Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Memestruck V

I've been memetagged by Sara over at Disheveled. Here are the rules as given...

"Each player lists 8 facts/habits about themselves. The rules of the game are posted at the beginning before those facts/habits are listed. At the end of the post, the player then tags 8 people and posts their names, then goes to their blogs and leaves them a comment, letting them know that they have been tagged and asking them to read your blog."

I, however, am going to ignore the last part of the rules, violating the very nature of the meme, because I'm too cool for that. If you'd like to continue it on your own, consider yourself tagged.

1. When I was in the 5th grade, I embezzled over $80 from the March of Dimes. Our school's administration forced us out into the world to collect donations for the March, (though I didn't think of it in those terms at the time so it's not like my embezzlement was an act of protest, or anything). We were all supposed to take our little donation envelope and go door to door, collecting money which we were to turn in at school on a specific date. When that specific date arrived, I was genuinely home sick. I wanted to turn the money in anyway, and even brought it with me to school the next day, but because our teachers had stressed to us so many times that they couldn't take any money after the deadline had passed, I was afraid to bring up the subject because I thought they would yell at me. I investigated no further and no one ever asked me about it. After a few months of storing the money in my safe place in the bookshelf of our living room, I began spending the money, slowly, so as not to draw attention to myself. Though I have probably not yet paid it all back, I still guiltilly purchase the little March of Dimes paper shoes whenever a grocery store clerk asks if I'd like to contribute as I'm checking out.

2. Out of the 50 or 60 comics I've obtained on Free Comic Book Day, during the past three years, I don't believe I've read more than two of them. Instead, they sit in stacks or in plastic bags in my office, unread and unloved. I have no explanation for this nor, seemingly, the ability to do anything about it.

3. I have an annoying habit of purchasing new albums by artists I love and then not listening to them for years at a stretch or even listening to them enough times to give them a fair shake. Sometimes those same albums, when given a chance later, become my favorite albums by a given artist. Perhaps I'm afraid I'll be disappointed and turned off an artist. Perhaps its my collector mentality, evidenced on Free Comic Book Day, where I'm content to merely own them. Not sure. Currently I have the following albums waiting to be given a test drive: Fiona Apple's "When the Pawn..." which I listened to years ago and loved but have not heard more than a song randomly played by my mp3 player now that I own it; Barenaked Ladies "Are Me" which I've heard a couple of times, but haven't played repeatedly as I have with their others; They Might Be Giants "The Spine"; Michael Penn "Resigned"; Midnight Oil "Breathe" and "Redneck Wonderland"; Dave Matthews Band "Stand Up" which I've only heard a couple of times; Sonia Dada "Barefootsoul" and "Test Pattern" both of which I've listened to once, enjoyed, and never touched again; Subdudes "Two Beasts"; Vinx "I love my job" and "Storyteller"; and pretty much anything by David Wilcox, most of whose albums I've owned for years, have listened to and enjoyed once, and still haven't given another good shake.

4. I was quite disappointed by the final episode of the Sopranos. (MINOR SPOILERS FOLLOW.) Not so much the very end of the episode that people have complained about, which can be interpreted in a number of ways and will likely be talked about for years, but for the fact that Paulie Walnuts did not die in a horrible manner, or indeed AT ALL. Ever since the episode a few seasons back where Paulie kills one of his elderly mother's equally elderly friends because he mistakenly thinks she's got money stashed somewhere, I've been waiting for Paulie's death and have hoped that it would occur in the most horrible manner possible. I was overjoyed when he got prostate cancer last season, as that seemed like it would be a good, long, slow, horrible death for him. But he beat it! And who do they kill off? Bobby, the one character on the show that I liked as a human being and was sorry to see shackled to the likes of Janice. Oh, and they royally messed up Silvio, who, despite being pretty amoral himself, was just so cool that you really didn't mind. Paulie, however, is irredeemably evil and I so wanted to see him switch to Phil's side, get caught at it and then be beaten to death by Tony at 3 o'clock, or something equally fitting to the show's established elements. Now that I think about it, though, if Tony was indeed hit when the show went to black, it would have come from 3 o'clock. Ahhhhhh. David Chase, I think I'm on to you.

