The Facebook 25, also known as The Narcissistic 25, is a forward going around facebook encouraging people to share 25 unknown facts about themselves with friends. There are no pre-canned questions so the survey is free-form and allows the writer to expose as much or as little as they desire. In the spirit of social networking I participated in the Facebook 25 with mostly boring tidbits about me, but some could be considered “explosive” enough to share on this blog and discuss.
1. It is difficult to think of 25 things that people don’t already know about me. I am not what one would call quiet, secretive, or mysterious.
2. Somewhere during college I realized many of my grandiose dreams of becoming a politician, constitutional lawyer, or author required sacrificing my desires to pay off my college loans, travel the world, enjoy time with my friends, have time to read books, take up photography, and get a few dogs. Many dreams are mutually exclusive to others and require choosing a few so you don’t lose them all. I thoroughly enjoy what I have, and do not regret what I walked away from.
3. If anyone told me 15 or 20 years ago that I would be married by 26 to a guy from Minnesota that I picked up in a bar in Chicago, I would have laughed and had them committed to an insane asylum. Glad I didn’t follow some life script we dream up in our youth; reality is often more amazing than our dreams.
4. I love food. Whether it is a gourmet meal at a fine restaurant, a wonderful dinner cooked in my home surrounded by friends, or my daily peanut butter and jelly sandwich; I derive great enjoyment from eating and preparing food.
5. Food doesn’t love me. Not that I have food allergies or anything (well, besides aspartame causing my head to explode). My metabolism is not what one would call fast. My weight gain record is 11 pounds on a one week cruise at 13 years old and 16 pounds between Thanksgiving and Christmas more years than I can count; impressive stats really.
6. People watching is a national pastime. I love sitting in a park, café, mall, airport, or city street and just watching people go by. I like making up stories about their lives; what they do for a living, where they live, and what they are like based upon the way they carry themselves, what they wear, and who they are with. The thing with people is their reality is probably crazier than any fictional life I imagine for them.
7. People make judgments about us each and everyday based upon nothing more than their split second analysis. Because of this I learned to project more confidence then I really possess; people respect and admire confidence. Underneath this steel exterior lies a whole host of terrifying insecurities.
8. Not all men (or women) are created equally and life is not fair. This is not saying I believe in discrimination, this is simply stating that we are all different and should learn to accept, embrace, and respect those differences rather than pretending we’re all the same. Life would be boring if we were each good at the same things. We each possess unique strengths that make us who we are and should spend more time bettering those strengths rather than succumbing to our weaknesses.
9. My Dad told me in fifth grade that I wouldn’t be a gymnast because I was too tall, a dancer because I was too klutzy, a professional athlete because women wouldn’t make money in sports, a supermodel because of my large build, an astronaut because I was afraid of heights, or a vet because I would never be able to put an animal to sleep. This was devastating news at the time but in hindsight good advice and the toughest form of love. Why spend life trying to fit the proverbial square peg into a round hole when we can find what we are good at and be the best at that. I’m glad someone told me at 11 rather than finding out years into pursuing impossible dreams.
10. I am smart; not Einstein smart but I would beat most of the US population in a battle of wits and intelligence. This is one of my strengths and I wouldn’t give it up for all the grace, good looks, agility, or metabolism in the world. I am not bragging but think we should be able to embrace our assets without fear of offending those who do not possess the same strengths. It is a shame that somewhere along the line intelligence became “uncool;” something that people, especially women and teenage girls, thought they needed to hide. Just as not everyone is a gifted athlete, musician, artist, writer, actor, comedian, singer, dancer, cook, etc., not everyone is blessed with intelligence and it is a gift that should be embraced like any other.
11. I am only 5 foot 9 inches which I fully understand is 5 inches taller than the average for American women but I am still not happy about it. Nothing is more beautiful or commanding than a woman over 6 feet tall and I feel like I was ripped off by 3 inches.
12. I was not always comfortable with my height as it limited my dating options; I tried but couldn’t be with a man smaller than me. It pains me to admit that I am attracted to men who are large enough to protect me and allow me to wear high heels (specifically 3” heels that make me 6 feet tall). Betty Friedan and all the feminists before me are rolling in their graves as I admit this as a personal shortcoming (excuse the pun).
13. I was almost born on August 13; my mother spent most of that day in labor and I was born shortly after midnight on August 14. It dawned on me last year that my birthday would be different if I was born in any other US time zone besides Eastern. This is just one of the millions of odd and random observations I make constantly.
14. 14 is my lucky number, this could be because it is my birth date but I really like how it sounds in other languages. Catorce. Quattordici. Quatorze. Vierzehn. Fjorton.
15. I am not very good at foreign languages and by not very good I mean terrible. I feel like such an ugly American when I travel overseas because no matter how hard I try I cannot communicate in any languages but English and Spanglish.
16. My favorite personal feature is my smile and the Crest White Strip is the best invention of the past 10 years.
17. I get calls from every charity on the planet due to my being a sucker for sappy telemarketers. I finally had to set criteria for who received my finances because I am (unfortunately) not rich. I never donate to overseas charities; there are enough problems in the United States that require my time, attention, and money. My focus is often on helping animals in need; as far as I’m concerned people can take care of themselves.
18. I love dogs, big and small. This is not a secret at all, what I don’t normally admit is I like dogs more than I like most humans.
19. I am not a jealous person, but will always be a bit green with envy at the relationship my sisters developed with each other after I left for college.
20. Going away to college had a profound impact on my life and who I became. Leaving my comfort zone of home, family, and a small town to spend four years meeting new people from a variety of backgrounds expanded my world in ways I cannot begin to explain. I fondly remember my college years, not because of the late nights, difficult professors, fatty food, and crappy keggers, but because college is one of the only times in life where we are surrounded by people of similar intelligence and encouraged to explore ourselves, think freely, engage in heated debate, question authority, and grow.
21. People often think I am older than my age, including many who mistake my mother as my sister. My mother loves this and I am forced spend exorbitant amounts of money on face creams and sunscreen in self-defense.
22. I play violin and sing but do not do either very well. It took me many years to realize my position of first stand in the high school orchestra and spot on the choir had more to do with my leadership qualities (getting people to come to rehearsal and practice their parts) than my musical abilities. No matter why I had my experience I am grateful to read, understand, and enjoy all types of music (except country).
23. I am not religious. I celebrate religious holidays because of tradition and family togetherness, not because of the true meaning of the day. Christmas for me is a celebration of winter. Easter is a celebration of spring. I (occasionally) attend church because it is a place to listen to cheap, beautiful live music. If there is a higher being then I think there is more than one required to do all the work required of higher beings. I guess this technically makes me a neo-pagan for those who must put me in a neat little religious box.
24. I regret not keeping a journal through the years, but I was so busy making a juicy past that I did not have time to keep memoirs of it. Actually, that’s probably for the best now that I think about it, less evidence.
25. No one is more amazed at the number of facebook friends I have than me (currently nearing 500). I am incredibly fortunate that in my life has crossed paths with such a diverse group of people across the globe in only 33 years.