Thursday, November 29, 2007

Seven random things

toothpaste for dinner

My bloggy friend Debra over at Reflecting recently tagged me. I've not been tagged for one of these in a while, so sure. I'll play.

The idea is to post seven random, "weird" (read: "not widely-known." I think) things about myself. I'm supposed to tag seven others, but I'll not call out anyone. You may participate or not as the spirit moves you.

I seem to recall having posted some of these in other contexts, so for some of you these may seem less "weird." In any case, the list appears below the fold.

1) Long story, which I'll spare you of here, but one Christmas Eve on I-10 between Junction and Sonora, Texas, my daughters' mother and I rode in the semi of a trucker who quoted for us the opening lines of the General Prologue of the Canterbury Tales. In Middle English.

2) One year during college, I worked as an "assistant" for a large-animal veterinarian. Your life is considerably less complete if you've not helped three other men struggle mightily to hold a year-old boar down and listen to him squeal while the vet is castrating him. If that whets your appetite to learn of other ways in which your life is lacking but don't yet know it, just e-mail me. But I say in all seriousness that, for the things I learned and saw that year, I would trade very few things.

3) I once qualified to appear as a contestant on Jeopardy! The reason you never saw me was that you never saw me; they always qualify more people than they actually have room for in a season. But still. I qualified, dammit.

4) During my second year living in Mexico, a tour guide in Zacatecas invited me to move there from Durango and become a docent myself. I would have if I hadn't already promised myself I would return to the States at the end of two years. Besides, I knew that if I had stayed another year, I would most likely have just stayed there, period.

5) I have an embarrassingly intense love of this song:

This is weird even to me.

6) If you are with me in a Mexican restaurant and mariachis are performing there, consider yourself warned: If I know the words to their songs, I will sing along with them. Loudly. (And pretty well, too, if I say so myself.) Complete with gritos and shouts of encouragement. The consumption of alcohol is not a prerequisite for this.

7) I have attended three readings, years apart, by Carlos Fuentes, the last time when I was at Rice. At that reading, I said to him, "I've seen you read before," and he said, "I know. I recognized you."


R. Sherman said...

Re: Item Number One. What brought that on?

Item Two. I'm surprised a vet was involved. Here, I've seen same accomplished via a more pedestrian technique. The squealing was the same though.

Finally, I'm jealous about Jeopardy.



Anonymous said...

You are my "onion" friend. Many, many layers. :)


John B. said...

Thanks to both of you for dropping by.
Randall, to fully explain #1 would require a lengthy blog post, but the trailer-version is that we were on our way to El Paso when our car broke down between Junction and Sonora; after an hour or so, the trucker pulled over and offered us a ride to the nearest truck stop (in Ozona), and when he learned I was a grad student in English, that's when the Chaucer came out. As for #2, we did this in the parking lot of the clinic; seeing as that seems pretty "pedestrian" to me, I'm having trouble envisioning what you witnessed. Hey! Maybe we can post dueling pig-castration posts!

Debra, thanks again for tagging me and for what I'm taking as a compliment.

Anonymous said...

What a wonderfully weird set of weirdnesses. I could never compete with qualifying for Jeopardy, being on a pig-castration team, and singing with mariachis. Debra was right, you are an "onion".

btw, your comment function has gone nuts...


Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
John B. said...

Winston and Debra,
Apparently, you Wordpress people and Blogger aren't talking to each other as they have in the past. I don't get it, and I wish it weren't so.

Anyway. I find it pleasing, if surprising, that I can out-weird the weirdnesses of others. So thanks, Winston.

Pam said...

These are hilarious. And impressively weird. Life is such a funny, funny thing, isn't it? Oh, and the singing in the mexican restaurant is a bit frightening - but I'd love to see (and hear) the video...

Oh, and blogger isn't speaking to us typepad folks either - on those with a google/blogger account. Shame on them.

Gwynne said...

I'd like to cast my vote in opposition to the dueling pig-castration posts. ;-)

Like the others said, this list was impressively weird.

John B. said...

I'd like to cast my vote in opposition to the dueling pig-castration posts. ;-)

Gwynne, while I'm very glad you came by and commented, I'm a bit put out with your resistance to my proposal to class up this joint and, in so doing, broaden my reader's' [sic] collective horizons.

What to do, you blogospheric gods, with this stiff-necked people?

Gwynne said...

Well, I am just one vote afterall. You do what you must do, John. ;-)

dejavaboom said...

I would relish the opportunity to sing with you and the mariachis, any time. I had the time of my life when I first discovered the singing "billy bass" on a wall in Mx...but I must confess mass quantities of alcohol were involved.

I posted my 7 things over at musementparking, FYI.