Wednesday, May 23, 2007

I Have All the Answers

Diana, star reporter, has personally crafted me some questions as part of an interview/meme-type thing that’s currently floating around the blogosphere. I had a great time answering them!

1. In the blogosphere, you are known for several things, including your walk-abouts around Portland, Oregon. What other city would you choose to spend a day doing a walking exploration of?

Well, I was going to say San Francisco, because it’s got roller-coaster hills, interesting history and architecture, and great restaurants, and I’ve never been there. Then I realized that there are tons of cities that meet these requirements, and I remembered that my friend P recently visited San Francisco and told me that it’s great and everything but that it doesn’t have anything that Portland doesn’t have. (This, by the way, is very typical of how we xenophobic Portlanders feel about our fair city, and I’m sure I’d have the same reaction.) Instead of really answering the question, I’m going to lame out and supply a whole list of cities I’d love to walk (in alphabetical order).

Bombay (Mumbai)
London (I never tire of walking it)
Miami Beach
New York City
San Francisco

2. You share with many enlightened ones of the Pacific Northwest an enjoyment of craft beers. Any current favorites? Which single one would you be stranded with on a deserted island?

Oh, this is an easy one. My favorite style of ale is India pale ale, or IPA, which is all about hops, hops, hops, and even more hops. I love that hoppy bitterness! If I were to be stranded on a deserted island, I’d take C-Note IPA, brewed right here in Beervana by the New Old Lompoc brewery. I believe it’s called C-Note because it has a rating of 100 on the IBU (International Bitterness Unit) scale. FYI: The scale only goes to 100.

3. You are self employed, doing freelance work instead of working for The Man. What has been the hardest part of this, aside from fretting about getting a steady flow of work?

I’ve given this question some thought and as much as I'd like to say that the hardest part is scheduling vacations, the honest and shameful answer is (despite the fact that I taped this sign up above my desk a few months ago) that I spend too much time fucking around, taking little breaks here and there to check in on blogs or look at the new offerings in my Flickr groups. The work always does get done, and I do think that in my line of work sometimes a certain amount of fucking around may be necessary to in order to churn the creative juices, but, really, I’m just rationalizing here. The problem is most acute when I'm not really under the gun--if I've got a pressing deadline, I do pull up my socks and buckle down. But what's infuriating and self-sabotaging about the fucking around that occurs when I've got a relatively light workload is that if I just applied myself I could maybe quit at 2:00 PM or something and have the rest of the day to myself. What's wrong with me?

4. Your mother and mine shared a horror of junk food. What chemically-laden, nutritionally devoid item that would make your poor mother scream, do you love to indulge in most?

Wow. I am so impressed that you remembered this obscure fact. Actually, I’m not a huge junk-food fanatic, but there was a time a few years back when I developed a mania for apple fritters. It had something to do with the fact that I lived within walking distance of three (3) bakeries that sell apple fritters. One of the bakeries actually sold a Boston cream apple fritter that was INSANE. That's right, a deep-fried fritter filled with custard cream. Can you imagine anything more deadly and delicious? How much fat was in one of those things? Interestingly and fortunately (for me, not for them) that bakery went bankrupt. The mania has gone into remission, luckily, or perhaps been replaced by a mania for iced lattes, which may be every bit as bad for my health.

5. Growing up in the Midwest, what were your girlish dreams? How did you see your life unfolding?

Girlish dreams? How far back on the girlish dream spectrum should I go? As a very little girl, I recall making some very detailed calculations and determining that I should get married at age 23. No further dreams necessary! Age 23 seemed to me, at the time, like the perfect age to get hitched—neither too young nor too old. Ha! That sure didn’t happen. A little later in life (i.e., high school), I became completely disenchanted with the Midwest and my life in general and really, really wished that I could somehow travel back in time and live in Victorian England. That didn’t happen either, surprisingly. To tell the truth, I think I basically just sort of drifted through most of my childhood and on into my 20s without any sort of real life plan. I never really knew how to answer that question: What do you want to be when you grow up? At various times the answer would have been: children’s author (fiction), librarian, hair dresser, veterinarian, ballerina, or microbiologist, but I wasn’t too sold on any of those professions and ended up majoring in English, simply because I liked to sit in a corner and read. I didn’t really have any clue about how I might use sitting in a corner and reading to get a job.

Hey, that was really fun! And now it is incumbent on me to offer to devise some custom questions for anyone who’s interested. Just let me know in the comment box if you want to be interviewed and I’ll shoot you some questions. Enquiring minds want to know!

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