Okay, I'm late to the party, but finally getting around to the "eight things you don't know about me" meme that was going around some time earlier this month or hell, maybe even last month. I read some interesting responses about some of you, so I thought I'd put a few things out there in reply, though they are not that earth-shattering...
I am a walking warning against piercings.
At 18, I pierced my own nose, and wore the nose pin for a good few years until it got infected and yucky. Along the way, though, I developed a blue spot around the piercing site which a dermatologist thinks was a silver deposit. (?!) But for some ten years, I had people coming up to me "helpfully" telling me I had some ink on my nose, and eventually, it grew old. So I had to have a plastic surgeon cut out a piece of my nose to remove it. Let me tell you something: having four needles in your nose to numb it? May be one of the worst pains I have experienced. The surgeon said that noses and soles of feet are about the worst places to need an injection. Great. But it looks pretty okay now, so I'm pleased, but will be recounting this story to Pumpkinpie when she gets older, and suggesting that she look for places that wouldn't be disastrous, should things go wrong. Right on your face may not be that place, you know?
I am the queen of clutter.
I was thinking of this when Mama Tulip wrote about her mother's lifetime of collected things. Of things beautiful and precious that she loved to surround herself with. It's funny - my parents are the opposite, but I am a collector. From way back, I brought home rocks and shells and pretty scraps of paper. I love beautiful objects, and I look forward to being able to build in real homes for them when we start renovations in a few years, homes where they won't be just more of the random clutter of boxes and shelves stuffed full like they are now.
Though I would never claim to be outdoorsy, I love nature in an immeasurable way.
My mom always said I was some sort of golden nature child. That she would lay me under the shade of a tree, and I would watch, mesmerized, as the leaves danced and swayed while she read for long, quiet stretches. I remember lying on hillsides and eating grass and dandelion stems, their milky white sap making my fingers sticky, lifting my chin to the breeze and squeezing my eyes shut like a cat with the pleasure of it. When my mother would throw me out the back door and lock it behind me to force me out of my books, my passtime would be to lift rocks and wood, discovering the pill bugs and other creatures that lived underneath, to trap flies and pop them into tubes with cotton balls soaked in alcohol, then examine their filmy wings under my microscope. I would sit for half an hour, watching an ant or ladybug traverse all angles and surfaces of my hand, fascinated by their tiny legs struggling on and on, undaunted. I talk to squirrels, who stop to listen, feed crumbs to birds, and whistle them a good morning. Some of my favourite smells, the one I was thrilled for on my return from concrete NYC to greener Toronto, are of fresh dirt, of rain in the air, of green things growing. I love the idea of being going back to nature, becoming part of the trees and growing things around us. And I love teaching Pumpkinpie about the flowers, the trees, and the birds.
One of my second toes is longer than the third, and one is shorter.
That's all. It's just odd. My mom used to say there was some old wives' tale about how if your first toe was longer, it was a sign of royalty, which is why I noticed it in the first place, comparing them side-by-side with her longer, bonier toes.
I have a gift for gifts.
As I have often been told. Thing is, I pay attention. I pay attention to what people like, what they wear, what they have in their homes, what they buy themselves, what colours they like, what they read, what their hobbies are. When you know a few things about someone, then you see things that remind you of them. And I buy things for people whenever I see them, and stick them in the gift closet. Yes, I have a whole closet full of gifts and gift wrapping at the moment, and it means that most years, I don't have to do much in the pre-holiday rush, just tackle those few tough people, and handle cards, stockings, and wrapping. Birthdays, too, can often be covered from a drawer of cards and closet of gifts. Generally, I have had people tell me that I do really well on their presents, simply because I go by what I have noticed about them already.
I have a costume box.
My own, not Pumpkinpie's. She has her own. So what's up with my own? I love dressing up for Hallowe'en, and over the years have collected up wigs, dresses, aprons, hats, and so on, so I can whip out one of a small selection of costumes on a moment's notice, and I even have a couple for Misterpie, too.
I feel incomplete without art.
I suppose this is partly related to the love of having lovely things around me, and partly from growing up with my artistic mother. I haven't moved into a place until I have art on the walls, at least some of it. I unpack art before many other things, right after the basic kitchen and bathroom stuff and the essentials of clothing. I have a box or tube or two of art that has yet to be framed, awaiting the right spot on a wall or the money for framing properly. Much of it is from my mother's hand.
I am shy about talking to individual people of a group, but I have gotten to the point where talking to a group is easy. This seems backwards to me, but there it is.
I can only assume it's a combination of all the practice we got in library school and the many, many, many storytimes and computer training sessions and literacy workshops and whatnot that I have given in the years since. I think I got over a lot when I was picked to tell a story (not read, tell) in an auditorium in front of 250 other children's librarians. That's a tough crowd, so after that, I had one of those if I can do that, I can do this things to draw on. But god, at a party? You better come talk to me, because I cannot make myself approach other people. I'll be the one in the corner, hiding behind my beverage.
Labels: moi, the meme factory