31 days in

31.jpgSo I’m 31 days in to the year, and I’m already ahead of last year’s blogging. January of 2015 saw only 5 posts, but counting this post, January of 2016 will have 10 posts, just north of 25% of the posts I need to beat last year’s total of 39 posts.  I haven’t blogged as much as I wanted to in January, but hey, I feel like I’m doing ok.  My goal with blogging this year is to try to take care of myself, giving myself the space to write more about the things I love, the things that scare me and, well, just the way that life is unfurling for me lately.

This morning I was looking at the “Facebook Memories” thing and apparently on this day in 2009, I did the “25 Random Things About Me” thing that was so popular back then. I read my contribution. But I thought I would, on this last day of January, revisit this list and see how much of it is still held true.  Most of it does, with the notable exception of having been to two more Madonna tours and I watch a  lot more hour long dramas now. Here’s the list, courtesy of 2009 Dan.


1) I hate Easter candy. Yes, I know it’s the same candy just colored in pastels or shaped into bunnies but I still hate it. I think it is probably related to too many years of too much Easter candy prior to the 6AM church service and then being very ill from all of it. That having been said, the Easter version of SweeTarts (Chicks, Ducks and Bunnies) are very cute and completely irresistible.

2) I played Santa Claus in the 6th grade music program. I was the skinniest Santa ever. There was also a scene in which I was supposed to be on the phone with someone and I put the microphone up to my ear. I couldn’t watch that part when we watched the videotape of it.

3) I have been to four of Madonna’s eight world tours. They have all been since 2001 and so far, my favorite is still The Confessions Tour. The next time she tours, I will hem and haw and say that I don’t need to go and end up going anyway. You heard it here first.

4) I didn’t drink my first beer until I was 20. It was St. Patrick’s Day weekend and I was with a couple friends of mine at Diamond Dave’s in the mall in Iowa City and I had green beer. Ever since then, it’s a bit of a tradition to have green beer on St. Patrick’s Day, although admittedly, it doesn’t happen every year.

5) While I enjoy my job and am very good at it, I refuse to have the majority of my personality defined by it. There is so much more to me than being a pharmacist. Also, pharmacists who have their identity all wrapped up in being a pharmacist annoy the living hell out of me.

6) I’m not much for hour-long TV dramas. They are too much of a time sink and I do not really have that much time to spend on them. That having been said, two of my all time favorite programs are hour-long dramas: The X-Files and Buffy The Vampire Slayer.

7) The first time I watched The Exorcist it was on network television and edited all to hell. I was in 5th grade, but It still scared the shit out of me. I remember being under a blanket and having to close my ears because it was so scary. Even today, it’s one of the few movies that really scares me. I can’t watch it after dark and really would rather not watch it by myself. The scariest scene for me is still the scene in which Father Karras’ mother is sitting on the bed where the demon-possessed Regan had just been. I am, to this day, not able to watch that scene.

8) The first book that I was supposed to read for a class that I never finished was The Grapes of Wrath. I have still not read that book, nor do I intend to.

9) I don’t have very good memories of high school. I was not a social pariah and had plenty of friends, but it was just not a very pleasant time period in general. Being an adult is so much more fun!

10) There are only three movies that I can think of that I saw four times in the theater: Titanic, Evita, and Jurassic Park.

11) Sometimes I really wish that there would be a real zombie outbreak. While I know that the outcome would inevitably be zombie hordes swarming the planet, a part of me can’t help but be fascinated by that.

12) I am very VERY attached to my morning ritual of being on my computer for 30-40 minutes before work. During that time, I read the blogs, surf the news, read my e-mail and generally get my brain on. It is, as someone pointed out to me recently, the modern day equivalent of coffee and the paper. If I were not so attached to this, I could sleep a lot later.

13) One of my favorite things to read about is late 20th century history. It is my firm belief that we should spend more time teaching recent history to our high school students rather than spending so damn much time on stuff that happened 500 years ago. While that stuff is important, I think the knowledge gap that so many people have about the events of the last 50 years is horrible.

14) I’ve had stitches on three separate occasions. The first was when I was four and I walked into a display of address numbers at a local store, cutting my eye. The second was when my lung collapsed and they had to put a chest tube in me. The third was when a glass pipette broke in my hand when I was putting the bulb on it, gouging the broken end into my thumb. None of those instances were very much fun.

