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Where I accept High Heels & Training Wheel’s Challenge

by John on January 23rd, 2014

Just yesterday, I was thinking “I really should figure out how I can ensure that I’m posting here, at least once or twice a week.” The problem? Finding something that’s post-worthy, that I want to write about, when I have time to write about it. Just as I finished said thought, though, one of my favorite bloggers, Sara from High Heels and Training Wheels tagged me in a tweet where she challenges me to complete the same challenge that she completed on her blog.


The rules of said challenge:

  1. Acknowledge the nominating blogger.
  2. Share 11 facts about yourself.
  3. Answer the 11 questions the nominating blogger has created for you.
  4. List 11 bloggers.
  5. Post 11 questions for the bloggers you nominate to answer, and let all the bloggers know they’ve been nominated. Don’t nominate a blogger who has nominated you.

So, without further ado, 11 random things about me:

  1. I’m tall (about 6’3″, or just shy of 2 meters), but I haven’t grown since, about, the fifth grade. I distinctly remember, in fourth grade, we had a substitute teacher. She looked at me & sent me to the principal’s office. I, being a good kid who followed instructions, just stood and walked out of the room. I got to the principal’s office & said that the substitute teacher told me to come here. They called back to the teacher to find out why I was sent. She said that a high school student was parading as a kid in her class. The secretary laughed, and the principal escorted me back to class, explaining things to the substitute. I don’t think she ever really trusted me through the full day, though.
  2. To bring in the New Year in 1999, I played with my college jazz band in the town square of Vienna, Austria. Despite it being bitterly cold, we reached an audience of approximately 20,000 people – and that was pretty cool.
  3. I started college fully intending to major in music education. My hope was to take over for the string teacher in my hometown as she retired. But, after a year, I decided that I’d probably have an easier life if my career revolved around computers, and not music, so I switched from music education to computer engineering.
  4. After years of barely playing after graduating college, I do everything possible to keep music prevalent in my life these days. Heck, there are times when I wonder if I could actually make a living as a musician, but not having a steady paycheck would absolutely drive me crazy.
  5. I try to only drink a single serving of coffee a day. However, this “single serving” is a 750 calorie concoction that pours into two travel mugs (that I drink through my way to work). 24 ounces of french-pressed espresso roast coffee, 1 scoop of whey isolate powder (vanilla flavored), 3 tablespoons of honey, 2 tablespoons of ghee1, 4 teaspoons of maca root powder, 1 tablespoon of coconut oil, 2 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar. I need to stick the concoction in a blender because there is absolutely no way that I can stir it and actually make it drinkable. But, blended together? It’s delicious & keeps me energized (and not hungry) until lunch (most days).
  6. I want to vlog more often, but there are times that my work situation doesn’t allow me to watch videos, so I know there are others who find a vlog entry from me difficult to watch — and then there is the fact that I hate the way I look/sound on video.
  7. Because everybody has different goals & missions & body limitations at the gym, I hold my tongue when I see someone doing an exercise that doesn’t really give them the benefit of the exercise they’re doing — even when that person started doing the exercise after watching my own workout routine. As I try to ensure that every movement that I make, during every workout, is as useful as possible, it’s getting more & more difficult to hold my tongue around such people.
  8. I have one tattoo and four piercings. I want more. Many more.
  9. Before having kids, if I had found myself, unexpectedly, without a job, I had planned to hike the Appalachian Trail and journal the journey. Now, if I find myself, unexpectedly, without a steady source of income, I’ll worry myself into an early grave, though I still love to hike and, as the Appalachian Trail winds through the town in which I live, I’m starting to take the kids on mini-hikes.
  10. I have a truly bizarre & absurd appreciation of B-Horror films. The more gratuitous nudity/gore, the better.
  11. I met my wife online, through Match.com – her profile was, perhaps, the geekiest possible self-advertisement. I read it, chose to pay the bare minimum membership fee to send her an introductory email, and the rest is history.

Sara’s eleven questions:

