Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Hey Look! Another Meme!

Some people have an awesome sixth sense. Jen Lancaster, for example. She just KNEW I was on the verge of a meltdown concerning book-related issues…and unfortunately for me, my coping strategy is less CALL THE PUBLICIST – AGENT – EDITOR – EVENT PLANNER – WRITER PALS TO ADDRESS CONCERNS IN A PROFESSIONAL, RATIONAL MANNER and much more CRAWL INTO A BOX AND FEDEX MYSELF TO THE YUKON TERRITORY.

Actually, that’s not true. My coping strategies involve watching videos of terriers doing amusing tricks on YouTube. So lucky for me, I have a new coping strategy / distraction today: A meme! So let’s get this show on the road. The rules:

1. Link back to the person who tagged you.

2. Post these rules on your blog.

3. Share six unimportant things about yourself.

4. Tag six random people at the end of your entry.

* * * Six Unimportant Things about Jess * * *

1. I recently and somewhat recklessly downloaded a bunch of music by artists I had never heard of before: Professor Murder, Say Hi to your Mom, Film School, Band of Horses, Sound Team, Tokyo Police Club, Wolf Parade, and Vampire Weekend. An hour later as I listened to my new playlist, I could be heard raving about my new purchase while I jammed on headphones at my computer like a kid from the eighties listening to the new Cinderella album in one of the library carrels during study hall: “You know all this new music I just downloaded? It’s all so GOOOOD!!!! I mean really, it’s just so … it’s so, it’s just really, really good. Seriously.”

This is what happens when you drink and download.

Also, I’m actually seeing Vampire Weekend this Saturday in Milwaukee.

And that is a sentence I never thought I’d ever type in my entire life.

2. Yes, my high school had REAL ALBUMS in the library that we could listen to during study hall on headphones the size of hubcaps. REAL ALBUMS by CLASSY bands like White Lion and Warrant and Billy Squier. We listened to them in parachute pants and Exclamation perfume.

3. My parents raise chickens, goats, and an assortment of inbred farm cats. They have day jobs, so their menagerie is really more of a hobby farm. With very prolific hens who lay up to two dozen eggs a day. After it became clear to my parents that there was no way they could digest that many eggs on a daily basis without solidifying important organs, they decided to post fliers with neighborhood businesses: “Eggs for sale! Get your farm fresh eggs!” Around Easter an adorable elderly couple saw my parents’ poster at the nearby gas station and called. “Yes, we would like to buy some of your eggs!”

Dad quickly rummaged around the fridge and found a carton packed with ten eggs. He packed two more to make a complete dozen and made the delivery before the couple resumed their drive home.

Unfortunately, he gave them ten HARD-BOILED eggs. And two raw ones.

4. Johnny Depp and Christian Bale are shooting some scenes for a film about John Dillinger in my city. Swoon! Last night I was downtown for happy hour (which actually turned into several happy, fuzzy, and mildly incoherent hours) and got to check out the old time-ification of Main Street firsthand. Which brings me to number five:

5. When I was about eleven years old, I was somewhat obsessed with The Great Depression. We had a thick, glossy Time Life book dedicated to the entire decade of the thirties, and whenever I was home sick from school, I’d savor every word in that book and study every black and white photo like there’d be a quiz at the end of the day. I was particularly fond of the section that listed the depression-era prices for things: a seven-room Spanish stucco home in Beverly Hills cost $5,000 … an automobile tire was $6.20 … a 3-piece bedroom set was $49.95 … a men’s wool suit was $10.50 … a haircut was 30 cents … one pound of onions was three cents. Three beautiful cents! Could there BE anything more gorgeous or fascinating to an eleven year-old girl than the idea that somewhere in history, a full POUND of onions cost just THREE CENTS???

Oh, how I would have been transported with joy if Mattel came out with a depression-themed Barbie during this time—Okie Barbie perhaps, complete with dust storm mask, broken-down Model T, and Young Communist League card. As I got older, my tendency to fixate on historical periods segued into an obsession with books & movies about The Holocaust, the Vietnam War, Soviet-era gulags, and finally, communist China.

I was a really cheerful and popular kid.

6. This Friday I’m blogging at The Debs about my first love. Er, loves. I promise to make it honest and awkward and embarrassing.

And now, I shall spread the joy by tagging December (she's new to the whole blog thing--go over and say hi!), Anonymous Coworker, Kevin Charnas, Green Mountain Country Mama, Monnik, and Jeff at View from the Cloud.


