Posted in Commentary

I’d like to thank the Academy…


My friend and recent desert escapee Alicia nominated me for a blog award, showing either her impeccable taste, or her kind-hearted and charitable partisanship. Either way, I’ll take it; I’m not proud. Thanks, Alicia! Liebster is a German word meaning dearest, beloved, or favorite. The Liebster Award is given by bloggers to other bloggers and is intended to showcase exceptional blogs. I am honored! And it allows me to take a welcome break from talking about myself on my blog to talk about myself more randomly than usual on my blog.

You’re welcome.

How It Works: 

1. Add the award icon to your blog!
2. Link to your nominator to say thank you.
3. Post 11 facts about yourself.
4. Answer the questions the tagger has set for you.
5. Create 11 questions for your nominees to answer.
6. Choose up-and-coming bloggers with less than 200 followers, go to their blog, and tell them about the award.

Eleven Facts (You Probably Don’t Already Know) About Me:

1. I was a National Merit Scholar. It was not as lucrative an honor as being a top football player, but I was recruited by Harvard, which was kind of cool.

2. I grew another inch my freshman year of college. This is, as I understand it, unusual.

3. I think 41 years of gravity have taken back about 1/2″ of that inch so far.

4. I have an excellent sense of direction, and can mentally map a new town pretty quickly. I discovered this when I used to travel for work, and didn’t get nearly as lost as I expected to. I swear I found my hotel in Akron, Ohio, purely by using the Force.

5. I’ve been blogging for over 9 years. Of all the blogs I read at the very beginning of my awareness of the blogosphere, only Ghost and myself are still blogging on the regular.

6. I have a bit of an earring habit. I have many, many pairs, and can’t quite stop myself from acquiring new ones. I like the pretty.

7. I took a year (in high school) and a semester (in college) of Russian. I like to sound words I see in Cyrillic out, even if I don’t know what they mean. I’m pleasantly surprised when they’re cognates.

8. Narcotic pain relievers have zero effect on me.

9. I e-mail musicians and authors and other interesting people whenever I feel like it, and can find their e-mail addresses. You’d be surprised at how many actually answer. I’ve discussed gear with Guster and Amelia Ray, songwriting with a member of the Vinyl Kings, general musician stuff and books with Christine Lavin, grief and poetry with Mark Doty, my favorite poet. Long before he was my guitar teacher, I sent fan mail to my guitar teacher’s band after hearing them for the first time. They both answered.  All these years later, I got each of them to pose with Flat Juliette after a show.  They’re really good guys.

10. I say “excuse me” when I bump into inanimate objects.

11. People stare at me in airports. I have no idea why.

Eleven Questions I Have to Answer: 

1. What was your favorite book as a child/teenager? I couldn’t even tell you. I read constantly, and voraciously, and I tend to assimilate what I read seamlessly enough that I can’t remember when, or where, I read it, or if I saw it in a movie, or I dreamed it…unless it was fluff I forgot as soon as I finished the book. It just melts into the rest of the knowledge base. I have favorite books I can name as an adult, probably because I read fewer of them and can keep track.

2. Aside from your parents/grandparents/etc, what adult influenced your life when you were a teenager? Gail Reeder, my 10th grade English teacher. She was like no teacher I’d had before or since. Her attitude was sassy, kind of “I don’t give a fuck” but she was a total pro and very serious about her work, but funny and human. She was the kind of teacher I wanted to be, and hope I was.

3. When you were in high school, what did you want to do/be when you grew up? I wanted to be a teacher. At first I thought music teacher. Then later it was English teacher. Then I was going to be a newspaper journalist. Good thing I didn’t do that, or I’d be unemployed now. Oh, wait…

4. Of all the “roads not taken” in your life, which one would you like to peek down, just to see what would have happened? I can’t think of a road I’ve passed up and regretted enough to wonder about later. I sometimes wonder what it would’ve been like to grow up in one place, instead of many, but that wasn’t under my control in any case.

