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15 May 2006 @ 11:50 am
Long-delayed interview meme. If you want to be interviewed, comment and I'll ask you 5 questions.

1. What's your pet history?

When I was little, I didn't have a pet. Mom objected to cats, dogs, hamsters, guinea pigs, everything. So I made up pets. In first grade, I said I had a cow that lived in our garage. Later on, that changed to a hamster. We finally got a dog when I was... nine or so? She was a miniature black dachshund named Trinka, after my mom's old dog. Trinka liked to chase cars. One day she was chasing my dad, and he accidentally ran her over.

We got Copper, a miniature brown dachshund, shortly after. Copper came from a pet store in the mall. He was so little and skinny, we felt so sorry for him and guilted my parents into buying him for us. Copper wouldn't eat, was very skittish, and liked to bite. After one too many leg-humpings, my mom gave him to her father, who adored him. Copper grew and thrived to a fat old age.

After Copper came another Trinka, the image of the first. And like the first, she met her fate under the wheels of a car when I was twelve. This was my parents' fault. Walking her without a leash. I ask you.

Licorice was the next miniature black dachshund. She was a little bit crazy. My parents gave her away. They SAID she went to live in the country, and they still stick to that story. I don't know how true it is. I hope so, though.

Muffy was a Havanese, a small white fluffy bundle. Muffy was the one dog that lasted in my family. She lived to be fifteen. She had far more of a personality than the dachshunds. We got her when I was thirteen or fourteen.

In my adult life, I've only owned one pet, and that's the current one: Saffron the pit bull. I adore my baby dog. She's five, and she is so wonderful-- friendly, loving, with a tail that'll raise a welt, she wags it so hard. Pit bulls have the best personalities. I don't ever want another kind of dog. Saffie's got at least another ten years in her, though, so the next dog won't come along for quite a while.

2. What do you like most about how your parents raised you? Least?

Most: I was raised with a love of reading. My mother read to me often when I was too young to read, and after I learned, my parents bought me books all the time. I had my first six-foot bookcase when I was seven. From an early age, my reading comprehension was always off the scale, and I think that's served me well in the rest of my life.

Least: I was raised to have too much respect for authority. My parents were fairly strict, and often punished in anger. I grew up with a need to ingratiate myself with authority, a fear of anger, a need to be controlled, and a blind trust of anyone above me.

This led to my belief, at age 18, that I might be pregnant (my period skipped a month) because my boyfriend and I had been rubbing up against each other, fully clothed, and he came. I believed this because one of my high school teachers had said he had counseled a couple that had gotten pregnant that way. I was so ignorant, because I was so trusting.

When I went to college, I had more freedom than I was used to, and it scared me. I ended up dating a person who controlled me, and I clung to that desperately. I didn't feel competent to make my own choices, so I allowed him to make them. He used anger to punish me, and because I was so frightened of authoritative anger, I would give in. Looking back, he was not entirely to blame-- I sought out that kind of treatment because I wanted the security of someone else's control.

I grew up, though. I still do the ingratiating thing, but I see it as keeping things running smoothly. And I will speak up if I feel my boss is wrong. As for questioning authority-- dude, all the time. :)

3. If you had to pick one issue to solve in this country, what would it be and why?

Dependence on fossil fuels. If I could wave a wand to equip us all with an energy system that ran on clean, renewable, carbon-neutral resources, I would. Our dependence on oil and our status as the world's #1 polluter is unsustainable, and we're headed for disaster if we don't get off oil, coal, even natural gas. Our agricultural production depends on oil, from fertilizers to harvesters and shippers. Our transportation system is dependent on oil. Our power grid derives electricity primarily from burning coal. We're adding so much carbon dioxide to the atmosphere that Glacier National Park's glacier is disappearing.

*deep breath* Okay, end of lecture. Go see "An Inconvenient Truth," which will make the case far better than I can.

4. What kind of person do you tend to be attracted to? (Physically, emotionally, etc.)

Boys: I like beta males. :) The misfits, the shy, unimposing guys. Men who don't feel a need to assert themselves. It helps if they're skinny and teenage-looking. bstro is all of that. Yum.

Girls: I like alpha females. Guh. Women who are secure in themselves, who take charge and run the show. Physically, I like heavier women. Breasts, tummies, full thighs and butts make me go nnngh.

5. If you could design your own religion, what would it be like?

Its only dogma would be to put others' needs before your own wants. That doesn't mean you should ignore your own needs, or that you must only live one step above poverty. It does mean it's wrong to wrap yourself in a luxurious bubble and ignore those who need help. Help can come in all forms. If you're too busy working to volunteer, donate money. If you don't have any spare cash, donate time. Do what you can, and don't make excuses for not doing anything.

Actually, I think that's one of the core messages of Christianity. It's not easy to do, though, which is why so many Christians abandon it and convince themselves they're helping others by holding bloody fetus signs outside abortion clinics, or rallying against gay marriage.

Anyway. There would be no holy days other than the standard seasonal observations. There would be no commandments that we don't understand the reason for. There would be little if any mystique. I do recognize that humanity needs mystery, but I don't know how to put it in a religion without it being misused. It would be a religion that means what it says and says what it means, without any handles to allow it to be picked up and used as a weapon.
BAMschmecky on May 15th, 2006 12:04 pm (UTC)
Great answers, all... Thank you!
Elle: Sarah Connortheletterelle on May 15th, 2006 12:11 pm (UTC)
Thank you for the good questions! :)