Wednesday, July 30, 2008

100 Things for the 100th post

Here we go, the fabled 100 Things About Me for my 100th blog post. You've all been holding your breath waiting for this, right? Well, exhale and read on!
  1. I have a freakishly good long-term memory. I can remember things accurately going back to when I was just over 2 years old. I also can memorize things very quickly and easily.
  2. I will occasionally pretend not to remember something because people would find it weird/odd/stalkery for me to remember it/them, which I do thanks to #1.
  3. I studied the piano, flute and voice when I was growing up. Eleven years for piano, seven years for flute and eight years for voice.
  4. Today, I still sing regularly - mostly with the choir at my church, also in the car, the house, the shower, the grocery store... I used to be a soprano, but these days I am definitely much more comfortable in the alto-tenor range.
  5. I have a 3/4 piano and try to play it at least once a day - usually just to accompany myself while I sing. Someday, I'd love to have a baby grand piano, along with a house large enough to have a room in which to keep it.
  6. I'd like to learn how to play the guitar. This is my midlife crisis plan: no fancy car, just a guitar and some lessons.
  7. I studied Spanish, Latin and Italian in school. I used to be fluent in Spanish, but haven't used it more than to properly read the bilingual bits of the kiddo's Dora and Diego and Skippyjon Jones books in years. My Italian teacher told me that I speak Italian with a South American-esque Spanish accent. At the time, I was just pleased that I didn't sound American.
  8. I was the co-president of the Spanish Club back in high school. One of the highlights of my term was having a "Churros y Chocolate" movie night for which we watched The Karate Kid dubbed in Spanish. (See, told you I remember the most random things!)
  9. I'm kind of a nerd.
  10. I was a Brownie, then a Girl Scout, and also in 4-H and my church's youth group as a kid.
  11. I've been known to read the dictionary for fun.
  12. I started reading when I was two years old. By kindergarten, I was reading at a middle school level, by first grade, at a high school level.
  13. I was taught how to speed read in a Gifted and Talented program in kindergarten, and to this day, I read very, very, very quickly.
  14. I failed my driver's license test the first time I took it (on my 17th birthday). I failed due to parallel parking - the examiner measured and my front tire was within six inches of the curb but my back tire was seven inches away. (That particular examiner was, and I'm not just being biased here, a real jerk.) I passed it the second time I took it, thank goodness. I had a different examiner for my second attempt, not only was he a lot nicer, but he was a dead ringer for Denzel Washington.
  15. I met my hubby when I was 20 years old.
  16. We got married less than a month after my 23rd birthday. (Hubby was 22.)
  17. Yes, I married a (slightly) younger man. We're the same age for exactly 6 weeks each year.
  18. I'm really, really talkative. Gregarious. Outgoing. Loquacious. Chatty. Expansive. Verbal.
  19. I always dreamed of being a Broadway star. Alternatively, a star in the West End. Preferably in musicals, but if the RSC wanted me, I'd gladly do Shakespeare as well.
  20. I cannot dance.
  21. I've never smoked a cigarette. Actually, I've never smoked anything.
  22. Similar to #21, I've never ingested any sort of illegal drug. Yes, I am hopelessly square.
  23. I always wanted a huge family, lots and lots of children.
  24. I have one child, and have made my peace with having a "one and only" child.
  25. I have yet to spend a single, entire night away from my daughter, since the day she came home from the hospital.
  26. I used to be a certified Road Construction Flagger, and taught classes and gave the certification exam for the states of NH and VT.
  27. I can wiggle my ears, and also one eyebrow at a time. I actually practiced that as a child in front of a mirror.
  28. I have the ability to astound and amaze children under the age of 9 with my admittedly pathetic sleight-of-hand skills. Just ask any kid who's known me since they were younger than 9, and they'll tell you all about Heather's Magic Penny. (The downside of this is that the kiddo now frequently will request that I look for whatever it is she's misplaced "behind her ears" as if it might really be there.)
  29. I have lived in New York state for over half my life now. The second longest I lived anywhere was New Jersey, and I've also lived in New Hampshire and Maine.
  30. I dream of owning a vacation villa in Italy. Preferably in Liguria or Tuscany, but definitely on the coast.
  31. I once lived as an exchange student in Italy. This was three years before I first studied Italian in school. I made good use of my Italian-English dictionary, as well as my Spanish, to get by.
  32. I am a lousy but enthusiastic athlete. Tennis would be my best sport, but I'm no Williams sister.
  33. I played in co-ed softball leagues for about ten years as an adult. My position was usually right field. In all of my softball playing days, I made exactly one catch in the outfield. One. That day is forever known as "The Day Heather Caught A Ball" and if there'd been a Jumbotron, it would've been replayed on it many, many times.
  34. I once met Charles Barkley, Hakeem Olajuwon and Clyde Drexler. They were not wearing much - if anything - at the time. This was after a Rockets-Celtics game in the Rockets' locker room. Charles Barkley actually spoke to me for a minute, too - and called me "ma'am" even though I was just 25 at the time. (Side note: see how I made this one number 34?)
  35. I once made my family drag out a meal at a restaurant in Manhattan for over three hours, because the hostess had told us Paul Newman had a reservation for "a bit later" that night. My father drank approximately two dozen espressos, while my sister and I made approximately two dozen trips to the restrooms in order to case the restaurant. We did finally see Paul Newman, and he smiled at me as he walked right past our table. It was worth it, totally.
