Saturday, May 01, 2010

Meme, Myself And I

A couple of memes to get May moving... one gifted and one stolen.

The first one I nicked from Being Me who also borrowed it from someone else, so do feel free to be light-fingered and make like a tea-leaf yourself if you like it:

Me In 3’s

Three names I go by:
Steve (for my friends)
Stephen Blake (for my bank manager)
Stephen Herrick-Blake (married name – to confuse officialdom everywhere)

Three jobs I've had:
British Telecom operator
Cleaner in a nursing home
Art gallery assistant

Three places I've lived:
Leamington Spa
Alsager (for about 10 days when I made an abortive start on a University degree in my early 20’s)

Three favourite drinks:
Water (filtered or spring, always still never carbonated)
Tea (Earl Grey, strong, milk, two sugars please)
Hot chocolate (cream, marshmallows, chocolate flake, chocolate sprinkles, the works)

Three TV-shows I (WISHED I HAD TIME TO) watch:
Boston Legal
Battlestar Galactica

Three places I've been:
Egypt – Nile Cruise (would love to back)
Montreal, Canada (would love to go back)
Florence, Italy (would love to go back)
The Maldives (I know that’s 4, I’m showing off)

Three places I would like to visit:
New Zealand

Three favourite dishes:
Chile con carne
Spaghetti Bolognese
Cottage Pie

Three things I'm looking forward to:
One day getting out of debt (once Tom is at school)
My next Lego set
Winning the lottery and never having to work again

The second meme came attached to a Kreativ Blogger award which was kindly passed onto me by Gappy at Single Parenthood. I have to list 7 things about myself that I have never before divulged on my blog. That is going to be difficult as (1) after nearly 600 posts very few subjects have been considered taboo in my insane quest to find something to write about each week and (2) I think I’ve already done a meme like this a couple of years ago. However, I’m never one to turn down a blogging challenge so here goes:

1) I have bunions. On both feet. My new doctor was shocked when he first saw them and asked “you do know you’re feet are not normal, don’t you?” However as they are not painful and do not impinge on my daily life nobody is in a rush to operate. And I’m not in a rush to be operated on. I’ve heard that foot operations are notoriously painful.

2) I've been a late starter in most things. I didn't learn to ride a bike until I was 23 and now aged 40 I still haven't learnt to drive though did take some lessons in my thirties (had to drop them due to poor finances). I can, however, ride a horse. Or at least stay on one without falling off. I may possibly join an Amish community and have done with newfangled technology altogether.

3) I have no known allergies but do have a phobia of moths. And butterflies. I can’t bear to have them near me. Or even in the same room. If one appears one of us has to leave. Usually the moth. My phobia extends to not being able to swat / kill them either. I did that once as a small boy and the moth literally exploded sending wispy bits of moth shrapnel everywhere. Urgh. Much better to trap them in a cup with a bit of card slid under it and turf them back outside. Makes me feel less guilty too.

4) I didn’t get my first girlfriend until I was 30. No excuses for this. Just lack of confidence and excess of earnestness. Not a great combination. Oh and I had hair down to my waist and a full beard. This hirsuteness may also have contributed to my lack of lady conquests... though I’m sure it’s never stopped Lemmy.

5) A mild case of measles as a baby meant I was never immunized against the disease and used to have the same nightmare twice a year until I was 7 and had full blown measles. At this point I had the nightmare 4 nights in a row, was delirious, sleepwalked and on the final night of my fever awoke to find myself talking to the mirror in my bedroom in a voice that was not my own and a language that I suspect was not of this earth. I kid you not. Over the years I’ve theorised about demonic possession, past life regression, etc, but I now believe (as the Arabs do) that some diseases have spirits or personalities and what happened that night was the measles virus literally coming out of me. Feel free to offer another explanation if you wish.

6) I get vertigo in deep water. I’m fine up ladders, flying or working at height but a session of snorkelling in The Maldives had me swimming over the edge of a reef and looking down into the blackest abyss I have ever seen. I freaked out and headed back to shore. I have now reconciled myself with the fact that I will never be a deep sea diver or work in a submarine. I can live with it. Honestly.

7) I used to believe quite strongly in God and Heaven but now, sadly, I’m really, really not sure anymore. I don’t want to not believe – I just don’t know what I believe. I have, to quote REM, lost my religion.

I’m not going to nominate others to carry on these memes but needless to say, if you’re ever stuck for something to write about feel free to give them a go... they’re oddly enjoyable!


Selina Kingston said...

Hate to say this but I think you've failed. See, I knew 3 and 4 about you already!!! But I worry now - maybe I'm getting a bit stalkerish and should stop keeping all titbits of information I can find in a special room devoted just to you!
But amen to debt-free living and I have bunions too (I know - I'm not the perfect woman after all) and I want to go to New Zealand too. Shall we go together, to visit The Sagittarian??

French Fancy... said...

Oh, lots of fodder for comments here and, in no particular order, here I go:

Your married name is a very swanky name with a good sound to it; I also love water more than any other still non-alcoholic drink and it is the greatest thirst-quencher of them all; I also would love to go to New Zealand, Iceland and Japan - and Tahiti.

Never working again sounds good but - seven years after moving out here and doing just that - guess what - sometimes I miss my lovely London job (more the camaraderie than anything); I can't ride a bike still but now have a trike and I love it; I love butterflies (but not indoors), I also do not believe in god or indeed any religion whatsoever. I think they are all myths with no basis of fact behind them at all.

Good post Steve

Steve said...