5. If you went to college, what was your major? Would you choose the same field if you went back today? I started out as a Journalism major; I switched to teacher’s college after I failed my first Photojournalism assignment. I took 15 credits that summer to catch up in my new major, Spanish and English, secondary education. If I had it to do over again, I would’ve done something techie instead. I’d like to be a higher level geek than I am. Or I would’ve thrown caution to the wind and done something creative, like music. But I was a very practical 18-22-year-old; I didn’t want any major back then that wouldn’t bring in a steady paycheck.

6. Do you have any siblings? Daniel, my brother, 3 1/2 years younger than me. (Yes, I know that should be “younger than I,” but that’s not how the song he was named after goes.)

7. What’s the most beautiful place you’ve ever been to? I suspect the Grand Canyon wins that honor. Though I’ve enjoyed some very fine, exceedingly beautiful moments on the shores of Lake Superior that might give it a run for its money on the right day.

8. How do you indulge yourself when you need a pick-me-up? There is generally chocolate involved, often of the Ben and Jerry’s kind.

9. When was the last time someone else cooked a meal for you? Sunday; I had a busy day with band rehearsal and grocery shopping, and once I got the stuff home, Scott took over and cooked for me and our friends, bless his heart.

10. What do you wish more people knew about you? I think people so often assume my strength and stability, that it doesn’t occur to them I might ever feel otherwise. I wish they could see when I’m struggling, and reach out, because I probably won’t; I am pathologically averse to begging for attention.

11. Why did you start blogging (which may not be why you blog today)? All the cool kids were doing it. And as it turns out, I have OPINIONS. And I like writing.

12. What movie do you always have to watch when it’s on television? I am easily sucked in to just about any movie if I find it while flipping channels. But if it has to be ultra-censored to be on regular TV, I’m equally likely to turn it off and order it on Netflix.

Eleven Questions I Am Asking:

1. Who was your best friend in kindergarten and how did you meet?

2. Where is your happy place, and why that place?

3. What song will make you stay in the parked car until it’s over?

4. Do you generally have more good dreams or more nightmares?

5. What is still sitting in your refrigerator that should’ve been tossed long ago?

6. What movie have you seen the greatest number of times?

7. When did you first start working with computers? How were you introduced?

8. What was the lamest Christmas gift you ever received?

9. What gives you the purest joy you know?

10. How much do you regret ever joining Facebook?

11. The house is on fire. Your family and pets are safe on the street outside. What 3 things do you try to grab on the way out the door?

Blogs I Am Nominating:

The original rules said to pick 11 people, but I don’t read that many personal blogs anymore; as I mentioned above, a lot of the people I used to read have given up blogging. Others I enjoy have private blogs, or blog only sporadically. So these are the ones I read regularly and like and think you might, too.  They’ve long been in residence in my sidebar, but if you’ve never checked them out, g’head.  They’re good people, and good writers, too.


Tattooed Mommy


Alicia (you don’t have to tag me back again–just wanted to reciprocate)



I've been doing some form of creative writing since 9th grade, and have been a blogger since 2003. Like most bloggers, I've quit blogging multiple times. But the words always come back, asking to be written down, and they pester me if I don't. So here we are. Thanks for reading.

8 thoughts on “I’d like to thank the Academy…

  1. Ooooh, you picked some really good questions! I’m excited to do this today. Thank you for thinking of me. And now I know if I think you might be down or struggling, I should reach out. I usually suck at that, but because you’ve told me, it makes it easier:)

  2. No surprise that we were both National Merit Scholars — and I grew an inch my first year in college as well! Oh… you meant an inch taller! I was thinking of the Freshman 15.

    And I won’t repost for the tag-back, but I will tell you what the lamest Christmas present I ever received was … from my passive-aggressive sister-in-law (not the cool one) a pair of men’s boxer shorts, about size 4X, with a giant smiley-face on them, so that the man’s thang would look like a tongue sticking out when he was urinating. Actually, that wasn’t such a lame present: It was quite an effective insult.

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