Five Things You Don’t Know About Me

 

Usually people want Ten Things, but let’s make it easy for everyone:

1. In 1999 on Kauai for a conference called Storytelling in the New Millennium, I interviewed Todd Rundgren, Thomas Dolby, Graham Nash (a super nice guy), and Dennis Muren of Industrial Light and Magic for video press releases.

2. I once composed, performed, and recorded keyboard music for a guided imagery program for Kaiser Permanente. Got paid $200.

3. I was at that Day on the Green concert with Led Zeppelin where John Bonham beat up Bill Graham’s security guard. They delayed the start by more than two hours, saying over and over, “They’re still trying to fix Jimmy Page’s guitar” until Bill Graham gave into extortion.

4.  A friend who worked for George Lucas gave me a tour of Skywalker Ranch while George was out of town; got to see his private theater and cherry wood elevator. The huge sound stage was designed for the walls and ceiling to move in and out to accommodate sound recordings.

5. My first marriage lasted about 14 weeks; I moved to Minnetonka, MN, for eternal love and marriage, and after the annulment left for a friend’s couch back in California on April Fool’s Day. Sometimes the universe makes an obvious point.

Your turn.

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  1. John H. Member
    John H.
    @JohnH

    If people will accept but Two Things, about me, here they are:

    (1) My car does not display a bumpersticker that reads I Drive With My Eyes Open For Safety

    (2) in December 1983 I took the sleeper from Cairo to Aswan and my compartmentmate was an Egyptian who was a high functionary in the dam down there. He said he had just returned from China. I think he said he had been given, by the Chinese, a TV. He sounded happy about this. He also offered me a cigarette. I declined, having been saturated by anti-tobacco propaganda. Indeed I had never smoked in my life. But at last I sensed I was being churlish, so I accepted. The cigarette, a Players, was great. I wanted another, but felt that after my earlier protests it would be bad to ask. 

    • #1
  2. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant
    1. I wrote three books averaging less than three weeks each late last year and earlier this year. Each was over a hundred thousand words. (But some may know that.)
    2. I have ten fingers and ten toes. (Alright, you might have surmised it, but you didn’t know it.)
    3. I’ve never met anyone who was really famous.
    4. I’m taller than I am wide.
    5. I’m really pretty boring, and this could be why I write about other people rather than myself.
    • #2
  3. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    John H. (View Comment):
    My car does not display a bumpersticker that reads I Drive With My Eyes Open For Safety

    I want one of these.

    • #3
  4. Randy Webster Member
    Randy Webster
    @RandyWebster

    I saw Charles Degaulle make a speech.

    • #4
  5. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Arahant (View Comment):

    John H. (View Comment):
    My car does not display a bumpersticker that reads I Drive With My Eyes Open For Safety

    I want one of these.

    I’d like one, too, but I probably should stick with the truth.

    • #5
  6. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    Arahant (View Comment):
    I have ten fingers and ten toes. (Alright, you might have surmised it, but you didn’t know it.)

    I don’t know it now. You have alleged it.

    • #6
  7. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Percival (View Comment):

    Arahant (View Comment):
    I have ten fingers and ten toes. (Alright, you might have surmised it, but you didn’t know it.)

    I don’t know it now. You have alleged it.

    You don’t get to comment on other people’s entries until yours is on the thread.

    • #7
  8. JustmeinAZ Member
    JustmeinAZ
    @JustmeinAZ

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    Arahant (View Comment):

    John H. (View Comment):
    My car does not display a bumpersticker that reads I Drive With My Eyes Open For Safety

    I want one of these.

    I’d like one, too, but I probably should stick with the truth.

    Mr AZ has one that says “I’m only speeding because I have to poop”. It’s usually true. Ooops. TMI.

    • #8
  9. JustmeinAZ Member
    JustmeinAZ
    @JustmeinAZ

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Percival (View Comment):

    Arahant (View Comment):
    I have ten fingers and ten toes. (Alright, you might have surmised it, but you didn’t know it.)

    I don’t know it now. You have alleged it.

    You don’t get to comment on other people’s entries until yours is on the thread.

    But what if you’re so pathetic you don’t even have 5 unusual or interesting things to say about yourself?

    • #9
  10. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    JustmeinAZ (View Comment):
    But what if you’re so pathetic you don’t even have 5 unusual or interesting things to say about yourself?

    Then you write the sort of stuff I did.

    • #10
  11. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    JustmeinAZ (View Comment):

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Percival (View Comment):

    Arahant (View Comment):
    I have ten fingers and ten toes. (Alright, you might have surmised it, but you didn’t know it.)

