Friday, October 30, 2009

Instead of writing about my life, I'm filling out a survey. Evidently I'm feeling philosophical tonight.

(1) Do you think it's fair that people who urinate outdoors have to register as sex offenders? Is that even true? Shoot, I pee outside all the time in the summer! But not in front of kids, or anything. I guess if someone whips it out in front of a kid, that would make sense. This is such a weird first question.

(2) When you have a cold what steps do you take to feel better? I don't really know what to do except complain and hope it goes away as quickly as possible. I try to drink water, sleep, do anything to unclog my sinuses.

(3) Have you ever witnessed a couple fighting in public? Yes, yelling, two or three times.

(4) What do you think about people who say they have no regrets in life? It seems to me that everyone must have at least a few regrets, but if anyone doesn't, then more power to them. I think anyone who truly has none, though, has none because they have decided to accept their past and move forward--not because they have ever made only excellent choices.

(5) What are you looking forward to the most in the upcoming months? Oh my gosh, Christmas. And Sara being home for a while.

(6) Describe what it was like growing up in your house? There is a lot of love in my immediate family, but a lot of pain, confusion, and frustration, too. But love, and humor, and forgiveness as much as possible.

(7) Have you ever ended a friendship because it wasn't good for your own well being? Generally speaking, I try not to start friendships that aren't good for my wellbeing. I haven't cut any off, but I've let a few drift--not that the relationships were intrinsically bad, but worrying about them was.

(8) Have any family recipes been handed down to you? Well, to my mom. I haven't gotten copies of them all for myself yet, though I should and I want to.

(9) If it made your mother happy would you wear her old wedding dress and get married in it? Her dress was lost in a move, or something. If we had it though, and she really wanted me to, and if it fit me, I would consider wearing it.

(10) If you're having a horrible day can people tell, or do you tend to try to hide it? I can hide it if I can forget about it.

(11) Hate is a strong word, do you honestly hate someone? No. This reminds me of that line in Ender's Game: "In the moment when I truly understand my enemy, understand him well enough to defeat him, then in that very moment I also love him." True, deep understanding of another person births a love for that person. It follows then that hatred stems from a lack of understanding. I don't tend toward hate, but when I dislike, I try to remind myself that I don't understand.

(12) Do you believe in psychics? I've never met or seen/heard any that I trusted, but I guess I believe in the possibility. I tend to believe things (in a vague sense) rather than disbelieve them, I guess. Also I've dreamed the future before (unfortunately, not in a useful way), so it's hard for me to completely write off weird mental "powers."

(13) Have you ever had a session with a psychic medium or clairvoyant? Nope.

(14) If they imposed a water ban in your town but it was 95 degrees out, would you really conserve water? Yes. Anyway 95 is annoying, but not that bad. Talk to me when it's 110 and I can't use water. Still though, I could just go to the pool. Or...turn on the AC...

(15) Have you ever let anyone live with you because they were having a hard time? I haven't, but I would.

(16) Would you vote on a law and pay extra taxes if they were trying to pass a law that would make all domestic animal owners spay and neuter their animals? No, because A) it would never happen, and B) we'd pretty much kill off a bunch of species, at least within the US. I mean, cats and dogs would be ok (as long as nobody wanted purebred anything ever again), but what about ferrets?

(17) Is there anyone who can tell how you're feeling just by looking at you? Sometimes it's obvious that anyone can. Even when it's not, though, Sara could probably tell how I was feeling by looking at my arm or something. It's crazy. Kelly sometimes, too. (More what I'm thinking, though--today we were driving somewhere and I saw some house decorations and gasped. She said, "Marie, those are Halloween decorations, not Christmas. They're orange." She read my mind, for real. I just saw twinkle lights and got all excited, before I registered the color.)

(18) Are you counting down the days to anything? I do sometimes, but not at the moment.

(19) Do you really think the world will end? Of course--everything ends, eventually. I hear that at the end of its lifespan the sun will swell and engulf the innermost planets. Hopefully we'll have branched out a little by then.

