Tuesday, February 03, 2009

25 Things about Me and Some Other Stuff

Thanks for the prayers and good wishes. We seem to have had some kind of healing. Computer only dissolved into pixels once yesterday and I was able to get it to restart before I had to go through the whole cut off the power and wait and try over and over again to get the screen and the computer to talk to each other routine. I was afraid to do anything meaningful, though, for fear it would dissolve into mush. Spent some time researching the cost of video cards vs the cost of a new computer but am hoping maybe I won't have to buy either one, though I did see a computer for as little as $279. My friend is going to see what something comparable to what I have now would cost. If I can spend as little as $279 (or maybe less, re-manufactured), then it might be smarter than putting an expensive video card into a 6 year old computer. But hopefully I won't have to do anything.

I'm hoping my friend Nate can fix whatever the video problem is. I used Windows System tools and apparently there are "no drivers" for the video. Hmmm.

But anyway, I'm hoping that your prayers and mine have led to a cure and that I won't have to buy anything.

On another front, I was hoping that Congress would act like grown ups, but seems that's not in the cards any time soon. Or maybe they are and I've just become jaded. It may just be possible that the Senate is functioning constructively at present, culling junk out of the stimulus package... I just have some concern that what will get culled out is help for the poor and thing which are visionary.

Well my early optimism was a bit premature. So far the computer has fuzzed out three times as I tried to post this. My niece Diana tagged me with a meme at her Facebook account: 25 (25? that's an awful lot, she grumbled) random things about me - so I guess I'll see if I can manage that before everything goes wonky again. Going to try not to tell you things you already know.

1. I love to laugh.

2. I love crossword puzzles. I really miss the New York Times which I used to do in ink. Little secret about people who do the Times in ink... it's easier that way. Writing over mistakes works better than trying to erase newsprint.

3. I have written a number of children's books which remain unpublished. Maybe I'll be one of those people who becomes famous after they are dead.

4. I have an idea for improving futons which I wish I knew how to patent and market. I think it's simple but clever and would make for a much better product.

5. I used to do a really good Wicked Witch of the West imitation when my sister's kids were young.

6. Someone once read the poems of Rabindrinath Tagore to me in Bengali. It was beautiful and would have been very romantic if I had found him attractive and had not been running a high fever at the time. Still, it was pretty cool to hear Indian poetry in the music of it's native tongue.

7. I was going to be an English teacher at one point in my life. I wimped out.

8. I type 90 words a minute.

9. I was a clarinet major when I first started college. Before I was going to be an English teacher I was going to be a music teacher. Sense a pattern here?

10. I got to meet Pablo Casals and sing in a Chorale conducted by him in my sophomore year of college. I was also in the New York Choral Society briefly and sang with Peter Paul and Mary in Carnegie Hall.

11. I once worked in the Mammology Department of the Museum of Natural History. Among the things I got to do there was to number and catalog the bones of bats and rats and other small rodents from Southeast Asia. It was tiquite fascinating to be behind the scenes. The people in the tannery (yep, they had one) had a pet ferret and a bunch of creepy little bugs that cleaned bones in no time.

12. In 1978, I spent six months travelling across the US by train and bus. I spent time working in Minneapolis and Seattle. I was already somewhat agoraphobic so this was a major feat for me and a genuine adventure. Would have been much easier if I had a license and a car. But I'm still glad I did it.

13. I once worked in the advertising department of Macy's Herald Square. Awful job. I had been looking for Christmas work. While I was on line waiting to apply, I met a man who was born in the same hospital as me one day earlier... my almost twin.

14. I own a set of Peruvian Whistling Vessels. (pictured below)

15. I love playing Trivial Pursuit and Scrabble and Clue. I almost always win at Clue for some reason. It's a mystery as to why.

16. Writing random things about yourself is not that easy.

17. I never got to go to a prom. I used to feel very sorry for myself about that. Didn't have my first date until I was 20 at which time two guys I worked with asked me out. I thought they were making fun of me and said only if we all went together. So we all went together. I ended up dating one of them for a while. His name was Lou and he was from Wappingers Falls which is where my sister's children grew up years later. He was a herpitologist and had a pet snake named Speedy who used to sit on my lap. Speedy seldom moved.

18. The problem with my legs was diagnosed as "ataxia." I don't think that's really what it is, but I don't suppose it really matters in the end.

19. I love rocks.

20. For my 60th birthday, my niece Diana gave me a cool drawing/analysis that is also a ticket to the mother ship should Mother Earth begin to implode. I keep it on my bookshelf for easy access.

21. I was a vegetarain for about 5 years, but living house-bound doesn't lend it self so well to vegetarianism.... or anything else.

22. I learned to drive in my 50s and have owned two cars - a 1986 Oldsmobile named Car-Car and a 1988 Dodge Daytona called True Blue. I like driving as long as there is no traffic on the road.

23. I love the smell of roses. My grandfather, who died when I was very young, used to grown them on a tiny plot in Kew Gardens, Queens. He kept them in the refrigerator.

24. I love Afghanistani food. A friend in NYC lived across the street from an Afgan restaurant and we would eat there from time to time. It was never crowded and the family that ran it were very nice people.

25. I love New York City but I don't really miss living there... except for delivery. Delivery was very cool, especially because you could get just about any kind of food there is delivered... and just about anything else too. Delivery is an agoraphobic's friend.

That's it. Long and boring, but I'm posting it anyway. My computer dissolved into pixels about 4 more times as I was doing it. Sigh. Here's a picture of my pass to the mother ship.


Akelamalu said...

Peruvian Whistling vessels? WOW what do you do with those Raven? I'm intrigued.

