First Best Friend(s): When I was in preschool, my best friend was a little boy named Jason. He was much more suggestible than my little girl friends at the time, being willing to slay sea serpents with me and so on. We could also just be quiet together. It was years until I had that trait in a friend again.
First Screen Name: mlingen, I guess
First Pet: Ben, a very sweet caramel-colored mutt. I was Benner's baby. He was gently protective of me. He died when I was 7, and I still remember how he smelled when he was sick, and how he licked my hand before they went to the vet to put him to sleep. (He had gotten the body size of his larger parent and the kidney size of his smaller parent. Mutts aren't always healthier, any more than purebreds are always healthier. Depends on the dog and the breeder and so on.)
First Piercing: My ears, when I was five, simultaneously. Also my last piercing. My friends were all getting their ears pierced, and my mom made the mistake of saying, "In our family, we don't do it that young." Then we showed up for the family reunion and found that the two little girl cousins my own age had their ears pierced. Mom was a lot more careful about citing "in our family" after that and focused a good deal more on "in this house" and "here are the reasons." ("Here are the reasons" were totally blown away, too, because my cousins were much less mature than I was and had managed to keep from getting their ears infected etc.)
First Crush: Jim Buchanan in kindergarten and throughout grade school. Jim and I were inseparable. We're still pals.
First CD: My mom bought me a Bryan Adams CD with my CD player, because my cousin loved Bryan Adams, and my mom wanted me to listen to music that would be acceptable to my peers. Not a huge success with the Mrissa demographic, but I honestly don't remember what I bought for myself when I had the chance. A dozen Columbia House CDs, yes, but I don't remember what. Oldies, though, at first. My parents' music. My dad and I still have extremely similar taste in music, but the balance has shifted from him recommending stuff to me to the other way around.
First Car: a little white GrandAm my mom wasn't driving any more. I drove it for the summer after my freshman year of college. My folks told me they would send it to college with me for my sophomore year, or else they would sell it and I could have a computer with part of the money. Uh, duh. (They were actually surprised at the directionality of that duh.) So then I didn't have a car again until our current car, which is a little white Saturn named Zeph.
First Love: scottjames, starting when I was 12. Unless inanimate things count, in which case books beat him out by about ten years.
First Stuffed Animal: a Snoopy dog. I had clothes for my Snoopy, including a little leather jacket and flying ace cap. We had to glue the nose back on innumerable times. My other special stuffed animal was Missy, a pink-and-white koala bear my dad brought back from a business trip.
Last Alchoholic Beverage: glass of Spanish white wine Tuesday night, when dd_b was driving me home. That is, I could drink it because I wasn't worried about driving myself, not that I was drinking it in the car. "You can drive after a single glass of wine with dinner!" No, my dear hearts, you can drive after a single glass of wine. I am not "totally buzzed" after a single glass of wine, but I notice it enough to not want to drive.
Last Car Ride: home from the loud loud restaurant last night.
Last Movie Seen: "Batman Begins." Some bits I really liked. Some plot holes you could drive a BatHummer through.
Last Phone Call: I picked up the phone to an automated "please hold for someone to ask for your money" message. Uh, no! I'm not going to give you my money over the phone anyway; I'm especially not going to wait around if you can't be arsed to put a monkey on the phone to ask right away. If this means last time I dialed out, I think it was to call my grandma to talk about the dog. My grands like to hear about the dog.
Last CD Played: Blues Traveler, "Bastardos!" Meh.
Last Bubble Bath: Has to have been something like 19 years ago. I don't like baths, I like showers.
Last Time You Cried: Honestly and pathetically, when I woke up at 5:00 this morning and realized that I had a headache and was not going to be able to go back to sleep.
EIGHT HAVE YOU EVERS
Have you ever dated one of your best friends: uh, yah. The rare times when I dated someone who was not a close friend or well on the way to becoming one were the big mistakes. This is the only way to go, as far as I'm concerned.
Have you ever been arrested: no. Lucky for me, too: the only arrestable crime I've ever committed was accidental but somewhat larger than swiping a pack of gum (which I've never done). Hmmm. I suppose I did drink a little bit underage, and that's arrestable but smaller. (What I mean by "arrestable" is if you're going 75 in a 70 mph zone and the cops pull you over, you will get a ticket, not arrested. But I haven't gotten a ticket, either.)
Have you ever skinny dipped: no.
Have you ever been on TV: yes. One of the local news stations was four blocks from my grade school, so every time we were having tornado drills etc., they would come and take pictures of our little butts crouching in the coatrooms. Also, Nebraska Public Television did a segment on freedom in the high school press, and they came and interviewed me because I'd written a story that generated a lot of controversy (about a knife being found in a student's car in the school parking lot when other reasons to search the car turned up -- this was referred to as "the bloody machete story," by the time rumor was done with it).
Have you ever kissed someone and then regretted it: yes, but not immediately.
Have you ever had a sex dream about someone you knew: yes. Hazards of being attracted to close friends instead of random movie stars and the like.
SEVEN THINGS YOU'RE WEARING
Look, meme, it's not yet 6:00 (though it probably will be when I finish this). So:
1. purple nightshirt
3. new glasses
4. freesia lotion
Seven is an awfully large number when it's not yet 6:00, is what I'm saying.
SIX THINGS YOU'VE DONE TODAY
1. Read e-mail
2. Read lj
3. Thrown away stupid jelly half of pb&j bone since the dog doesn't want it and it's disgusting and I've actually cut my feet open on it twice now.
4. Taken Advil
5. Eaten breakfast (Nutella tortilla and milk)
6. Packed fruit leather
FIVE FAVORITE THINGS IN NO ORDER
(that's five of my favorite things, not my five favorite things)
3. Dark chocolate
4. Falling leaves
5. The way it looks from the skyways at dusk when it's snowing.
FOUR PEOPLE YOU CAN TELL [ALMOST] ANYTHING TO
Quiiiiiibble quibble quibble. I can tell lots of people lots of things in terms of what they're comfortable with, even in terms of what I'm sure they won't divulge or get harsh about or whatever. But I tend to talk to different people about different things, and that strikes me as quite all right.
THREE HOLIDAY DESTINATIONS
Umm. Right now:
But that might be different tomorrow if you asked me tomorrow.
TWO THINGS YOU WANT TO DO BEFORE YOU DIE
That's ambition, that is. Two whole things? I mean, I was hoping not to slip in the shower this morning and break my skull open (more or less impossible in my shower). Okay:
1. Finish a good version of the book after Midnight Sun Rising
2. Make a really kickass flourless chocolate cake
Yah, there are other things I'd like to do -- a whole list of other things I'd like to do -- and if I do these, I'll go on ahead and do some of those, too. And probably more along the way that are on about the same level or perhaps higher.
I have a hard time putting things that are not largely under my control on lists of goals. I've seen people put things like "Have novel published" and "Win [award]" on their goal lists, and if it works for them, hey, good deal. I'd rather put things like "send [specific novel] to N editors and Q agents," "polish [specific novel] to take care of [problem therewith]," that kind of thing, because it's largely under my control. "Have successful writing career" is up to a metric ton of other people. "Write really cool books" is a lot more up to me.
This is why "have kid" does not make the list: we'd like to, but I know enough people who thought they'd like to, too, and haven't been able to, that I think it feels like it's a good deal farther out of my control than it probably is.
ONE THING YOU REGRET
I don't spend a lot of time regretting things. Some things in my life certainly are or have been suboptimal, but they've gotten me where I am, which is a pretty good place. Not such a great time this morning, but a pretty good place, and a lot of the stuff that's suboptimal about it is not stuff I could have controlled and should therefore regret.