  1. Do you believe you have a purpose in this life? If so, what is it?
    Yes – I believe it’s my goal to provide dick jokes in inappropriate contexts. And to raise children who will make this world better. And, as “just a regular guy” to try to inspire greatness in others. But mostly the dick jokes.
  2. What scares you the most in life?
    Not being able to provide for my family.
  3. What is your favorite vacation spot?
    Chincoteague Island, Virginia — not necessarily for the spot (though it’s amazing), but for the experience. I’ve written about this before, but we head down, every year, with a group of 25 or so, renting several houses in close proximity to one-another. Everybody brings their own foods for breakfasts/lunches, and each family is in charge of a single dinner. I wake up early, get to the beach to do yoga with the sunrise over the Atlantic, then play with my kids in the sand & surf for hours on end, then enjoy a delicious meal, then slowly get drunk with many of my best friends before calling it a night. For a week. It’s magical.
  4. What is your favorite way to unwind?
    I sit down in front of a piano & “just play” until my blood pressure lowers and I feel more centered. If I don’t have a piano at my disposal, I’ll run, or lift weights, or go hiking.
  5. What’s your home decorating style?
    Messy & cluttered & “let’s hope the strewn about laundry isn’t soiled.” Seriously, Duffy is a saint for putting up with me.
  6. What’s a favorite childhood memory?
    I’m not usually a fan of linking to prior posts, but I wrote about this in detail: Walking the Charles Bridge in Prague shortly after my grandfather’s death.
  7. If money wasn’t an issue would you want a bigger home, smaller home, or stay where you are living now?
    This is, actually, something that I think of, often. If I had a great windfall of money, I’d stay right where I am, but make some serious improvements to my current house (take out the porch, putting in a patio, do some serious landscaping, replace the outdoor shed, double the size of the master bathroom by cutting into the master bedroom, new floors anywhere that we haven’t already replaced the floors, new cabinets in the kitchen, put in an endless-pool). I’d also really, really like a modest vacation home close to the shore that had internet & a piano.
  8. What was your favorite age? Why?
    Does this mean chronological age, of myself? Or ‘time period’? If the prior, I’d actually say “right now.” My kids are growing & learning every day . . . while they, regularly, drive me crazy, I love them more every day. My job situation leaves a lot to be desired, but it’s steady, and it allows me to get lots of time with those kids, and lots of time to play music. If the latter? I think I’d have enjoyed living in the Romantic Age. Though I often wonder, at my height/body type, what life would have been like as a warrior in the height Ancient Rome.
  9. What’s a guilty pleasure?
    As I wrote above, B-Horror flicks with lots of boobs. I am not ashamed.
  10. What’s the most spontaneous thing you’ve ever done?
    You know, I, simply, don’t do a lot of things spontaneously. It might be, soon after breaking up with my fiance, as I was living in Baltimore, by myself, just going out & buying a fish tank. Because I thought it’d be fun.
  11. Why do you blog?
    Because I work better when my thoughts are organized, and blogging, even my silly bullet-point posts, makes me sit down and organize my thoughts.

Eleven bloggers that I want to see more from:

  1. Mommy Undressed
  2. Libelletage
  3. Smedette
  4. Best of Fates
  5. Julie Gardner
  6. Crowning Victoria
  7. Baby Feet
  8. The Flying Chalupa
  9. Dances With Chaos
  10. Mom Got Blog
  11. Sure D, It’s All Good

And, lastly, my eleven questions:

  1. If you could have the ability to fly or the ability to turn invisible, which would you choose? And how quickly would you visit a locker room of your preferred-to-look-at sex once you became invisible?
  2. If someone invented a TARDIS-like machine, allowing you to travel to any place/time, but there was only a 50% chance that you could return to the present time/place (there is 100% assuredness that you’ll be transported to your intended time/place, but if you could not return, you would be forced to live in your new time/place from that point forward, unless someone were to show up with another space/timey-wimey machine – but now we’re getting into the absurd), would you take a trip? If so, to where/when would you travel?
  3. Would you rather be famous for a life’s work, but have said work be lost to time (here, I’m thinking of something like performing the Macarena or Who Let the Dogs Out), or to complete a work that would receive little notice during your lifetime, but live on for the ages as a masterpiece?
  4. If a kind benefactor were to show up & offer to cover your current bills and fund your education to provide you a new line of work, would you take the benefactor up on the offer? What would you study to become?
  5. If you could offer one piece of advice to your 16-year-old self, what would that be?
  6. If you could deliver one message to your 87-year-old self, what would that be?
  7. It turns out that someone managed to tap into your mind & recorded your dirtiest daydream, selling the rights to said daydream to a pornographic movie producer. That person will be filming a pornographic movie from it. Only you & the daydream recorder will be able to trace you as the content-provider of your daydream. However, you must provide a name for the writing credits – what name do you provide?
  8. If you won the showcase showdown on the Price Is Right, and it included an “all expenses paid” trip, to where would you prefer that trip be?
  9. Your receive a fancy, wax-sealed, parchment envelope where your eldest child’s name and description of the location of his/her bedroom in relation to the house is written on said child’s eleventh birthday. What thoughts run through your mind?
  10. If you could magically sculpt your body to match someone else’s, while retaining your face, who would you chose as your new physique? Answer in the form of a haiku.
  11. The Earth receives word that an alien race is coming and anticipates making contact on March 1, 2021. There is no hint as to the intentions of the visit, and the visitors made it clear that they would not be able to submit another transmission prior to arrival. Does this news change the way you live your life? How so?

  12. 1 Clarified butter, or, basically, butter that has been separated between fat & solids and the solids removed . . . in short, I am taking only the fat from butter.
4 Comments
  1. Oh dear, I don’t know which is more of a challenge for me, answering the questions or tag 11 other bloggers. This is going to take some time.

    • It just so happens that my list of “I absolutely must read” bloggers, who don’t post every day and/or appear to have no issues finding audience happened to be, precisely 11 bloggers long. So that made it a bit easy for me :-)

  2. I second what Brandi said, 11 people? I don’t think 11 people read my blog. Ha ha.

    That’s interesting that you met your wife online. So many people meet that way these days.

    • It’s funny – I don’t know if I’d recommend people meet that way now . . . it happened that we started dating at the infancy of online dating, so it kind of worked out. I don’t know what online personals are like now, but it seems like a far more complex online world than the one where I paid $4 to be allowed to email members for a week.

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