Friday, November 28, 2008

How many...?

Now this meme has been making the rounds the past few days. I find it interesting to go through each blogger's posting to learn a little more about him or her.

What have you done?

1. Started your own blog.
What are you reading?

2. Slept under the stars.
Several times, but I prefer a tent. Dew on the sleeping bag (or the body) can be a real chill in the wee morning hours.

3. Played in a band.
Music is a mystery to me. No ear or talent to play anything more complicated than a CD player. Yet both my kids are quite good. Go figure.

4. Visited Hawaii…no.

5. Watched a meteor shower.
Several. The most memorable would be one August night in a campground outside Yosemite National Park when the kids, wife and I lay on the picnic table and looked up through the sugar pines.

6. Given more than you can afford to charity.

7. Been to Disneyland.
Disney World counts?

8. Climbed a mountain.
Mount Washington and the Presidential Range several times.

9. Held a praying mantis.
Both the adults and as they came out of the egg case as little miniature machines of death. Kept them as pets in the classroom.

10. Sang a solo.
As a Cub Scout (age 9-10, Weblos) I sang “Tom Dooley” on amateur night at a Pack meeting.

11. Bungee jumped.
No. And you’d have to hold a gun on me to get me to even think about it. I don’t even do roller coasters.

12. Visited Paris.
Paris, New York? Never have I left North America. Never intend to.

13. Watched a lightning storm at sea.
Not quite at sea. I was on Great Bay just north of Atlantic City in a 16-foot outboard when the storm swept up from the south. Got scary when the wind kicked up and we hauled ass for the marina.

14. Taught yourself an art from scratch.
Photography, beading, drawing, fly tying…

15. Adopted a child…no.

16. Had food poisoning.

17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty.
Long time ago when they still let you go up to the torch.

18. Grown your own vegetables.
Beans, tomatoes, zucchini, cucumbers, and more. Some from seed.

19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France…no.

20. Slept on an overnight train…no.

21. Had a pillow fight.
Long, long time ago when sleeping over at the cousins’ house.

22. Hitchhiked.
Once, when my car broke down. I’ve picked up several thumbsmen and women and carried them for as much as four hours and a couple hundred miles.

23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill.
Why waste it when you’re really sick? They are “mental health” days. Keeps you from going postal.

24. Built a snow fort.
Oh, yeah! Piled the snow sprinkled it with water and then tunneled from one redoubt to another. Also built igloos. (Of course this was in the days before cable TV, computers or video games.

25. Held a lamb.
Petting zoos were made for this.

26. Gone skinny dipping.
Yeah, but it was on a fishing trip to the wilds of Quebec and all the guys needed a bath.

27. Run a marathon.
You’re kidding, right? Ever see a jogger with a smile on his face? Why subject yourself to such pain?

28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice…no.

29. Seen a total eclipse.
Freshman year at Rutgers. Easter break (?) and I stayed on campus with one or two other guys on my dorm floor. We had front row seats to the total eclipse of the moon. Did watch a partial eclipse of the sun once while teaching several classes of high school Earth Science using a telescope and solar filter. Nine times out of ten, it’s cloudy when either solar or lunar eclipses roll around.

30. Watched a sunrise or sunset.
Nothing like watching the sun rise—or set—while sitting quietly in a tree stand in the woods, or from the porch of a fishing cabin in the wilds of Quebec.

31. Hit a home run.
Little League. I was a seldom hit decent catcher who happened to get lucky one evening and knocked the stuffing out of the ball. Went 50 feet past the fence in right-center. Won the game. Mom made a strawberry shortcake with real whip cream and fresh strawberries to celebrate.

32. Been on a cruise…no.

33. Seen Niagara Falls in person.
From above on the American and Canadian sides and from the Maid of the Mists at the bottom of the falls.

34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors…no.

35. Seen an Amish community.
Several tours of Amish farms in PA. Several Amish farms are located in the vicinity of the Bolt Hole in NY. Got to keep your eyes open for the horse and buggy on the roads.

36. Taught yourself a new language.
Still working on English….

37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied.
There are months at a time I feel no need for further $$$.

38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person…no.

39. Gone rock climbing.
No. Anything steeper than a step ladder troubles me. Even a step ladder troubles me if it’s 12 feet or more. I prefer to have gravity hold me to the earth’s surface rather than trying to peel me away from terra firma.

40. Seen Michelangelo’s David…no.

41. Sung karaoke…no.

42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt.
On one of the Family Tours. We ate at the Yellowstone Lodge and then parked outside to watch the eruption. It’s spectacular but not the biggest of the geysers in the Park.

43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant…no.

44. Visited Africa…no.

45. Walked on a beach by moonlight.
Long Beach Island, NJ. Martha’s Vineyard, Mass. Bar Harbor, Maine.

46. Been transported in an ambulance.
Once. After I had torn the tendons in my ankle while practicing basketball with the faculty of the high school where I taught. We were to play an All-Star team of Mets, Jets and Giants in a week. I was on crutches.

47. Had your portrait painted.
Does a caricature count? Fund raiser at Rutgers.

48. Gone deep sea fishing.
Besides fishing for fluke, weakfish, and snapper blues in Raritan Bay, Great Bay and Barnegat Bay, I’ve been out on several party boats and charters. The charters were with Boy Scouts. Ten or so boys with their parents going after blue fish.

49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person…no.

50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris…no.

51. Gone SCUBA diving or snorkeling.
I lived in the water for three summers between seventh and eighth grade. Flippers and snorkel were used to explore the bottom of the river in which we swam…when the water was clear enough. Then there was the time I went diving for scallops off the fork of Long Island. Damn things are fast!

