There’s been a rash of “X Things About Me” nonsense going on within my ever-expanding circle of social networking friends, ((This is a term we use ever so loosely these days, “friends”. I have a lot of acquaintances on Facebook and Twitter and such—more than I ever imagined possible—but the number of true friends is pretty small. I will go on record as saying that I consider Rachel Ross, who tagged me with this list, a true friend, if for no other reason than she knows how much I love not telling the truth.)) and I admit that I recently enumerated 16 Things (and 7 Weird Things), but now they’re all wanting 25 more Things, and it’s coming to the point where I am rapidly running out of Things About Me.
Well, True Things About Me, at the very least. But at last we have something different: 25 Utter Lies About Me. Finally, a list of twenty-five seemingly random tidbits about yours truly that have one thing in common: none of them—not even the ones that sound plausible—are true.
Perhaps I ought to be posting this to Facebook, as that is where I was tagged, but I have a blog for a reason ((Ego.)) and I’m going to use it.
Truth, begone! There is no place for you here!
- When I was sixteen years old, I broke my left shoulder during a high school diving competition held at Northern Michigan University.
- My younger sisters each received a Barbie and a Ken doll for Christmas in 1985. The next day, I convinced them that I had eaten the heads off both Ken dolls. This prank backfired on me in a big way when Karen flushed both of the removeable fists from my brand new Optimus Prime down the toilet.
- I never met my real father; there is some speculation that I was conceived by midi-chlorians.
- I was thirteen when I first traveled to Japan and I have been back four times in the past twenty-two years. On the most recent trip I was there for eighteen months and taught an ESL (English as a Second Language) class. I used the Back to the Future trilogy as a training aid. When we recreated scenes from the movie in the classroom, the most coveted role was that of Doc Brown, as Christopher Lloyd is a superstar in Japan.
- I was a contestant on an episode of The Weakest Link that never aired. Jeff Stitzler, another of the contestants, suffered a fatal stroke during the taping. Each of the remaining contestants was given $5,000 and sent home. I briefly considered buying a Segway with my “winnings”, but Laura convinced me to donate the money to the National Stroke Association.
- I’d rather be golfing.
- It wasn’t until my 10-year high school reunion that my classmates revealed that they had completely fabricated the story about what happened after I passed out from drinking spiked punch at my Junior Prom. I was both angered and relieved to learn that Junior Prom was not the night I lost my virginity.
- Against her better judgment, Laura bought me a pet tarantula for my thirtieth birthday. His name is Torquemada, and he has gone AWOL twice in the past five years. We are now much more careful about taking him out of his terrarium, and he has not escaped since before Kyle was born. Kyle calls him “Tortemala”.
- I am Superman.
- I have been involved in one high-speed police chase, but I was in the back of one of the cruisers the whole time. The officer driving the cruiser joined the pursuit despite the fact that it was against regulations to do so with non-police personnel in the vehicle. I could have sued the department, but they offered to drop the felony possession charges against me if I agreed not to.
- I moved to Cleveland after my first marriage fell apart. For the first three years after the divorce, my ex-wife and I were not on speaking terms, but after I took responsibility for the fire and agreed to weekly therapy sessions with an anger management counselor, we formed what could be called a tentative friendship. If I could do it all over again, I wouldn’t change the fact that we’re no longer married, but I’d definitely change the circumstances surrounding the breakup.
- I do 30 minutes of yoga every morning.
- My brothers and I have a running contest in which we call our mother and pretend to be each other and see how long before she realizes which of her sons she is actually talking to. The current record is measured not in minutes, but in number of consecutive calls. My oldest brother, over a series of seven phone calls, convinced my mother that Laura was pregnant with twins last summer. We are all dreading the day when caller ID becomes available in the Upper Peninsula, as it will likely mean the end of the game.
- I was born with a kink in my urethra. As a result, I am physically incapable of urinating while standing up.
- I invented the Internet.
- My first car was a 1982 Dodge Aries, which currently resides under sixteen feet of water. I was being stupid in late December of 1990 when the ice on the pond in my parents’ backyard cracked. I managed to get out of the car before it went under, and barely got my feet wet, but I wasn’t quick enough to save anything in the car, including all of my cassettes. There was some talk of retrieving the car, but it was deemed too expensive so we left it there.
- I actually have an Uncle Sam, who is married to a woman named Samantha, so I have an Aunt Sam, too. Though they were both born in October (15th and 23rd, respectively), they celebrate their birthdays on the 4th of July.
- I am from the future.
- I have eaten the same breakfast—two eggs over easy, two pieces of whole wheat toast with raspberry preserves, three slices of bacon and a glass of orange juice—every Saturday morning since October of 1996. Laura and I always play three games of canasta over breakfast on Saturday; the loser does the dishes for the next week.
- I was invited to join a secret society in college, but I turned them down.
- I lost fifty-three pounds on NutriSystem.
- I was kicked out of the Boy Scouts because much of what I did while trying to get my Coin Collecting merit badge was technically theft. My grandfather was extremely cool about the whole thing, and told me a very interesting story about how he came to possess the coins in the first place. He would have been kicked out of the Boy Scouts, too.
- I played keyboards in a band called “Milquetoast Breakfast”. We played only one gig, which ended when our guitarist, Greg Felders, over-tightened his high E-string and it snapped. The audience thought Greg’s screaming and clutching his bleeding left eye was part of the act and it was nearly 10 minutes before someone called an ambulance. I have lost touch with Greg, but I understand that he now plays for a locally-popular band called “Carmen’s Second Nest”, whereas I have not touched a keyboard since.
- I shot J.R.
- I do not close my eyes when I sleep.