Saturday, July 23, 2005

"I'll tell you no lies"

This seems to have just taken over my life, and so I'm posting it this weekend. After the angst of the previous post, I have left everything on that I was angsting over. After reading Swiss Toni's encouragement & Flash's inspiring words (in response to R on his blog), I decided to go ahead.

That said, this is the first time I have ever dumped this much of myself on anyone at one time. That's probably the most overwhelming thing of it.

Good, then, have at it...which is the lie? Oh, and you might want to get a refreshment or take a bathroom break before sitting down to this one.

1.I was born April 6, 1970 in Minneapolis, MN.
2.My father thinks my conception was an “accident.” My mother tells me I was planned.
3.I have one older sister (henceforth known as Sister) – we love each other cautiously.
4.I was baptized (and later confirmed) at Bethlehem Lutheran Church.
5.My godfather was from Mexico where he had trained to be an acrobat and clown. He owned a small circus.
6.Both my maternal grandparents were deaf. I learned the English Sign alphabet about the same time I could talk.
7.My paternal grandmother committed suicide when I was 4. I remember that when they told me she had died, I didn’t feel sad but I thought I should, so I pretended to cry.
8.When I was 6, I was officially registered with the CB handle “Barbie Doll.”
9.I hated playing team sports…despite that I played soccer and basketball in grade school intramural leagues.
10.The grade school and middle schools I attended were both named after women (Sister Kenny and Susan B. Anthony).
11.The first computer I ever learned to use was a teletype machine. The second was an Apple – both were in grade school.
12.I thought “War Games” was the coolest movie ever made when I saw it.
13.I was initially thought to be “slow” because I was quiet. I was sent to a class once a week to work on motor skills and coordination (never quite figured out why).
14.When I was 8, my babysitter took me to an evening Baptist bible camp where I accepted Jesus as my personal savior.
15.When my mother found out, she never let me go back to the camp. I had to go watch Sister’s soccer match instead.
16.I sang in my church youth choir for 10 years. We performed “Joseph & His Technicolor Dream Coat.” I wore a bathrobe and sang in the chorus.
17.When I decided what instrument to play in grade school, I chose the flute because it was the lightest. I secretly wanted to play the drums – but at the time it wasn’t okay for girls to do that, so I didn’t.
18.Sister introduced me to my earliest musical influences – Prince, Queen & Adam Ant.
19.The first time I saw or heard Adam Ant was on Solid Gold when I was 12. He performed Stand & Deliver.
20.The first album I ever owned, independent of Sister, was Pink Floyd’s The Wall.
21.The pets in my childhood were mostly cats: Missy, Baby and Big Boy. But we adopted an Australian Shepard named Sherry, and she was my pet.
22.The single most traumatic event of my young life was my mother’s heart attack when I was 12.
23.The second was her open-heart surgery, a year later.
24.I didn’t have any close friends at school, until I met a girl named Samsakoun in 3rd grade. She didn’t speak any English, and I didn’t speak any Laotian.
25.When I was in the 6th grade, I “officiated” at 2 “weddings” at school. I got in trouble for it.
26.I have, as an adult, officiated at 2 weddings.
27.Our family trips often were trips up north to a lake cabin to spend the week fishing. I know how to bait a hook and de-hook a fish. I have never cleaned a fish.
28.I read my first romance novel at 12. It was titled The Bride of the MacHugh. I read it over and over until it fell apart and my mother threw one half of it away.
29.I can read a book in about 6 hours, if I’m really interested in the book and have the time.
30.When I was 12, I helped Sister steal a bottle of vodka from a neighbor’s house. We then proceeded to get drunk during a neighborhood block party.
31.I smoked my first full cigarette at 12.
32.I got my ears pierced when I was 12. I let the holes close in high school and have never had them re-pierced. I have never had any other piercings.
33.At 13, I got my first migraine headache. I was in English class. There were flashing lights, then I couldn’t hear anything, then the pain. My mother couldn’t come to school to pick me up because she’d just gotten out of the hospital and couldn’t drive. I had to walk home.
34.Also at 13, I had my first boyfriend, Bruce. We never kissed. But he did kiss my friend. I kept my friend and dumped Bruce.
35.I smoked pot (courtesy of Sister) for the first time at 13. We made our pipe out of an empty roll of toilet paper, the foil from a gum wrapper, and some duct tape.
36.I traveled outside the U.S. the first time at 13. I went to Quebec Province, Canada on a French trip. My French name was Jasmine.
37.I read the Lord of the Rings trilogy when I was 14.
38.The most valuable skill I learned in middle school was to type. We learned on manual typewriters.
39.At 14, a girl in one of my classes started “borrowing” money from me. When I refused to give her more, she threatened that her friends and she would kick my ass if I didn’t give her money. This went on for about 6 months until her family started asking where she got the money. I got hauled into the Principal’s office and accused of buying drugs from her. I confessed what was going on and had to write out an official statement.
40.I’ve never told that story to anyone since…I don’t think anyone ever told my parents.
41.I was in Drama Club in high school. I acted in one play: “What Where” by Samuel Beckett.
42.My first kiss was at 15 with “Eyes.”
43.I owned a whip in high school. I never used it.
44.I took Japanese in high school. I love the language.
45.My favorite classes in high school were history. I learned more about writing in those classes than I ever did in an English class.
46.In biology class, I learned about the HIV virus and AIDS. When we received the Surgeon General’s mailing telling parents to explain AIDS to their children, I explained the virus to my parents.
47.I was the copy editor on my high school newspaper and wrote opinion articles. No one ever read the paper.
48.My first job was as a “greeter” at a car dealership when I was 16. I was sexually harassed by 2 different men who worked there.
49.I got my driver’s license at 16. When I still had my permit, I got in my first accident. I was driving on the freeway at night in the middle of the winter. We hit a patch of black ice. The car did a 360 and slid into the ditch. No one was hurt and only the grill of the car was damaged.
50.The first concert I went to was John Cougar Mellancamp.
51.I’ve walked out of only one concert: Sheryll Crow at the 9:30 Club in DC. Chelsea Clinton was at the same concert. She stayed.
52.I also attended an Indigo Girls concert with Chelsea Clinton. In total, I’ve seen 4 Indigo Girls concerts (and one Amy Ray solo with the Butchies). I don’t know how many Chelsea went to.
