I've been tagged so many times in that "25 Things About You" Facebook meme that I decided I'd put twice the effort into it. So here goes:
1) I don't remember what my earliest memory is.
2) I didn't get off the bus after my first day of kindergarten. I thought the bus driver would drop me off in front of my house. When I was the last kid left on the bus, he had to take me back to the corner where I was supposed to get off, and my mother was still patiently waiting for the bus to come back.
3) I don't think my mom was too worried; she saw me wave to her when I didn't get off the bus the first time.
4) I moved halfway through kindergarten. At my new school, I spent half of my time in a first-grade classroom. When I started first grade, I spent half the day in a second-grade classroom for about a month. Then it was decided to just keep me in second-grade all day.
5) As a result, I graduated from high school before I could drive (3 days shy of my 17th birthday), and from college before I could buy alcohol (13 days shy of my 21st birthday).
6) Also as a result, I lucked out in fourth grade, when our tiny school became so crowded that it was decided that fourth-, fifth-, and sixth-graders would only go to school for four hours a day, in alternate shifts. That's when I became a "latchkey kid". I did fine; I still think that eight-year-olds are perfectly capable of being left home alone.
7) And while all my classmates are turning 40 this year, I'm not!
8) I wasn't one of the "popular" kids, but I wasn't unpopular, either. I think I was well-liked.
9) I never went through a "girls are icky" phase. I wasn't shy around girls, but I was painfully shy about asking them out. My list of unrequited crushes is painfully long. I went to every junior high school dance, and spent nearly every minute with my back against the wall mustering up the courage to ask some girl to dance, but only ever mustered up the courage once. I think I was too nervous to say anything to her while we danced, and after we danced, too.
10) As far back as I can remember, my younger brother has been as big or bigger than me. I got used to being mistaken for the younger brother myself, though I never much liked it. The only other person I know who had a bigger younger brother growing up is Chris on the T.V. show "Everybody Hates Chris". I feel for him.
11) I get along with my brother - and my parents and in-laws - just fine.
12) I wish my parents hadn't moved to Florida.
13) I like having a very small family. Less drama.
14) I hate bananas. The smell and the taste disgust me. It's probably the only "normal" food I can't abide. (Is Roquefort cheese a "normal" food? I can't abide that, either.)
15) I'm not a very picky eater otherwise. I feel sad for people who are picky eaters. There's too much good food out there that needs trying.
16) I was definitely not good in sports in school, but at various times I was on soccer, baseball, volleyball, and track teams. Track was my best sport; I managed to get a varsity letter in it. I probably could have been even better if I weren't so lazy (see #34 and #35).
17) I got back into running in my 30s. 4-mile to 10K are my favorite distances. I've done one half-marathon, and even though I had a decent time (1:40) and I felt good afterward, I don't quite feel the need to do a full marathon.
18) The only class I got an A+ in in college was Statistics. I don't think you need to know how many B-s and Cs I got.
19) I did get straight As in grad school. I understood the subjects better the second time around. Plus there were fewer distractions.
20) I met Sue in college; I knew pretty soon after meeting her that she was the one I was going to marry. It took a few months for me to convince her of that, though.
21) Sue and I did not live together before getting married. I think we're the only ones. We never even lived in the same state between my graduation from college and our wedding five years later.
22) I've never once tried an illegal drug. I once took a puff of a friend's (tobacco) cigarette as a lark. But I do like my alcohol.
23) I still haven't been to all 50 states. I'm missing Alaska, Oregon, Arizona, New Mexico, Kansas, Missouri, Oklahoma, and North Dakota.
24) I don't understand tattoos. Nor do I like them.
25) I'd go back to any part of my life and live it over again. There are some things I'd want to do differently, but it wouldn't be so bad if it were exactly the same.
26) Being a father is much easier than I expected it to be. Perhaps it's because we have a very easy baby. Perhaps that's because we're such good parents.
27) But as much as I love Violet, I don't regret not having a baby sooner.
28) I don't dislike cats and dogs, but I don't want any in my house. If Violet ever wants a pet - or a tattoo - then too bad for her.
29) I wish I were better at foreign languages. I'd love to be fluent in Spanish and French, but that's not going to happen unless I live in a Spanish-speaking or French-speaking city for a year.
30) I don't expect to ever live anywhere but New York, though.
31) If I were to move from New York, I'd miss my friends. But we could still keep in touch on Facebook. What I'd really miss is all the amazing food. You can't Facebook a saag gosht.
32) There are far too many places in the world I haven't been, but so far I'd say the most beautiful city in the world is Venice; my favorite building is the Old Faithful Inn in Yellowstone Park; the most breathtaking scenery I've seen is driving north from Jackson Hole, Wyoming into the Grand Tetons; and the best wildlife experience is watching the penguins come home for the night in Wilson's Prom, Australia.
33) I'm a big Peanuts fan. I'm thrilled that they're reprinting every single comic in 25 nice hardcover volumes. I'm going to buy them all in English and in French. And in Spanish, too, if it ever comes out in Spanish.
34) I took piano lessons from when I was 6 to when I was about 13. Then I played piano (and saxophone) for our high school's jazz band. You'd think I'd be better at playing the piano than I am, but I'm too lazy to practice hard enough.
35) I've always been kind of lazy and kind of a procrastinator. It's taken me weeks to get around to making this list.
36) I'm not great at remembering names and faces, probably because I have way too much of my brain given over to remembering song lyrics.
37) My favorite ice cream - the perfect ice cream - is Breyer's vanilla.
38) I'm glad I've taken so many photos over the years; there's so much I would have forgotten if I hadn't. Sometimes I wish I had taken even more photos. I'm making up for lost time now.
39) I like when people leave comments on my photos up on Flickr. Hint, hint.
40) I'd like to write a book someday, but so does everyone.
41) Everyone also wants to be in a rock band, too. I was in one. We played at friends' houses, and a bar once, but it was too hard to keep it up while we all went off to college.
42) Sadly, my chosen career has far fewer groupies. But I love that I can work from home.
43) I am a terrible drawer (as in someone who draws, not as in something that holds silverware. I guess I'm okay at holding silverware.)
44) I am an inveterate pack-rat. I save way too many things that probably don't need saving.
45) I think I'm an okay singer, but I could be wrong. I know I'm not the next American Idol.
46) I don't like my speaking voice. I cringe when I hear recordings of it.
47) I know I've been very fortunate in life. I also believe that one does make one's own luck, or at least a good part of it.
48) I grew up near the beach and I love the beach to this day. I'd go every summer weekend if I could.
49) And I'd go skiing every winter weekend if I could. I learned to ski while I was in grad school, and I immediately regretted not learning when I was younger. That will be one of the things I'd change when I go back and live my life again.
50) I'd also ask more girls to dance.