ValGalArt has tagged me with the task of sharing six weird things about me with the world at large. Now, you would think that me being me, six things that are weird about me should just spring to mind like monkeys from a Trojan banana, but alas it's not the case. I'm having to struggle with this one. Especially after reading hers. My life hasn't been nearly as interesting. Still, I'll try.
When I was four years old we lived in Oklahoma. Being so young with nothing better to do, I decided at some point that I needed a hobby. I was still too young to build plastic models or cruise the strip looking for loose women, and stamps didn't interest me at all. However something else that was sticky did. There were these insects that appeared in the Spring or Summer that would cling to the trees, fences, houses, the slower elderly folk, etc. and then crawl out of their skins and wander off somewhere else leaving behind a shell of a bug. They might have been locusts. I don't know. I was four. I do remember thinking their skins were mighty cool looking and they were just there for the taking so I would spend my time hunting for locust skins. I learned to be real careful because they were fragile. If you just snatched them from a tree or whatever they would at the very least lose their legs if not cave in altogether. By the end of the season I must have had at least fifty skins – a few still occupied with dead bugs that didn't make it out – and I stored them in a cardboard box that I kept under my bed. Then my mom cleaned my room one day and found the box. As she tells it she saw the box, wondered what was inside, pulled it out, shook it a bit and then opened it. I'm sure there was screaming shortly after and then it was time to find a new hobby.
I wrote about this before, but I feel it counts as weird so I'm writing about it again. I came to the conclusion when I was five that school was for suckers. My mom was working and I was staying with a babysitter who had a dog that bit through my ear... but that's not the point. The point is this sitter allowed me to walk alone to kindergarden after the first couple weeks. She only lived a few blocks away from the school and it was still the early 70s. For whatever reason I decided I'd had enough of school and would be better off spending my time playing in a nearby drainage ditch than allowing myself to be educated. It was an awesome drainage ditch. The school playground had nothing on it. There were all kinds of concrete blocks to climb around on, sand to play in, and I could hear the school bell from where I was so I would know when to head back to the sitter's house. It was a wonderful three days that ended with my mom storming my over the blocks and sand, dressed in her business clothes and yelling bloody murder. Who knew the school would miss me? They had all those other kids who certainly were still attending and...ohmygod!hereshecomes! RUN!
After those two, this is probably a bit boring, but I have a freckle right in the middle of my lower lip. And a small mole centered right under my belly button. And another freckle that I won't talk about other than to say it's down the middle of me too. Also I made the discovery, after they shaved my head at Basic Training, that there was a circular spot about half the size of a dime on my forehead that didn't grow any hair except for one strand right in the middle. The spot has since vanished due to a receding hairline, so you'll have to take my word on it. And on that other freckle. And so far I have never broken a bone that I know of, although I have cut my eyelid open, impaled my knee on a nail in a fence I was climbing and cut the tip of my thumb off at work.
I didn't have any interest in the Super Bowl this year. Or last year. Or any year with the exception of when the Broncos have played, and then it was more of a matter of state pride than a desire to watch football. Or any other televised sport. I'm not a "sports" guy. I can enjoy watching sports, but pretty much only when there isn't something else I'd rather be doing. Make that "some sports." I never enjoy watching baseball or basketball. Or soccer. Or golf. And on the rare occasion when I've bowled, I was playing a game and not participating in a sport. Bowling against me is sporting almost as much as putting a "kick me!" sign on a blind paraplegic's wheeled cart. If I break 90 it's a woo-hoo moment. I can't just watch bowling. I'm totally lacking whatever gene it is that most men and a surprising number of women seem to have that drives them to watch sports. I feel that professional athletes are horribly, grossly overpaid for what they do. I feel that any athlete that makes over $1Meeeeelion dollars in a year should donate the excess to the public school districts they attended while growing up, rather than spend it on mansions, cars, jewelry, drugs, guns and hookers. But hey, that's me.
This one is Heather's suggestion. She says I'm weird because I'm not ticklish. When I was a kid I was horribly ticklish. If you approached me and just made your fingers do the tickle gesture I would roll up into a ball and giggle uncontrollably. That's faded over the years to the point where about the only way I can be tickled is if I'm not expecting it and then only for about a second or two. In a way it's like nails on a chalkboard. That was a noise that I couldn't stand as a child. Until... One day in 5th or 6th grade I happened to have one of those plastic balls that vending machine toys come in and the teacher had left the room for some reason. All of the kids were talking or tossing things back and forth and I got the idea that my contribution to the chaos would be to take the clear hard half of that ball and scrape it down the length of the chalkboard. You should have heard it. EVERYONE stopped talking. And the odd thing was even though I expected to cringe as well it was as if seeing how everyone else reacted to the noise cured me of being bothered by it. So I did it again with the same results. The power was mine! It got to the point where it became a weapon I would use against kids who annoyed me. One kid thought I was pretty tough with my half-a-plastic egg thingie, so he dared me to use only my fingernails figuring that would topple me from my throne as "that kid who makes the chalkboard scream all the damned time." Hah! Instead I learned that using my nails didn't bother me either. It did at first, but I powered through and took all five fingers from as high as I could reach on the board down to the chalk tray. He may have been crying when I finished. I don't really remember.
And, finally, the last weird thing about me – there's nothing else so don't bother looking or pointing anything out – is that usually, if I find a spider in my house I don't kill it. I catch it and release it outside a good distance from the house. "A good distance" usually translates to "as far as it'll fly from my back door" depending on if I have my shoes on. It also depends on the type of spider, of course. If I don't recognize what type it is, or I do and it's poisonous, it dies. Otherwise it's catch and release. Why? I don't know. I'll kill a fly and I've gassed ants by the dozens, but spiders usually get treated better. Except for one that Jordyn found during one of our blizzards a few weeks ago. It was a wolf spider and I caught it in a cup as usual, but then I took it to the back door and looked out at the snow. Jordyn was with me. She expressed concern that it was too cold for it to be tossed outside. But what could I do? I couldn't keep it. So I opened the door and tossed it out onto the snow on the steps while assuring her that it would be fine. It landed, took maybe one step and then curled up. Oops. She said. "Are you sure he'll be okay? He looks dead." Fortunately I was able to fall back on my Monty Python training and I said, "No. No. He's not dead. He's just resting." Luckily she hasn't seen the dead parrot sketch yet. And I don't know, perhaps it was just reacting to the cold by hibernating after a fashion and later it would have been fine. If another five inches of snow hadn't fallen on top of it.
There you go. I'm supposed to tag 6 other people with this, however I'm not sure if I even have six regular readers anymore. So I'll just suggest a few people and if you see this post and want to do it, great. If not that's fine too.
And here are the "rules":
"Each person that gets tagged needs to write a blog post of their own 6 weird things as well as clearly stating this rule. After you state your 6 weird things, you need to choose 6 people to be tagged and list their names. Don't forget to leave a comment that says "you're tagged" in their comments and tell them to read your blog for info as to what it means."