7 Things

January 7, 2009

I was tagged by @empirebetty to reveal “7 things you don’t know about me,” then tag 7 more folks. Here goes:

  1. I’m a sucker for the glossy sound of New Wave and synthpop. Sure I like high-brow music, such as Bach and Beethoven on the classical side, or Coltrane, Jonah Jones, and Béla Fleck in jazz. But I’m sadly smitten by “the music of my youth”: Blondie, The Cars, Talking Heads, Eurythmics, Devo, Adam Ant (and before that, Adam and the Ants), Depeche Mode, Duran Duran, The Human League, Kraftwerk and a whole bunch of other lower-brow sounds. I don’t have the musical ear or vocabulary to precisely understand or express what it is about this music, but it’s like Cheetos. I just want to eat the whole bag. And then, maybe a second one. I hear the same slick sounds carried over in more recent bands, be it U2, INXS, or Oasis, and I like them for the same reason(s). And if this weren’t a sufficiently embarrassing admission, I’m equally a sucker for surf rock. Here’s a Pandora.com station that combines these influences.
  2. I like “older women.” This won’t completely surprise those who’ve met my wife. While quite young for her age, you’d have to be pretty unobservant to not notice that she’s a few years my senior. 22 years, in fact. I think it traces back to the fact that, as a child, I spent a lot of time with much older women: my 70- to 90-something aunts, grandmothers, and great-grandmother. I related to them as “other people” rather than “old people,” which made me much more accepting of women of any age when I became interested in the opposite sex. I certainly admire the bodies, the energy, and the enthusiasm of younger women, but let’s be practical. On any kind of ongoing basis, you can have sex, what? Maybe two or three times a day? At the most, on good days. That leaves a lot of hours in which you have to interact in other ways. And so your companions / mates had better be able to make decent conversation, remain interesting, be cooperative and kind, and generally be the sort of person that you want to do things with and be with. Human beings don’t seem to be “fully baked” until about 25 years old. Until then, there’s a lot of, like, you know, immaturity. Ohmigod! There is. And, like, not enough, like, substance. You know? And so 25-on-up is the appropriate age range, with 30-something or 40-somethings seeming like “young women.” That’s enough, at least, to impart some experience, and to get over unrealistic party-always or fairy-tale thinking. Side note: When I was young, it felt like I had the whole MILF category to myself, but these days it seems a lot more men have caught on to the virtues of sadder-but-wiser girls.
  3. I never wanted children. Ever. I knew, from an early age (by 10 certainly, maybe younger) that I never wanted to have children. At the time, most adults I discussed this with tried to convince me that I was Wrong, and that my opinion would change as I grew older. I knew the opposite. They were wrong at the time, and I’m doubly certain of it now. My parents were divorced, and maybe this played into my thinking, but not in any clear or direct way. Don’t get me wrong. I do like kids. They’re so cute and adorable. When they belong to other people.
  4. I’m bad at math. I suck at basic arithmetic; it’s amazing when I can add and subtract numbers correctly, much less multiply or divide them. Yes, I have a B.A. in mathematics, and could easily have gone on. Yes, I took 5 years of calculus, up through the Complex Numbers. (Ulch!) Yes, I did graph theory, combinatorics, and abstract algebra at a graduate level. Yes, I score near the top on tests. Yes, I earned my way into a national competition on the strength of a mathematical insight. But trust me, I’m bad at math. Or put another way, I was good in the same way that many high-school or college athletes are good at their sports: Good or very good compared to the completely untalented general population—but pitted against a real professional or someone with genuine talent, you quickly realize just how pathetic they still are. I studied with a world-class mathematician, and I was just good enough to maybe polish his shoes.
  5. My internal thermostat runs at least 10 or 15 degrees hotter than most peoples’. I’m quite comfortable in 50-60 degrees Fahrenheit. I wait until it gets down to 40- or 30-something to use a light coat, and don’t get serious about warmth layers until it’s freezing or below. Most indoor environments are kept much warmer, especially in the winter. That’s not particularly comfortable for me. I start to get hot in the low 70 degrees Fahrenheit, about the same temperature most people think is just starting to be cozy, and I start to sweat about 3 degrees higher. A room that’s 78 or 82 degrees is like an oven to me. I’m forever opening the windows, rolling up my sleeves, or mopping my brow. My desk always has a small fan, and it’s usually on, even in the winter. This leads to no end of social discomfort, especially since many things I love—moving around, engaging in energetic discussion, or consuming anything alcoholic or caffeinated, for example—turn the furnace up even higher. Mommie, why is that man sweating buckets? Because he’s what the Chinese would consider the very embodiment of the Fire element, that’s why.
  6. I have interesting ancestors by the boatload. My forebears include some of the first Jews in America (Portuguese Sheppardic Jews fleeing the Inquisition in 1733), a Cherokee lass separated from the Eastern Band and brought up Baptist in the late 1800s, and a whole bunch of hard-working, Western-pioneering farmer folk from the United Kingdom, especially Scotland. Some of my cousins, descendants of those hardy Scots, their great-great-grandparents having homesteaded Oklahoma and then moved even further West, are still out there farming the edge of the Arkansas River in Colorado. Then there’s the one-legged Confederate sergeant, the exquisitely corrupt government contractor, the druggies, alcoholics, and violent rage-o-haulics, and the insane. One great-grandmother spent a goodly amount of time “at Milledgeville”—a facility started as the “Georgia Lunatic Asylum” (a.k.a. the “State Asylum for the Insane”), but that was watered down over several iterations down to the colorless “Central State Hospital” (still “Georgia’s largest facility for persons with mental illness”). Oh, did I mention the swamp-billies living on the edge of the Everglades, complete with swamp buggy in the front yard? Say what you like, but I come from interesting people.
  7. I’m hopelessly in love with any food featuring an elastic texture. Marshmallows are the paradigm example. I’ll eat marshmallows toasted, or right out of the bag, or Fluff out of the jar. I’ll eat basically anything with marshmallows on or in them. Fluffernutters are great sandwiches,[1] and Lucky Charms really are magically delicious. I even like marshmallowy things if they are objectively disgusting, such as the grotesquely orange pseudo-marshmallows called Circus Peanuts. I’m also fond of Jello—especially if it’s stiffer and springier than usual. That it’s made from the scrapings of animal carcasses? Doesn’t faze me a bit. Speaking of meat byproducts, meats often have part of the skin, ligaments, or gristle that’s quite elastic. Love it! There are also elastic noodles, such as in Pad Thai. Or spongy, elastic breads, such as Mandarin buns. Also mmmmm! Truly, anything with an elastic texture is worth a try.

