Sunday, April 29, 2007

Thanks to Bored in Vernal, I get to pretend that I'm famous

I've always wanted to be interviewed. In fact, I used to lay in bed at night and imagine being the subject of one of Rolling Stone magazine's famous (or perhaps infamous) interviews. Yeah, even though I have no discernable musical talent. Ah, well...they interview writers too. So, when the opportunity came up on Bored in Vernal's blog, requesting requests to be interviewed, I couldn't quite help myself. So...

1) Britney Spears recently "acted out" by shaving her head. What would you do publicly to "act out?"

I have to admit, with a great deal of embarassment, that I have acted out at least once in public. In my defense, this happened nearly twenty years ago. It had to do with a broken daisywheel for a typewriter (yeah, I'm old) and an assignment due early the next morning in a class where the instructor did not accept late papers. It was after closing time for places like typewriter repair stores, and so I started calling around to the big chain office supply stores, which stay open somewhat later. I finally found one that had the particular daisywheel (for those of you who only know computers, the typeface for the typewriter I owned was mounted on a daisywheel...broken wheel meant no typing) and confirmed that they would still be open by the time I drove the thirty miles to that store. By the time I got there it was nearly nine p.m. I walked in and looked for the the thing on the shelves. They didn't have the one I wanted. So I asked one of the clerks about it. She didn't know, so I asked to talk to the manager. "Oh, she said, "we don't carry those. Never have." I explained that I had called first and that I had been assured that they did carry that particular item and that it was in stock before I drove the thirty miles to purchase it. I would have been fine if the manager hadn't laughed; I would probably have been fine even with the laughter if she had bothered to apologize. But she didn't; she just thought it was really funny. I lost it at that point; and threw a little, a big fit...right there in the store. My poor mother was so embarassed; she just walked off as if she didn't know me, and I don't blame her a bit.

But, to answer the specific question, I actually thought that Britney chose perhaps the best way a woman can possibly act out. It is dramatic, because in our culture women - especially young, famous women - just do not shave their head unless they're doing it for a role in a film or are undergoing chemotherapy. It really makes the point that "I am not happy." Yet it isn't a permanent commitment. Yeah, you'll be bald for awhile, but hair does grow back and in a few months you'll be well on your way back to those long, flowing locks that represent femininity in most Western cultures. So, if I felt the need to act out in a really dramatic way, I think I might do exactly what Britney did. Minus the drugs and the underwearless partying, of course.

2) Which of the First Ladies do you most admire, and why?

That's a difficult one, BiV. I don't actually know much about historical first ladies, so I'll have to confine my answer to the first ladies I remember. I think I have to say that Betty Ford gets the most of my admiration. While her husband was president, she was so up-front about her attitudes about her children and about the various problems she had at a time when first ladies were pretty much still expected to be seen and not heard. And she held her own even when she came in for a great deal of criticism for some of the things she said. I also need to go on record that while I didn't have much admiration at all for Nancy Reagan when she was First Lady (I'm still convinced that she drove people to drugs with that "Just Say No" campaign), I had to revise my opinion of her to an extent as I watched the quiet dignity which she maintained through the nearly interminable activities after her husband died. She showed a great deal of class at a very difficult time.

3) What is the perfect age for a woman?

This might be a weasly way of answering this one, but I think whatever age a woman is, is perfect. I don't think we "lose value", as some would have us believe we do, when we start to show outward signs of aging, or when we leave our child-bearing years (I'm getting pretty close to that one now), or when we reach the point where we might have to have some help getting around and doing things on our own. I think we are perfect just the way we are, no matter where we are in our individual life journeys.

4) What is in your purse at this moment?

