Sunday, May 4, 2008

Six Things About Meme

My friend Karen tagged me for a meme. Here are the rules:

Link the person who tagged you.
Mention the rules in your blog.
Tell about 6 unspectacular quirks of yours.
Tag 6 bloggers by linking them.
Leave a comment on each of the tagged blogger's blogs letting them know they've been tagged.

Here are six of my MANY quirks:

1. I’ve never been able to accept anything on faith. I can’t recall ever believing in Santa Claus, although I remember pretending to for quite a while. I was baptized, went to Sunday school and was confirmed, but I never believed in any of it, despite my best efforts. In junior high school, I wrote a term paper called “Psychology and the Belief in a Supreme Being” where I theorized that religion is a historical invention of the people in charge to control the rest of the people with fear of invisible entities. I’m pretty sure my seventh grade English teacher wasn’t quite sure what to do with me.

2. The sound of someone chewing or breathing loudly is so disturbing to me that when I hear it, I have to find something to focus on to block out the sound or I might even find an excuse to leave the room for a few minutes to get away from it. When I was a kid and my sister Leslie and I shared a room, the sound of her making mouth noises after she fell asleep was so aggravating to me that I would actually get up out of my twin bed, walk across to hers and punch her to wake her up and make her stop. Sorry Leslie!

3. I feel very strongly about the proper way to hang a roll of toilet paper, which is obviously where the paper spools over the top of the roll as opposed to coming from underneath. I am so obsessed with this “right” way that I routinely “fix” incorrectly installed rolls of toilet paper when I encounter them. I will do it in other people’s homes and now and then I’ll do it in a restaurant or other public bathroom.

4. I have a terrible fear of poverty and unemployment. I got my first job working in a D’Angelo’s sub shop in Rockland, MA when I was fifteen (I lied and said I was sixteen), and I have never gone a day without a job since. At times I’ve worked two jobs at once and for a few months once I had three jobs. I’ve been a bank teller, Kirby vacuum cleaner salesman, factory worker, short order cook, military member, civil servant, government contractor and technical sales person. Due to my fear of financial insecurity, I stay in jobs much longer than I should. I often wish I might have taken some time off between jobs, rather than finishing one on a Friday and starting the next one on Monday morning. In August, I’ll have been working in my current job for eight years.

5. I have a semi-pathological need for neatness and organization, but the paradox is that I am often messy and disorganized. Consequently, when everything is in its place and I have my schedule straight and my endless to-do lists all written out, I can get an enormous amount accomplished. The other 50% of the time, I am mentally scattered and feel like I can’t get anything done.

6. I believe I have an unusually strong connection with animals and spend an inordinate amount of time in staring contests with my cat and my dog. I am convinced that they know things about me that human beings don’t and I frequently imagine that they’re frustrated at their inability to speak English so they can tell me exactly what they’re thinking.

I know that a number of people have been tagged for this and some people aren’t into the memes, so this is completely voluntary – do it if you want to, or not. I tag: Patti, Ello, Charles, Lana, Shauna, and Larramie.

Next up: What I am figuring out about The Foundling Wheel or lessons learned on why you should never get over 100 pages into a WIP without a premise, or it’s all about plotting stupid, or structure -- don’t leave home without it, or pantsing is cool up until the point where you lose your way (see quirk #5 for further insight).


ChrisEldin said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog!
Is it okay if I include you on my master email list for updates on upcoming Author's Weeks?
I'll go ahead and do it, but if you want me to take your name off, I will. And when I email, it's a group BCC so everyone's privacy is protected.

By the way, I am LOVING "Possible Side Effects!" I'll have to look for the book Sellivision. Sounds hilarious!

Lisa said...

Chris, Absolutely! Please do add me and thanks for stopping here :)

Charles Gramlich said...

I'll post some weird things about myself later this week. I am close to you on a couple of these, but not the Toilet paper one.

Sustenance Scout said...

Lisa, you crack me up. I'm afraid our toilet paper rolls would drive you crazy!

Missy k said...

