January 29th, 2009


More of the 5 question meme

akillianna asks:

1) What's the last thing that made you angry (not just ticked off)?
I am really bad at angry. I'm not even very good at ticked off. But the last thing that made me feel a completely unexpected rush of anger was when I was watching Battlestar Galactica S3, first or second episode. A favorite character came home to find that their spouse had been taken by the secret police and their baby was left alone crying. For those very few episodes, they live in tents. So either every single one of the neighbors was taken, or--and this seems by far the most likely--someone was listening to the parent being taken and the baby being left alone and screaming and stayed in their tent and did nothing. And the rush of anger bubbled up and went, "Aw hell no."

Yes, it's more dramatic this way. But if that's the human race they've got, maybe the Cylons deserve the universe.

It's not the world I live in. If our door was open and there were audible screams coming from our house, I can name neighbors from four of the nine houses around us who would be in at a run to see what on earth was wrong. And to be clear, that's because those are the people I can name, Tom and Kathy, John and Sherry, Catherine and Mohammad, Jim who sang on the radio in WWII. I have no doubt whatsoever that the long-haired lady whose mailbox is a pun and the brusque mother of three girls and the other next-door neighbors who like us better now and and the fella who clears every last inch of his driveway with even margins every snowfall unless he's sick would do it, too. I just can't put given names on them. We noticed when the ambulance came for Tom and Kathy's Martin in December. We don't get into each other's social lives and personal choices, but terrified baby-by-itself screams are something different.

We rely on this. This is a basic level of humanity.

I think watching crime shows has spoiled me, because all the FBI agents on Criminal Minds and Numb3rs have this in common: they are disgusted and angry when people don't step up. And so are the regular cast in Numb3rs outside the law enforcement professions. The intonation and the body language of "And you didn't say anything?" will vary depending on whether it's Don Eppes or Derek Morgan saying it, but either way it is clear: there is a basic level of humanity we expect of witnesses to murders and suchlike, and you, sonny jim, have failed to live up to it.

I like characters who have standards.

2) What's the worst movie you've seen?
Hmm. You know, I think I'm trying to block that out. I certainly disliked The Road to Wellville at the time, and have not felt any urge to return to see if the jiggling and fart jokes have improved since. (You know that something is highbrow and intelligent, of course, if it has jiggling and fart jokes in a different century than the one in which it was made.) But other than that--oh, wait! I know! My dad and I watched most of the BeeGee's Sgt. Pepper's movie once. That was really awful. We kept yelling down the hall to my mother, "Hey, Ma!" "Hey, hon!" "You gotta come see this, it's so bad!" "Aaaaagh, so terrible! Come watch!" "Nooooo, I can't believe they--Ma, you're missing it!"

For some reason she did not join us.

3) Looking back, who is one person you would have treated nicer in High School and why?
I was actually pretty nice to most people in high school. A small but still alarming number of people from high school have since claimed that I was the only person there who was nice to them, and in some cases I can't remember doing anything even remotely out of the ordinary. Except that apparently asking them how they were doing was out of the ordinary in that place, gah.

I think there are a few people who would have liked me to behave differently, but I disagreed with them rather than being cruel to them. Also there were some boys I would tell my teenage self to ask out instead of waiting around and seeing who turned up asking, but that's not really the same as not being nice to them.

So, as precious princess as it sounds, I'd have to go with me. There were enough people who were pretty hard on me in high school. I didn't need to join them quite so often as I did.

4) If given the chance would you like to know the day of your death?
I can't think how I would trust that information, is the thing. I am too much a skeptic. I would end up with a plan and a backup plan. So probably not, because I can have fairly sound plans and backup plans anyway, just in less detail.

Also I think it would be very sad to try to guess whether I had time to write just one more book and either risk leaving 80% of a book or not get to try.

5) Do you put water on your toothbrush before or after applying the toothpaste?
After. Heathen before people and their slidey wet toothbrushes and their slightly-too-dry toothpaste! Uff da, what a thing.