    I don’t know it now. You have alleged it.

    You don’t get to comment on other people’s entries until yours is on the thread.

    But what if you’re so pathetic you don’t even have 5 unusual or interesting things to say about yourself?

    I don’t even have five uninteresting things about myself that I haven’t already posted on Ricochet.

    • #11
  12. Dotorimuk Coolidge
    Dotorimuk
    @Dotorimuk

    1. Was involved in a two car, no driver accident.

    2. Got a haircut once in Chitwan, Nepal. (About $3)

     

    • #12
  13. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    JustmeinAZ (View Comment):

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Percival (View Comment):

    Arahant (View Comment):
    I have ten fingers and ten toes. (Alright, you might have surmised it, but you didn’t know it.)

    I don’t know it now. You have alleged it.

    You don’t get to comment on other people’s entries until yours is on the thread.

    But what if you’re so pathetic you don’t even have 5 unusual or interesting things to say about yourself?

    Yeah! What about that?

    • #13
  14. Gary McVey Contributor
    Gary McVey
    @GaryMcVey

    1. I have dual citizenship (Republic of Ireland), although I’ve never applied for an EU passport.

    2. My draft number was 183, right in the middle. They only got up to 120 my year, so I was free to remain in the USA, learning how to photograph naked girls with a movie camera. 

    3. I have five younger brothers. All of them (but me) have carried firearms on the job. 

    4. I bought one of the original animation cels from Fantasia for my wife’s birthday in 1971. It must have worked; we’re still together. 

    5. I’ve met Mike Pence, George W. Bush, and Richard Nixon. No Democrats, though I saw Bill Clinton jogging once. 

    • #14
  15. Phil Turmel Coolidge
    Phil Turmel
    @PhilTurmel

    Mark Alexander: Your turn.

    Some things ought not to be written down.  Possibly shared in person, like at a Meetup.

    • #15
  16. Steven Seward Member
    Steven Seward
    @StevenSeward

    Gary McVey (View Comment):

    5. I’ve met Mike Pence, George W. Bush, and Richard Nixon. No Democrats, though I saw Bill Clinton jogging once.

    My wife, an original Ricochet member, has been kissed by George W. Bush!

    • #16
  17. Django Member
    Django
    @Django

    I can on occasion behave like a complete jerk. I realized that only recently, but I suspect others of my acquaintance have known it for years. 

    • #17
  18. iWe Coolidge
    iWe
    @iWe

    Here are a few:

    1: I once enjoyed the Bolshoi Ballet in seats just behind President Ford.  Come to think of it, I also sat behind Yitzchak Rabin at a conference. Both were friendly. But neither was anywhere near the most powerful men with whom I have met.

    2: When I was a child we slept under elkskins for blankets. They shed.

    3: I have emptied honeypots in the Canadian Arctic. 

    4: I once rolled a Lincoln Towncar, the land-yacht 1994 version. The roof held, which is why I am here today.

    5: I have something like 100 patents to my name. Which I consider to be a pretty good accomplishment for a guy whose PhD work was in 13th century paleography.

     

     

     

     

    • #18
  19. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    iWe (View Comment):
    Which I consider to be a pretty good accomplishment for a guy whose PhD work was in 13th century paleography.

    Surely not all 13th century writing systems.  Aren’t you going to tell us which ones?  

    • #19
  20. Steven Seward Member
    Steven Seward
    @StevenSeward

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    iWe (View Comment):
    Which I consider to be a pretty good accomplishment for a guy whose PhD work was in 13th century paleography.

    Surely not all 13th century writing systems. Aren’t you going to tell us which ones?

    You actually know what paleography is?  That beats me.

    • #20
  21. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Steven Seward (View Comment):
    You actually know what paleography is?  That beats me.

    These days, it means cursive.

    • #21
  22. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Steven Seward (View Comment):

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    iWe (View Comment):
    Which I consider to be a pretty good accomplishment for a guy whose PhD work was in 13th century paleography.

    Surely not all 13th century writing systems. Aren’t you going to tell us which ones?

    You actually know what paleography is? That beats me.

    I checked Google to be sure.