15) My lung collapse experience is still one of the more surreal experiences of my life. Most times a pneumothorax results from trauma like a stab wound or gunshot wound, but I woke up with mine. I walked around with vague chest pain all day and finally decided to go to student health to get checked out. They sent me to the hospital. I spent the weekend in the hospital. Three weeks later, I was sitting in class and felt the exact same pain, only fifty times worse. I tried to walk across campus to student health, but couldn’t make it. I had to flag down a total stranger to get me some help. The ambulance came to central campus and they put me on the gurney. I wanted them to put the sheet over me because I may as well have been dead at that point. I have stayed fully inflated ever since.

16) The only birthday party I had as a kid was when I was 7. I remember it was my 7th birthday because my mom was pregnant with my sister for it.

17) I tend to be fiercely loyal to those I consider friends.

18) I married what can pretty easily be considered my first “serious” girlfriend. That is not to say I didn’t date others, but when you know, you know.

19) My favorite book is Bright Lights, Big City by Jay McInerney. I read it on pretty much an annual basis. It is not great literature but the story is so compelling and the way it is told (second-person narrative) just sucks me in every single time.

20) I take great comfort in the doing of dishes. I jokingly refer to it as Zen and the Art of Dishwashing. When the meal is done, we gather up all the dishes and I pretty much do them on my own. This is not something that has been forced on me, but rather it is by my own design. Frequently, I’ll put my iPod on while doing the dishes and before I know it, they are all done and you have a spotless kitchen to enjoy. Inevitably though, someone comes and puts a dirty dish at the edge of the sink just as I finish up. That’s where the Zen part comes in.

21) I really do want to believe in all the paranormal things for which there is no hard evidence. A part of me does.

22) The first 45rpm single I bought was Olivia Newton-John’s “Physical.” That was 1981. 24 years later, in 2005, I finally saw ONJ in concert in Cedar Rapids. I went with my sister and we hit a deer on the way home. We were not hurt, but the car was totalled.

23) I have been offered chewing tobacco twice in my lifetime, once by my preceptor on a pharmacy rotation at Osco Drug in Iowa City (while at work!) and once while riding home from Tama in a tow truck pulling my sister’s totalled car after its collision with the deer. I declined both times. It’s a disgusting habit.

24) When I was in college, I thought I was going to leave Iowa immediately after graduation. It just goes to show that you can’t take the boy out of Iowa or the Iowa out of the boy.

25) I am not tagging Heidi for this – she is not interested in this meme!

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6 Responses to 31 days in

  1. John says:

    The more things change,there will always be constants. The lung deal sounds terrifying.

    • Dan says:

      It was – mostly because the first time I thought I was having a heart attack at age 18. The second time was scarier because I was having a really hard time catching my breath. Usually, pneumothorax is the result of a stab wound or a gun shot wound or some other trauma, but in young thin men, it can happen spontaneously. Whenever someone asks me how it happened, I usually deadpan “drive-by” or “gunshot wound.” 😉

  2. I relate to so much of this! The morning computer ritual, the Exorcist terror (I saw it in theatres the day it opened; I knew what I was in for the moment I walked into the cinema because there was a smell of vomit hanging in the air from the previous audience’s own reactions), the necessity of teaching recent history… but the one thing that resonates most strongly is the pharmacist issue. My Dad was one of those who allowed it to consume his entire identity, and it drove my Mum crazy. It never bothered me… I began working in his dispensary when I was 14 and stayed there all through university, a total of ten years. It was second nature to me. But I recall one Sunday dinner as we were all just sitting down to eat, and instead of saying grace he intoned, “Good afternoon, Boulier’s’s Chemists…” My Mum hit the roof. lol And I can’t say I blamed her. He was always more invested in his work than in his home life. He spent a lot of time with me, of necessity… but not with anybody else in the family. Which he regretted in later life.

    • Dan says:

      That makes me sad because so many people miss their lives because of work tunnel vision. Like I say, I like what I do and am dedicated to my place of work, but man, the parts of me that are not a pharmacist are SO much more interesting.

  3. Mary says:

    I’ve never understood why every year in American history classes we started with colonization and the revolutionary war. As a result, I don’t really know much about what happened in American history after WWII. I had a history teacher friend who tried to start at the present and work backwards, but it was too weird for him.

    • Dan says:

      Right? I mean, it’s an important part of our history for sure, but I think we have a lot more to learn from the recent past than the distant past.

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