53.I walked out of Pulp Fiction.
54.I went to the University of MN where I got a B.A. in History (concentration in Tudor/Stuart England). But my senior thesis was about the Dakota Conflict of 1862 (AKA the Sioux Uprising of 1862). You can ask for a copy if you want. :)
55.I am the first person in my family to get a college degree.
56.My first college boyfriend was British. His name was Stu and he was from Kent. He and the other “Brits” (Phil, Ralph & Pete) were on exchange from their university (I can’t remember which one). They would illegally buy us beer at the local pub. I haven’t talked to him in over a decade.
57.My worst summer job was as a nursing assistant at a Nursing Home. My best summer job was as a camp counselor in the UP of Michigan.
58.While at the camp, I visited Northern Michigan’s Men’s Penitentiary, with some other counselors and the head of the camp who was a pastor and ran a support group for some of the prisoners. It’s the only time I’ve been in a prison.
59.In college, I decided that I would go to seminary to become a Lutheran pastor.
60.My college roommate was a manager for the U of Minnesota’s Women’s Basketball team. She played for them, briefly, one season. We’re still good friends.
61.I spent 2 years after college in the Lutheran Volunteer Corps (LVC, a sort of domestic Peace Corps). I’m still involved with support activities for volunteers here in the Bay Area.
62.I really learned to cook in LVC. I am a good cook, but mostly of vegetarian foods.
63.During the 2 years in LVC, I worked with homeless women in DC and in an AIDS hospice in Baltimore, MD.
64.At different times, in Baltimore and DC, I was solicited for sex (i.e. someone thought I was a prostitute).
65.I became a pagan during my second year in LVC.
66.I met the artist who created Smokey the Bear for the US Forest Service. He was in his 80s and still doing paintings for them.
67.The first person that I came out to was Writing in AK. It took me at least a half an hour to say the words.
68.3 of the houses I’ve lived in have been broken into. The first, I was sleeping in at the time (so was Writing in AK).
69.I had my first kiss with a woman at 25. I hadn’t realized we were on a date until then.
70.I’ve sat on Einstein’s lap – the statue, of course. It’s in front of the National Academy of Sciences building in DC.
71.2 years later, I started working at the National Academy of Sciences.
72.I’ve only been in love once…I’ve already told this story.
73.I came out to my parents as a lesbian because I thought it would be easier for them to understand than my being bi. I’ve regretted not telling them the truth.
74.I quit smoking in 1996. I’d start again in a heartbeat if I knew it wouldn’t affect my health.
75.I fell in love with poetry in DC and started writing it there. I would attend poetry readings at the Library of Congress…and get free wine and cheese (Bonus!). I read my poetry aloud for the first time at an open mike in DC.
76.I got to see and meet my favorite science fiction author, Octavia Butler. She told a story about taking the Greyhound bus across country…when I met her I told her that I was considering something similar to move out to California. She signed my book with the following inscription: “Don’t ride the Dog!”
77.I wrote my first short story in DC and sent it out for publishing. It’s never been published, and I have the requisite number of rejection letters.
78.I write articles for a spirituality journal, SEEK, that a couple of my good friends in MN publish. I’ve been writing for them for about 4 or 5 years.
79.I got my first tattoo in Maryland in 1998. It’s a tree and a crescent moon on my right shoulder.
80.I never thought I was a logical person, but that was the highest score I got on my GRE (don’t ask me what the score was…I didn’t care to remember).
81.I took the Amtrak train across country when I moved to California. All of the really good scenery we passed through at night.
82.My Master’s degree is in Social Welfare is from the University of California – Berkeley.
83.That’s where I met HippyChick, Executive Director, and P’tit Loup.
84.I worked as an HIV test counselor for the City of Berkeley Public Health Department.
85.I went to Scotland for the first time after graduate school. I used what was left over of my student loans to pay for the trip. I went by myself. It’s the first time I’d traveled overseas.
86.I had my first whiskey at the distillery in Oban.
87.Also in Oban, I had drinks with a former RAF officer who had been stationed there during WWII. He shared stories with me and told me how he and his wife had met there. It is my favorite part of that trip.
88.I am within 6 degrees of Kevin Bacon…My father’s cousin (who I met at a family reunion several years ago) is Kirsten Warren. She was in a television show with Beau Bridges who was in the Fabulous Baker Boys with Michelle Pfiefer who was in Wolf with Jack Nicholson, who was in A Few Good Men with Kevin Bacon. I could maybe get closer than that if I looked into it…
89.My step-uncle (my step-grandmother’s son) is a conservative Christian representative for the South Dakota state legislature. He plans to run for the House of Representatives. (ACK!)
90.My cousin was voted “Miss Congeniality” in the Miss Alaska USA pageant 2 years ago. She was 2nd runner up the same year.
91.I love dogs to distraction. I have had to train myself to speak to the owners of the dogs I meet on the street. I cannot own a dog because my rental (and my time) does not permit.
92.The song “Doorbell” by the White Stripes just makes me happy (and glad I decided to buy a ticket to their concert).
93.According to the Myers-Briggs Personality Inventory, I am borderline introvert/extrovert. This seems to mean that I like to go out to parties, but not host them…because when I’m done being an extrovert, I want to leave the party. (My full personality profile, if anyone is interested, is I/ENFP.)
94.I went to Scotland a second time just 2 days after the invasion of Iraq started. There were protests in Edinburgh the day I arrived. I didn’t get to see or participate in them.
95.Despite my sometimes erratic emotional states about work and my lack of a love life, I am happy with the life that I have.
96.I love being a therapist. I only like being a social worker.
97.I have never been in a long-term relationship, and I have never had sex with another person - hence, the “spinster” designation (although I’m pretty sure I’d keep the moniker at this point anyway). This makes me feel like an alien sometimes.
98.I have been to Disney World, but not Disney Land.
99.Despite the fact that I write poetry, fiction, essays, and now paint, I don’t really think of myself as creative.
100.I am horribly messy and unorganized. I wouldn’t be organized at all except that my disorganization would cause other people to be disappointed or put out.


