It's the end of the world as we know it...

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15 More Things I'd Answer If I Were Asked (15-30)

Because I’m having fun (?) challenging myself and making myself think about things that could never happen (as a friend pointed out to me), and because I don’t have time right now to expand on how the end of the world as we know it as already occurred (Bush ‘00) and that we are waiting for the end of the world as we didn't know it (Bush ‘04?) (as such a serious topic deserves due consideration), and because I don’t have time to talk about the brilliance that is Tocqeville right now (which is what I really want to do as he has had my attention all day for no apparent reason), I continue with my questions.

16. If at birth, you could select the profession you child would eventually pursue, would you do so? Can I make them be a left handed pitcher for the Cleveland Indians?? As tempting as that might be, this I know that the answer would be no. Absolutely not. I’m too much a free spirit to want that done to me, I would rather die of thirst than be forced to drink a beverage of someone else’s choosing (ha! You all thought it was than to drink from the cup of mediocrity, huh?) and so, I can’t do that to someone else. Especially someone I love. (Ok, I’m presupposing that I’m going to love my child. I don’t find this to be a flaw in my answer though.) Can you imagine some parents wanting their children to be successful X or Y, as if that somehow validates their life. And all the parents who want their kids to be the president - how many presidents do we need?? Or actors? Who is going to look at their child and say, "I want you to be a janitor. I want you to be a garbage collector? I want you to sweep wrappers and scrape gum off the cement. Yet as surely as we need presidents and actors and sports stars and doctors and lawyers, we need garbage collectors and janitors.

17. Would you be willing to become extremely ugly physically if it meant you would live for 1,000 years at any physical age you choose? 1,000 years? Hmm...I’m obsessed with vampires. Vampires are cool, in part because they live forever. (Like how I presume that vampires exist?) And this is any physical age, so I don’t have to be old and forgetting. That is getting tempting. But is 1,000 years even long enough to do all the things that you want to do and see all the places you want to see in life? Oh, and then there is that ugly thing. Not that I’m a prom princess or anything, but the simple fact is, people stare at but don’t look at ugly people. How many times do people walk by a homeless person? An albino (I've only seen once)? Someone horribly disfigured in a fire? You are an awful kind of invisible then. Am I strong enough to be stared at but invisible and ignored for 1,000 years? Probably not. So no. Even for the promise of the chance to do more and see more than life gives us a chance to.

18. If you could wake up tomorrow having gained any one ability or quality, what would it be? Geesh. As for ability, I’m torn between the altruistic ability to heal anyone of any disease and the selfish ability to read minds so no more questioning: "what are they thinking right now?" Many of you probably thought I’d say defy gravity, but since I don’t believe that gravity exists anyway, I didn’t need to. As for one quality, I suppose that being a better person is way too each and much too vague. Hmm...which of my multitude of vices would I most readily give up? There are so many to choose from...trusting people, opening up, pride, envy, jealousy, paying closer attention to other people’s problems and pain (especially those on the street who I don’t know). I honestly can’t say that any one of them is any worse than any others. They are all pretty limiting in my quest to be a better person. Or qualities that would make me happier? More creative, more artistic, more coordinated (I’d KILL to go through a day only walking into the wall once). I’d say the ability to look at life as if it were all new again and forever.

19. You have the chance to meet someone with whom you can have the most satisfying stuff imaginable - the stuff of dreams. Sadly, you know that in six months the person will die. Knowing the pain that would follow, would you still want to meet the person and fall in love? What if you knew that your lover would not die, but instead would betray you? Ok, the second question is probably because most people would say yes to the first one. I’m not so sure that I would. I mean, I’d like to think that I would. But I’d often like to thing great things about myself. From The Dance, one of my favorite nostalgic songs, "I’m glad I didn’t know the way it all would end, the way it all would go. Our lives are better left to chance, I could have missed the pain, but I’d have had to miss the dance." If I didn’t know that would happen, and I had the six months and then boom - then it’s just part of the pain that we have to deal with in life. It’s expected in its unexpectedness. But if I know how things will end, and it’s not good, would I honestly walk into that, eyes wide open? The part of me that wants to believe that I’m a better person than I know I am says, "of course." The obnoxious part of me that is weak and constantly afraid of getting hurt is poking me with a stick every time I start to say yes, mocking me. So maybe not. It would take real courage, and I’m not sure I have that. Moreover, the first several months, everyone is on their best behavior. I would never know if that was the real person or the "best behavior" person, and then what if I’d be comparing everyone for the rest of my life to someone who never existed? As for the second one, if I were to be betrayed, definitely not. When I get betrayed (how over the top soap opera-y) it makes me question whether anything that occurred was real, or whether it was fake or just the moment or brilliant acting. So to know that it would end in betrayal, I’d question everything the entire time. He’s say, "it’s nice outside today" and I’d not even be able to believe that, even though the sun was shining and there wasn’t a cloud in the sky. So definitely no to that one. Even for a dream period.