52. Kissed in the rain.
I’m not telling.

53. Played in the mud.
I’m male. There was a stream behind our house. ‘Nuff said. Still do from time to time as I try to change the drainage behind the Bolt Hole.

54. Gone to a drive-in theater.
Several times in the late ‘60s and early ’70s which turned out to be the waning days of their operation.

55. Been in a movie…no.

56. Visited the Great Wall of China…no.

57. Started a business…no.

58. Taken a martial arts class…no.

59. Visited Russia…no.

60. Served at a soup kitchen.
Once with a church group when I was in my teens.

61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies.
I’ve got a daughter who was in the GSA. Of course I’ve sold Girl Scout Cookies... (And my son was in the BSA so I sold lots of popcorn too.)

62. Gone whale watching.
Sat on the beach south of San Francisco looking for whales (or watching submarine races). Never saw any whales or submarines but it was fun anyway.

63. Got flowers for no reason.
Yeah, and then the Mrs. usually tells me where she wants them planted.

64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma.
I gave over a gallon and suddenly I got notified that I had Hepatitis-C. Turned out to be a false reading but even with a doctor’s note they won’t let me donate any more.

65. Gone sky diving.
You’re going to jump out of a perfectly good plane? No effing way!

66. Visited a Nazi concentration camp…no.

67. Bounced a check.
Several when either my wife or I would forget to enter a check or ATM withdrawal into the checkbook. Luckily, we had overdrawal protection and the money was automatically transferred from savings to cover the tab.

68. Flown in a helicopter…no.

69. Saved a favorite childhood toy.
Nope. Wore them all out.

70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial.
My eighth grade class trip in 1967 was to Washington, D.C. I think the Lincoln Memorial was finished by then.

71. Eaten caviar.
Never could get a taste for it. However, take the egg sacs from a mess of sunfish and fry them up and it’s sweet!

72. Pieced a quilt.
I had enough patches on a pair of jeans once that made them look like a quilt. Never spill even weak nitric acid near cotton denim. An hour later the denim is going to disintegrate.

73. Stood in Times Square.
Oh, yeah! But having done so in the early ‘70s, I’ve no interest in doing so on New Year’s Eve or at any other time.

74. Toured the Everglades.
Never went far inside. Some day when I decide to head to the Keys or Miami I’ll do it right.

75. Been fired from a job.
Quit one or two but never got fired.

76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London…no.

77. Broken a bone.
Only one. My collar bone during wrestling practice in my senior year of high school. And we didn’t even have a team.

78. Been on a speeding motorcycle…no.

79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person.
Only from the south rim. That’s the touristy side. I want to go back to see it from the north. Don’t think I’ll ever get to the bottom at age 59.

80. Published a book.
Does a middle school yearbook count? Four years as editor-in-chief.

81. Visited the Vatican…no.

82. Bought a brand new car.
Cars, trucks, vans. Almost every vehicle I’ve ever purchased was new.

83. Walked in Jerusalem…no.

84. Had your picture in the newspaper.
Yeah, a couple of times, but nothing really important…or notorious.

85. Read the entire Bible…no.

86. Visited the White House.
Eighth grade class trip was to Washington, D.C.

87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating.
Deer many, many times. Squirrels, rabbits, and lots of fish, too.

88. Had chickenpox.
Yeah and Aveno baths were THE thing for the itch.

89. Saved someone’s life.
Not that I am aware of.

90. Sat on a jury.
Several times. Guilty! Guilty! Guilty! (Don’t get pulled over with the loot of your burglary in the trunk of your car. Idiot!) I also got excused several times. Once because it involved someone with whom I felt I would sympathize and once, I assume, because the defense attorney felt I was too intelligent.

91. Met someone famous.
Couple of sports figures (see # 77) including Ed Kranepool.

92. Joined a book club.
Yeah. And a record club. Ditched them both as soon as I could.

93. Lost a loved one.
Mom and Dad are both gone. One slow and painfully with cancer, the other suddenly from heart failure. I’ll take suddenly when it’s my time, please.

94. Had a baby.
Not personally…but I was there for the two that the Mrs. whelped.

95. Seen the Alamo in person…no.

96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake.
No, but I’ve driven by it several times and visited the Wildlife Refuge along its western shores.

97. Been involved in a law suit…no.

98. Owned a cell phone.
Well, yeah!

99. Been stung by a bee.
Many, many times. Found out early that I was severely allergic to the little buggers. The second sting (and the third) came t…h...i...s close to doing me in. Got desensitized after the third sting and have since been stung by as many as 20 at one time with no effects. (Well, no serious effects. It hurt like hell for half an hour.)

100. Read an entire book in one day.
Many times. Some books are like cashews, popcorn or potato chips. Start on the bowl and you just have to finish.

How many of these have you done..?

You will note that most of the "no" responses dealt with things outside the continental US. I've never left North America and have no plans to do so. There is just so much to see and do in the US and Canada. Terry and I tried to book a trip to Hawaii two years ago but it fell through when we realized the company making the arrangements just didn't seem to care one way or the other. Europe holds no interest. The British Isles, while intriguing, are not high upon my "to do" list. I'd rather go back to Nova Scotia and New Brunswick, visit Alaska and the Yukon,and tool around the Gulf states and Texas, than get on a plane to fly over seas.


Rev. Paul said...

"I'd rather...visit Alaska..."

Come on up! I'd be happy to show you around my part of the state.

digbycounty said...

Your blog came up on my computer. How wonderful the world of computers and blogs can be! So glad to read that you'd rather stay in North America. There is indeed so much to do here! And you mention Nova Scotia. Ever been to the Digby area of Nova Scotia? Please see my blog at: and/or
Hope to see you this way or back this way soon! It's just filled with things to do here! Kathleen