  36. I was once an extra in a series of videos for David Bowie's band Tin Machine. I was not as lucky as my friend Da Nator, however, because the night before (when I wasn't there), he stepped on her foot and then apologized to her. Yes, David Bowie actually spoke to her and touched her (albeit on the foot...), the lucky girl. We did manage to get into the very first row of the "concert" set-up for the shoot, so I was less than 3 feet away from the Man for several hours.
  37. I've never considered myself to be pretty. I've always been the smart one or the loud one, never the pretty one.
  38. I've seen Billy Joel in concert over a dozen times since the late 80s. (In case you weren't aware, he is a phenomenal live performer.)
  39. I've seen the Oak Ridge Boys in concert. Twice. (Hey and the first time, Lylah, didn't you go with us?) I've also seen Aerosmith in concert twice.
  40. My very first "popular music" concert was Duran Duran at Madison Square Garden when I was in high school - it was for my birthday that year. I brought two friends with me (Da Nator was one of them) and my dad went, too. I still have my ticket stub.
  41. I have saved ticket stubs from almost every concert I've ever been to, going back to that Duran Duran concert in the mid 80s.
  42. I have saved the Playbills from every Broadway show I've seen since the late 70s.
  43. The first Broadway show I went to was Peter Pan, starring Sandy Duncan as Peter and the guy from Mr. Belvedere as Captain Hook.
  44. I am a total theater stage door groupie, and have been for over 30 years now. I used to make my family wait with me after shows so I could meet the actors and get my Playbill autographed. I once got very irked when Tyne Daly was more interested in talking to my youngest sister than she was me. This was after a revival of Gypsy and my sister just wanted to go get dessert, whereas I was the one with the dream of becoming an actress.... Humph.
  45. My most prized autographed Playbill is from Private Lives. I actually managed to mumble a few inane and utterly starstruck words to Alan Rickman while I tried very hard not to pass out, as he graciously signed my Playbill.
  46. To this day, I regret not having brought a camera to get a picture of myself with Alan Rickman.
  47. I harbor a secret fantasy of someday being a seat filler at the Academy Awards. A close second would be the Tony Awards, especially if Hugh Jackman was hosting again.
  48. I've sworn that for my 40th birthday, I will apply to be a seat filler at the Oscars. If that doesn't work, I've sworn that I'm going to Vegas. (This gives me a little over 3 years to make my plans...)
  49. I make really, really good chocolate chip cookies (from scratch, obviously). So good that my hubby's boss once wrote a reference letter for him in which he stated that it should be made a condition of Hubby's future employment that I bake cookies for all his coworkers on a regular basis.
  50. I hate seafood. The only seafood I willingly order in a restaurant or eat are scallops wrapped in bacon.
  51. I love animals and if I were ridiculously wealthy, I'd like to own a piece of land large enough for a barn with a few horses and many more cats.
  52. I could be, without much pushing, a crazy cat lady. Hubby is the only thing keeping me away from that.
  53. I like dogs, but really only big dogs. I've always said "If you're going to have a dog, get a big dog. If you're going to get a small dog, get a cat." If I had the space, I'd love to have a Komondor or a Great Dane.
  54. The smell of dog poop makes me want to retch. This is the main reason why I haven't pestered Hubby for a dog. (I learned this the hard way one summer when I had a job housesitting for some friends of my parents who bred bulldogs and boxers. Cleaning their dog run and kennels made me physically ill.)
  55. I saw Kermit the Frog get his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in person.
  56. I have ridden horseback through the Alps and the Rockies.
  57. I have had the same recurring nightmare since I was six years old.
  58. I always dream in color. I didn't realize there are actually people who don't dream in color until one day at lunch when I was describing a dream I'd had to my coworkers and one of them stopped me to say he'd never dreamed in color in his life. I find that very odd, assuming one isn't colorblind, that one wouldn't dream in color. I mean, we LIVE in color, don't we?
  59. I once read the entire set of World Book encyclopedias.
  60. I was horribly, horribly unpopular until high school. As in, virtually friendless and picked on daily. I cried after school every day for almost four years when I was a child.
  61. I was a total music and theater geek in high school. Fortunately, I had friends who were, too.
  62. My left foot is a whole size larger than my right foot, and has been since I was 9 years old.
  63. The first time I ever played poker in a casino, I got a royal flush on my third hand. I still have the disgusting, plastic-y card room jacket I was given as a prize for getting the royal flush.
  64. I've been to 26 states in the United States.
  65. I want to go to every state in the US someday. The state I'd like to go to the most, to which I've never yet been, is Hawaii.
  66. I've always dreamed of renting a (suitably tricked-out) RV and driving across the country for a family vacation. Hubby thinks I'm somewhat insane, and I believe he is just waiting for Kiddo to be old enough to join him in voting this idea down.
  67. I can fall asleep anywhere, anytime.
  68. I have a fear of sleeping in public, and won't allow myself to fall asleep unless my hubby is there to stand guard.
  69. I talk in my sleep. I have had entire conversations while sound asleep, including answering the telephone and having a full conversation with the person calling. I have told Hubby many of his birthday and Christmas gifts while sleeping.
