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21 February, 2004

100 Things

The '100 Things About Me' meme has been particularly persistent amongst bloggers, circulating since at least 2001.  It's an interesting exercise, which I recommend to others, but it's not as easy as it seems!

1.  I dislike my given name, and never use it myself.
2.  I do respond to it.
3.  I was nearly named Robin.
4.  I'm male, but not excessively so.
5.  Most of my close friends are female.
6.  I'm not a particularly social person, but people fascinate me.
7.  The number six, and variants thereof (16, 60, etc.) keep recurring in the significant events of my life and family history.
8.  As an institution, family is unimportant to me.
9.  I do value my mother, sister and father tremendously, but as individuals, not socially-defined roles.
10.  I've had no contact with other relatives for over a decade.
11.  My self-belief is like diamond: extremely hard, but brittle.
12.  Beneath lies... well, not someone I like.
13.  I dislike bright light.
14.  I wouldn't choose to live in a hot climate. 15°C is my ideal temperature.
15.  I regard myself as British, then Welsh, then European. I'm not English!
16.  I haven't had a haircut since 1991, though I have had the ends tidied occasionally.
17.  I always tie it back in a ponytail, which reaches halfway down my back.
18.  I like long hair, on males and females.
19.  I have a beard, not because I like them but because remaining clean shaven is avoidable hassle.
20.  I don't wear a watch.
21.  I wear glasses, but only to pick out details over 20m away. It wouldn't be legal, but I could drive without them.
22.  No-one else who wears my glasses notices any effect at all.
23.  I have a metal plate and four screws in my right hand, after breaking a finger in 2003.
24.  My left little finger sometimes locks; another old break.
25.  I have a scar on my forehead, in the hairline. I don't really know how it got there.
26.  I heal very rapidly, but scar. Now I think of it, that's physically and mentally.
27.  In 1996, I climbed the highest mountain in each of Wales, England & Scotland, in aid of the Cystic Fibrosis Trust, as I'm a carrier of the gene.
28.  I'm 6'1" (1.85m) and ~11st (~70kg, or ~154lb).
29.  I have powerful legs but negligible upper-body strength i.e. a cycle-commuter with a desk job.
30.  Least favourite body part: my chest.
31.  I find it easier to think of 'least favourites' than 'favourites'.
32.  My 'favourites' change continually.
33.  My favourite words are 'schadenfreude' and 'cruft' - but ask again tomorrow.
34.  I wear black. Usually only black.
35.  Some characteristics of 'goth' apply to me; more don't.
36.  I'm a deeply private person. I'm deliberately underplaying/omitting quite major things from this list.
37.  I am an ISTP, borderline ISTJ.
38.  I'm Scorpio - sun, moon and ascendant. Really Scorpio.
39.  Empirically, I believe the three birth signs (not just sun sign) do reflect general character, but daily horoscopes are superstition.
40.  I easily get mildly car sick, but never air- or seasick.
41.  Accelerating down a runway (in a plane...) is one of my favourite experiences.
42.  I have never been on a roller coaster; never wish to.
43.  I'm uncomfortable in lifts (elevators) - scared of being trapped. I'll always take the stairs.
44.  My favourite colour, after black, is jade green.
45.  I dislike the colour orange.
46.  I can't even bear the thought of eating eggs (fried, scrambled, boiled, etc.), but have no problem with egg in cakes, pancakes, and an omelette probably wouldn't turn my stomach.
47.  I don't keep to regular mealtimes, but 10:00, 14:00 and 21:00 would be typical.
48.  I like spicy food, but not pointlessly hot.
49.  I rarely drink coffee, and only black; within an hour I can smell it in my skin.
50.  I drink too much tea.
51.  Coke, never Pepsi or other brands.
52.  I don't drink alcohol. I dislike intoxication and hangovers, and there's no alcoholic drink I really like.
53.  I prefer photorealism to impressionism.
54.  Not even I can read my 'joined up' handwriting, unless I use all-capitals.
55.  I painted 28mm fantasy & sci-fi miniatures ('toy soldiers') for over twenty years.
56.  I was a finalist in international competitions (the Golden Demon awards) 1988-2002.
57.  I won 'best of category' every year 1993-2001 - that's nine Golden Demons, one Silver, one Bronze.
58.  In 1996 I won outright - the Demon Slayer Sword.
59.  I also sculpt the miniatures, and have done so professionally, freelance.
60.  I have no interest in the associated RPGs or wargames, at least not since school.
61.  I enjoy some sci-fi films & books, mainly cyberpunk. Few sci-fi TV series, though.
62.  I don't like many 'fantasy' novels, and no 'fantasy' films (I'm talking about LOTR...).
63.  I enjoyed university so much I went straight on to a PhD. Big mistake.
64.  I'm a scientist by education and artist by inclination, so in practice I fall somewhere between the two.
65.  I am a web designer/administrator for a top-ten UK university.
66.  Before that, I designed forty commercial websites in eleven months.
67.  Before that, I taught myself html.
68.  I have no directly-relevant formal qualifications for my job.
69.  I designed and maintain the Jethro Tull Tour History, but that's just a sideline - I'm no 'train spotter'.
70.  The first album I bought was 'Kings Of The Wild Frontier' by Adam And The Ants, on tape, in 1980 (aged nine).
71.  The second was 'Live After Death', by Iron Maiden, on LP, in about 1987.
72.  Until 1990, I had little interest in music.
73.  Now I have at least 1000 CDs.
74.  Jethro Tull is not my favourite band.
75.  I'm not materialistic. Books and CDs, maybe, but that's words & music. I don't care about cars, etc.
76.  I have had a driving licence for almost 15 years, but no car.
77.  I cycle everywhere within 10 miles, and use the train to go further, unless with car-owning friends or in a rented van.
78.  I'm a cyclist, but not a cycling activist. I want equality, not special treatment.
79.  I keep my house tidy, but mainly by not using much of it.
80.  I own my own house. I don't want to.
81.  For eighteen of my first nineteen years I lived in the same house.
82.  I've had eight more permanent addresses since then.
83.  I live in Lancaster, UK; Helen lives in Warszawa, Poland. We manage.
84.  No marriage, no children, no thanks.
85.  My life is compartmentalised: home/work/Helen/friends/mother/sister/father, with little overlap.
86.  I can walk in high heels. (Eh?)
87.  Team sports bore me. I can respect the skills, but why move balls from place to place?
88.  I struggle to remember precise details from books I've read even recently.
89.  I am bad at anagrams, including Scrabble. I think in words, not letters.
90.  Of the dreams I remember, almost all are lucid.
91.  I watch very little TV.
92.  I don't dance.
93.  I have no heroes.
94.  Lace doesn't do it for me.
95.  PVC does.
96.  I intensely dislike whistling.
97.  Intolerance annoys me. That's not political correctness, just common decency.
98.  My tolerance of others might (often correctly) be interpreted as indifference.
99.  I'm a cat person.
100.  I like dogs, but can't respect their unconditional loyalty.

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