So Many Intrusive Questions!
I recently came into a book called 4,000 Questions For Getting To Know Anyone and Everyone. I'm gonna try to answer all 4,000 of them, 15 at a time. Your feedback would really help this project. Answer one or two for yourself, okay?
1. Where did you grow up?
Grow p? Have I? Okay... I lived for almost 20 years in the same house, a rental, in Ventura, CA—a fairly small, kind of sleepy beach town. When my parents finally bought and moved to Palmdale, CA, I did some of my growing up there, too. From the beach to the desert, and both had a lot of impact on me.
2. If you only had one quarter, who would you call?
For a few years before I was first murdered, I'd have answered "Darrell" (Darrell John Coleman, a friend I've written about in this blog and the closest friend I ever had). But for the vast majority of my life, before her death in 2012, I'd have said Mom. Now, I don't know. I feel very alone.
3. As a child, were you closer to your mother or father?
Depends on the situation, but I was very close—and I'd say especially close—to both. But it was different with each.
4. What troubles did you have with your parents?
Like most people, many troubles. And yes, less than most, I think. I definitely fought a lot with both—that is, we yelled at each other (or Mom and I yelled at each other; Dad rarely yelled even if I did). But there was never any lack of love. The truth is, I think I had just about the best parents possible. For sure, I wasn't raised like most kids, and I hope future questions will let me expand on that.
5. Anything can be fun if you want it to be—agree or disagree?
VERY reluctantly, I think I have to agree. But more importantly, I think we should not want to make everything gun. I think Zack de la Rocha from Rage Against the Machine had it right, "Anger is a gift." At least, sometimes. And I doubt we can be sufficiently angry about terrible injustices if we are able and willing to make anything fun. It's a recipe for complacency, and complacency is the sail for suffering. Fun suffering?
6. What things can you do with your eyes closed?
Sleep, mostly. :) Nah, I dunno. I guess I can balance on and walk across almost anything. Though not with my eyes literally close. I can't even turn my head and go in a straight line. Something wacky about my equilibrium, I guess. Also, I can do almost any bike maintenance while hardly thinking about it.
7. How often have you fallen in love?
Often, at least relative to how little I've been allowed to live. I first "fell in love" when I was 14 with someone I met at the Mirage in Las Vegas. I didn't even know it was love until I realized I was heartbroken from separation on the way home, and for weeks after. Since then, I've learned that my capacity for love is essentially boundless, and I've fallen at least five times in the nine years I've lived since that first time. No, at least six times. Seven?
8. Do you prefer a peaceful or hectic life?
I think both have their good points. But if I have to choose one, I guess I can pretty confidently say I prefer peacefulness.
9. If an activity does not result in progress toward a goal, is it a waste of time?
What a stupid, unfortunate question. :( I'm sad that so many people take it seriously. Of course it's not a waste of time. Our obsession with goals and progress seems to me a much worse waste.
10. Do you question conventional wisdom and authority?
Ha ha. Conventional wisdom, yes. I question it all the time. Authority, no. There is no question—I reject it completely. I don't mean the authority of expertise from experience. I mean the "authority" that pretends to legitimize the exercise of power by some over others.
11. Of what ideas and lifestyles are you less or more tolerant of now than when you were younger?
When I was younger, I bought much more into the idea of some people having much less "right" to help from society, where today I believe we all owe compassion and care to one another without regard to whatever we might conceive of as "merit." And today I have absolutely no patience or tolerance for the unapologetic harm or unhappiness under the guise of "just doing my job." No job should be predicated on damaging others. And if it is, no one should do it.
12. How would you like to influence people's minds?
I'd like to encourage people to be courageous in the face of power and popular prejudice. And I wish I could cause people to adopt a more expansive understanding and valuation of happiness. Happiness is important. It may be the only thing that really matters.
13. What's the most exciting thing you've ever done on a dare?
Honestly, I don't remember ever doing anything on a dare that I wasn't already confident in and comfortable with. Peer pressure has never been my problem.
14. Do you believe people are basically lazy or hardworking, and why?
This is another painfully stupid question like #9. Lazy is overloaded with value judgment, and if humans weren't fundamentally hardworking (another deeply subjective word, but I mean cooperative and focused on survival), then we wouldn't even be here to debate it.
15. What is sacred?
Life and dignity.
First 15 down, 3,985 to go! :P
How would you answer some of these?
I'd like to get to know you a little, too!
Peace Day Resist Aunts
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