  70. I've always wanted to swim with dolphins. (The closest I've come thus far is seeing them from a boat in the Gulf of Mexico out of Tampa Bay and touching one at the Mirage in Vegas.)
  71. When I was a kid, I wanted to be an archaeologist and a linguist. At the same time - I thought knowing many languages well would help with the world travel required for archaeology.
  72. When I was a senior in high school, I played the role of "Smitty" in the school musical (we did How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying that year). A few years later, I began dating my hubby, who was nicknamed Smitty. I refused to ever actually call him that, though.
  73. I do a killer rendition of Barry Manilow's Copacabana. I perfected the routine when I was about five years old.
  74. The first movie I remember seeing in the theater is Snow White. According to IMDB, Snow White was re-released in December of 1975, which means that I was 4 years old.
  75. I have a serious fear of heights. Not heights, specifically, but of heights where falling seems possible. (For example, I've been to the top of the Empire State Building or similarly high places and felt fine as could be. When we went on a cruise once, I couldn't stand at the railing on deck because that didn't feel secure enough. Even watching a movie where a character or the camera angle is up high - like Cliffhanger - can make my palms sweat.) I'm not sure if "fear of falling from a height" is actually acrophobia, but whatever it is, I've got it!
  76. I'm more concerned than I ever try to let on about people liking me. This stems from the years as a child where I had no friends (primarily age 7-12) and was utterly miserable. Consequently, I find it hard to say no to people, because I just want to be liked!
  77. I can hang a spoon off my nose. I've also taught my daughter how to do this, because come on, isn't that an essential skill?
  78. I never broke a bone in my body for the first 18 years of my life, despite being a huge klutz.
  79. Two days after my 18th birthday, I fractured my skull and broke my nose while sledding.
  80. Ever since I broke my nose, I snore, especially so if I'm the slightest bit congested. (According to Hubby, I snore very, very loudly when I'm congested, too. Loudly enough to drive him to the guest room when I'm sick just so he can get some sleep.)
  81. I'm allergic to the sun. (It's called PMLE.) My sun allergy started when I was 18 years old, on a trip to Mexico. (Coincidence that it was the closest I'd ever been to the equator? I don't know...)
  82. I have been to eight countries outside the US (Canada, Mexico, the Cayman Islands, Jamaica, England, Wales, Italy and Switzerland).
  83. I can walk down a flight of stairs while balancing a dictionary on my head.
  84. I have been in the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans as well as the Gulf of Mexico and the Mediterranean Sea.
  85. I once came upon an adult (or at least it was quite large) octopus while swimming in the Mediterranean. I have never swum so fast in my life as I did to get back to the boat after encountering it.
  86. My nicknames in high school were Mugsy and Heddy. There are very, very few people who still use these names.
  87. The other name my parents were considering for me was Pamela. The reason I wasn't named Pamela was because my father has an aversion to nicknames and didn't want to give any of his children names from which a nickname was commonly derived. If I'd been a boy, I would've been named Derek.
  88. I cry very, very easily. Books, movies, TV shows (and not just the Lifetime channel), even newspaper stories and TV commercials have been known to turn me into a blubbering mess. Even just hearing a sad or touching story told in real life can reduce me to tears.
  89. I have been in the studio audience for both the Arsenio Hall Show and the Phil Donahue show.
  90. I'm a naturally upbeat and happy person. I'm cheerful a lot more than I'm grouchy, and I like it that way. Optimist and glass-half-full is my general mode.
  91. My favorite holiday is Christmas. I am a Christmas nut. My hubby had to enact a rule in which Christmas music is not allowed to be played except between the day after Thanksgiving and New Year's Day. Kiddo and I have amended that rule to "played in Hubby's earshot" and listen to it for much longer than that.
  92. I have a snowman figurine collection. I love snowmen.
  93. I do not, however, particularly love snow. I like snow for a couple of weeks in December, but by January, I'm over it. Unfortunately, I live in a corner of the world where it can start snowing in October and last through April into May. Seriously, Kiddo has been Easter Egg hunting in snowpants before.
  94. I would love to live on a beach somewhere.
  95. For our honeymoon, Hubby and I went to Disney World. The very first ride we went on during our honeymoon was the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror. (Have I mentioned my fear of falling from a great height? Yeah. I thought so.) Somehow, not only did I not die from fright, but I enjoyed it so much that we spent the entire morning re-riding the ride.
  96. I have never ridden on a roller coaster (or any other amusement park ride) that goes upside down. I plan to ride on a roller coaster that does go upside down for the first time next month when we go to Disney World. (That'd be the Rockin' Roller Coaster starring my beloved Aerosmith.)
  97. I had two sets of adult teeth, and subsequently had 33 teeth pulled, not counting my wisdom teeth.
  98. I have ridden an elephant and a camel and petted a lion cub.
  99. I cannot stand pumpkin guts. The smell and feel of them makes me woozy. Real, animal guts? No problem, but pumpkin guts, ewwwww.
  100. I would love to someday be a published author. Of what, exactly, I haven't decided yet, hence the "someday" part of this one............
Whew. 100 things isn't easy. Did anyone actually read them all? I don't think I'll be repeating this for 200 or 1000..............