5. Vol. 1 has an end. And it will, though you might not notice right away.

6. One of my major regrets in life is trying eggnog. Each Christmas season, throughout my time on earth, I've seen people nearly break their necks running to get a cup of eggnog like it was one of the best things you could possibly drink, and I always wondered what the big deal was. I even recall, at a fairly early age, being denied eggnog by my father (likely for my own good, as it was probably spiked) and deciding thereafter not to drink the stuff on principle. I went for years turning down offered cups of eggnog, resolved to go through life without having tasted it. Then, a couple years back, at my in-laws' house, I decided that was silly and I should just try some and did. The experience was so underwhelming that I cannot for the life of me see what all those people who nearly killed themselves trying to get some were after. It was just so very bleh tasting that I cannot understand what the big deal about it is. It made me angry. I mean, if it had been even as good as drinking a cookies N cream milkshake, I could maybe see the attraction, but it just wasn't good at all. Maybe it's that people who love eggnog don't really like the eggnog so much as whatever alcohol they've spiked it with. In other words, it's a good excuse to drink hard liquor in front of the kids without them knowing about it and the reason all those people from my childhood were so happy drinking it is because they were getting wasted. That's the only thing I can think of to explain the craze. That or peer pressure.

7. On a similar topic, I am in possession of secret knowledge of the true origin behind both a fad and a grandly successful unintentional sociological experiment. See, the cafeteria of the high school I attended, (Starkville High, in Starkpatch, MS), is legendary for its chicken nuggets. The legend and resulting incidents didn't start during my time there, but during my younger sister's time there and have reportedly continued in the years since. What happened is this: in the early 1990s, on our cafeteria's chicken nugget day there were literally stampedes through the hallways escalating into riots in the lunch line due to students attempting to cut in line in order to quench their desire to stuff their gobs with mechanically separated poultry parts that much more quickly. Now, as an alumnus, I consumed many of those same nuggets myself and can report that they were nothing special and were pretty sub par for even a high school cafeteria. When I was in college, I heard of these riots and was mystified by them. I mean, who has that kind of passion about chicken nuggets? The craze over them can be explained, though, not due to their actual taste but instead to the idea of their taste as sold by a charismatic huckster named Shane McRae. Shane is an actor these days, but back then he was something of a Ferris Bueller type, beloved by pretty much any given clique you might find in a high school. He was friends with everyone from theatre nerds to jocks to goths to bandnerds to bowheads, etc. Years later, while talking to Shane and some other friends, the topic of the Chicken Nugget Riots of 1992 arose and Shane laughed and explained that he was behind it all. One day, in a class right before lunch, Shane told one of his friends that he was about to start something big; he would race to the cafeteria as though his life depended on it and tell anyone in his path to get out of said path because no one was getting in his way on chicken nugget day. And this he did. Within weeks, whenever they were posted on the menu, there were whole lines and then whole herds of students racing to wait in line to eat these phenomenally shitty chicken nuggets. And it continued for YEARS after he graduated. For all I know, it continues to this day. Shane may go on to win Academy Awards, but, if for nothing else, he has achieved immortality for the chicken nuggets.

8. My highschool cafeteria did, however, make the best Ranch dressing I've ever had and I crave it to this day.


Anonymous said...

The chicken nugget story made me laugh out loud. I'm going to have to keep an eye out for Shane MacRae in future shows.

crsunlimited said...

The Eggnog bit may be from alcohol. However I do crave Holdaynog every year, which has more spice, and is a lot more like a milkshake then eggnog. I don't drink Alcohol, so I wouldn't know if there are any good eggnogs out there, but the stuff I get from the store is very lack luster. Try the Holidaynog. It's worth a sip.

An employee of a small town "liberry" chronicles his quest to remain sane while dealing with patrons who could star in a short-lived David Lynch television series.