(20) Do you have a passport? Yes.

(21) If you're husband/wife had to go over seas for two years would you honestly wait that long for them? If my husband went overseas, I assume I'd be going with him.

(22) Does it get you angry when you see people who get public assistance - (food stamps - free housing etc) Buying expensive seafood and driving around in very expensive cars? I don't see that, but it definitely would. There are people who need monetary help, but I am pretty offended by people that don't need it and get it anyway. We don't have the resources for that crap.

(23) Is there anyone you would risk your own life for? Absolutely.

(24) Is there any part of your town that you refuse to go to because it's such a high crime neighborhood? There are some neighborhoods I wouldn't really want to visit even in the daytime without business, because I've been told by residents (friends of mine) that sometimes just being a stranger will put you in danger, but it's not like I wouldn't go there at all.

(25) If you slept with your doors unlocked at night would you really feel safe? In the area where I currently live, sure. But there are a lot of areas (probably most) where I would not.

26) Do you consider it sexual harassment if a co worker told you a dirty joke? That would really depend on the existing relationship and on the attitude of the coworker. I've been told a lot of dirty jokes that did not constitute sexual harrassment, but I've been told a few that absolutely, most definitely did.

(27) Do you know anyone who was accused of a sexual crime and they were later found innocent? No.

(28) Do you think most parents overreact about pedophiles and sexual offenders? I don't really know how parents act about pedophiles and sex offenders, but personally I feel like pedophiles are pretty close to the lowest of the low, and I would not want any to be anywhere near my kids. That being said, I really feel for people who did something stupid like sleeping with a 17 year old when they were 21 or whatever, and then get stuck with the "sex offender" gig for the rest of their lives. I don't think that is in any way fair or productive. In that sense, I don't think it's a black and white thing at all.

(29) Do you think first time drug offenders that are severly addicted to narcotics should be given the chance to rehabilitate themselves before going to prison? Yes, definitely. The key word there though is chance--there's no point in their going to rehab if they don't feel like they have a problem. And rehab is expensive, but so is prison--and prison doesn't solve any problems.

(30) Have you ever been part of a jury? No.

(31) Do you think someone who kills another person in self defense should be charged with murder? I think that should probably be a case-by-case thing, though obviously precedent should have a lot of influence. I mean, people in two nearly identical situations should not get different sentences.

(32) Do you think Barbie & Ken are a positive or negative influence on children? I don't really know. I never played with Barbie and Ken. I guess if girls are going to try to look like her, then yeah. Honestly I think pop stars and "Bratz" are a lot worse.

(33) What do you miss most about your past? I miss living closer to more of the people I love.

(34) Have you ever purposely called someone and hung up just to hear their voice? No..

(35) Are you afraid of going to the doctors because you may hear bad news? That's not a fear so much as a certainty. Usually though, the reason I don't want to go for stuff is because I'm sick of getting told stuff I already knew and then getting charged for it. What? That's a weird looking rash? No shit. Here's 50 bucks. This sort of thing has happened to me multiple times. At this point I've decided that if I can't figure out what it is, and it doesn't seem life-threatening, I'm not going, because odds are they aren't going to know what it is either.

(36) Would you donate one of your kidneys to a family member? Absolutely. Or a friend. Or whoever came to me and needed it.

(37) If your sister couldn't have a child Would you carry a baby for her? I'm not sure. I have this terror about childbirth. But for Chloe, yeah, I guess I probably would.

(38) Have you ever protested anything? Not in a "going to a protest" sort of way. I don't seem to have the emotional energy for activism. Conversations, yes. Evangelism? No.

(39) Have you ever considered a life of crime? No.

(40) With which family member do you have the strongest relationship? I'm not sure. Probably my little sister, at this point. I love her more than just about anything.

(41) Do you donate the blood? Every time I've had a chance, there's been some reason I can't do it! I think my blood is legally clean now though, since I haven't been to any malaria-infested countries recently.

(42) Have you ever gone to a benefit dinner? I think so.