20. If you knew of a way to use your estate, following your death, to greatly benefit humanity, would you do it and leave only a minimal amount to your family? Absolutely. I would definitely leave it to others if it could benefit. I’m not one of those people who thinks that you have any responsibility to leave things to your family. You are what YOU make of yourself, not what others leave you. Therefore, what I accumulate in my lifetime, that doesn’t mean that it belong to my children. They have no right to is. And if it does better good somewhere else, I’d want to do that. Not to have one lasting impression on the world, but because it’s only right. Above else, I want to do things that are right in the world.

21. Do you prefer being around men or women? Do your closest friends tend to be men or women? It's not a "preference," but my closest friends are almost all women. Mostly people who have known me for years and years and years. Though two of my favorite people in the world have been men - and not for the romance but because they were both...brilliantly weird. It’s definitely a different dynamic. It’s like When Harry Met Sally. The sex thing is always out there, even when it’s not out there. It’s always just underneath and hidden, but there. Like the sun on a cloudy day. It's not there, but you know that it's there somewhere and could come out later. But I don’t think that means that it’s any worse. Just different. I prefer being around anyone who isn't going to try to change me into a Stepford Wife. Or a lawyer. Sadly, that discounts most of the people in the world. :( 

22. If you could use a voodoo doll to hurt anyone you chose, would you? Do people like Osama count? I am slightly ashamed to admit that I can be a vengeful soul. And actually, this again gets frightening b/c if my Greek temper comes out, I’d break someone’s legs and then realize, "oops, I didn’t *really* mean to do that. I have been known to act first and think later. So I’d rather not have the power to do so, because I’m not sure I’d have the responsibility to keep myself in line.

23. While on a trip to another city, your spouse (or lover) meets and spends a night with an exciting stranger. Given that they will never meet again, and that you will not otherwise learn of the incident, would you want your partner to tell you about it? If roles were reversed, would you reveal what you had done? Damn. I’ve actually thought about this before, in a "maybe before I get married we decide whether we are going to talk about any affairs or whether we are going to keep them quiet." How cynical am I? I read in some magazine that like 72% of spouses have an affair, and conclude that means that my spouse or I or both will and think about what the plan will be in the aftermath. Can we say, "don't trust?") If there was no way that I would ever find out, part of me says that I don’t want to know about it. It will just make it so that I can never really feel secure and trust him again. The problem is, how often do secrets stay secret? The other side of me says that if the roles were reversed, I’d want to tell b/c I couldn’t keep it in, the guilt would get to me. So explain that one to me. Same question, and two different answers depending on my role in this. Questions like this make me not like myself very much.

24. Are there people you envy enough to want to trade lives with them? Who are they? I am sure that I’ve envied things that some people have, but I don’t think that I’ve ever wanted to literally trade lives with someone. There are things like, "I wish that I had her hair or his career" or something like that, but they are not things I’d be willing to give up my family and friends for. Things that I’d be willing to even give up my cats for. So I guess that means that I can’t totally hate my life, right? ;-)

25. For an all-expense paid, one-week vacation anywhere in the world, would you be willing to kill a beautiful butterfly by pulling off its wings? What about stepping on a cockroach? I could not kill the butterfly, and I could kill the cockroach, and yes, that makes me bad. Because part o the reason that I could not kill the butterfly is b/c it’s beautiful, and that I could kill the cockroach is because it’s ugly and scary. To be fair, I also would not want to because pulling off the wings seems so cruel, like torture, while stepping on a cockroach doesn’t seem to have the same torturefulness to it. So it’s not only the beauty. An ant is not beautiful, and whenever there is an ant in my house, I get a piece of paper and try to get him outside rather than squish it or flush it. So there is something to be said that because of the manner in which I’d have to kill it. And because I’m scared of cockroaches. But at the end of the day, that’s probably more a red herring, because I did note that the butterfly is beautiful and the cockroach is not. And I’ve come to realize that I should stop answering these questions b/c then all my badness comes across. That’s not fun. You don’t want everyone in the world to have the ability to realize that you are not a good person.

