September 21st, 2005

duke-juggle

Ten Interests

The people have spoken, and here are descriptions of the first 10 interests requested by you lovely readers.

1. being kissed awake
I find that there is something remarkably tender and sweet about being gently kissed awake. I suppose that it is partly because, no matter how independent I pride myself in being, there is still a part of me looking for a protector. It is probably especially because I am such an insomniac, and it is such a rareity for me to be asleep while another person is awake. I love how safe I feel, gradually waking up to a man's touch and soft kisses, realizing that he's been watching over me while I sleep, and he's been missing me.

2. piano
I started taking piano lessons when I was around eight years old I think. I remember walking to my teacher's house, and sometimes roller skating when I thought that walking was too tedious. I continued with the lessons (but not the roller skating) all through high school. When I went to college, I stopped taking lessons, but I still played periodically. When I graduated, I got an electric keyboard and I started playing more. A few years ago, my parents bought me a surprise christmas gift of an upright piano! I don't play every day, and I don't play as often as I wish I did -- but I do enjoy playing. Isn't it strange how sometimes you don't do things, even when you know they make you happy? Anyway I used to play classical music, but of late I've started playing "pop" type songs, ones that I can sing along with while I accompany myself. I'd say Ice by Sarah Mclachlan is what I'm best at currently, or at least it's one of my favorites.

3. uechi ryu
Uechi Ryu is a form of Okinawan karate. When I started college, I decided to join the karate club. I'd always been interested in martial arts, and it sounded like fun. It so happened that the karate club at Amherst that year was practicing Uechi Ryu. A few friends of mine joined with me, but I was the only one who stuck with it. I really enjoyed it; I especially liked the kata. I was never a fan of sparring, but learning to master my body and muscles intrigued me. I kept at it for about 2.5 years I think... the club started to dwindle right around the time that my studies were sucking up more and more of my time. I got up to a green belt (4th level). When I graduated, I looked around for a Uechi dojo near my home, but didn't find anything. I haven't studied any form of karate since then, but I did get into yoga last year (which was totally different but a tiny bit similar).

4. making people think
I suppose this isn't entirely accurate, because you can't really make people think, can you? But I like to encourage people to think, or startle people into thought. One of my favorite jokes, for example, is to take somebody literally. People say the most ridiculous things sometimes, out of habit! (Me too, I'll admit it freely. But this topic is about making other people think, remember.) So I like to point such things out sometimes, or ask unexpected questions. I also like trying to look at the world a little differently, or a little more closely. Then tell people what I see. Hopefully it makes people think a little... if nothing else it helps me think.

5. happy feet
I think that happy feet makes for a happy person. I'm a skater, and a dancer, which means I use my feet a lot. I depend on them and abuse them, so when I'm not making them work for me I like to dress them up. I love bright silly socks, and cheerful cute shoes. I also like taking pictures of my feet! This is partly because they are attached to me, so they are always readily available, and they're a perfect distance for camera-focus. I have an entire LJ memories section devoted to happy feet. When my feet are cold, tired, or hurting, it's hard to be happy. So happy feet are an important part of a happy life!

6. struts
Yes, k8*'s right about this one: it's a computer/java thing. (Not a Seger thing.) More specifically, it's an open source apache thing. It's a framework for doing a complex front end of a web application. It's what we've been using for the client part of my current project at work.

7. uncle bonsai
Ahhh.... *happy sigh* Uncle Bonsai, one of the greatest little musical groups I know. Even though they allegedly broke up in 1989, long before I'd heard of them, I've seen them in concert twice. New year's eves, 2001 and 2002, I believe it was! When I went to that first NYE show, I'd only heard a couple of crappy web-clips. I'd been assured that they had an acapella-like sound, and that I would like them. They had a single guitar mixed in with three amazing voices, and I LOVED them. This is no cliche: I honestly did both laugh and cry that night. Talk about versitility! They have some of the funniest little ditties I've ever heard, and some of the most beautiful songs and harmonies. I love 'em. Apparently they still perform now and then... I hope they make it back to Ann Arbor.

8. cellophane
This one is pretty easy, because I already wrote about it a couple of years ago. It's not just an interest, it's an identity of sorts: my journal is titled cellophane - the story of an invisible girl. Cellophane is see-through, just like I can be at times. But also, I once entered a masquerade costume dressed in (almost) nothing but colored saran wrap. Surprisingly, I was less invisible that day for some reason.

9. ikanorah
I was wondering if somebody would ask about this one! No links here, this is a made-up word. When I was in high school, I invented my own religion with the help of sherdeb. I think it all started with a little symbol I doodled one day. which looked something like the ascii-art below. I don't remember quite how it evolved from there, but eventually we claimed to be Ikanorians, who worshiped the Mouse King Ikanorah. Because all religions have to have a holiday around Christmas, I settled on Ikonorat as our December holiday. I don't recall many more details, except that sherdeb and I called ourselves the Ikanorian priestesses, or something like that.
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10. great big sea
Great Big Sea is an amazing band from Newfoundland. They play a unique combination of celtic/folk music with a modern rock flair. Their music just makes you want to bounce and dance, and their vocal harmonies are lovely. I sometimes joke that the best thing that came out of my long-ago relationship with Evil P was my discovery of Great Big Sea. If you've never heard them play, you should definitely check out some of their clips. I've been lucky enough to see them in concert a couple of times too, and it was 100% worth it.