Tagged by a grocery clerk

I was tagged yesterday by Paul over at mostlygrocery.com, and since I had already interrupted the series of posts I was doing on books that changed me, in order to do yesterday’s post about my birthday, I decided to jump on this one. Since I’ve been blogging longer than he has (I just started my third year at this), I had to think a while to come up with ten things about me that I didn’t think would be repeating myself too much. And because I like to write, I ended up doing a mini-post on each one instead of just a sentence or two.

1. I am left-handed. I cut with right-handed scissors, though, never having had left-handed ones to learn to use as a child. I can’t make left-handed scissors work. On the rare occasions when I play any sports, I play baseball left-handed but tennis right-handed. I switch a ping-pong paddle from one hand to the other rather than learn to do backhand well. I do miniature golf either way, and do it pretty well. With regular golf, I am equally inept with either right- or left-handed clubs. In college I practiced taking notes with my right hand to keep from getting too bored in class. Sometimes I also wrote them backwards. Occasionally someone would ask to use my notes to study for a test, and I would have to warn them that they would need a mirror.

2. I like pizza with just about everything on it (no capers, anchovies, or broccoli, please). I like chewy candies like licorice and caramel, though the best is a mix of creamy (chocolate), chewy (caramel), and crunchy (nuts and/or wafers/pretzels). I don’t like brussel sprouts. Hot dogs are best with either chili and cheese, or relish, mustard, and ketchup. The only pop (e.g. soda) I drink is diet, because the sugary stuff tastes too sweet and doesn’t quench my thirst very well.

3. I grew up in Connecticut, though after living more of my life elsewhere I have gradually adopted the words and phrases used where I live now instead of the ones I grew up with. I eat sub sandwiches rather than grinders (or hoagies, as they were called where I went to Bible school in upstate New York). I go to garage sales or yard sales now, not tag sales. (Though I did see a tag sale advertised last summer, much to my surprise – I would have liked to go but I had my husband with my and he is not into garage saling the way I am.) I drink pop rather than soda, and since moving to Iowa I even put my groceries in sacks instead of bags. I carry a purse rather than a pocketbook – but I still call the writing implements I keep in it “pens,” rather than “ink pens.”

4. I don’t wear a wristwatch anymore. (I got this idea from reading suzicate’s list.) I could write a whole post just about watches, from the Snow White watch I wore as a child to the Bulova watch I was given after ten years working at one company (an achievement I never planned on when I started there). When I was in my mid-twenties, my skin became sensitive to the metals in jewelry (at least in the kind I could afford), and even the metal in the buckle of a wristwatch caused such a rash I had to find one that was all plastic. I dressed up for work, and that watch didn’t fit the professional image I wanted to convey, so I was especially pleased to get that expensive watch chosen from a jeweler’s catalog. But it didn’t last nearly as long as the ten years I worked to get it, and the less expensive watch I replaced it with started giving me a rash after a couple years. These days I check the time by reaching into my pocket and pulling out my cell phone.

5. I have at various times injured

  • The middle finger of my right hand – by not paying close enough attention while sewing and putting the sewing machine needle through my finger (it missed the bone, just barely, but required a large bandage – I had no idea why people looked at me so strangely when I held the finger up to show what had happened)
  • The big toe on my left foot – a stress fracture from when I started jogging, too much too fast. The nurse at summer camp told me I had a pulled muscle. The pediatrician I saw in the fall told me I had tendonitis. When the pain came back in the spring, a podiatrist took an x-ray and showed me where extra bone had grown over the spot that had been broken.
  • My left knee – from a bicycle accident when I was looking at a street sign so I wouldn’t get lost, and I didn’t see the cyclist in front of me stop, until it was too late. The doctor was never able to identify exactly what was wrong in there, but occasionally, even after twenty years, it still gives out once in a while.
  • My right foot – going down the steps to let the dog out, though I still don’t know how I managed to trip so badly as to tear the tendon (or is it a ligament?) that used to give me an arch (now I am flat-footed, but only on that foot).