26. Would you be willing to murder an innocent person if it would end hunger in the world? Yes. I would be willing to. If it were someone I didn’t know or was only a mere acquaintance with, the decision would be made before I even had to consider it. I have never thought of myself as an "end justify the means" kind of girl, but I guess that I am. At least when the scale is so easily tilted. One death saves millions and millions of deaths...each yet. In fact, I would easily give up my life. The hard part comes if it were one of my close friends, or my children, or family, that would be harder. I’d like to think that I ultimately would. And unlike some of the other things, this isn’t just what I’d like to think I could be, I’m pretty sure that I would do this. Though afterwards I might be despondent and then kill myself in my guilt. But I think that in this situation, the scale is way too heavily tilted towards the obvious - you better do what you can to make the world a better place - and there is not one single person who I can say without a doubt will save millions of lives in some way, inventing a cure for cancer or curing world hunger. We all have that possibility, yes - but would you trade that possibility in one person for the definiteness that it will be cured. (and her total number of friends dwindles to zero...)

27. If God appeared to you in a series of vivid and moving dreams and told you to leave everything behind, travel alone to the Red See and become a fisherman, what would you do? What if you were told to sacrifice your child? I know that it’s God for a fact, or do I also wonder whether I’m going crazy? Because if I’m having Godly dreams, I probably first thing that I’ve lost a few screws. How do I know that I shouldn’t be in a room with rubber walls? If I knew that it was God, then I’d be in a bind, b/c I don’t want to be alone forever and ever, and fishing bores me b/c you have to be so quiet and all that stuff, and we all know that I can’t be quiet. But if I knew that God was telling me to be a fisherman, and it wasn’t me going crazy, I’m not sure that I could refuse to be a fisherman just because I don’t like fishing. I don’t understand why things happen, but I trust that they happen for a reason. As for sacrificing my child...I’d probably demand why. And God would probably refuse to answer. And then I’d be torn, doing something I didn’t understand merely because I was told to. And I’m not sure that I could be Abraham and blindly follow.

28. What is your most treasured memory? I have so many. The first time camping and boiling water in an empty beer can over the fire. The first time skiing and not knowing how to stop so steering myself into a class. The first time water skiing and not knowing that you were supposed to let go of the rope and clinging for dear life as I was like a punching bag and the water was like Mike Tyson in his prime. The first (and only, so far) time skydiving and just seeing how beautiful everything was up there. In Rome when I was walking through the Colosseum and sticking my hand in Bocca della verità (and wondering whether it was going to come off.) In Greece...well, everything in Greece, actually. In The Cave where we would stand up and sing "HERE WE ARE, BORN TO BE KINGS" every time that Highlander came on. Playing soccer with aluminum cans in parking lots before baseball games while tailgating. The first time I fell in love and the first time I went to New Mexico, neither of which I’ve actually ever done and both of which I plan to do.

29. Have you ever hated anyone? If so, why and for how long? I haven’t ever really and truly hated hated anyone that I’ve known. I’m very reactionary, but I don’t hold grudges, no matter how badly I’ve been hurt or someone I love has been hurt. And it’s not a mature thing, or a "try walking in their shoes" thing. It’s just that I can’t really hate someone, no matter the sin. I do have lots of "ugh" people, but not true hate. That’s way too much energy.

30. Would you rather be given $10,000 for your own use or $100,000 to give anonymously to strangers? What if you could keep $1,000,000 or give away $20,000,000? I’d give away the $1,000,000, because $10,000 just isn’t that much and there is so much more that can be done by giving it away. Now that there is $1,000,000 as an options as well, and that is a considerable amount, it’s harder, but I still think I’d give it away. I’d start with my grandparents (yes, I realize it’s anonymous, the point isn’t that they know it’s from me, or else that stubborn Greek man would never take it) and other people I know who need the money, then charities that I support, starting with animal shelters and orphanages, and then to my college to build a new dorm, "Anonymous Hall." Those are things I’d do with my money if I had it anyway.


  • At 12:53 PM, Blogger Curtis said…

    "So explain that one to me. Same question, and two different answers depending on my role in this. Questions like this make me not like myself very much."

    Well, in both situations you want what will make you happiest. You wouldn't want to know about his affair because it would be hurtful and you might not be able to trust him again. If you had the affair you would eventually want to tell because it would eat up inside you.

    I don't think you should feel bad for thinking of the answer that way. It seems like a perfectly natural response, which is part of why affairs are so destructive. Most decent people couldn't keep something like that in. I'm sure some people would say that a decent person wouldn't have an affair, but I don't think that's true. Once I'm married, I'd hate to either find myself in an affair or find out my wife is having one. Scary question!


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