Selina: all I need is the money for the flight; Saggy has already arranged accommodation for me (which I'm sure she'll confirm) - apparently I'm sharing the rabbit hutch with her rabbits. ;-) As for stalking; a man never made himself a success until he acquired a stalker or two (court order is winging its way to you in the post).

FF: I'd like to give the "never working again" thing a real go. Really I would. I bet I don't crack. I could fill my days with loads of stuff if I had the lottery win behind me to finance all that I want to do. Do you hear me, Universe? That's a challenge! Go on, give it to me!

Fran Hill said...

I think you should get a new new doctor. They're not supposed to say things like, 'You do know you're not normal, don't you?'

I will reserve this meme (MUST look that word up - I know what one is, but not why) for a rainy day. Then we're quits.

Steve said...

Fran: apparently the famous atheist Richard Dawkins was the one who invented the word "meme" though I think he originally meant it as a concept for the discussion of evolutionary principles...

As for my doctor... he's a good bloke. Straight up. I think he was just amazed that I was 40 and hadn't noticed how deformed my feet were. He had a point I must say.

Anonymous said...

Once the debt free thing kicks in I can hook you up with cramped but friendly digs in Japan.

Hear you on the water, I love water, source of all life after all.

Egypt? Cool, I would love to go to Egypt.

The Sagittarian said...

Oh, and now that we had to separate the rabbits there are 2 hutches so we have room for more people!

The Sagittarian said...

Oh yes, you gotta come visit! Go to Iceland,then hop over to Japan and then head down here for some R and R!! I'll get the cocktails in. Great post as usual Steve, and I reckon I could do the no-working thing quite easily (just ask my boss!)

Steve said...

Missbehaving; Amanda: one day I'm going to hold you both to your kind invitations. You do know that, right? ;-)

Anonymous said...

Great post Steve. Learning a few more things about you...I would love to go to Japan and Iceland too. And I am a keen Battlestar Galactica fan.

Thanks for sharing !

Steve said...

Janete: my pleasure.

Gina said...

Well, I did know most of those things because you have confessed in my comment box although I didn't know re the bunions or that you didn't learn to ride a bike till so late. How come? That's very odd.

Not working again? I often think I wouldn't stop working if I had enough money not to - but I suspect I would. There are more interesting things to do with my time. Like visit Saggy.

Owen said...

Well then, I guess the career posssibility of becoming a pirate in Somalia is out of the question... with deep water vertigo you might have a hard time making people walk the plank, and an even harder time doing it yourself should you get caught...

Looks like there are a few of us who are all ready to head to New Zealand to meet the Saj. I hear she's getting a hotel ready for all of us... Will look forward to meeting you, and Selina, and French Fancy, and I don't know who all out there...

Steve said...

Gina: I think a lot of us are going to be visiting Saggy! The poor woman will be run ragged making cocktails for everybody!

Owen: oh I see, everyone else is getting a hotel. I'm getting a rabbot hutch (a long standing arrangement). C'est la vie.

Tim Atkinson said...

Personally I'm surprised you lasted that long at Alsager...

Steve said...

The Dotterel: I had to wait for my dad to get time off work to come and pick me up...! ;-)

The Accidental Author said...

I can totally agree with what you said about vertigo in deep water. I've been up great heights and down potholes but never experienced anything like the fear I felt when diving on a wreck in the Caribbean. Makes my hair stand on end just thinking about it. Found you through Completely Alienne. Great blog!

Steve said...

Previously (Very) Lost In France: my legs turned completely to jelly... not great when you're trying to swim! Thank you for dropping by - hope to see you again!

Being Me said...

Ah! I see you like your tea (and hot chocolate.... and water) the same as I!

And, again, condolences on the moth phobia thing. Right with you on that one. You'd not like to visit Australia. We used to get Bogong moths in our house when I was a child (just think, moths the size of an adult hand or larger!) and that's possibly where my overgrown fear of even the tiny delicate ones has come from.

femminismo said...

OK, I didn't know any of those things. Hysterical about the measles and talking in another (?)language to the mirror. Oh, I wish I had been there (but didn't catch the measles). I can ride a bike but I really can't swim. Just a dog-paddle across a pool where I can touch bottom at any time I wish. I have vertigo all the time - standing, climbing or swimming!

Steve said...

Being Me: the size of a hand? Urgh! That doesn't bear thinking about!

Femminismo: you reminded me - I didn't learn to swim until I was 30. Something else I started late at... though that was partly due to an atrocious teacher when I was at school.

TheUndertaker said...

Stephen Herrick-Blake, do come to New Zealand! I will have your hot chocolate ready and we can watch all seasons of 24 on DVD, eat Bolognese and play with all the Lego from when the boys were young(er), lol

Steve said...

The Undertaker: now that's an offer I cannot refuse. My suitcase is packed. Can you meet me at the airport?

Trish said...

Fascinating stuff. As my blog is travel-related I can agree to your love of Florence (I came back pregnant) and Montreal (I thankfully didn't come back pregnant). You must visit Iceland (that's what started this blogging lark with me, 16 posts worth!).
I hate butterflies too.
Must follow you now as I see your comments pop up on others blogs and I like your writing style.

Steve said...

Trish: thank you kindly... I shall pop over to yours as soon as I get a free 5 minutes and check you out! ;-)

Being Me said...

I feel I've led you astray... And I'm not about to right it because it means poring over dozens of images of moths and I just cannot do it! The bogong was the common moth, but wasn't the large beast of a one I mentioned. Just had to rectify that.

Thank you. As you were. You can google if you like. I'm not game.

Steve said...

Being Me: like you I'm not up for poring over hundreds of images of moths. I don't need to know the names of any of them - especially the big buggers - I just want them kept as far away from me as possible. In fact Australia is fine.