Here are the rules:
1. Link to the person that tagged you and post the rules on your blog. (I'm sorry, but shouldn't that be person "who" tagged you? Forgive me; I've been grading.)
2. Share 7 random and/or weird things about yourself.
3. Tag 7 random people at the end of your post and include links to their blogs. (Come on! If I've been tagged, there is practically no one in the blogoverse who has not been tagged.)
4. Let each person know that they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog. On it. (Uh huh.)
So here are some weird facts about me:
- Apropos of the title of this post, when I was a child in the '70s, I loved The Steve Miller Band's song "Fly Like an Eagle." (Also, The Kinks's "Lola," though my mother worried about me loving that song.) Maybe it was too much Sesame Street and "today was brought to you by the letters X and Z and by the number seven," but I was convinced that part of the song went: "Seven, seven, seven. . .into the future."
- Connected to this is that my parents were very young when they had me. So I grew up with parents who were alternately Nichiren Shoshu Buddhists, avid bowling team bowlers with trophies all over the house (including the special joke one given to my mother when she bowled a season pregnant), and rally racers. After Urban Cowboy came out, I babysat my much-younger sister on the weekends when it was imperative that my parents had to go "ride the bull." This said, I still sometimes forget about all this and wonder why I don't fit in with the status quo. Then I remember.
- Further connected to this is that recently my wonderful bashert, OPL told me that I'm one of those crazy people who don't know they're crazy. (Okay, so I asked him and he said: "a little." "Really? I'm one of those people?" I asked again. He said: "a little.") The really crazy thing is that this makes me feel better. When I was young, I feared being normal and average. I needn't have bothered. For the last couple years, I feel like I've been pouring lifeblood into the project of being "presentable" ("a vegetable," goes the next line in the super-fab "Logical Song" by Supertramp). It's exhausting. The seams of this "presentable" costume are so frayed, I must look like the Scarecrow without a Brain.
- The strange thing isn't that I am divorced but that I was ever married. People who know me now (and didn't then) can never remember that I spent ten years with someone. That's how single I seem, I guess. And I no longer remember what it felt like to be married. Could it have been that my marriage was just like having a roommate around?
- In the last three stressful work environments that I've been in (which is to say the last three work environments I've been in), part of my coping strategy has been imagining my work as a TV series with long, complex and totally over-the-top storylines. Grad school was simply called "English" and featured a homeless grad student who slept on a cot in his office and showered at the gym, a hapless new grad student who had terrible teaching nightmares and whose teaching scenes would be shot like acid trips, and the scheming social climber grad student who was alternately screwing professors and students in her office. In my previous work environment, the series starred Martian engineers, a drug-dealing cat who slapped his owner around, a boss who seemed incredibly competent to all and sundry but secretly freaked out and shot up under her desk, and the graphic artist who was turning into a fly who was the only one who could see the boss as she was: totally and completely freaking out all the time. Of course, all the characters were based on someone real. Right now I'm working on a movie. I'm keeping this one to myself for now. I still need its good healing mojo.
- Contrary to my sarcastic and cheeky affect, I'm a total romantic, loving Jane Austen movies (and, of course, the novels, though really they are all about money and virtue, which I find satisfying for my heart and my head) and a sweet and much-beloved British comedy series called As Time Goes By, about two people who meet up again thirty-eight years after their romance abruptly ended. I also love old-fashioned things like needlepoint and cross-stitch. I'm sarcastic and self-effacing as a defense because I'm sort of embarrassed about my old-fashionedness. At the same time, I have totally liberal views about relationships and gender roles. In theory. In practice? I still think the man should be the one to smell the milk to see whether it's gone off.
- For many, going to grad school and pursuing the life of the mind and the uncertain life of a grad student-turned-professor is a dream that requires a giant leap of faith. But I worry that it's a way for me to cop out and give myself an excuse to not try to live out my dreams. I've sought out structure and security in my life. What's more structured (if not secure) than the tenure track? Leaving that sure-step future is, I think, a bigger leap of faith for me. It's scary.