Diana said...

I love rocks too!

I'm pretty sure I've beaten you at Clue once or twice. But I also know that you've beaten me quite a few times. Clue is my favorite board game. I remember playing it at Grandpa and Grandma's house.

Kim said...

Nice job! I enjoy reading these "25 things".

I like Clue, as well...but played Harry Potter Clue with my cousin's family recently and it was just awful...they changed it so much it barely resembled Clue at all! :(

gabrielle said...

#5. me too. My favorite line was “poppies will put them to sleep. Sleeep. Sleeeeep”
What was yours?

The experience of singing in a Chorale with Pablo Casals…I can only imagine!

Lou sounds interesting.

Finding Pam said...

Very interesting facts about you. I love the pass to the Mother Ship! The art work is fabulous.

I hope that your computer gets it's self together. Does that make sense?

I wanted to be a music teacher too. I played french horn and guitar,but after a college playoff game in -7 degrees, I opted for interior design.

Felisol said...

Dear Raven,
Now I have been praying for your computer again.
I thin the Lord who heals people also can send a reparation angle to help repairing your pewter.
I prayed for our old car a year ago. It still runs. Husband Gunnar has done a lot of work on it as well.
But we both know that the night in the middle of nowhere an angle came to rescue.

So interesting reading your 25 random things.
You are quite an impressive person.
Have you tried Bloomsbury for the publishing of your books?
JK Rowling had tried almost everyone else and been rejected when she came to them.
I'd love for you to be famous now!
Singing with the Peter, Paul and Mary must have been beyond imagination.
Beyond mind, at least.

I'm sitting here sneezing. Have your machine got a virus??
Hope not.
Hope everything will turn out well, really soon.
From Felisol

quilly said...

Your 25 things were most fascinating!

SnoopMurph said...

I think I learn something new about you each time I visit. I am also curious on the Peruvian Whistling vessels.

Being a music teacher can be a lot of fun, but sometimes I am ready to move on to something else. Sometimes not!

There is a kids' version of Clue that I just got for Ian. It is who ate the cookies and with what type of drink. He LOVES it.

I'll keep your computer (and you) in good, positive thoughts.

Carletta said...

You did well with these random things about yourself. I don't think I could think of that many or even half.
An English teacher? You would have made a wonderful one. I'd sure want to be in a Creative Writing class with you teaching.
You have certainly led an interesting life.
My one regret is traveling across the US. It must have been so exciting to do that.
Here's hoping and praying your computer problems get solved quickly.
Love the kitty shot - those eyes!

maryt/theteach said...

Katherine, you are one of the, no, the most interesting person I know! I'm sorry I haven't been around but I will be from now on... I love finding out about my friends in the blogosphere! :)

Raven said...

akelamalu - maybe I'll write a separate post about the Whistling Vessels. They are very cool and not getting used which is one of the more frustrating aspects of my life.

diana - I enjoyed this challenge. Clue is really such fun. I'm sure you've beaten me. I don't ALWAYS win, but I win more than my fair share of the time. My Clue story that I tell to the point of tedium is how when I was in college, I lived in a house with 5 other people and we played Clue a lot. I always won. One time I had to go to the bathroom near the end of the game. I came back and smugly announced who did it with what and where and was stunned to find I was wrong on all three counts. They had switched the cards while I was out of the room. I thought it was hysterical then and I still do.

Hi Kim - Harry Potter clue? Sounds like a silly idea... Much as I love Harry Potter, there are limits.... The kids version Linda (snoopmurph) talks about sounds sweet, though.

gabrielle - Isn't the wicked witch fun? My favorite line was "So my pretty... thought you'd get away with it, did you? You'll be sorry!"
Encountering Casals was pretty cool. Alas freshman and sophomore music students can be smug (young) idiots and most didn't appreciate that they were in the company of genius.

pam - hope you are settling into your new home. Isn't my pass to the mother ship wonderful? Leave it to Diana to come up with a really cool gift like that. She's awesome.

felosil - seems like all the prayers are being answered. Nathan the Magnificent came by and has fixed it (mostly, maybe completely)... Looks like I'll be spared buying a new one or anything like that. Sorry you are still sneezing. I have been neglectful of everyone. I had a brief go at submitting my writing but I'm not very determined. These days, from what I understand, you have to have an agent or they just cast submissions aside. Such is life.

quilly - thanks... I'm surprised that people find them interesting. I know how dull my life has actually been, I guess. Looking forward to your new project.

snoopmurph - I'll post something about the whistling vessels. They are pretty amazing. I've heard about kids Clue before and think it sounds wonderful. I was too shy (at least when I was 20) to go public with my music, I think. There's a lot more behind it, but it's a sad story. My other wonderful musical experience at Fredonia was singing Benjamin Britten's War Requiem conducted by Robert Shaw. Man, he was awesome as was the music and poetry.

Hi Carletta - I probably wound have been a good teacher but I had too many emotional problems - maybe I was too young and age would have helped to be teaching kids almost my own age (especially boys almost my own age). I wish I had known how to drive in 1978 and could have done my travels by car. With my agoraphobic tendencies, I didn't see as much as I would have liked to. But it was still a grand adventure.

mary/the teach - I can't possibly be the most interesting person you know, but I think it's really cool that you think I am. I think I'm so boring that it's way cool to have someone find me interesting... especially someone with such varied interests and talents as you.

Dianne said...

the photo is so sweet! true love

I learned to drive when I was 36! and really because Jeffrey started driving

there are some amazing stuff on your list, I agree with Mary - you are a very interesting person

Quiet Paths said...

Random is never boring!