“I am not convinced that one ever knows quite enough to come down with a full condemnation.”
– Julian Fellowes, Snobs
I’ve had a surprising amount of recent encounters with people that ended with, “I didn’t think you’d be into that,” or some such variation (although for heaven’s sake, nothing sinister or scandalous!). Even friends and coworkers with whom I’ve spent cumulative years in close proximity. And it got me thinking about how readily all of us form ideas about even our close friends and how even lifelong mates can surprise us. So here’s a few facts to add some nuance:
I really like science fiction. Don’t let the pearls fool you. I admit I’m not entirely up on the canon or all the great authors, but I genuinely enjoy the genre – for the same reason, as it happens, that I enjoy history. Human nature and the human condition interest me. History shows me that humanity has behaved in roughly the same way stretching back millennia, scifi shows me that as far as we can project we’ll be behaving the same ways millennia in the future. Far from discouraging I find that a pleasant thought since I tend to view mankind as a sort of tenacious struggle, always upward.
My first recorded professional ambition was to be the first person to see a giant squid in the wild.
I have terrible handwriting. I have boxes of notebooks kept through middle and high school, piles of scribbles and sketches, and my desk at work is a well organized but tightly packed mass of agendas, notes, and schedules – all handwritten. I still prefer a small leather bound planner to an electronic calendar. I write by hand all the time, and yet for all the practice my penmanship is dreadful.
I prefer salty and savory to sweet almost uniformly.
One of my personal disappointments is that I have a great relationship with my siblings but I don’t know them extremely well. I moved out when my sister was six and she turns sixteen this year, and for the better part of those ten years we’ve lived on separate continent or on the opposite sides of one. That’s ten years of inside jokes and stories that I simply am not privy to and only catch up on during holidays.
I know I have vivid dreams because I catch glimpses of them when I wake up, but I almost never can remember them.
Some girls have the knack for always looking finished and put together. I always feel seconds away from terminal dishevelment and somehow no amount of effort seems to tame the flyaways. I pretend not to care but I’m really self conscious about it and covet the easy polish of some women.
I love reading new books but my secret love is to reread favorites over and over again. J. teases me about how I’ll read some novels a dozen times a year, but there are a select few I never get sick of.
I am a religious person often deeply at odds with my faith. It’s sometimes a rough balancing act, but I think it makes me a more thoughtful person and more deliberate about life. Which is what I think healthy religion is supposed to do, frankly, so in spite of the vexations, I’m okay with the struggle.
So, that’s me. Minions roll call to the front, please, and tell me something about you that I probably don’t know.