There’s this game of blog-tagging that’s been going around for some time now. I was just tagged by my old neighbor in Minnesota. The very lovely and talented JJ Killins who has been such a good friend to my wife and daughter. In fact, her daughter was Ashby’s first friend. This meme (see Unusual #2 below for why I’ve not used that word for two years) has evolved some it seems from the original five things that most people don’t know about me to 6 things that make me unusual and 6 things that make me happy. Here it goes:
Things that make me unusual (Tara helped):
- I’m blunt. I mean really really blunt. I speak my mind like no one I know. Want to know what I think? You may not even need to ask me. You may have to ask me not to tell though.
- I don’t like things that are trendy or particularly popular. Whether it’s a band, a restaurant, fashion whatever. If something becomes popular I’ve been known to drop it. If it’s already popular when I’m introduced to it I’ll likely avoid it like the plague. I’m making an exception for blog-tag I suppose, which is surely very trendy right now. This aversion for the popular or trendy has, on some occasions, proven to be counter-productive professionally because there can be wisdom in crowds. Some examples: I stopped blogging when it became really popular and abandoned a thriving and growing community of readers for a couple years. I refused for over a year to use any application with tagging. I avoided anything Web 2.0 (confs, groups, etc) for over almost two years. Anyway, the wisdom of crowds does not often manifest itself in pop culture.
- I never leave home without my knife and my camera.
- I enjoy reading, but mostly I consume my books in audio format on my iPod. The only novel (fiction) I’ve read in the last ten years (I think it’s been ten years) I read on my Treo600. Don’t get me wrong, I’m always reading something, but I don’t read fiction often. The reading a novel on my Treo (smart phone) is what Tara suggested was an item that makes me unusual.
- I like documentaries lots. I watch a few a week. This tends to irritate friends, family, and my wife who are all not as fond as I am of documentaries. Tara likes documentaries, but she doesn’t want to watch one every night. As I write this I’m watching “Jesus Camp“. Craaaa-zy–Duude, Ted Haggert has a cameo appearance, you know him. He was the evangelical preacher who was snorting crank, banging a gay prostitute, and advising George W. Bush every Monday of the week. At home right now I have: “Grizzly Man” (Steve recommended it a long time ago), “Terror Storm” (apparently you can watch it free here), and “Who Killed the Electric Car“.
- Tara says I dress like an old man. Particularly my socks, shoes and hats. I almost only wear Birkenstock’s and I like hats. I don’t know what’s wrong with my socks…
Things that make me happy:
- My daughter Ashby makes me happy in ways I never thought possible. All I have to do is look at the girl and regardless of my state of mind I’m filled with happiness.
- Sex. And my wife in general. Tara is so funny. See Unusual #1.
- Making the world a better place. Diminishing poverty. Helping under-served people and communities to improve their quality of life. Facilitating education. I love helping people learn. Knowledge is everything man.
- Camping. I try to make at least one solo camping trip a year. When I had fewer responsibilities I spent a lot of time in the Boundary Waters.
- Sharing. Sharing knowledge, ideas, emotions. Sharing is good (most of the time). This may account for Unusual #1 and Happy #3.
- Diversity. In everything, but particularly in culture and ideas. It’s hard not to love California when you love diversity.