Q1. What was the last thing you read digital or print?
A1: Digital: The Washington Post’s “Daily 202” newsletter for 4/22/19. Print: Quite possibly the worst book I’ve ever read, The God Players by Phil Valentine. It was so bad I couldn’t quit reading. I just had to see how bad it would get. I can’t wait to savage it here and on Goodreads as soon as I have time.
Q2. Are you more an extrovert or introvert?
A2: Reckon I’m an equivert. I rarely seek to be the center of attention, but neither do I shrink from it. On the rare occasions it comes, I do enjoy my moment in the spotlight.
Q3. How is your life different from what you imagined as a younger person?
A3: Hmm, well, now… This has the potential to be a very long answer, so forgive me if I ramble.
I never really had any specific goals as a younger person unless I include those aspirations that were common to 4- to 7-year old American boys in the mid 1970s, jobs like fireman, policeman, cowboy, or doctor. As early as 10 years of age, I wanted to be a famous writer like Stephen King, but I lacked the drive to work hard at it and even the wisdom to know it would require meticulous planning and concerted effort.
During high school I went through periods of wanting to be a psychologist, park ranger, Army soldier, and high school English teacher. But I never had concrete, specific goals or plans to go about achieving those goals.
The two things I’ve always known for sure I was bound to be, hell, born to be, were a good husband and father. I wanted to be, like my parents were, married by 20 and have fathered 4 kids by 25. Other than that, I drifted recklessly through my late teens and early 20s with no plans, no clue really, just a vague but firm feeling that, no matter what, things would work out the way they were supposed to.
So the most accurate answer to Q3 is that my life differs vastly from what I imagined as a younger person because a) I didn’t marry ’til I was 24 and only fathered 2 kids, at 35 and 40 years of age; and b) I never actively imagined much else. I certainly never would’ve imagined that I would spend 15 years slaving away in the restaurant industry then stumbling half-drunk, aimlessly, and ultimately in vain through 2 years of grad school then 2 more years as an adjunct English professor and lens grinder in an eyewear lab before finally lucking into what has become an enjoyable, fulfilling, (and so far) 15-year career as a probation officer, a career I have no intention of jeopardizing before I’m ready to retire. And, gods willing I should live that long, I have no intention of working a single day past my earliest retirement eligibility date.
Q4. Do you think about dying? Does death scare you? Why or why not?
A4: I very rarely think about dying. The thought of death itself doesn’t scare me, but I do hope to live long enough to see my kids grown, graduated from college, and successfully on their way up in the world. And of course I hope to have a quick, peaceful, and relatively pain-free death that doesn’t leave my loved ones with any unnecessary financial burdens. Many, many years from now. And before The Boss dies. I know that’s selfish, but lordy, I couldn’t get by without her.
I thank Melanie B. Cee for keeping the “Share Your World” tradition going. Y’all go check her out!