Flash said...

Spins, pardon me for I am drunk.
However I feel that though I don't actually believe it, I'm gonna go for 97.

Othweer than that, gtreat blist spins! love ya

Anonymous said...

Hmmm, I'm having a hard time figuring out which one is the lie...I'll get back to you with my guesses. It was very cool learning new things about you and thank you for sharing them. BTW I am in love with your hedgehog.
Much love,

Aravis said...

I have no idea which is the lie, but I really enjoyed learning more about you. We have a lot in common :0)

If you would like to be a couple of degrees closer to Kevin Bacon, feel free to use me. Bacon and his wife Kyra often shop in my husband's store, making me one (two?) degree(s) from Kevin Bacon. And you know me here. *G*

Flash said...

Just re-read the whole list because although I claerly did, I have no recollection of reading it last night. Doh!

LavaLady said...

Wow, this is a *wonderful* list. You are a cool and interesting woman (but we already knew that).

And You met Octavia Butler? That's the most personal story I've ever heard about her.

I can't figure out what the lie is.

Wait, is it "Don't Ride the Dog?" No, probably not.

SwissToni said...

You see, that wasn't so hard was it? It's a really good list, and I feel I know you a lot better for reading it. The way I look at it, this kind of list, done honestly (at least 99% honestly) helps your readers to know you a bit better and brings us all a bit closer together. Shall we have a group hug now?

I have no idea about the lie, mind you. It can't be 92 though - me too!

(and Aravis - cool KB story!)


B1RDIE Num Num said...

minneapolis - nice place. stayed there for a month in 2001.

prince fan too, so was a bit fun.

Lord Bargain said...

i am going for #32. I have absolutely no idea why.

and (whoops excitedly) we're all within a couple of degrees of Kevin Bacon! That means we can get to almost anyone in Hollywood in three steps.

anyone think I am too excited by this?

Mr_Mystic said...

About number 2 you're not the only one with parents that think like that. and the funny thing is they can both be right

spinsterwitch said...

Mystic - I am pretty convinced that it is exactly mother planned it and my father has never been told.

Anonymous said...

I agree with Flash. Love your list!