    • #22
  23. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator
    • #23
  24. She Reagan
    She
    @She

    This is a great thread.  Unfortunately (or fortunately, as the case may be), I’ve been on Ricochet so long that I don’t know if there are five things everyone doesn’t know about me, but here goes:

    1.  When I was very young, I slept in the beds of several highly-placed government functionaries and heads of state.  No need to call CPS; they weren’t in them at the time.
    2. One of the most classy and elegant sights I’ve ever seen in my life was Jackie Kennedy in jeans and a sleeveless top, riding a horse in Newport RI, when my family was there for the America’s Cup trials.  (I think it must have been 1964.  Dad went over to chat to her for a few minutes, and when she left, asked if it would be alright to take some film of her riding away (8mm).  She agreed, rode several paces, then turned, smiled, and waved. A nice memento.)
    3. Auntie Pat (98 in July, may she live forever) and I were in Washington DC while parts of Absolute Power, starring Clint Eastwood, was being made.  Dreadful, strangely fascinating, film.  Had we arrived at our destination about five minutes earlier at one point, we might have been extras in a scene, but we did see some of it (and Clint) being filmed.
    4. I have a Nigerian name bestowed upon my by the Sardauna of Sokoto, who formally adopted me when I was an infant.  It’s “Hawa Numan.”  Hawa is the Arabic name for Eve, and Numan is where Dad was stationed when I was born.  When I was nine years old, and lived under 24×7 armed guard for a year, the folks who were trying to do me and my family in gave out a story that my mother and father had been killed in a car crash that they had engineered (this was false, but it made all the Nigerian papers, and even a couple of British ones).  The Sardauna wrote to my grandmother in the UK, offering to take me and my sister, if we did not have family who could step in.
    5.  From 1965 until 1978, I lived in the house, in a suburb of Pittsburgh where Barbara Feldon (Barbara Hall as she was then), Get Smart’s Agent 99, grew up.
    • #24
  25. iWe Coolidge
    iWe
    @iWe

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    iWe (View Comment):
    Which I consider to be a pretty good accomplishment for a guy whose PhD work was in 13th century paleography.

    Surely not all 13th century writing systems. Aren’t you going to tell us which ones?

    Sussex Eyre Roll. 1240 to 1248. Latin shorthand. 

    • #25
  26. TBA Coolidge
    TBA
    @RobtGilsdorf

    iWe (View Comment):

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    iWe (View Comment):
    Which I consider to be a pretty good accomplishment for a guy whose PhD work was in 13th century paleography.

    Surely not all 13th century writing systems. Aren’t you going to tell us which ones?

    Sussex Eyre Roll. 1240 to 1248. Latin shorthand.

    Sussex Eye-Roll > Bronx Cheer. 

    • #26
  27. The Scarecrow Thatcher
    The Scarecrow
    @TheScarecrow

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Steven Seward (View Comment):
    You actually know what paleography is? That beats me.

    These days, it means cursive.

    I thought cursive was @#$!graphy.

    • #27
  28. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad
    1. Other than meeting prominent conservative writers, thinkers, and politicians on NR cruises and Meetups, the most famous person I’ve met was Admiral Rickover in my interview for the Nuke Navy.
    2. I’ve met one Hollywood producer/director because one of my best friends is married to his older sister.
    3. The same best friend had lunch with President George HW Bush on Air Force One.
    4. My late brother-in-law was one of the top vacuum cleaner experts in the country.
    5. I’ve been married three times.
    6. I was named after both my grandfathers.
    7. I drove submarines in the Navy, and flew a Cessna in civilian life.  Still haven’t driven a locomotive . . .
    8. My wife and I adopted three girls from Russia in December, 1996.
    9. My favorite food is beer.
    • #28
  29. She Reagan
    She
    @She

    6. I have two lambs who are clearly too large for the playpen they’re in, who still spend the night in (what’s left of) my kitchen. 

    This should surprise very few here, although it is a breaking news update.

    They spend all day outside now, and are quite adept at grazing on grass, eating sheep feed, and drinking out of a bowl.  However, about 8PM they appear in concert on my back porch, serenading me in increasingly acrimonious-sounding and dissonant minor chords until I let them in, give them a watered-down bottle (more comfort than anything else at this point), lift them into the playpen, add a little (more) hay for them to snack on during the night, and leave them to it.  They settle down, lie down, go to sleep, and I rarely hear another peep until the next morning, when I get out of bed and start moving around the house.  (So much better behaved than 2 1/2 month old human babies…).

    When I make it to the kitchen first thing in the morning, this is what greets me (Tatiana on left; Oleg on right):

    I’ve been teaching them to spend time in a pen in the barn, and pretty soon (hopefully before the playpen floor gives up the unequal struggle), they’ll have to go out there for the night.  I can only guess at the wailing that will ensue.

     

    • #29
  30. Phil Turmel Coolidge
    Phil Turmel
    @PhilTurmel

    She (View Comment):
    I can only guess at the wailing that will ensue.

    Just like moving similarly-mature humans from crib to grown-up beds. /:

    • #30