Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Weird Like Me

One of my favorite poliblogettes recently advised me that I was "tagged". Being a little out of the loop and way out of hip, I had to surmise from her post what that meant. Apparently, it means that I have to reveal five weird things about my self and select five additional saps to do likewise. I asked my children for their suggestions, since one of the weird things about me is the inability to see myself from "the other's" POV. My daughter noted something about me of which I was not previously conscious, but when she mentioned it, I realized that she was correct. So, here goes my list and my apologies to those whom I feel compelled to tag because I'd like to know more about them:

1. I have an unusually strong sense of smell (this was my daughter's contribution).

After my daughter said this, I thought back and could racall many instances over the years when an odor I thought was strong and noticeable was entirely unrecognized by anyone else. Ironically, one instance was in my then-infant daughter's bedroom (she's now in her mid-twenties).

I was downstairs and on the other end of the house when, around ten pm, I picked up the smell of something burning. My then-wife denied there was anything of the sort in the air. Sniff sniffing my way through the house finally led me up the stairs and into her closed bedroom. Quickly, I narrowed the smell to one wall of her room, behind which there was a small crawl/storage space. I touched the wall and felt that it was warm. When I entered the crawl space to investigate, I found a wiring short and the wall board with a brown-black spot about 8 inches across. I shut the power off to the outlet and doused the wall. The next day the electrician opined that the wall likely would have ignited overnight.

What is very weird is that, despite similar stories I can recall, I never ever suspected that there was anything unusual. I do recall, however, that the ability to pick up the smell of something burning -- even behind closed doors with towels stuffed in the bottoms -- served me well in college . . . .

2. Also from my daughter -- I celebrate America's independence on July 2 and tell my family, ever year, why. Recently, I've begun telling my co-workers and, starting this year, dear reader, the same. Although she allows that it is a weird habit, she says she likes it.

3. Again, from my daughter, my reading habits. Not my serious reads -- which tend to historical biography, politics, law, and literature -- but my entertaining reads. She thinks that it is weird that I'll pick up a random Encylopedia volume, or dictionary, and just start reading at whatever page opens up. To this, I'll add something I rarely confess -- I read the fine print on all those endless offers, contests, and credit card statements that we all get -- for fun. It is a left-over from a past life as a corporate lawyer, but I do enjoy seeing how cleverly the fine print is put together to screw someone. Which leads me to the next entry --

4. In college, I had hair down to there; I've attended several score Dead concerts, Who, Kinks, Patti Smith, Stones, Neil Young, Nils Lofgren, Joe Cocker, Airplane/Starship, Alvin Lee, Allman Bros, and dozens other relix of the 60s and early 70s. In politics and social philosophy, I am reliably not corporate in outlook. Way back when, I had a working knowledge of many recreational diversions then easily available and realtively safe. All this merely to set up the weirdness of then spending two decades -- happily -- in New York City with a very large international law firm. There I toiled as a corporate lawyer for multinationals, and even a foreign power or two, and in criminal court defended wise guys and white collars against the likes of Rudy Gulliani. I concede that the combination of deadhead and corporate gunslinger is weird.

Finally,

5. I love Julia Roberts movies. I don't think they are art; I know she is a movie star and not an actress. And I know that they are derogatorily called "chick flicks". But I really do enjoy them and even own a few. I had a friend in college, a brilliant person, now an outstanding writer for a publication you know and a regular panelist on a weekly talk show. This friend's spouse is a leader in the literary world. Elvis movies are that friend's Julia flicks. I recall that conversation, from 30-odd years ago (and I do mean odd), and my inward shock and near mockery of the admission. But it was that conversation, and the respect I have for that person, which permitted me to finally admit of my cultural soft spot for Ms. Robert's mindless sugar baths.

So there you have it, mock away.

I tag

Will Divide
Gort
Blue Wren
Liam McEneaney
The Cajun Jew
Gort having been previously tagged, and none too happy about it, I hereby tag . . . .
Bernie

4 comments:

Bernie O'Hare said...

Thanks a lot.

A Big Fat Slob said...

Don't mention it.

Blue Wren said...

Challenge accepted and acted upon.

A DeadHead corporate lawyer. The very idea makes me giggle. Thanks, Slob.

I challenge YOU to my Messy Desk Contest.

http://wren-o-blue.blogspot.com/2006/07/messy-desk-contest.html

eRobin said...

You're like Lassie!