For the parents in the crowd: What would be the absolute worst name you might give your child? If you’re not a parent (I’m not), then what’s the worst name you could give your pet? My first husband’s name –the III… because he was a Jr. We considered it, we really did, but isn’t it a bit pretentious, and quite a bit unimaginative, to tag a kid with the dad’s name? I never really got why people did that. Okay, that’s not the *worst* name, I mean there are much worst names out there, but we’re talking about my kids, and I don’t label my kids with stupid names, so there ya go. I will let you in on a secret, y’all. I misspelled one of my kid’s name on purpose. Not anything crazy like Mykil for Michael, instead like Micheal for Michael. People think I just didn’t know how to spell it, but I did. I just prefer the other spelling… and they’re both “right” depending on the circumstances. My kid probably thinks that’s the ‘worst’ thing I could have done. I mean imagine all of the elementary school teachers telling my kids that their name is spelled incorrectly. Of course, they went through life with a shortened name — like Mike — so it didn’t really matter much, but still.
What mildly annoying curse might you wish you could curse annoying people with? One of my favorite curses I heard was from the old TV show M*A*S*H — a long time ago. I think it was Klinger who said it… anyway, it was: “May the fleas of a thousand camels infest your private parts.” I’ll never forget that. It’s kind of horrifying when you think about it. I’ve used it myself on many occasions. I don’t know if it qualifies as “mildly annoying” but it’s better than “Fuck off and die.” I’m not sure it’s so much of a blessing as the someecard here says it is, but hey… whatever. I didn’t know of the “may your arms be too short to scratch” until decades after I heard the first part, but that’s how these things go I guess. It’s like that saying my dad used to say, “Almost only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades.” Then somewhere down the line someone added “… and nuclear warfare.” I’m sure the saying has been bastardized to bits from the original…
What’s the weirdest thing you did as a child? I’m gonna be honest, I don’t remember much of my childhood, and what I do remember what pretty normal-ish when it comes to the things I did myself and with my friends. I mean I had friends, and we did a lot of the things most kids do… The things done to me, well, that’s another story. That being said, I was an early reader. My mom claims that I was reading before Kindergarten, and I believe her. I remember reading before everyone else I know. I remember writing before everyone else too. So I read a lot. That could be considered weird, I guess, because it was certainly an oddity. Having an identical twin was weird too, but it’s not like I had any say in that! But people certainly did make fun of us for it.
Do you believe things happen for a reason or are random? I’ve always been a champion of the idea that things happen for a reason *and* that the world is a random, random place. Humans want to have a purpose. We (and I mean we in general, so don’t get your panties in a twist) have this deep seeded need to believe that we’re alive and kicking for a reason, and we’re not just here just because, well, here we are. We want to believe that we are more than coexisting with the other animals on our little blue planet, that we’re higher. Because maybe some higher being placed us here in their image — for whatever reason — or we as individuals have a calling to do… something in the world. In general humans as a species seem to want to believe that we as individuals are here for a reason. I’m as human as the next person, so yeah, sometimes I think that there must be a reason that we’ve evolved to the point we’ve evolved and there is a purpose to it all. But! for the most part, life is just a series of random events and we as individuals are here to live our lives to the best of our ability until we die.
And Finally, in the spirit of New Year’s: What’s a resolution (if you make them, I don’t) you’re making for the New Year? How confident are you in keeping it a reasonable amount of time? I don’t make New Year’s Resolutions. I stopped making them when I turned about 13 and learned that there were more than one calendars in the world. We were at a Chinese restaurant and they had those little Chinese calendars with the “Year of the…” whatever animal of the year you’re born in on them. And the nice waiter told me that their new year wasn’t until February (that year). It blew my mind that they were on a totally different calendar than we were. Then I heard of the Jewish Calendar, and as the years went by all of the other calendars that are out there. As a kid though, I learned that this calendar we’re on — the Gregorian Calendar — isn’t the first calendar we’ve had. And that was when I was, “Yep, so not caring about New Year’s Resolutions”. Anyway, the Gregorian calendar has only been around since 1578. That’s not that old, y’all, in calendar years. I’ve read books older than that — translated and reprinted, but still, my point stands. We’re on a relatively new time measuring device. And what I’m saying is — it’s all arbitrary. The “New Year” can be any day of the year that some dude picked out of his ass and said, “This is when the year begins.” I celebrate making it through another year, but as for making resolutions… nah. If I want to resolve to be a new and better person, I don’t need an “New Year: to do that. I can pick any day of the week my own self.