May 01, 2005

Weekend Survey

RIGHT THINKING GIRL recently posted a rather nice "weekend survey," which asked a series of 10 questions for readers/other bloggers to answer.

Here are my answers to the questions she presented, viz. and to wit:

1. What movies would you like to live in? (Note: This question was directly lifted from The Sheila Variations. If you haven't checked her out, you really need to.)

Gad Ė movies I would like to live in. Thatís a tough one. I mean, with the historical movies, itíd be kind of tough because youíd know how things would turn out. I can just imagine it Ė

CHAMBERLAIN: -- and I believe it is peace for our time.
ME: Uh. Dude. What the hell?
ME: Heís not going to stop with Czechoslovakia, moron.
CHAMBERLAIN: But I have this agreement, and Ė
ME: If you attack NOW you might have a chance at stopping him before the Wehrmacht goes fully operational and crushes Poland. Oh, and Ė
CHAMBERLAIN: Guards! Seize him!
ME: -- what! Hey! Let go of me! You rotten ó OUCH!

2. Name one thing you do better than anybody else.

I have a good head for remembering numbers and doing mental arithmetic. Obviously Iím not the best in the world at these things, but I do have an aptitude for figures. This aptitude stops at calculus, however Ė I am completely useless with integrals, although I finally got derivatives.

3. What's your background?

Well, letís see. Iím a twenty-something white guy of German, French and Scottish ancestry. I grew up in Michigan, went to school in Michigan, and still have a soft place in my heart for the Great Lakes State, particularly the Ann Arbor-Detroit area. Iím now living in New Hampshire, which is a lot like Back Home, although I also spent time in California (got burned out on the place) and a wee bit of time in Washington, D.C. (which rules).

4. If your friends would be completely honest and tell you what they think about you, would you want to know?

No, I would bloody well NOT want to know Ė unless, of course, it was actually good. A key part of friendship is overlooking someoneís minor faults, irritating tics and whatnot Ė because in the end such things are immaterial compared to all the wonderful things which led you to be friends in the first place. However, I can now say that Iíve really really quit smoking Ė and thatís got to make me a lot more agreeable to be around.

5. What's the last good book you read?

I re-read Walter Millerís ďA Canticle for Leibowitz.Ē It really is a fabulous book Ė itís not merely an engaging story, itís great in terms of how it deals with spiritual matters. Itís definitely worth a read. Plus, itís funny.

6. If you were a cartoon character, what would your name be, what would you look like, and what would you do?

After long and serious thought on the matter, Iíve decided my cartoon character would be named "Ward Randall." My character would look a lot like Helmut Dantineís character in Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia.

You know, like this:

But Ward Randall would not be shot by Warren Oates. Oh no. Ward Randall would never be shot by anyone like Warren Oates, because Ward Randall would not let anyone armed with more than a bag of chips near his immediate person. He would be careful and he would be smart, as both these traits would be necessary for him to pull off his quasi-nefarious schemes.

Yes, you read that right -- quasi-nefarious. Thatís because Ward Randall would only be partially evil, and that on days when his sinuses were acting up. He would have lots of good days too. Besides, normal cartoon bad guys always want to make Big Statements and Wreak Havoc, and that's madness.

I mean, Gad. First itís a plan to blow up Mount Rushmore; then itís a plan to steal the Hope Diamond or a scheme to take over Topeka. Trouble is, these geniuses never realize that none of these great ideas ever work, and the end result is prison or worse. And if all that wasnít bad enough, the sheer indignity of having oneís arch-nemesis bask in the glory and adoration of the people after one was thwarted Ė feh!

Ward Randall would not be about having Lieutenant (j.g.) Freedom come along and ruin his plans. No. That would not work. So what would Ward Randall do, you ask?

Well, you know those ďconvenience chargesĒ that you get when you buy concert tickets? Thatís Ward Randallís work right there. Inexplicable ďsurchargesĒ on your phone bill? Ward Randall. Gas prices went up, even though the price of oil went down? Ward Randall. Some electronics firm held up your rebate? Ward Randall.

Ward Randall would then use the millions upon millions of dollars generated through these annoying but perfectly legal schemes to a) work at destabilizing the European Union and b) have massive, Bacchanalian parties at his pad, which would have that late Sixties, ďDiamonds Are ForeverĒ feel to it. Also, he would help all his friends out with registering their cars, getting cable television service, or what not. So you can see heís not such a bad sort after all. And when the chips were down and the fate of the world was at stake Ė well, Ward Randall would be fighting right alongside the good guys.

7. Are you going to buy a copy of my new book?

Yes! Absolutely! Just buy a copy of mine -- when I finish it, that is. IF I finish it.

8. Tell me one thing you are glad you finished.

Iím glad Iím finished listening to my annoying, pot-smoking neighbors having domestic disputes Ė because, praise God almighty, they moved out yesterday. Yeah. OK, so thatís not the intent of the question. I donít care. Iím glad they moved out.

9. Give me one piece of wisdom your mother told you.

Mrs Kepple always told me that I would find love when I least expected it. I can say with certainty that this has held through my entire romantic life.

10. Name a few overrated blogs and a few underrated blogs.

Well, I donít think it serves any purpose to name ďoverratedĒ blogs. After all, who am I to question the wisdom of the market? Who am I to question the Demiurge of Fortune? Who am I to question the idea that the customer is always right? Plus, as Mom used to say Ė if you donít have anything nice to say, donít say anything at all.

However, I will say that many of the blogs on my blogroll deserve to be read more, and many deserve to be read on a daily basis. In fact, if you came here JUST to use my blogroll, and didnít even read any of the entries on which I spent SO MUCH TIME laboring, I would be cool with that.

Posted by Benjamin Kepple at May 1, 2005 10:42 PM | TrackBack