I am on Facebook now. Well, I have been for a couple of years, but the dreaded snowball is starting to roll. I am now getting "friended" by people I don't think I have personally met - which happens, I know. It's all about networks etc. I have mostly been getting on there to keep up with my sister Sally's doings. She is quite hard to pin down in any other way.
Now I have been 'tagged' by a (genuine) friend, with the requirement that I write down 25 things to enable her to know me better. Then I tag 25 other people, and they have to do the same. It's part B that bothers me. I don't mind trotting out trivia here for everyone from Poland to the US Virgin Islands to read. But I am certainly not going to insist anyone else does the same.
So here I will try to come up with the 25 things. None of you need feel any obligation to do likewise.
1. I am phobic about my fingernail and toenails. I often visualise minor damage, splinters under the nail, etc etc and it makes me feel ill. (I have lost a few nails before so it's not completely a vivid imagination).
2. I was born here in Tasmania and have lived all but 18 months of my life here.
3. Some of my happiest moments have been spent sitting alone in empty grandstands.
4. My feet are in terrible shape and I worry a lot about how I am going to get around on them in twenty years' time.
5. I like to know at least three of four bits of jargon about everything. Whenever the talk turns to rabbits, Indonesia, the high jump or microcars I can FAKE IT with one or two of my key words (eg chocolate lop cross, Sulawesi, the Fosbury flop, the Peel P50). But after about 4 minutes I've just gotta get outta there.
6. I can type very quickly and very noisily with two fingers. When I really get on a roll other people in the room have to raise their voices and turn up the music. My favourite word to type is 'management'. Try typing it with two fingers. It's ace.
7. I am a lifelong soccer player. This has a causal relationship to #4. From age 10 - 37 I was a defender. Late in life I have morphed into a striker, and a ball-hog. I can walk it through the defence and score with either foot.
8. In my darker moments I take a ridiculous amount of solace from my last few goals.
9. I genuinely feel wealthy when I think of my two children. I've got it all. I'm on easy street. I am extremely fortunate and I try not to take them for granted.
10. On our first date my wife and I read newspapers. One our most recent date (this evening) my wife and I read newspapers.
11. I would never wish to live at any other time in history. You've just got to love now.
12. I am addicted to butter. Getting off it is one of the hardest thngs I have ever done, ie I am still eating it by the truckload.
13. I went to South America when I was 20. I travelled with a Peruvian-born friend, but we argued and split up. Travelling alone there was an experience that soaked quite deep in to me. We made up but it took a few years. He's now in my indoor soccer team.
14. I read encyclopedias. Today I learned about Brabant, Samuel Butler, The Black Panther Movement and Balzac.
15. I say no to drugs. Things can get reasonably far-out in my brain without any chemical whim-wham.
16. This is an aspect of #11 - email your heroes! If someone has an email address, I assume they want to hear from me. And I am nearly always right - I have emails back from musicians, writers, broadcasters, sportspeople. Not form letters but actual thoughtful replies.
17. I lack ambition. I am drifting into the reliable grey-haired-old-guy-in-the-corner role at work. I love being a graphic designer, but it's probably time in my life when I should be putting my hand up for more responsibilty, which will mean less time designing.
18. I like to leave doors unlocked. I like to leave the music playing when I go out. I like having no real back fence. I like to leave the blinds up at night.
19. Although I like to think of myself as relaxed and easy-going in the ways mentioned above, I am socially pretty anxious and spend a silly amount of time planning an unobtrusive exit.
20. I used to play the trombone.
21. I was in the Army Reserve for 6 months - (when I broke my leg playing soccer I took the opportunity to get out). One of the most memorable days of my life was spent at a rifle range. I was surprisingly good at target shooting. I found out subsequently that my father's father was a prize-winning pistol shooter.
22. I would like to spend a summer day sitting alone in a paddock, from dawn to dusk, with just a pen, paper, water and a stack of sandwiches.
23. I would also like to walk from Hobart to Burnie (340km).
24. I can name the 50 United States of America. In all honesty, I almost always get 49. Not much of a claim, is it?
25. The wisest quote I can think of is "Circumstance might require you to lie to others, but never lie to yourself".