(43) Have you ever helped raise money for your church? Some? But not for a long time. I haven't really had a home church for a long time.

(44) Do you believe everything happens for a reason? In terms of cause and effect, yes, absolutely. In terms of God causing all kinds of shit to happen as a part of his plan? Not really, no. I don't believe, for instance, that I dropped my power converter on the floor this morning and cursed as a part of some grand scheme. I don't believe that my friend Chris was supposed to kill himself last week to make way for anything. But I think I do believe that things are the way they were always going to be. I think that there's a God, up there, somewhere, all around and through us, and although I don't think he wanted Chris to end his own life after only 21 years on Earth, I think he knew that Chris would. And he sent him to us anyway, to live here and bless us for twenty one years and eleven days. I guess I think the gift of free will made us almost like partners in the planning of the world, you know? Obviously we have the freedom to make choices. I chose (though it didn't feel that way at the time) to fight with my mom this morning. I don't think anything outside myself made me do that. I don't think it happened for a reason in that sense. But I think it was always going to happen.

(45) Do you think that you're really never given more than you can handle? This is a question I turn over in my head a lot. For me, it all comes down to your definition of "handle." What does that even mean? That I haven't killed myself, so it must follow that I haven't been given "more than I can handle?" If, on the other hand, "handle" means "bear easily and with grace," then yes, I have been given more than I can handle at times. But as nice as I sometimes think it would be if the adage were true and read "God will never give you more than you can bear easily and with grace," I'm not sure that's what it means.

(46) What is something you'll just never understand? Darkness. In the metaphorical sense. Obviously that's a really vague answer, and of course there are aspects of pain and darkness that I DO understand, at least to a point. I guess it's the whole concept. Why does it have to exist? I get that it propagates itself, but why did it have to start? There's the eternal question of what separates humans from animals, right? Here's the answer: humanity is the race that fucks itself up. Lately I've been blaming it on language. Language is Pandora's Box. I could go on for a while about that, so I guess I'll shut up on it for now.

(47) Are you easily confused? Depends on the territory. In general though, I don't think I am.

(48) Do you follow politics? Not as much as I should. (Actually, not really at all.) I know it's important, but I can't seem to make myself care, most of the time.

(49) Who do you think the next President of the United States will be? How should I know? A lot can happen in four years.

(50) Do you tend to ask a lot of questions when you don't understand something? That depends. If it's something I don't really care about: no. If it's something I feel like I should know already: depends on how comfortable I am in the current company. If it's something I do care about, then sure. I'd be more likely, though, to just look it up at home later.

(51) Do you think the staff at nursing homes are mostly caring or mostly cold hearted? I'm sure there are a lot of people who work there because they have a passion or a love for the work that they do, and I'm sure there are a lot of people who just need a job. I can't really speak for "most."

(52) Where do you think prison inmates get most of their drugs from? Never having been in prison, I really couldn't say. Hidden in packages? Snuck in by visitors? Bought off crooked guards? I don't know.

(53) Have you ever cried because of the misfortune of someone you didn't even know? Almost certainly, though I can't remember a specific instance right now.

(54) Do you think people who abuse animals should be given the same punishment that people who abuse people get? I don't think either of those groups gets the punishment they deserve for the lasting pain that they inflict.

(55) If you could have a five minute conversation with Michael Vick what would you say to him? Hey, what's up? Your name sounds familiar. This is some weather, huh? Hey where'd you get those shoes?

(56) What time of the day are you at your best? I don't think there's any particular time. I tend to be more creative after midnight, though.

(57) How do you make the best of a bad situation? Sometimes I just have to walk away. Sometimes I can talk myself through it. Sometimes I disassociate from my emotions.

(58) Have you ever had to choose sides? Yeah, but generally I try to avoid that, and either just stay out of it or mediate instead.

(59) Should smoking be banned, even from households and cars? Honestly, even though I sometimes find myself thinking it sexy in some way, smoking is disgusting, dirty, expensive, and unhealthy for everyone in the vicinity. I wish no one smoked at all, but passing a law wouldn't accomplish that.

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