Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Behind The List, Part One

Surfing around the NaBloPoMo list, I ran across this blog written by a woman who's raising eight kids with her partner. It's kind of a mommy blog on steroids, but not quite - it's a family consisting of eight children and two lesbians, certainly a unique point of view.

Anyway, she posted this list. There's 150 of them, which is too many. I was much more curious about the ones she had done, so I thought I would borrow the idea and expand upon my own answers. However, I think I have to break it across two posts.

03. Climbed a mountain
Does Rocky Road, aka Corona Heights, count? All of us neighborhood kids took summertime classes at the Randall Junior Museum. Sometimes afterwards we walked up the long, eastern side of Rocky Road to its peak to look over the city and the bay toward Oakland.

06. Held a tarantula
I forget if this was part of sixth grade Science Camp or at the Randall Junior Museum, but we all sat in a circle and the tarantula walked across our hands as we held them close to each other, palms up, to make a path for the tarantula.
A college friend of mine was so afraid of spiders that when they made him do this is sixth grade, he freaked out and threw the tarantula across the room.

07. Taken a candlelit bath with someone

When I was a kid, the Coos had some property up in Healdsburg, with a cabin that was basically one big room and a sink that had a hose from the creek. There was an old barn, a great treehouse, and an outhouse. There was also a sauna on a deck attached to the cabin. Inside the sauna was an old bathtub in which we would pour about three inches of icy water from the creek, and we'd sit in the tub when we got too hot (DeeKay, as I've mentioned, never did). One night we were all in the sauna with some older kids (I don't remember who they were, except they were teenagers) and they had brought candles into the sauna with us. They had to keep lighting them because there wasn't enough oxygen for them to burn with all of us kids in that little space.

08. Said “I love you” and meant it
Many times.

09. Hugged a tree
I remember a field trip to see some old-growth redwoods. The ranger had some kids in the class hold hands and circle the tree to see how big around it was. We stretched our arms as much as we could and it still took six or eight of us to wrap ourselves around the tree.

11. Visited Paris
Mom called me in January '96 and said, "Round trip tickets to Paris are $400. Want to go?" I arranged coverage at both my jobs, paid for express mail and express processing for my passport, and we spent a week walking all over Paris. Highlights: The Musee D'Orsay and watching a parade of veterans walking up the Champs Elysee to the Arc d'Triomphe, in which hung the largest flag I've ever seen.

13. Stayed up all night long and saw the sun rise
Several times, in different states and different states of mind.

15. Gone to a huge sports game
Mom took No and me to see the Giants play the Cincinnati Reds at Candlestick Park when we were kids. I may have been ten at the most. It was much warmer than we'd expected and we sat on our parkas. I was rooting for the home team, but probably read a book during most of the game.

19. Slept under the stars
I was in college the first time I slept in a tent. In second and third grade we went on class camping trips and slept under the trees. one year he place we camped had three-sided shelters, which coincidentally was the same year it rained and rained. There were a bunch of parents, but many many kids - two classrooms' worth, plus our siblings.

20. Changed a baby’s diaper
I hated babysitting. Not because of diapers so much as because of babies. Weird to think that the four children I babysat are now about 30 years old.

22. Watched a meteor shower
A bunch of us working on Laundry and Bourbon and Lone Star in the summer of 1990 went out to Yelm to watch the stars fall. It was some big named meteor shower, though I can't remember which one. The assistant director of the show was from Yelm, and she said it would be dark enough out there to see. It was. We sat on a picnic cloth, drank wine, talked, and got home really late.

25. Looked up at the night sky through a telescope
But I can't really see through telescopes because my vision is so bad.

29. Asked out a stranger
Zirpu and I met on Craigslist. We exchanged a few emails and then arranged to meet in real life. Did I suggest meeting first? I don't exactly remember.

30. Had a snowball fight

A few days a year, usually in late January or early February, the college would have to declare a snow day because it was too hard, or too dangerous, for students and professors to get to school.Our house was near campus so lot of people would come over and we would go on walks, have snowball fights, and drink hot chocolate and eat the cookies or brownies or whatever other good things Jujubi baked.

34. Ridden a roller coaster

Willard's Whizzer and the iconic roller coaster at Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, and The Demon at Great America.

36. Danced like a fool and didn’t care who was looking
What does a fool dancing look like? I've done so much dancing that I've probably looked like a fool at least once. I have a still photo of dancing bolero with Zirpu in which I look totally clumsy and graceless.

37. Adopted an accent for an entire day
I took acting classes at Attic Theater when I was in junior high school. One evening after class a friend and I spoke in British (or British-ish) accents for the whole ride home. We were in a cab, and were talking as if we were in a production of The Diary of Anne Frank. The cabbie probably thought we were show-offs, which we were.

38. Actually felt happy about your life, even for just a moment
Much longer than a moment, and at more than one time. Like these days, for example, despite crankiness due to work burnout.

41. Taken care of someone who was drunk
One night when Bink was in law school, she had a party at her house and Spudwhip, Denver D, and I sat in the backyard and passed a bottle of Three Star vodka back and forth. Denver D was in the middle. Spudwhip really took the lead in making sure Denver D would be all right - and the next morning he felt the best of the three of us, since he'd been so sick the night before.

42. Had amazing friends
More interestingly, I have some friends I don't really like. Well, acquaintances really. But the rest of my friends are amazing. I wouldn't settle for less.

44. Watched whales
When Bink got married in the backyard of her in-laws' house on Orcas Island, at the end of the ceremony the minister asked the guests to remain seated while the wedding party walked through to the deck to line up for photos. When the wedding party recessed, all of us were looking out into the San Juan Straits under a blue sky and a hot sun, with lots of boats on the water.

Suddenly a pod of killer whales appeared. It wasn't just that they appeared, but that they showed up after the wedding but while everyone was facing the water. I think it was a sign of good luck.

47. Taken a road-trip
Washington to Colorado three or four times. Oregon to Colorado once. California to Colorado twice. San Francisco Bay Area to Los Angeles area several times. The I-5 Boogie many times.

49. Midnight walk on the beach
After graduation from college, a bunch of us rented a house in Seaside for a few days through Jujubi's parents. The house was a block or so from the beach. One night one of the guys who came down to Seaside for the celebration and I went onto the beach and into the water. It was dark, but there was a moon, and it was cold, but he was from Maine and went a little further out than I did.

53. In a restaurant, sat at a stranger’s table and had a meal with them
Jujubi and I were walking around the Hawthorne Street Fair and stopped in to the Baghdad for a cold beverage. There were people at all the tables, but we asked a couple if we could sit in the empty chairs at their table and they said yes. Not long after they left, and a couple of men asked if they could sit with us. People had done it for us, so we said yes, and one of them started chatting a lot to Jujubi.

That was the Famous Irishman. We learned much later that he had made his friend follow us around the fair because he wanted to meet Jujubi.

55. Milked a cow
I milked a goat at Camp Beaverbrook in Calistoga during the summer of fifth grade. The different tent groups took turns taking care of the goats, and our turn fell on a Sunday, the one "sleep in day" during the week. The goats couldn't wait, so we were up at 7:30 to milk them.

58. Sung karaoke

"Me & Bobby McGee," twice. Never again. Do I sound snobby if I say that I sing much better, and feel much more comfortable, with a live band?

59. Lounged around in bed all day
When Shobi-wan and I lived together we stayed in bed as late as we could on Sunday mornings reading the paper and drinking coffee.

62. Kissed in the rain
I lived in the Pacific Northwest for twelve years. Of course!

63. Played in the mud
See above

64. Played in the rain
See above

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