And they come with no warning,
nature loves her little surprises.
Continual crisis!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Tagged, Bagged, and filled out in Quadricate Meme

(imagine me in the roll of Kirk in Star Trek II, the Wrath of Khan) KANREI!!

Your four things. Ugh. I have to keep them to four?

Four jobs I have had or currently have in my life:
1. Platemaker/Typesetter - The current day job. That title really only covers about one third of what I really do. Let's just say that it doesn't drain my soul and it fills my pocket. Which is more than I can say for previous jobs.

2. Councilman - Hi, I'm from the Government, I'm here to help. I've been in office for five years now, first year I was appointed to fill out the term of a recalled councilman. I'm up for re-election this year. Vote for Me! I've served on several committees. Currently I'm chairman of the Streets and the Lands and Building Committees (we tend to lump these together as one). I hope not to be chairman next year come what may in November. Three years is long enough.

3. Manager - I managed a 14 person art department for the National Office of a former Big Six Consultancy Firm. I was there five years (less two months). For three years I was #2 in charge (first year we had a separate design office, last year I was manager) and then promoted by vacancy to the chiefs position. Never do that to me again. Okay, well, if you're gonna pay me a real salary that matches to others in the same positions, sure. But they were only going to give me a token raise and then take away my over-time (which would have been a 25% or more pay cut). Don't ever take away my OT unless you're giving me a BIG raise. This is the job that asked for the pint of blood. Then the pound of flesh. And finally they came for my soul. I had to leave. Six months after I had left that consultancy division had been sold off, and then about five-years down the line really didn't exist anymore.

4. Mowing lawns and yard work - The job I started when I was 12. This wasn't mowing my Grandpa's lawn for an allowance. This was mowing two neighbors' lawns, digging their gardens, hauling stuff, pushing snow (with a shovel) for hard cash. When I started at Wendy's four years later, I had four lawns, plus my Grandparent's. Since I was at Wendy's I've been out of work twice for a total of eight months. Both times there was Bush in the Whitehouse and we were at war in Iraq. Keep that in mind if you ever wonder why I don't like the current president (notice that wasn't "hate," I just don't like him).

Four Countries I have been to:
1. Canada - You gotta go to Canada. Toronto, you just have to experience it. And seeing Niagra Falls in the winter, very romantic. If you see the falls in the summer you have to do the Cave of Winds tour. Really. Lots of stairs, but well worth it.

2. Germany - A couple of days worth side-trip while in college with my brother and Mom. We went to Heidelberg. Most interesting story? Arguing with West German border guards on the crossing from Denmark (you could see East Germany from the train station). They had MP4s and guard dogs. I had myself. Yeah, full of piss and vinegar was I. Also, people were smoking so much in the train car (when they shouldn't have been) that I had to stand between trains. They didn't like that. And I was young and dumb enough I didn't care what they liked.

3. Denmark - Also in college to visit with my Uncle. Both the Germany and Denmark trips were heavily subsidized by my Uncle. Thanks, Uncle Jim. I still remember the castles, Tivoli, and Legoland. I also remember the country side. I wish I could go back because I was young and stupid at the time and I'd take in more now.

4. I don't have a fourth I can talk about. Hmm. I need to rectify that. Does it count that I've been to Canada many, many times? And that I have a valid passport? Yes. This is one thing that needs rectified in short order. Bette's always wanted to go back to France. We've talked about Ireland and Scotland, including living there. (all the properties are closed out now)

Four places I would rather be right now:
1. Back in college - I'm far enough removed from it that I don't remember the hellacious times, only the good parts. To be young and strong again. Full of piss and vinegar, ready to take on the world and squeeze what you can out of life. Who wouldn't want that. Of course then there was the fact that I don't remember when I slept. Hauling clothes through a sleet storm to the laundry (30 minute walk). Having a 500 square-foot apartment. But to be that alive again. Oh yeah.

2. In the San Juan de Fucas - If I ever hit it big, I have a feeling this is where I'll end up. Owning a small island, watching the ocean, orca, and weather come in and out of the Puget Sound, writing like a fiend.

3. Anywhere on a boat. I love boats. On a ship you have a lot of distance between you and the water. On a boat you feel the water.

4. Anywhere that isn't work and I'm with my wife - because, seriously, I don't spend nearly enough time with her.

Four foods I like to eat:
1. Mexican. Real Mexican, not Taco Bell. Not any of the chains. Real Mexican where they cook the tamales and shred the meat.

