Seven random things

So I saw this meme on a few other blogs, and I figured it’d be a great way to get the ball rolling. Most people did this meme because they were tagged by another blogger somewhere; I’m a bit different, I just saw it and did it because I was bored out of my mind for the heck of it.

Seven random things you may or may not know about me:

1. I have a rather random and bizarre sense of humor.

I’ve been known to crack some of the weirdest jokes. Sometimes, my sense of humor goes underappreciated, unappreciated or even ignored, but it’s something I’ve gotten used to.

2. I have a very diverse and eccentric taste in music.

I grew up listening to country music, then pop/rock, then harder rock, and finally I started expanding my tastes to just about anything with a discernible melody (i.e. not rap). I may well  listen to 80’s pop, heavy metal, new age, and classical in the same sitting. It depends on my mood.

3. I am often a fan of “less-populated culture.”

I often love movies, music, and television that seems to completely miss the target with most of the population. I think the best example I can come up with is the movie Howard the Duck, which for many years was my all time favorite (of course, this was when I was in middle school). Yes, the same Howard the Duck movie that ALF made a barfbag joke about.

Now, this does not necessarily imply I always go for the weird, bizarre, eccentric, eclectic, less populated, etc. However, I consider myself less afraid (in fact, much less afraid) than average to stray from the beaten path.

(Interestingly, the film that finally displaced Howard the Duck as my all-time favorite was Some Kind of Wonderful, the story behind which I’ll save for another day.)

4. I don’t have a college degree.

I did take some college classes, but most of the stuff I know has been self-taught. It’s more of a case of lacking patience as opposed to not being able to understand the material. I often consider the only exams that really matter to be the ones given in the real world.

I take driver’s education as the best example of this. I have forgotten at least most of the distances, such as how far in advance you’re supposed to signal a turn, exactly how far from a railroad track you have to be to be legally parked, etc. But I’ve been given plenty of such tests in my current job (courier/messenger) as well as the years of driving before that and I certainly feel overall I’ve earned a passing grade.

5. I’m a huge fan of arcade gaming.

In particular: 80s to early 90s video games, and solid-state (roughly, late 70s/early 80s to present) pinball. I have a huge list of favorite games, too many to even try to narrow down to a top 5 or top 10. Again, through the magic of MAME (particularly the xmame version at the moment), I’ve been able to find many old gems that I never got to really play in the arcades. In particular, someday, I want to play a few games of Snake Pit on its original hardware. However, that’s far from the only game in that category.

6. I’m a huge fan of the free software movement.

Not to be confused with the confusingly named open source movement, which I do not support at all; the actions of the open source splinter faction, while they may have had noble intentions in the beginning, have done much more harm than good to the great work of Dr. Richard Stallman and the Free Software Foundation. For now, I’ll leave it at that; this isn’t intended to be a “seven mini-rants” meme, after all.

7. I’ve never travelled outside the country.

I’m not particularly proud of that, but that’s the truth; I’ve never had the pleasure of going through customs. The closest I’ve come to that was leaving the mainland for a trip to Hawaii some years ago. I’ve also been to Disney World in Florida; casinos in Lake Charles, Louisiana; a relative’s wedding in Virginia; and when I was very young, Mississippi (I think it was Biloxi but of course that part of my brain has flipped way too many bits to remember for sure).

The countries I would most like to visit are (in order) Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, the Netherlands, Russia, Japan, Norway, Sweden, Finland, and Denmark. I will probably wind up visiting other countries not on this list, and may not make it to all ten of the countries I listed in this lifetime.

Now that I’ve finished, I’m supposed to tag seven people. This is tricky, because most of those I would tag have either already been tagged elsewhere, or have already done this. So, I’m just going to leave it up to the first seven people who haven’t already done this, to tag themselves. I might add, this is a great reason to start a blog if you don’t have one already; this was originally supposed to be one of my first entries.