20 August 2007

Past Indiscretions

About seventeen years ago, Riese tagged me with the '8 facts' meme. (And a few months before that, Isaac actually tagged me with it, too, which I'd forgotten about until I was looking up his answers to steal generate my own, and which invalidates any whining I may have done about being the only person not tagged with this meme.) I refuse to refer to it as the '8 random facts' meme, because the only way I can give you a random list of facts about myself is if I, like, write out a bunch of facts on little slips of paper, put them in a hat, and pick out 8. That's what random means, okay? (Pre-fact i: Jaime is a misanthropic snob.)

So 8 facts. You list the facts, then tag 8 other people to continue the fun. I didn't do this right away because if I had my list would've looked something like: 1. moving sucks, 2. i'm so fucking tired, 3. moving sucks, 4. balls, and why subject you to that? I mean, why subject you to any of this, really, but I'll try to keep it brief. I took a stab at this last night, and what did I learn in the paragraphs and paragraphs? I'm not really 8 facts worth of interesting. And hey, it's Monday, so bonus - you get some cats!

1. I was on College Jeopardy. This is always the first (and usually only) thing that comes to mind when I'm asked for "random" facts about myself. (For The 24 Hour Plays we had to come up with one-line bios, and it took me days to think of anything that wasn't "Jaime was on College Jeopardy and hopes she didn't make too much of a fool of herself." I think I ended up with "Jaime ran out of time to be clever.") To answer the follow-ups: I lost*; and yes, Trebek is sort of a tool.

2. My name is misspelled on Wikipedia. I was curious what would happen if you googled me and my Jeopardy triumph. Aside from an awful picture of me with Trebek (jesus my hair was long) and a gem of an interview which I will give you a taste of here:

I literally never got out of third place, which just sucked. There's always one girl on Jeopardy! who is just stupid, and I didn't want to be that girl. My fear was that I was going to make a complete fool of myself. I think I only made a partial fool of myself.
I didn't tell a lot of people at school, because (1) I didn't do very well and (2) I didn't want to be like, "Hey, I'm on television. Oooh, come watch!" People were saying they wished they'd watched. People were saying they were glad they watched. And my boss at work was, like, "So, when are you taking me out to dinner?" I've been getting that question a lot. I'm like, "You want to go to McDonald's? Okay, we can go to McDonald's."

3. I was a part of this for a year in college. It was completely ridiculous and really fun. Theatre and dignity got in the way, but I now have an encyclopedic knowledge of sea shanties.

4. I used to want to be a Physicist. Until winter of my last year of high school, I was anticipating a theatre/physics double major in college. (Then I met calculus and my plans went downhill.) I fucking love science, and the very big and very small ends of physics especially.

5. While we're on the subject, I used to have: An eyebrow piercing and hair down past my waist. But not at the same time. Now I keep my piercings to my ears and express my inner goth middle-schooler by dying my hair black. Such a rebel.

6. I used to speak Hebrew. I went to a Hebrew Day School through sixth grade. Then I went to public school and learned Spanish, which ruined my Hebrew. Then I went to Italy, and bastardized my Spanish. Then I took a French class. I can order dinner in five languages, but not do much else. (I used to be able to say "Your mom's my dad" in eight languages. Alex Trebek chose not to use that fact as my introduction piece, instead going with ARRR!!!, which he pronounced in right pirately fashion.) I am still full of knowledge about Judaism, though, which is about as useful as remembering what each of the Enlightenment thinkers believed, but this is the junk that's taking up all the space in my head.

7. I don't know if I've ever believed in god, but in Kindergarten I thought I could talk to Santa Claus. Yeah, Kindergarten in the Hebrew Day School. I don't get it either.

8. I love Inwood. Shifting from the past to the present/future. I've lived here for three weeks now, but this weekend was my first not out of town. (This can be deduced by the unpackedness of my bed- and livingrooms.) I've liked the place from the first, but until yesterday it was for my apartment's closeness to the subway, the subway's closeness to work, and the gobsmackingly low rent. Yesterday, though, I walked up a few blocks for the greenmarket and fell in love. There are parks everywhere, and scattered historic houses. It's the most truly diverse neighborhood I've seen in New York. There is a Bank of America ATM. I also apparently have the right skills for this place - this weekend I learned that I am very good at sleeping on the subway. An hour and a half feels much shorter when you're asleep from 23rd street to 135th. Besides, how much of a rush can you be in at two in the morning? (I don't even do the rouse-at-every-stop thing, but when you live at the second-to-last stop, that isn't too dangerous.) Other places I am good at sleeping: cars, buses, trains, airport benches, beds, couches. I have never fallen asleep in a movie, but just about everywhere else.

Now I'm supposed to tag eight people. But I'm just going to tag one person, someone who wouldn't do a silly meme even under normal circumstances, but especially now that he's on indefinite leave from blogging. So, CrimeNotes, I tag you here in a symbolic act of protest. Motherfucker.

*Lengthy footnote, because I'm obviously not over this: Here's the thing about losing, and you're gonna think this is an excuse, but seriously - I had terrible timing with the buzzer. Abysmal. To the point that they came over to check that it was working during the first commercial break. Once you get on Jeopardy(!), most people know the answers to most questions. But there's this evil system with the buzzer - after Trebek finishes asking the question, these lights go on to signal that you're clear to buzz in. But! If you buzz in before the lights go on, you're blocked out for a tenth of a second, which will inevitably fuck any chance you have of getting in. So you have to time it so you anticipate the lights just enough to ensure that you buzz in as they go on. I could not get this right. I did okay when I actually, miraculously, got through, but it was rare. The Indian chick (who ended up winning the whole tournament) got the question about Hebrew days of the week.

One of the rare times I did get to answer, I said Troy
Aiken. That really sucked. My dad was proud that I had any idea of this at all. And that's the thing about Jeopardy - I didn't actually know that the answer was Troy Aikman (or Aiken, for fuck's sake), but it was something about football and his name (or whatever godforsaken version of it I made up) just popped into my head. Most of it worked that way for me. Weird instincts that were usually right.

The 25 minutes or whatever of the show passed in a blur of frustration. I got Final Jeopardy right - I don't remember the clue, but the answer/question was "The Pied Piper" - and when the camera showed the three of us writing during the Jeopardy music, it got to me after I'd already answered, and the look on my face, which I've only seen once, was so clearly, "Yeah, I got it right, but what the fuck does it matter." I am not a graceful loser.


crimenotes said...

Aw ... I'll still read here, and occasionally leave a comment on those rare occasions when you don't write about theater and/or LOLcats, neither of which are my bailiwick.

Thanks for caring enough to be pissed, sincerely.

Jaime said...

Just the fact that you're able to wade through all that for the one time I might mention college football warms my heart. I still think you're a bastard, but my heart is warmed. Also because you said bailiwick.

riese said...

I have a similar problem with foreign languages, as you know. Hebrew, Spanish, Italian ... even my English is a bit paltry. But yeah, I can totes ask to go to the bathroom in one of those languages, construct a present tense sentence in one, and um, identify a chalkboard in the other.