Some tiny creature, mad with wrath,

Is coming nearer on the path.

--Edward Gorey

Location: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, U.S. Outlying Islands

Writer, lawyer, cyclist, rock climber, wanderer of dark residential streets, friend.

Friday, December 29, 2006

Five Things

It seems I've been "tagged," and since it comes so rarely I feel obliged to entertain the meme. Too bad it's an especially difficult one. The theme is Five Things You Might Not Know About me, which is made all the more tricky in a pseudo-anonymous semi-confessional framework (one my parents sometimes read - Hi Mom!), but here goes:

1. I don't wash my hair every day. I take a shower every day but I only shampoo every second or third or fourth day if I haven't done anything extraordinarily dirty or sweaty. It's a habit I picked up a few years back when I had long hair. I have always had trouble managing my mop, and my stylist at the time suggested that overwashing wasn't making taming it any easier, and she was right. Now, my hair is shorter, albeit on the long side of professionally acceptable, but it's still thick and shaggy and still wants to go wild, so the reasoning still applies.

2. When I was maybe twelve I was tricked into taking a sip of diluted urine by a six-year-old bully who lived nearby. Bad enough that I fell prey to the bullies in my school and class, but even the young ones got the best of me.

3. When I had long hair, I let my stylist put in blue-ish lowlights alongside my premature grey streak to make it "pop." And it's probably this effect that I miss most from the long-hair days.

4. As literate/-ary as I claim to be, I spent all of my first twenty years reading crap, and I am continually filling in the classics that I failed to read as early as I should have done. For example, I only just read Walden Pond, and I'm almost finished with Rhys's Wide Sargasso Sea. Today at the Barnes and Noble fire sale downtown I bought Hemingway's Garden of Eden as well as Ian McEwen's Atonement, which might be too modern to be a true classic, but still seems like something I should have read quite a while ago. In much the same vein, I have never read any Tolkien.

5. I am absolutely horrid at remembering names, in art and life, and occasionally I blow it with faces as well. If I apply myself (and I have been lately, as I make more of an effort to get involved in my community), I can usually retain a real-world name for a while (character names from books, movies, even series I watch dedicatedly almost never stick and I've stopped trying), and if I'm fortunate enough to meet the person again within a few weeks it takes root. But no matter how long I've known someone, there's no guarantee that I won't struggle to find his or her name when I need it. I just had this happen a couple of evenings ago with a friend of seven years whom I hadn't seen in the flesh in a year or two. I went to refer to her in conversation with her husband (she was sitting right there) and it took the duration of a three or four second pause, during which I mimed a momentary hiccup of sorts (I've developed a bevy of compensatory tricks over the years) to call it up. This happens with colleagues, lovers -- pretty much everyone. It's creepy, and one of the personal tics I find most frustrating. There's a name for it but (natch) I can't remember. So if you happen to know me in the real world, feel free to help me out when you see me struggling.

And perpetuating this silliness, I tag the monkey, the brit, Emily, and the folks over at the Coup (which makes six, but I doubt I'll get all of the Coup to play along).

UPDATE: Jocelyn says that my confession of not-daily-shampooed hair and the regrettable urine-sipping instance has stripped her of her illusions. Says she: 'So, now, instead of sitting across from Moon and thinking "He's so smart, he's so idealistic, he's such a believer, he's so dreamy," I will now ALWAYS sit there and think "Yep, he's the boy who drank pee."' That's all fair enough, but from where I'm sitting, the relatively mild indignity of having once (heh, yeah) imbibed something I later wished I hadn't is nothing next to the other indignities I've suffered. For example, given the cumulative residual effects, psychic damage, and sheer embarrassment factor, I'd probably trade just about any of the rejections I've fielded from uninterested women (who, ostensibly, found me less than "dreamy") for another urine incident. It sucked, no doubt, but it left no scar. Well, that it happened due to the trickery of someone all of six o eight years old might have left a slight scar, but now that I'm a professional and thirty-something, even being outmaneuvered by someone significantly my junior is relatively easy to, er, swallow. Thanks anyway, Joc, for the backhanded compliment. :-)



Blogger rachel said...

there's prosopagnosia, but i seriously doubt you are dealing with something this severe. was it me? i didn't notice, so your simulated hiccup worked :)

10:25 PM  
Blogger Moon said...

isn't prosopagnosia face recognition?

anyway, yes, it was you -- sorry sweetie. that it happened with you only underscores my point: that it's more like a disability than something associated with some inaccessibility to new people, or people i don't care about. you are (it should go without saying) neither.

but i'm also sure you're correct that my condition probably is more personality tic than disability, and to claim otherwise is to insult people who labor under debilitating conditions that i'm fortunate not to have.

6:35 PM  

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