2. Asian (Thai, Chinese, Japanese). Again, the real stuff. Of course not all of it I like, and you can't get completely authentic food prep for some of it (and for some of it I wouldn't want it), but places that don't over-cook in the wok (vegetables should be crisp, not soggy), that know their sauces and how food is meant to go together.

3. A hoagie. Gods how I miss real hoagies. We're not talking just a sub/grinder/blimpie whatever. I mean a hoagie.

4. Real deli pickles. Not those spear thingies they sell in glass jars, I'm talking real wood-barrels and long tongs to pick them out. Garlicy, tart, spicey and juicy. Yum.

Four personal heroes-past or present:
This one is difficult for me. I really don't think in these terms. So I'm probably going to munge this all up and forget a few hundred people. Also not on this list are the people I served with. You know who you are. And there's the added part that I'm a politician that's up for re-election and this is one of those questions that you either maintain an even keel, or sink to the bottom.

1. My Mom, she raised us two boys after divorcing my Dad. She's always been there for me. She showed me what devotion means. She also taught me that you don't give up because the going gets hard.

2. My Grandfather, Charles Marpe. He taught me what it meant to be a man. How to love my wife. How to work. That life isn't meant to sleep through. Grandpa taught me how to live, and how to die. I miss my Grandpa very much.

3. My Uncle. You showed me what was possible to do.

4. The Fab Four - I was going to cheat and name them separately and not to the family thing. But seriously 1) John Lennon, damn. "In my life." Every December 8th, For the Late Great Johnny Ace. 2) Paul McCartney, he owns how much of Great Britain now? 3) George Harrison, if I had a quarter of his talent/skill I'd be playing guitar for profit. 4) Ringo Starr, Barbara Bach, 'nough said.

Four books I have read or are currently reading:
Jeez, you ask a writer this. What, don't you have anything else to do for the next year?

1. Atrocity Archive by Charlie Stross - currently reading. I don't think there are any wasted words in this book. Wow.

2. American Gods by Neil Gaimen - seriously, you have to read this book. This is the book that taught me what I should aspire to, and it wasn't Tolkein. Only one of two books that my response to finishing it was, "Damn" and turn back to page one to start all over.

3. 100 Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez.

4. Vintage Ray Bradbury by Ray Bradbury - the book I read before taking the class.

Four to Tag :
Ha ha ha!
1. Dan B. - because, seriously Dude, you need to post more often.

2. Jim Wright - because he's got a new blog and he needs to think about if he's going to do these kinds of things.

3. Camille - double tagged.

4. Greenyflower - because it'll be interesting.


Jim Wright said...

Man, I decide to spend a beautiful day out in the shop, making saw dust, and I get tagged. Okay, Steve, I accept your challenge. I've got to think about it for a day or so.

Camille Alexa said...


Camille Alexa said...

O, and GreenyFlower is always interesting, no doubt.

ThatGreenyFlower said...

I am so not interesting, but I'll do it because this is my FIRST tag and I feel like I've just been asked to the prom!!!

Unknown said...

Great list! Actually makes me feel like less of a man...

I need to read more.

Steve Buchheit said...

Kanrei, we can all read more. And never let someone else define your manhood, because they'll always skimp. Heck, you've been more places than I have. That's something I aspire to do.

And guns don't make me nervous. Well, they do now, but only because I have the overwelming urge to disarm people who carry them stupidly and safety them. Especially when they belong to a police force. Just a hint for anybody listening, they make holsters that can only be drawn in a single direction (+/- 5 degrees). Use them for your side arm. If you don't know where your side arm is, how it's being presented, there's a good chance someone is about to take it from you. Like if you have it 1/4 the way around your back (not really in the small of your back) and then you're bending over to inspect packages and have both your hands engaged... really uncool to do that. My hands are twitching just remembering that.

Jim Wright said...

Challenge accepted and done.

Ditto on the gun thing. I taught small arms for fifteen years, I own weapons (all unloaded and locked away) but I am not a "gun nut," I love the idea of background checks before you can buy and required training and certification before you can carry, and I think that there are certain people who should not be allowed anywhere near pointy objects let alone own something that can kill at long range. Strangely, many of these same folks hang out at gun shows, which is why I stay as far from them as possible.

Hope you enjoy my response to the 4x4 challenge. It was fun. Let's do more.

Steve Buchheit said...

Yes I did, Jim. And, okay, just remember you asked for it. :)