6. I usually have an assortment of bruises on my legs (and sometimes my arms) from walking into doorways and furniture, or getting something caught in the car door as I get in. I have concluded it is a combination of poor proprioception (the ability to sense where the parts of my body are in relation to the rest of me at any given time), which is perhaps related to my poor depth perception, plus my generally high pain threshold (presumably if it hurt worse I’d be more careful to keep from bumping things).

7. I have a collection of bunny figurines. When I was in high school, I admired the elephant collection in the principal’s office (where I had been called to discuss the speech I would present as salutatorian). I thought about what I could collect, and decided that bunnies fit my personality (timid, not too expensive, not too fancy). Besides several ceramic bunnies, I have one made of onyx (or maybe it’s carbonate) and one of pewter, plus a few made of cloth and stuffed, a stained glass bunny, and a Matchbox version of the Volkswagen Rabbit.

8. I have what would probably be considered some OCD tendencies. I can step on cracks in the sidewalk – but I much prefer not to. When walking on a path with regularly shaped stones or cement rectangles, I like to find a stride that lets me follow the same pattern on every block (or every two blocks depending on their size) as to where I put my feet. When I put away silverware, I like to have the all the spoons neatly nested one against another, and sorted by the pattern on the handle (same with the forks, but they don’t fit as well). And I like all the plates and bowls stacked from largest diameter to smallest. When I get ready for bed, sometimes I count the steps it takes (brush teeth, brush hair, remove makeup, take off shoes, put away glasses, etc.) – especially if I have been feeling depressed.

9. I’ve never had a nickname that people call me on a regular basis, but I’ve had a few nicknames over the years. As a child I was Piglet Moon (at one point Piglet-Moon-who-likes-to-help-Daddy-with-the-grass, but that was rather long), probably because I identified with Piglet in A.A. Milne’s Pooh stories (small and frightened), but I have no idea where the Moon came from. My mother called me her Thing Finder, as I was the one who could usually find her pocket calendar where she kept all her notes, and her glasses (which on at least one occasion she was wearing while looking for them). When I was a young adult, the kids in a family that “adopted” me called me Wal-Ping, which I guess was from mixing up the sounds of my name. (And they still call me that – I just heard it on the phone yesterday.) My husband occasionally calls me OSA, short for One Step Ahead, as I so often manage to do something before he asks me to.

10. I have been around music as long as I can remember. My mother loved to sing – lullabies, folk songs, songs from church, and songs from the community choir she and my father sang in. My father sang in the church choir, and we had to go to their concerts, which as a young child I found very boring, especially as the anthems were often in Latin. I did come to love hearing organ music however (it was a large church with a high quality pipe organ). I started playing violin in fourth grade, and continued through high school, though I never practiced enough to get really good. Between the influence of my parents’ musical preferences and the nature of the music we played in orchestra, I developed a strong preference for classical music, especially from the Baroque period (Bach is my favorite composer). One evening during music time at a young adults group at church, I heard a wonderful tenor voice (new to the group). I located its owner, and less than a year later married him. Our older son now plans to major in vocal music in college, so the tradition continues (even if he and my husband and younger son all prefer contemporary Christian music rather to Bach). These days I sing in a community Civic Chorale (we just started rehearsals for a March 13 concert of the Easter portion of Handel’s Messiah).


2 Responses to Tagged by a grocery clerk

  1. Paul Wynn says:

    Hate to admit it but watches have officially been replaced with cell phones. Definitely agree with #2 as well, what type of food actually gets you almost all of your food groups? Pizza.. yummy. Ambidextrous and not cocky about it .. I like that.. boy do I have a story on that for you Piglet Moon.

  2. Peter L says:

    I sropped wearing a watch most of the time. The classroom where I teach has a clock, computers have clocks and so does the cell phone. My car has a clock as well. Like you, my wrist gets irritated by the strap.

    The only time I wear a watch is on the days I do tours at the cave (summer job). Since I have to keep a schedule, it is easier to look at a wrist watch than dig out the cell phone. Besides, the battery died too frequently with the phone trying to find a signal all the time.

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