Thursday, August 25, 2011

I'm Sweet and Versatile ... and Full of Random Facts ;-)

I love receiving blog awards.  I really do.

I'm not always great about passing them along, mostly because it's so hard to choose from so many deserving blogs, but this one has the added bonus of allowing me to explore random facts about myself (which is something I enjoy doing, for some reason or another), plus Richard at Writing and Living by Richard P. Hughes is such a cool person that I just can't not go for it.  (Yes, I know that last sentence is an English teacher's nightmare ... heeheehee).

Plus, the timing is right on this once since tomorrow is my first day back at work and I never sleep the night before school starts up again, so this is as good a time as any to occupy my time (and better than reading this horrible chick lit book I'm in the midst of, which is horribly lame and predictable but I still want to know what happens, or watching NCIS reruns).

Also, there's the added privilege of this being a "two for one" blog award event ...

According to Richard, I'm deserving of these two titles:
And he also, in his wonderful post awarding these two very complimentary honors, referred to me as a survivor ... which is something I really needed to hear.

So, the deal is that I share seven random facts about myself then pass this dual award on to five deserving bloggers.

Seven Random Facts About Me
1.  I get skeeved out by really weird things.
Like everyone, I have some odd fears (snakes, thunderstorms, airplanes, feet), but every once in awhile I'll get completely freaked out for odd random reasons.

A few weeks ago, my dog Sonja's invisible fence collar stopped working, so I had to walk her on a leash.  I happened to be in the middle of reading 'Salem's Lot by Stephen King, which is about vampires.  I've read the book probably twenty times and it's never once scared me, but while I was out there in the dark by myself, I got totally freaked.

Then tonight, when I got home, I was walking up the brick path to my house and a toad hopped out in front of me.  Now, I'm not scared of toads at all, but the suddenness (and the fact that I almost stepped on the poor thing), completely threw me for a loop.

2. I am an excellent teacher and 100% comfortable talking to classes of 25-30 kids, but I stutter and sound like a rambling idiot when I try to speak in front of adults.
I hear this is a fairly common problem, actually, but it still bothers me.

Most interesting, though?  How my students react after an adult has come into my classroom.

"Why were you stuttering?  Are you afraid of him?  No offense, but you sounded like a moron.  You turned magenta when you said the word 'balls', and we weren't even going to laugh until you started to."

It does lead to some good discussions on how teachers are human, too, that we have weaknesses and fears and stressors and so on.

3. I have become something of a Tweetaholic.
I started using Twitter in earnest as a writing tool, actually.

If you read my blog with any regularity (and if you're at this point in my "list" of seven random facts), you'll note that I have a tendency to go on.  And on.  And on.

I have never been a concise writer, despite the many accolades I've received, and I realized this summer while rereading my finished novel that this little issue of mine might be part of why I'm still unpublished.

So Twitter, which holds me back with a character count limit, has forced me to just spit it out.  Simply.  It's been invaluable, all joking aside.

And that simple, tell-it-like-it-is mentality has allowed me to share and explore my pathetic short story repertoire and recognize this as an area in need of work.

4. I can't cook.
I don't know if I've ever mentioned this on here, but I cannot cook.  I've completely ruined macaroni and cheese out of the box, set oatmeal on fire in the microwave, and destroyed a pan boiling water ... and those are the ones I'll admit to publicly.

I have many other skills (I can do a split, tie a cherry stem in a knot with my tongue, write about any topic, and so on), but it's very interesting to me that a skill that pretty much any fifth or sixth grader can do is beyond me.

5. Motherhood is my greatest adventure.
My kids crack me up.  In fact, sometimes I wonder how I ever laughed before my daughters were born.

I am incredibly proud of both Addie and Belle, and I would not change either one of them for anything.  They are beautiful, brilliant girls with their own thoughts and ideas; they are polite and respectful (well, at least in public); and, just to emphasize the point, they are freaking hilarious.

If you are my friend on Facebook, you know ...

I also have to note that becoming an aunt to my two nephews is also an unspeakable, enjoyable treat.

6. Sometimes I find it hard to solve a problem, then a very obvious answer will appear as if from a bolt of lightning.
*  I couldn't figure out how to charge my old iPod Nano (which, although it's been replaced by an iPod Touch, still contains 3,000 of my favorite songs that I can't access on an account which I paid for ... it's kind of a long story).  I'd been using a speaker dock as a charger, but I accidentally dropped it, and it's for some reason stopped charging.

It finally occurred to me that I could just plug it into my computer.  Success!

*  The mouse on my work computer sucks balls (actually, it still has a ball, which is the majority of the problem).  I sat there for an hour fighting with the stupid thing, then it occurred to me to put in a new mouse ball.

*  I can't think of any more examples off the top of my head, but I guess the gist is that I have a tendency to miss the obvious, then feel pretty cool because I figured it out ... before realizing that it wasn't exactly a difficult problem to solve.


7. I am so lonely sometimes.
Following the irreparable marriage dissolving into divorce, I enjoyed being single for a long time.  I really did.  I hadn't had random hook-ups like that since college, and it was pretty good for my ego.

After a really traumatic incident last spring which I will probably never write about on this blog since I can count on the fingers of one hand the people I have told and that it's something that hit me harder and more viscerally than rape, divorce, or anything else, I realized that the problem was bigger than I'd thought.

I am a kind person that loves to help other people.

I'm told that I'm smart and funny and have a great personality and so on.  I don't like myself enough to come up with a list of my own adjectives, but those are the ones I hear a lot.

I have the capacity to be pretty.  When I'm in gym-going mode and lay off the Barq's Root Beer and Milky Ways (and Big Macs, who the heck am I trying to kid?), I can look pretty good for my age.

(well, at least not totally disgusting ... lol)

I have a good, solid job and many enjoyable hobbies.

I am hygienic.

And yet men either want one thing from me, or they want to be friends.  I can't seem to find a situation where those two expectations are not mutually exclusive, and it's very frustrating, very daunting.    

It makes me wonder what the heck is wrong with me, why the occasional Friday night hook-ups (or Monday night hook-ups, as the most recent case may have been) are the only way to salve my damaged ego.

And yet I would give a great deal to be able to have "a real boyfriend", which sounds pretty ludicrous when you're 34 years old.

But it's true.  I get so depressed watching couples everywhere, hearing love songs, observing body language in a restaurant.

I know that patience is a virtue, but I'm not good with patience.  If anyone knows any nice single men in the New Hampshire/Massachusetts/Maine area, give them my e-mail ;-)

Okay, pity party over ... time to share the love I feel for five sweet, versatile bloggers that I enjoy ... and bear in mind that "sweet" and "versatile" can be taken a number of ways ;-)

1.  Half Past Kissin' Time

2.  Anything But Theist

3.  Just Another Blog

4.  Peaceful Reader

5.  The Frisky Virgin (who, I should note, also gave me an award ... and I'm working on that post :-))

I hope you check out these five amazing places in the blogosphere.  You will not regret it :-)