, I laugh a lot, and I'm really not unhappy in general (obviously, the less I think about Republicans, the better). I just don't have a naturally happy looking face, so I have to strive for looking artificially happy. Maybe I should just paint on a clown smile every morning and be done with it!
(Not really. Clowns, for the most part, give me the willies.)
Do you still want to buy a home or has the financial nonsense made you wary?
We want to buy one. For many various reasons, we just can't seem to get our shit together quite to that degree. But I wonder if it's not just a matter of saying, "Oh, hell with it, let's just pull the trigger and get this done." Lots of folks own homes who are financially no better off than we are, and it's not like we're teetering on the brink of destitution here.
I'm not sure we'd really approach home ownership as an investment, anyway. We'd want a place to live, a place where we can grow our own fruits and vegetables, where we can plant trees and have privacy, where we can hook a surround-sound system up to the teevee and watch Star Wars and The Lord of the Rings in massive sound. (Well, maybe that last one's for me, only.)
I think we'll own a home in the next couple of years. I hope, anyway.
Would you appear on The Amazing Race? Another 'reality' show?
Probably not, but if I was to appear on a reality show, TAR would be the one, I think. It just looks like so much fun, traveling the world. I don't think I'd do well on Survivor, and with my luck, I'd manage to get on the show during Boston Rob's next appearance, and nobody would listen to my pleas to vote his ass off the very first time we go to Tribal Council. I think that Big Brother just looks stupid. And while I like to cook and make good food for my family, I am nowhere near good enough of a cook to go on either Hell's Kitchen or Master Chef. But hey, maybe I can find some kind of really nifty antique doodad to take on Pawn Stars!
I know you love your wife, and all that, but [Oh dear! -Ed.]: In your fantasy world (or before you met The Wife), what physical characteristics were you most attracted to?
Oh God, I hope she's not reading this! I've always liked red-heads, but I think every guy likes red-heads, so that's not a big one. Long hair is wonderful, and The Wife had long hair when I met her (and for a number of years after that), but she eventually cut it short (except for another fairly brief period of longer hair in 2007 or thereabouts) because of her restaurant management jobs, which had "restrained and up off the collar" restrictions. Eventually she got sick of having to spend time putting her hair up every day, so she went short. Which is just fine with me, really -- The Wife is beautiful no matter what!
As far as other physical characteristics, well...I'm not much of [God, I hate this term! -Ed.] an ass-man, for what that's worth. And I don't tend to like overly skinny women; flesh makes me happy and curves are awesome.
And a nice smile, of course. The Wife's got me covered there, too -- her smile makes me all kinds of happy.
Is there a question you won't answer, not because of your own sense of privacy, but because of someone else's?
Well, I sure had to be careful with that last one, didn't I! I suppose that there's a galaxy of such questions that I wouldn't answer, all of which deal with my family members. Basically, I'd shy away from any question that doesn't focus on me, since I can then gauge how much of myself I want to reveal (and if I decide to reveal less than I'm asked, I cover that with jokes and verbosity). So yes, I do consider others in phrasing my answers. (Luckily, this is almost never a concern here -- in all the iterations of Ask Me Anything!, I can't recall a single question that actually made me uncomfortable in the answering.)
I'd also note that there are questions that I genuinely expect to get asked every time I do this, and none of those "Hey, will this be the time that X gets asked!" questions has yet to show up!
More to come! Another post or two ought to do it. Great questions, folks!