Monday, June 30, 2008
1. What do you add to your coffee? Non-dairy creamer (I’m lactose-intolerant) and a small amount of sugar (that I’m working to wean myself away from).
2. What are you reading now? I’m finishing The Architect of Desire by Suzannah Lessard, and beginning The Ornament of the World: How Muslims, Jews and Christians Created a Culture of Tolerance in Medieval Spain by Maria Rosa Menocal.
3. Do you own a gun? No, and would never do so.
4. Are you registered to vote? DO you vote? Yes and yes—always in every election that comes along, local or national.
5. Do you get nervous before doctor appointments? No. I was a bit nervous before getting a sigmoid colonoscopy, but not before any regular doctor or dentist visit.
6. What do you think of hot dogs? I usually avoid them—there are many, many better things to eat if I’m willing to let down my guard a bit against fat and empty calories.
7. Favorite Christmas Song? I don’t care for most Christmas music and have come to really hate the The LIttle Drummer Boy. The Ukrainian Carol of the Bells is one I do like very much.
8. What do you prefer to drink in the morning? Orange Juice to begin, tea to finish, Earl Gray being a particular favorite.
9. Can you do push ups? Yes!
10. What was the name of your first boyfriend/girlfriend? Depends on how you define boyfriend. Probably a boy named Donald in high school. He didn’t know he was my boyfriend, but he sure was mine.
11. What's your favorite piece of jewelry? A flat-braided steel Turk’s Head wrist cuff.
12. Favorite hobby? It’s between gardening and giving dinner parties.
13. Do you work with people who idolize you? I’m not looking for idolization but for productive collaboration. I do think the people I work with, and have worked with in the past respect me, and that means an enormous amount to me.
14. Do you have ADD? I suspect I may have a very mild case.
15. What's one trait that you hate about yourself? My tendency to seek out baked goods at moments of stress. The other thing that I do when stressed is begin to clean everything in sight. It’s a productive response that I refer to as getting in touch with my Inner Jewish Mother.
16. Middle name? Alexander. It’s for my paternal grandfather Alessandro and I’ve often been tempted to sign myself William Alessandro instead of William A. or William Alexander.
17. Name 3 thoughts at this exact moment. 1) I have a review deadline tomorrow for a book on Richard Wagner 2) I need to ask Fritz to buzz my hair some time this week 3) I have to remember that tomorrow is garbage pick-up day.
18. Name 3 things you bought yesterday. 1) Five antique cast iron shelf brackets 2) A large covered plastic storage tub 3) Four fresh lemons to preserve in brine with bay leaves and a cinnamon stick for use in cooking Moroccan tagine.
19. Name 3 beverages you regularly drink. 1) French roast coffee 2) Pinot Grigio 3) Orange juice.
20. Current worry right now? That January 20, 2009 won’t get here in time to keep Bozo from completely destroying this country.
21. What side do you dress to? I don't dress consciously to either side but it always settles to the right--the opposite of my political orientation, interestingly.
22. Favorite place to be? Right now, in this magical new house with Fritz. Otherwise, southern Spain or Europe in general.
23. How did you bring in the New Year? With a dozen or so gay guys at our four-day house party.
24. Where would you like to go? Barcelona; northern Italy; New Zealand’s South Island; Samarkand, ancient city and Tamerlane’s capital along the legendary Silk Road.
25. Name three people who will complete this. Three of my readers, I hope, and I’d be happy if they’d let me know if they do.
26. Whose answers do you want to read the most? RG (dulce y peligroso), because he has a wonderfully antic and unpredictable sense of humor; Ted (The Neighbors Will Hear) for roughly the same reason; Nicky Cooper because anything Nicky writes is always worth reading.
27. What color shirt are you wearing? A multi-colored rayon summer shirt that’s one of my [many] thrift shop purchases.
28. Do you like sleeping on satin sheets?. Not especially—flannel sheets are my favorite, summer and winter.
29. Can you whistle? Yes but not well.
30. Favorite color(s)? Several shades of orange (a very undervalued color), lapis blue, sage green.
31. Could you be a pirate? Not my style. I would, however, consider being abducted and ravished by one . . .
32. What songs do you sing in the shower? Now that I’m a New Hampshire resident and I shower daily with Fritz, I don’t. Most sane people don’t want to hear me sing under any circumstances.
33. Favorite girls name? Sophia. Greek for wisdom. It’s my younger daughter’s name. And there’s also the great Sophia Loren.
34. Favorite boy's name? Gregory. I took it as my second middle name.
35. What's in your pocket right now? Cell phone, keys, handkerchief, small change.
36. Last thing that made you laugh? Fritz being silly. He can be a supremely silly man and it’s a total joy when he is.
37. Best bed sheets as a child? The first sheets that had any color or pattern to them. My parents had been nursing ancient white sheets for decades—sometimes they’d shred during the night from dry rot underneath me.
38. Worst injury you've ever had? Breaking my ankle last November. Among other things, I broke my right ankle and couldn't drive for nine weeks. I nearly went bonkers.
39. Do you love where you live? Yes!
40. How many TVs do you have in your house? Three. I offer no apologies—I like to stay informed.
41. Who is your loudest friend? An opera-going buddy of mine who has a very loud voice that he doesn’t modulate a lot.
42. How many dogs do you have? None—I’m a total cat person. I couldn’t live without at least one cat.
43. Does anyone have a crush on you? I think there’s a guy who does. I know for certain there was someone several years ago but I had fallen in love with Fritz and that hurt the other man very much—something I would never willingly have done but the situation couldn't be helped.
44. What are the most fun things you ever did? The river boat tour we took up the Danube from Budapest and then down the Rhein to Amsterdam; climbing castle towers in Wales; a hot air balloon ride in Albuquerque.
45. What are your favorite books? Biography and history.
46. What is your favorite candy? Trader Joe’s Pound Plus Bittersweet Chocolate with Almonds bar, marzipan, Altoids.
47. Favorite Team? The Boston Symphony Orchestra.
48. What songs do you want played at your funeral? Edward Grieg’s Second Elegiac Song as sung by Birgit Nilsson, the second movement of Antonin Dvorak’s Symphony #9.
49. What were you doing at 12 AM? Reading in bed.
50. What was the first thing you thought of when you woke up? Something delicious that was seriously XXX rated.
The Wit and Wisdom of George W. Bush
I glance at the headlines just to kind of get a flavor for what's moving. I rarely read the stories, and get briefed by people who are probably read the news themselves. (September 21, 2003)
The Turkish cuff is unusual -- I really like it. Is it a one-of-a-kind??
#41 made me laugh. I don't know why.