The latest craze is instructive as well, but in the shadow of the great Age of Conversation, this meme is designed to build or deepen relationships we have with each other as we reveal 8 Random Things About Me. I was tagged by Ryan Barrett.
I'm struggling to come up with really good ones, because I feel like I've shared some already in various contexts online. Well, on the off chance that people haven't been paying attention, I'll repeat myself.
- In graduate school, I won a student book collecting contest sponsored by the Friends of the Libraries at Boston University. I subsequently joined the group and attended many cocktail receptions, lectures and dinners where I had the opportunity to speak with celebrities at length, including Angela Lansbury, Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex, Claire Bloom, Prince Albert II of Monaco, Roddy McDowall, Saul Bellow, Anna Russell, Michael Chiklis, Dan Rather... At the event with Prince Edward, Lauren Bacall approached me and my wife, saying she wanted to hang with "the younger people."
- I was trained classically on the accordion. Yes, I can play polkas, but I choose not to. I competed at the state and national level and took home many prizes over the years. I stopped lessons after high school - there's only so much ridicule a guy can take.
- My range of vocal impressions is fairly exhaustive; I'd be doing voice-overs on the side if anyone took me up on it (see the right column under "About Me").
- I am a clothes horse - I own over 300 neckties and 50 bow ties. In order to make it through the "rotation," at my last job, each week I celebrated "Bow Tie Monday."
- You know Booger from Revenge of the Nerds? His real name is Curtis Armstrong and he and I are friends. If he were here he'd want me to point out that he was also in Ray, Akeelah and the Bee, Moonlighting, Better Off Dead and Risky Business, he's a P.G. Wodehouse and Washington Irving scholar, and he never gets tired of being called "Booger."
- Growing up in rural Connecticut, before I was of legal age to work in typical high school jobs (supermarket, fast food joints, etc.), I spent two summers working on tobacco farms that produced cigar tobacco. The first summer was broad-leaf (the wrapper) and the second summer was shade (the filler). My parents thought it built "character." I think it made me realize I never wanted to do manual labor.
- I was a Resident Assistant on duty the night Warren Towers had to be evacuated due to toxic fumes venting up from the sealcoating of the parking garage beneath. Over 1,500 students were displaced over October 11-13, 1991, as genius contractors thought the building would be at low capacity for Columbus Day weekend, and decided to use the toluene-based chemicals.
- I am an investitured member of the Baker Street Irregulars, a literary society whose members have included Rex Stout, Christopher Morley and Isaac Asimov, and I serve as business manager of the Baker Street Journal.
Consider yourself tagged!