Just a sec. I'm going to have to go look. Okay, there's my wallet, which pretty much holds the ususal things. A bottle of Tylenol. Hairbrush and comb. Calculator. Several receipts from various places; most of them are still from my recent trip to Southern California. Two scrunchies, one yellow and one red. Several paper condiment cups from Long John Silver's. I picked up a few more than I needed and then just threw them in the purse rather than throwing them away or leaving them to be cleaned up by the staff. A partially empty back of Luden's wild cherry throat drops. Receipt from my most recent payment for car insurance. Reservation confirmation for my motel from the trip to SoCal. Nine thirty-nine cent stamps with Ella Fitzgerald on them, still unused. Proof that I paid my car registration, because the postal service never bothered to deliver the sticker that goes on my license plate (just in case I get stopped). One random piece of yellow paper with an old shopping list on it. One unused (still wrapped in cellophane) toothpick. Shoulder strap that can attach to my wallet in case I want to carry just that rather than my whole purse. A spare feminine napkin, just in case. Earpiece and mic for my cell phone. Empty aspirin bottle (to put my mother's meds in if we are going to be away from home when its time for her to take them).

That's it. However, whenever I leave to go somewhere, my cell phone goes into the purse, along with my journal, which I bought just for the fact that it fits in my purse, and - if it fits - my current carry-around book.

5) Describe your best friend in high school. Would you still be best friends today?

My best friend in high school, Debbie, has actually been one of my best friends since we were both three years old. Additionally, her father and my father grew up together, so we are really second-generation friends. She is tall (6 feet in her stocking feet), funny, extremely talented artistically and musically, bright, a wonderful photographer, and a loving mother. Although she lives in the English Midlands now, having married an Englishman in the early 1980s, we are still in contact and I still consider her to be one of my best of the few people who know the real me and who I would not hesitate to tell anything to and who I trust completely.


Now it's your turn. If you would like to be interviewed by me (littlemissattitude) and pass this meme along, here's what you need to do:

1) Leave me a comment telling me you want to be interviewed. Either leave your e-mail address in the comment or e-mail me at ElnFrei at aol dot com with your addy.

2) I will respond by e-mailing you five questions of my choice.

3) You answer the questions in your blog.

4) When you post your answers, include this explanation in the post and offer to interview someone else.

5) You send five questions of your choice to those who ask to be interviewed.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

I think I've aged...

It has just come to my attention that my profile here claims that I'm 250 years old. LOL. And while I'll admit that I feel about that old some days, when I've been fighting with my computer at work, I haven't been around quite that long.

But it occurs to me to ask...what would you do if you found out that you would live forever, no matter what? Would you be elated? Would you try to find a way out of it? Would you suddenly start living far more dangerously than you ever would knowing that your time on earth is finite? Would being immortal be a good thing or a bad thing, in your opinion? And, would you tell anyone?

Also, what would you do if you found out that someone you know is immortal and in fact had been around for thousands of years? If someone told you that, would you believe them? Would ask them to prove it? How could they prove it to your satisfaction?

Well, I think that's enough questions for a Saturday morning. Let me know if you have any thoughts on immortality and its implications.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

The Art of the Nap

I took a nap this afternoon. It was a lovely thing, at least an hour and a half long. I felt sort of like a cat stretched out in a pool of sunlight, a slight breeze wafting in through the open window keeping me from being too warm to be comfortable.

Yeah, there were other things I could have been - should have been - doing, but it was the perfect afternoon for it. I had struggled with work, not being able to find the updated information that I needed for an article I was writing, which left me feeling stressed and frustrated. I needed to relax and a nice, late lunch hadn't done the trick. I was trying to do some reading after lunch, but I couldn't settle to it and laying there in the sun my eyes just kept shutting of their own accord. I could have gotten up and done something productive...I have a load of laundry sitting waiting to be done...but the nap seemed like the thing I needed most.

I don't usually give in and take naps. As it is, I often complain that I need to figure out a way to live without sleep, because they aren't going to shoehorn any more hours in the day. There's all that stuff to do, all those books to read, all that writing to do, after all. But I got spoiled last week. I was on vacation, out of town, and felt no guilt at all about laying down every afternoon for at least a short nap. So, now that I'm back on my regular schedule...up at 7 am, if not earlier...I find myself wanting to sleep for awhile in the afternoon.