That's funny -- we're very similar regarding #5; I have an elaborate system of lists and schedules and reminders; when they work, I'm the most organized person you could know; when some little thing gets off track, I fall into complete chaos! Just ask my't!

Shauna Roberts said...

This unspectacular quirks meme is turning out to be just as interesting as the seven facts meme. I would not have suspected you of any of these quirks. My sister shares your quirk number 2, and when go to Ohio I drive her bonkers with my allergy noises (blowing nose, snuffling, fumbling in my pocket for a tissue, etc.)

I have an author interview scheduled for this week's post, but I'll do this meme next week.

CindyLV said...

Hi Lisa. I'm with you on the TP issue. And I married a man who insists it must hang upside down. We spend/waste and inordinate amount of time re-hanging. My S-I-L resolved the issue in her house by buying a small statue of a butler who resides next to the commode with a tray "offering" a selection of tissue.

Melissa Marsh said...

Y'know, I am not the neatest person in the world - my husband jokes that I have three offices - which means that my writing stuff often appears in about three different places in the house. But like you, when things are nice and neat and organized, I feel very accomplished and get a lot done. Why, then, do I let it get messy again? If I could figure this out, I'd be a happy gal. ;-)

Lana Gramlich said...

Although I don't mind memes, I have company down from Canada for the next 2 weeks, so I won't be able to this until she leaves, most likely.

Yogamum said...

I am with you on #1 -- I never believed in Santa Claus either!

And I would be pathologically organized but my kids and husband actively subvert my schemes!

Larramie said...

Lisa, PLEASE! You still don't believe in Santa after last July?

And, as you know, Karen already tagged me so don't get your hopes up and think that a double tag = 12 quirks. :))

Carleen Brice said...

No wonder you were freaked out by my enjoyment of listening to my husband eat popcorn!

Oh and I TOTALLY disagree about the TP thing. I have to have it coming oout from underneath.

I too have a terrible fear of poverty. Unfortunately I seem to have a bigger fear of work. :)

Vesper said...

An interesting list, Lisa.
No. 1 - could've just been me! Very interesting!
No. 2 - I cannot sleep if I hear someone else's breathing and their rhythm is different of mine.
Thanks for sharing...

debra said...

Lisa, how can you not believe in Santa when the little blue guy l-i-v-e-s in your house? I am so happy when the TP roll is replaced that I don't care which ways it hangs. I also make lists---then I can't find them.

Josephine Damian said...

I'm with Carleen on the work thing.

Lisa: I'm with you all the way on 2,3,5,& 6. Especially the toilet paper thing. I dated a guy who insisted the roll should over and said, under! We had an ongoing silent war the whole time we dated since he kept switching it to his way every time he used the john.

RE: FOUNDING WHEEL - Moonrat thought it was a good idea to post whereas I did not. I'll be doing a blog post about later today.

Billy said...

I still believe in Santa, but thank God someone else realizes that the toilet paper must spool over the top. Otherwise it breaks. (I thought I was the only one with this concern lol.)

Therese said...

I am SO ditto-ing you on 2(when I'm trying to sleep),3,4,&5--especially 3. I too correct tp rolls everywhere I go.

I haven't worked every day of my adult life (no jobs, when I was in the Philippines, then I was a SAHM) but share and am driven by that fear of financial insecurity.

Lisa said...

Blogging peeps, I am sorry for being MIA for so long. Work is killing me and I'm buried. Please forgive me and I promise I'll get back to visiting and commenting soon.

Charles, Can't wait to see what you come up with and yeah, people are either with me or agin' me on the TP!

Karen, No they wouldn't because I'd fix them ;)

Missy, I'm telling you, if I could live in complete isolation I'd be the most efficient and organized hermit...oh yeah, but I'd be a hermit.

Shauna, Actually allergy noises are OK (I am allergic to everything in the universe too). I can deal with excessive nose-blowing, no problem. It's a noisy mouth I can't handle.

Cindy, I've noticed some people are oblivious to the TP installation issue and it's a holy war with the rest of us. I've got Scott re-educated (shhhh -- don't anyone tell him I said that), but I was always pretty impressed he'd hang it at all!