szarek4 said...

Oh Heather, I really enjoyed reading your 100 things about you :-)

and it definitely helped take my mind off the migraine that woke me up at 4:30a this morning!

My name is Andy. said...


I actually learned new things about you. And our weird twiness found a couple of new points to match up on!

Anonymous said...

Kudos to you for doing that list...quite impressive...and very full of information for the and my DH are lost twins too...with the exception of the interest in acting and love of musicals and travel desires you guys are identical...all that reading the brains the memory (god the memory for everything but names!!) the reading the dictionary and the bible and the reading my DH blog and he doesn't even have one.

HAPPY 100TH post...

Lylah M. Alphonse said...

Eeeeelvira (a-oom papa oom papa MAOW MAOW.

That's a yes on #39...

-- L.

Maria Wilson said...

impressive post!

Scary Mommy said...

I feel like I know you very well right now! Peter Pan was my first Broadway show, too. And, major ouch about the teeth!!!!

Ronnica said...

I love #9. I'm kind of a nerd too. =)

Ditto on #21 and 22. And #88.

lynn said...

What a great list. Mine was not quite so detailed.
#58 I remember reading somewhere that women dream in color and men dream in black & white. Weird huh?
Oh, and congrats on reaching 100 posts!

ChrisMooreMusic said...

I can't believe I've never been to see Billy Joel live, even when both he and Elton John came around a few years ago. I love Billy Joel songs and I love how he tends to stick to his own material and not play as many cover songs. One of these days...