I'm really beginning to think that the cultures who practice the siesta have the right idea. Rest a little in the middle of the day, stay up a little later at night. I get more done late, anyway, but it's difficult to function late when I have to get up so early. Maybe I'll have to schedule a nap...even if not one of epic length as today's was...more afternoons a week. After all, summer is coming. Around here, it's too hot to do anything in the middle of the afternoon anyway.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Holiday silliness...

Holidays make me do strange things sometimes. Things like actually posting the results of silly online quizes. Like this one:

You Are Jelly Beans

For you, Easter is all about fun and sweet treats. None of that Jesus dying on a cross stuff!

The scary thing about this one is that it is completely accurate. Jelly beans are, in fact, my favorite thing about Easter. Used to be chocolate Easter bunnies, but since I can't eat chocolate any more (a long story for another time) jelly beans are it, as far as I'm concerned.

And, no I don't mean all those fancy Jelly Belly beans in their plethora of exotic flavors. Give me yellow (lemon), orange, and white generic jelly beans and you can have the rest. The red ones are too spicy, non-vegetable green food in general doesn't thrill me (won't catch me eating green pancakes on St. Patrick's Day), and the black licorice ones are just nasty...although I have a friend who loves those, so when we worked together, I would just give those to her. In addition, the idea of bubblegum or popcorn flavored jelly beans...eewwww. Just, eewwwww.

As far as the other, more serious part of the result of the quiz, I really try to remain respectful of my observant, more traditional Christian brothers and sisters and their beliefs surrounding Easter. However, I have to admit that I just don't understand the whole concept behind blood sacrifice. I guess I can't grasp why God couldn't think of a less gruesome way to save his children. I've given the whole idea a lot of thought over the years, a lot, and so far I just can't make it make any sense for me. I don't mean that to sound disrespectful, honestly. It just hasn't ever made any sense to me.

Be that as it may, I hope all of you had a wonderful Easter holiday, observed in the manner which you feel is most appropriate.

And I hope it involved lots of jelly beans.

By the way, I found this on Sr. Susan Rose's Musings of Discerning Woman, which you can reach via my links.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Just a little personal aside...

Maybe it's just me. It's been a long week.

So, maybe I was just in a bad mood when I walked into the minimart this evening to use the ATM (I was on my way out to dinner and I prefer not to use cards in restaurants if I can avoid it). But this really bugged the crap out of me.

I was trying to get to the ATM, which is the far corner of the store, and as I walked past the counter a woman, not looking where she was going as she backed up, nearly stepped on me. I tried to be polite. I said, "Excuse me," and waited for her to move so I could get through. She looked around and said, in a semi-nasty tone, "Well, I didn't see you." But she did move, just enough so that I could get by her. Which was fine. Maybe she'd had a bad day, too. But, after I had moved far enough away from her so that she had to say it loudly enough that everyone in the store could hear, she said, "Maybe you should wear a bell." Slightly nastier tone that time.

Excuse me?

I held my peace. Not that I didn't think of about five other things that I could have said back, all of which would have taken me right down to her level. But I didn't say them because it would have been rude, provocation aside. I went ahead, waited for my turn at the machine, used it, and left.

What I don't understand is why some people feel that they have to be needlessly rude to people they don't even know, and who haven't done anything to them. Maybe it goes back to upbringing. Maybe we're all like those rats in experiments where they put too many rats together in too small a space and they started, after awhile, to tear each other up, and we just do it verbally sometimes instead of physically. I don't know.

I do know that it seems that, more and more, being polite seems to be considered a sign of weakness...the moral equivalent of a "Kick me" sign, in neon, on top of one's head. Whatever the causes of it, I think it's a shame.

Anyway, if you've got any answers to why this is so, drop a comment.