Melissa, All I can figure is that paper multiplies so quickly and then my work stuff gets mixed in with household stuff and then writing stuff and it takes no time at all before all of my careful organization is out the window!

Lana, Have fun with family -- looking forward to learning about your quirks whenever you get around to it.

Yogamum, Like I said before -- if I were a hermit...

Larramie, Woohoo, 12 quirks -- that's going to be a post I can't miss! Um -- sure, I believe (see sometimes I still have to pretend).

Carleen, Exactly! Now see, if you do it the other way, it tears before you want it to. I'm telling you, give the other way a chance and you'll see. You'll see!!!

Vesper, We seem to have lots in common. You should do this one too.

Debra, I didn't say I didn't believe in the power of Blue Santa :)

JD, No kidding! See, in most things, I'm a pretty live and let live kind of person, but when it comes to TP, there IS a right and a wrong way!

Looking forward to that post. I have mixed emotions about it, but I feel like since it's a first draft and anybody who reads it can clearly see that's what it is, and since if I were to eventually revise, edit and polish the actual novel would probably not have many similarities to the first iteration, I don't worry. But I did see your most recent post and I think I know at least one angle you're coming from.

For me it's a little like a superstition. I sort of feel like if I am overprotective of it and act like I think someone will "steal" it, then I think too much of it and it really will suck. Probably not the best attitude :)

Billy, It's a very big issue to me! I am willing to leave people to their own opinions and views on nearly everything else -- but this one is non-negotiable!

Therese, OMG, I thought I was the only stealth defender of the TP!

Yes, I can wake up in a cold sweat thinking I'm suddenly penniless. I also worry, but not to the point I've ever done anything about it, about natural disasters and more than once have considered setting up a doomsday supply of water and canned food and candles, etc. in the basement. Unfortunately, I'm terrible about grocery shopping and would be constantly breaking into my emergency supplies if I did that.

Patti said...

my quirks are weird...some of yours seem absolutely normal, like #6. who doesn't have such contests with their fur-ends?

steve said...

Sometime in the 1960s there was a raging controversy in the Dear Abby (or was it Ann Landers) column about the correct way to roll toilet paper. People were endlessly fascinated with it. It finally ended with the verdict that TP should roll from the top. I've held with that view, but I'm not about to change somebody else's roll.

I used to think I had that kind of connection with animals, but I've either outgrown it, or never had it in the first place. My dog Copper likes me becuse I take him for walks, but still flinches when I try to pet him on the head. (He was probably abused by a man before we got him, and he still thinks (after 8 years) that any adult male is going to hit him. My daughter Anne has that kind of connection. Unfortunately it means that right now my wife is taking care of Anne's gecko.

Lisa said...

Patti, I suspect I'm more quirky than I know. Interesting that #6 seems absolutely normal to you. That's the one that I think only one other commenter (besides you) identified with ;)

Steve, It seems to be my only borderline weird obsession. Even as I'm reinstalling TP at a friend's house, I'm asking myself why I care how their TP is hung!

I've noticed that people who don't have kids and who like animals seem to have more of a direct connection with the animals. I suspect that people with children tend to channel that same energy in their direction. Just a theory. I do know that I tend to be an animal magnet and people are often surprised when pets who supposedly don't like strangers will come to me for attention. I think I'm better with animals than people. :)

Ello said...

He he! I am 5 and I love 6. My sister has 2 cats and a dog and for some reason they love me and are always rubbing themselves on me or jumping on me and staring at me. I don't think they think I'm human.

Great randoms. I just did one so can I pass that off for this one as I am all randomed out right now! Or I might have one of the girls do a random on themselves! he he that would be funny.

Sphinx Ink said...

Love your list. I share Nos. 3, 4, 5, and 6, perhaps on a less intense level. Shauna tagged me for the meme--my list will appear on my blog tomorrow.

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Literary Quote

It is worth mentioning, for future reference, that the creative power which bubbles so pleasantly in beginning a new book quiets down after a time, and one goes on more steadily. Doubts creep in. Then one becomes resigned. Determination not to give in, and the sense of an impending shape keep one at it more than anything.

Virginia Woolf