I tag the following tweeps to similarly reveal 7 things we don’t yet know:

  1. @fistsoffolly DONE! Read here.
  2. @Jessabelle207 DONE! Read here.
  3. @zolora DONE! Read here
  4. @mayjah DONE! Read here
  5. @davislove DONE! Read here
  6. @viciousbleu
  7. @EntropyAS DONE! Read here

[1] Bonus info: Apparently, Fluffernutters.com is also a company that arranges hedonist/swinger vacations. No affiliation with the sandwiches. Once again, Thank you, Google!

UPDATE: TBMimsTheThird provides a nice listing of various folks’ #7things posts.


  1. But…..but….I don’t have a public blog!

  2. […] @greciangoddess [Read hers here.] 2. @joanmarie [Read hers here.] 3. @jonathaneunice [Read his here.] 4. @vmason [Read hers here.] 5. @tryte 6. @twitterknitter [Read hers here.] 7. @rexnebula [Read […]

  3. @viciousbleu Then leave your 7 things as a comment here. Or get a blog. Takes about 4 minutes at wordpress.com. If you use it just this once, so be it. Seriously, there is no excuse that isn’t _entirely_ transparent!

  4. I like your ‘fully baked’ analogy!

  5. […] hiatus. I didn’t do anything neat to tell you about, either, so it’s a good thing Johnathan tagged me for the 7 Things You Didn’t Know About Me meme! A good thing […]

  6. […] avatar, as in late middle age. I pictured someone not terribly happy or outgoing. Now I generally like older women, but I wasn’t terribly keen on the cross-following. I thought she might at some point chide […]

  7. You do come from interesting people. And the fact that you are endorsing older women – I thinks it’s great. I myself prefer to date older men.(at least 2yrs older and up, maybe 15-20yr limit?) But there is something to be said about older women. I’m glad you found yourself a good one.

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