[personal profile] maystone
I was tagged by [livejournal.com profile] brighty18 a few days. I finally have the chance to answer, so here goes. And also? It has been forever since I've used LJ tags; I see that they've changed a lot of things, so apologies ahead of time if this goes all fubar.

1. Always Post the Rules
2. Answer the questions the person tagged you and write 11 new ones
3. Tag 11 new people and link them to the post
4. Let them know you tagged them


1. What was your favorite game or activity as a child?
Being a Boomer, there were always a bunch of kids to play with. I loved playing in the woods behind our development. Rattlesnake Mountain was our favorite playground: The base was swampland (bogs, ponds, meadows) and then the mountain was tree-covered with some outcrops and a few caves. We were out there four seasons, allowed to roam and explore as long as we were back home by dusk. It was a much freer time for kids. We hiked, we scrambled, we built forts, hunted for the wild pigs rumored to be up there, made up our own adventure games. It was great. During the winter, we'd sling our skates over our shoulders, grab brooms or shovels and head out to the swamp for some skating at Black Pond or Duck Pond. I had loads of fun, and I truly feel sorry for kids who's only experience of playing games is sitting passively in front of a screen.

2. What are your three biggest pet peeves and why do they bother you?
Damn, Skippy - just three? Heh. OK, lets go with 1) not saying please and thank you, 2) people talking on their cell phones in shared spaces like busses, subways, and restaurants, and 3) pushing past instead of saying excuse me. All three have to do with simple courtesy and acknowledging that we share space, and this is only really going to work if we all agree to follow a simple set of basic courtesies.

3. If you could fix dinner for anyone, living or dead, who would fix dinner for, what would you make, and why?
My paternal grandmother, Anna Kalwat. I never really knew her, and I truly regret that. I have so many questions about her life; I'd give a great deal to be able to sit and talk with her. For dinner I'd try my hand at stuffed cabbage and noodle kugel served with her favorite Manischewitz kosher wine. It wouldn't be as good as she could make it, but I'd try my best to honor her.

4. If you could become proficient at a weapon what would it be and why?
Well, thanks to crappy vision and intention tremors I can't think of any weapon with which I could gain proficiency :) But if I could overcome those two things, I'd like to become proficient with a rifle. I went to a gun range once and had a grand time banging away at targets with a .38, but I think a rifle would be more practical. I really can't see myself ever killing anything, but I've enjoyed archery and target shooting. My mom used to go skeet shooting with her friends when she was young, and that always sounded like fun. And if push came to shove, I think that having a proficiency with a defensive weapon is not a bad thing to have.

5. Do you have recurring dreams or dream images? What are they?
Oh yeah. The big one is looking through windows. Usually I'll be looking at something truly terrifying to me: some kind of carnage or natural disaster. Ghouls. Yeah, that was a fun night. That is my personal message me to figure out what is scaring me that I'm not acknowledging. I don't get that one as often as I did when I was younger. The two most recurrent ones nowadays are 1) using a public toilet that is only partially enclosed - say from the waist down - or has no door (this has to do with privacy issues), and 2) struggling to get into clothes that are wet or tangled or too small. Lots of frustration in that one.

6. What makes a good movie in your opinion? You can list both elements or examples or both.
Character, character, and more character. Great dialogue. Great acting. I don't need action. In fact I hate chase scenes, fight scenes, and things blowing up. If a director throws any of that in, it had damn well better be in support of the story rather than the main point of the story. I like talky movies. I like long takes.

7. Have you ever had a supernatural experience? What was it?
Yes, I have. My mother and I took care of her sister Verna when she was dying of cancer; she was my favorite aunt and my godmother. We were very close. The night she died, all of us heard a knocking sound that traveled completely around the outside of the house, and our dog started howling. Our house was small, but it was built into the side of a hill: the back of the house was two stories up, with the basement being the first floor - no one could have been walking around the house knocking on it. We all thought it was my aunt. I also spent the night in a haunted house; just the two of us were there, but we both clearly heard a bell ringing in another room; it was the kind of bell that someone would use to summon a servant. It wasn't scary at all, thankfully.

8. What is your favorite journey?
I'm not sure what this means. Is it meant literally or figuratively? Literally, my favorite journey is driving the New England mountains in full autumn. Figuratively it's the journey of self-discovery through introspection. I'm still working on that :)

9. If you had a theme song, what would it be and why?
Ha! Well, you know, it should probably be a medley of show tunes - something for every occasion. I'd have to go with Bruce Springsteen's Thunder Road simply for these lyrics:

Hey, what else can we do now?
Except roll down the window
And let the wind blow back your hair
Well, the night's busted open
These two lanes will take us anywhere

It's a very personal reference for me full of exhilaration and hope and movement, all tied up with my great love of driving and exploring and freedom.

10. What is your favorite place (city, state, country, building, park, etc.) and why?
Mount Auburn Cemetery in Cambridge and Watertown, MA. I spent a lot of hours there when I lived in the Boston area. It's beautiful year round, and it's a wonderful place to walk, take photos, explore, or just sit and read. Plus it's huge. I still haven't seen all of it.

11. What is your favorite thing about yourself?
I like myself. I don't like or even understand everything that I do, but I'm trying to figure out how to do better. And sometimes I succeed at that. But even when I don't, I don't give up trying. And I like that about myself.

I don't think that there are eleven people left who read my journal, so here's the deal: If you'd like to answer these questions, too, please do; I'd love to read your answers.
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