Saturday, March 17, 2012

The Versatile Blogger Award

A big thank you to M. Hufstader for nominating me for The Versatile Blogger Award. She has a great movie review blog at Feed Me a Stray Cat! Go check it out.

Here are the instructions for the lucky recipients:

1. Nominate 15 fellow bloggers for the Versatile Blogger Award.

2. In the same post, add the Versatile Blogger Award.

3. In the same post, thank the blogger who nominated you in a post with a link back to their blog.

4. In the same post, share 7 completely random pieces of information about yourself.

5. In the same post, include this set of rules.

6. Inform each nominated blogger of their nomination by posting a comment on each of their blogs.

7 Random Things About Me:

1. My Wife and I met at her housewarming party in New York. In search of something to do, I called a couple of friends to see if they might be free. They said they were going to a party. One of them joked that I could be the gift. Little did they know... My Wife has always joked that she only kept me because she couldn't get store credit. At least, I think she's joking.

2. I wish I could be better at many things without having to put in the work. My first choice would be basketball. I adored playing as a kid and probably still would now, given the opportunity. Over time, I got better at aspects of the game - rebounding, defense, passing - but I was never a very good shooter. I love watching people who are really good. In total honesty, if I could choose superpowers for myself, they would be superhuman basketball powers.

3. My second choice would be chess. I think chess is beautiful. As with basketball, I've learned a lot over the years but I'd love to have a more intuitive sense for the game.

4. I've always thought of myself as a dog person but My Wife has converted me to cats. We used to have three cats, which was far too many. But now that we're down to just one, he's lovely - playful at times, affectionate at times but ultimately very independent. I admire such qualities in people and animals alike.

5. Ever since my stint teaching English in Japan (1996-98), my anxiety dreams usually involve trains - missing trains, missing stops, boarding the wrong train, etc. As I was preparing to go to Japan, all of my anxiety dreams involved not having appropriate shoes.

6. Much of the fun of parenting is having a second go-'round with toys, books, children's television and so forth. Unfortunately, my favorite of my daughter's TV shows only survived a run of 13 episodes: The Upside Down Show.

7. My friends and I played a lot of Dungeons & Dragons from the ages of about 9-14. We took many liberties as far as "rules" were concerned. My favorite character was a gnome thief (can't, for the life of me, remember his name) who somehow managed to marry Ishtar. Obviously, what Babylonian love goddess wouldn't fall madly in love with a gnome thief? (In hindsight, Ishtar would have been a great choice for my '80s crush.)

My nominees:

Wikes! Hikes on the Long Trail
Stay on Target...
Exclamation Point (!)
The Ubiquitous Perspective
Analog Breakfast
Geek Banter
| Snap out of it Jean There's beading to be done |
Random Interruptions
Spunk on a Stick
inspire nordic
Drama, Dice and Damsons
Welcome to Author Stephen Tremp's Web Site
Jennifer Lane
The Quintssentially Questionable Query Experiment


  1. Thanks for the shoutout, Squid! I love your random info, especially hearing about you gnome thief.

  2. Thank you so much! This was a lovely surprise in my long day :) I hope you don't mind I googled this award and picked another 'badge' icon thingy, since I'm not the colour green's biggest fan :)

    I like the story of how you met your wife, it's very sweet! I'm the same when it comes to wishing to be good at something without putting in the work. I'd love to learn piano but I just want to be good at it right away and play amazing songs! I don't want to have to sit and practice scales and play nursery rhymes all day!

    Thank you again :) Have a wonderful, wonderful weekend!

  3. Thank you :) This is greatly appreciated. I will take the award with pleasure and do the full honours tomorrow. Like Nikki, I enjoyed your story of how you met your wife and had a special fondness for your gnome thief tale as well :D

  4. Thank you so much! I shall write about you tomorrow! I love the word versatile, particularly in the song Let me entertain you, from the musical Gypsy. You rock! You are THE ARMCHAIR SQUID!
    veru best wishes, jean

  5. Hi, Squid. Thanks for another tag. I'm actually going to try to make the rounds on the blogs you listed, below.

    Where did you teach when you were in Japan? My brother is a pilot and he speaks with a fair amount of awe of the amount of technological advances he sees in Tokyo and other cosmopolitan areas which don't reach the states for 18 months to two years. I find that fascinating.

    1. I was in Yokohama, just southwest of Tokyo. Is your brother a military or commercial pilot? There are loads of American bases in the area.

      Japanese technology is a funny thing. Anything in the entertainment/electronics is top-notch and definitely ahead of what we've got. On the other hand, anything connected to what's considered "women's work" is stuck in the distant past. My washing machine, for instance, was very primitive. I had to manually move my clothes to another compartment for the spin cycle. Mind you, it's been 14 years so it's possible that household appliances have caught up with everything else but I have my doubts.

    2. My brother is a cargo pilot and the stories which have awed me the most are his tales of 'smart buildings.'

      I love this book: -- weirdly -- since it is mostly images of great disorder but there are a few pictures in there which really convey what I call the tiny Japanese sensibility, a capacity for capturing loads of meaning in very fine, miniaturized detail. Anyway, I mention that book because in viewing the images, I can imagine the machines for domestic use are likely quite outmoded. As you say, though, a lot can happen in fourteen years.

  6. Thank you, Armchair Squid!

    Did you miss a lot of trains when you lived in Japan? As fast as the bullet trains travel, I would've been afraid of accidents involving trains.

  7. Oh no, I got the hang of the system overtime but there were plenty of anxiety producing mistakes made early on. The Japanese are actually justifiably proud of their safety record with the bullet trains - all astonishingly efficient, too. You really could set your watch by them.

  8. Thanks for the nomination! I really appreciate it, but I already accepted an award so similar to this I think I will let this one pass. I really love chess--it is such a fun brain workout!

    Allison (Geek Banter)

  9. It appears the Versatile Blogger Award is kind of a big deal to some bloggers, or so I've learned over the last few days. I guess I didn't really know, before. So thanks again for bestowing it on AB.

    There's a worthy blog I would recommend to you. It occurred to me as I visited it, today. I believe you would really appreciate it: . Check it out if you find a chance.

    1. Thanks for the recommendation. Great photos. I am now following.