  1. I am now fixated with Dust Bowl Barbie. I can see her now, travelling to California to pick oranges and being discovered outside Schrafts drugstore by sleazy Hollywood-type Ken. You just can't keep a good Barbie down.

  2. johnny depp in your neigb?? swoon, indeed.

    thanks for popping over to say hi. please don't fedex yourself to the yukon! (although i'll probably be joining you there in august when i am stressing about my forthcoming release!)

  3. I'll admit to being a bit intrigued by depression era prices myself. I know when my Great Grandma was young (hmmm...before the depression, I guess, in the early teens of the 20th century perhaps?) she went to the grocery store and tried to buy 25 cents worth of ground beef. The grocer said, "Now Lillian, you have 10 people in your house. There's no way you can eat 25 cents worth of ground beef. Get everything else on your list, and we'll get the beef with what's left." HA!

  4. Ah, memetastic. The only problem: what's NOT unimportant about me?

  5. What a coincidence... George Clooney and Renee Zellweger were just in Duluth (my hometown) to promote their new movie based on it. Unfortunately they didn't film it there. They claimed it was "too cold". Wusses.

    Oh, and thanks for the tag Jess. Even though it will be a challenge to find any "ordinary" things about me, I'll give it my best shot ;-)

  6. And it's up. Now see what you've started?

  7. I LOVE Vampire Weekend. Our friends recently had the opportunity to record them - check out their site:

    Bookmark it and then you can download FREE music when you are drunk!

    Hope the show in Milwaukee is a good one!

  8. Okie Barbie. Billy Squier. Inbred cats.
    What more could I ask for in a post???

    (Am laughing to hard to comment further, but if you need someone to talk you in off the ledge about book publicity, email me :) )

  9. Ha ha I love the egg story. I also like to download music I never heard of and I think I may have Vampire Weekend. I'll check when I get home.
    I am soo excited to get to tell everyone some MORE unimportant stuff about me.I already have a list going and will post it asap, which will probably be in a few days.

  10. True story:

    When Mr. Manic and I started dating, he went to the perfume counter at a department store to buy my favorite scent for me for Christmas. When he asked the lady for Exclamation, she said, "Honey, you need to go to Walgreen's for that brand."

  11. Anonymous10:10 PM

    I was neither cheerful nor popular as a kid. Go figure.

  12. wow...johnny depp AND christian bale?? i might die.

    love depression-themed barbie. LOVE. i was obsessed with "little house on the prairie" for this same reason. 1/2 penny candy? gallon of milk in exchange for an arrowhead? sign me up.

  13. We had those same hubcap-sized earphones in high school. We used to rush to the library when class changed to be SURE we got one of those carrels.

    I was obsessed with the USSR.

  14. Anonymous9:30 AM

    I play golf with jonny depp's uncle, Dr. Depp. He's a 23 handicap.

  15. I'm always a little late. Can I still get that seven-room stucco house in Beverly Hills for $5,000? I have a coupon...

  16. Just added you to my blog roll!

    And regarding the meltdown...I so know how that feels. Just try to remember to enjoy the process.

  17. Anonymous3:02 PM

    OMG! OMG! I'm going to spend all day watching Cairn Terrier videos! So many familiar behaviors...

  18. Anonymous4:58 PM

    Thanks for not tagging me. If I told you the kind of music I had recently downloaded/uploaded?? to my iPod, you'd be shocked...and then bored.

  19. Oh, to have Mr. Depp in one's city...breathing the same air, walking the same streets. *sighs*

    (found you through flotsum)

  20. If I was rich I'd buy you one of those creepy American Girl Depression Dolls. I think they cost around fifteen-thousand dollars and they each come with their own stash of already-used aluminum foil.

    I'll start saving now, so I can send you one for Christmas.

  21. Until today I was optimistic I would make it to the end of my life without reading the words "billy squier" again.

  22. How funny is "Professor Murder, Say Hi to your Mom" put next to one another?

    It's kind of like you're saying to a killer, "Look asshole, you kill ONE MORE PERSON, and I'm telling your Mom. GOT IT??"

    And I want to move in with your parents. Tell them, I'm really good at decorating. And I can hold a conversation. And I only smoke crack on Friday nights.

  23. Anonymous7:49 PM

    Yay! One of the only times I've read this meme in which the writer hasn't assumed that unimportant is synonymous with boring.

  24. Your Depression-era obsession spiel reminded me of Veronica Mars. Did you ever watch the show? I miss it.