Saturday, February 14, 2009

Twenty-five things you didn't want to know about me

Think of this as the blog equivalent of a clip show—the Facebook meme that’s sweeping the nation. Here are twenty-five things you didn’t want to know about me, in no particular order.
  1. In case you really haven’t been paying attention, I lost fifty pounds over the past few months. I look a bit different now.
  2. Sometimes when I sneeze, I sneeze so hard that both of my arms hurt for several minutes. It's not a mild pain, either; it's a sharp, prickly, distracting pain.
  3. I’ve been publishing software under the alias Green Eclipse for more than half my life now—since May 10, 1994.
  4. When I had my first and only prostate exam, I was waiting all day for someone to complain about something so I could respond “yeah, well at least you didn’t have an old man’s finger in your ass,” but that happened to be the one day in my whole life in which no one complained about anything.
  5. People with Seasonal Affective Disorder tend to become depressed during the winter. I am usually the other way around; I’m fine in the winter but become depressed in the summer. I can’t take the heat, despite growing up in a climate hotter than it is here.
  6. In middle school, I resold Caramel Apple Pops that I bought in bulk at Sam’s Club for profit. I had quite a good contraband smuggling business going—it was against the school rules for a reason that I can’t quite remember.
  7. I wanted to be a lot of things when I was young, from a writer to a teacher to an “electronics expert,” whatever that means, but I figured out pretty early on that I wanted it to involve computers.
  8. I used to often have nightmares about being caught using counterfeit money that I received as change or from a bank, not realizing that it was counterfeit. I haven’t had one in years, though.
  9. I think that my main stress coping mechanism is just avoiding stress in the first place. I’m quite good at managing that. When I actually do get stressed, I’m not sure that I do such a great job at dealing with it.
  10. I’ve never shaved with a blade. I am very clumsy, and the very idea of doing so is fairly terrifying.
  11. I didn't see an R-rated movie until I was nearly old enough to do so by myself—approximately age 16. My first was either Se7en with a group of friends from church, or Schindler’s List in history class.
  12. Out of respect, I never break the Third Commandment (You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God, for the Lord will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name). In my entire life I’ve only done it once or twice, always when quoting someone and not catching myself in time.
  13. I hate touching flowers. They creep me out.
  14. I’ve never used a sick day inappropriately.
  15. I think that people find me really trustworthy, and that makes me happy. A lot of my friends have told me a lot of surprisingly personal things, and I’ve done a really good job at keeping them secret.
  16. One summer, my family went on vacation without me, at my request. At one point while they were cruising around in the Intolerably Warm American Southwest, I stayed awake for about 72 hours straight, mostly playing Starcraft. I am sometimes annoyed that people don’t believe that I could have done that and not died. Given the number of people in Asian countries who have died from playing video games for too long, I don’t think I’ll try that again.
  17. I don’t actually pee my pants all the time. It’s just that people get water all over the sink, and sinks are always at exactly crotch level for people my height.
  18. I greatly enjoy the sensation of having an ice-cold can of Diet Coke pressed gently against my eyelids to cool them off.
  19. When I walk around my home, I often say or yell things out in funny or interesting voices. I’d like to say that I’m practicing for something, but I’m not.
  20. I don’t like making life changes in January because I don’t want people to think that I’m the sort of person who makes New Year’s resolutions.
  21. Within the past six months, I think that I’ve felt the best that I’ve ever felt in my life, and the worst that I’ve ever felt in my life.
  22. I resolved a year or two ago to stop lying altogether and always be honest. I’ve been really successful at it, and it’s made me happier. I thought that it would be harder than it was, to be honest.
  23. A few months after I started at Microsoft, after coming back from a meeting that did not go well, my officemate said “kill me” and sat down. I happened to have a half-inch-thick steel cable with me, so I put it around his neck and slowly tightened it. He did not seem amused.
  24. I find goals entirely demotivating. When I haven’t reached my goal, I feel like a failure because I’m falling short. When I’ve hit it, I feel like I can give up because I’m done. So, I try to set goals as infrequently as possible.
  25. A girl I met once at a restaurant for two friends’ anniversary once got my email address and sent me Firefly-themed Kaylee/Inara lesbian fan fiction to say hello.

2 comments:

beca said...

I tried really hard to like caramel apple suckers because everyone I knew thought they were SO GOOD. It made me look really nice when, on Valentines Day, I would sort out my loot and give them all away.

Ryan Schmidt said...

Eric F. and I copied your racket, but I think we tried undercut you, with little success... People seem to find you trustworthy, and Eric and I not so much.

There's actually a long list of things I've copied from you over a pretty short number of years, to wit: the activation codes to "Sam and Max Hit the Road", "Duke Nukem 3D" and Diablo, and some "Echo" code.

I may still actually have your "Microsoft Certification for Dummies" book somewhere... you loaned it to me when we were 12 years old and if I find it, you're going to have to autograph it for me! You moved on to "Visual Basic" and I moved on to... well... never mind.