03/30/04: poetry / questionnaire

Today's Spam Poetry:

Bridesmaid maximized
Sweetening serpentine

Clear cleansed aloneness paralyze dandy.


Budding explainer smokes needful veil.

Inflatable flake sifting pastry advert.

Unified topics deducing Danville.
Instigates mediations

Found this old questionnaire that Stefan created back in 2001. I figured I'd post it in lieu of anything particularly insightful to report.

You all know my policy regarding 'chain letters' --both hard copy and virtualiter-- in a nutshell: I don't play that game. However, there is one form of chain letter that I enjoy and support and that is the questionnaire. The only downfall to the questionnaire (besides the time-consumption) is the typical quality of the questions. I think we can all do without such drivel as "What's your favorite movie?" and "Have you ever been in love?" I used to think there was no such thing as stupid questions until these came along. In my unending mission to make the world around me a better place, I decided to devote my spare time to the creation of a really cool questionnaire with which to curse the 'net and its users. Don't cringe: this one gets down to the real nitty gritty, asking the thought provoking questions that really matter. It's more intelligent than the 'sex test' and sexier than the 'intelligence test.' The questions beg witty responses that inform as well as delight, ultimately uniting us all into one big happy cyber-fam. Best of all, there's only twenty questions! Newcomers: copy this to a file, then forward it to everybody on your mailing list, including Gramma. Just delete the answers [on the copy, duh!] and fill in yer own. It is that simple. If you have trouble, just ask a sixth grader.

Thanks, folks!



Your Name Here: Jill Ann Knapp

Here begynneth the questionnaire:

1. If you were Imperator/Imperatrix for just enough time to pass one global mandate, what would it be?
Iíd institute a law that would require all people to wait one full second to consider what they are about to say before they say it. Being a recovering chronic interrupter, it's helped me a bit.

2. What is your favorite opera? (NB: "Jesus Christ Superstar" and "Les Miserables" are technically operas, "Rent" and "Godspell" are not --Stef)
Well, now that you mention it, Jesus Christ Superstar (that is, the original concept album) is probably my favorite. Tobias Picker's Emmeline is unbelievable (http://www.current.org/prog613.html); but if we're going with "legit" opera, I guess Iíd have to say The Magic Flute, only because the Queen of the Night arias make me pee my pants.

3. What was the last movie you saw that made you want to hurl your popcorn at the screen in disgust?
I haven't been to the movies in a while, unfortunately. I know I've seen something really disappointing recently, but I just can't recall what it is. Titanic was pretty vomitose. Jeremy and I had put off seeing it for a million years, but when it wasnít out of the theaters after 23 years, we figured what the hell. We laughed throughout the entire thing, making fun of the sheer stupidity of the thing, and we really pissed off some middle-aged sappy lady sitting next to us. Embeh.

4. What is your favorite rainy day activity?
Staring at the wall, working on my website, painting my toenails, applying various facial skin products, stalking people on the Ďnet, reliving embarrassing moments in my head until I deem myself totally worthless

5. If you could whisper something in the US President's ear in the middle of a press conference, what would it be?
"Hhuuhhhhuh..... you said Ďbush.í"

6. What musical instrument would you like to master [that you do not already play]?
I agree with Stef ≠ that would definitely have to be the piano. I am ashamed that I have a music degree and canít play the damn thing.

7. Did you ever have a friend who was born in the 19th century?
No, sadly.

8. What song drives you up the wall?
"The Rose." It makes me want to kill people. "Wind Beneath My Wings" is a close second. Also, anything from Annie that features shouty young girls makes me want to go postal. (I'm not hostile, what makes you think that?)

9. Tell us about a time you fell asleep while driving (if applicable):
[This was my 7-month rebellious period.] I was still in college, though no longer living in the dorms... I was living with my folks. I was dating a guy named Pete who attended the University of Massachusetts, about 3 hours away from my NJ home. Two or three times per week, I would tell my parents that I had some sorority event and I wouldnít be home until late that night. With only $5.50 cents (usually in change) in my pocket ($2.50 for the Tappan Zee Bridge toll), I would leave my school at 4:00pm and arrive at UMass around 7:00 - 7:30pm. I would hang out with Pete until midnight or so, and then Iíd start the drive home. Thank heavens there was a drive-thru Dunkin Donuts at the freeway entrance by UMass. With my remaining $3.00, I would refill my extra jumbo Dunkin Donuts travel mug and purchase 3 donuts. I would use these rations to pace myself for the drive home... I knew I couldnít begin to drink the coffee until Connecticut because it was too hot to drink before I reached that point. So I would eat one donut in Massachusetts, and by the time I got the sugar crash, I would be in Connecticut where I could enjoy my coffee and a second donut about halfway through the state (Connecticut was the longest portion of the journey). Getting through New York was quick, so I didnít reward myself there... and would finally consume the final donut when I got on the Garden State Parkway in NJ. However, one night, Connecticut seemed longer than usual... and the coffee and one donut wasnít sufficing, so I ate my Jersey donut also in Connecticut. Still didnít help. So I rolled down the window (this being November, it should have helped), but even that couldnít help keep me awake. So I cranked the radio, which also rapidly lost effect. I didnít have money for a hotel and I didnít have a credit card, so I resorted to slapping myself in the face and pinching my arms to keep myself awake. My eyes wouldnít focus on anything, I was seeing double, and the next thing I knew, I was in a different lane than I was in a few moments ago, with no recollection of how I got there.

That kinda woke me up.

An addendum to this story was that my new insurance card had arrived in the mail that morning (my previous one had expired) and I forgot to take it with me before I left for school that morning. So my mom called half my sorority sisters looking for me that night, wanting to drop off the insurance card to me so I wouldnít have to drive home uninsured. A few days later, my dad had walked out to my car to check the mileage to see if it was time for an oil change yet. Instead of there being 2500-3000 miles as he expected, there was close to 11,000. Needless to say, my parents were none too happy. What a rebel.

Anyhoo, if you ever have had a close call with falling asleep at the wheel, purchase the Barenaked Ladies disc Maroon and listen to the last track. Itís aptly titled "The Night I Fell Asleep at the Wheel." I cannot listen to this song, as it throws me into fits of crying hysteria, no matter how elevated my previous mood. It also has a bonus track after this tune, which, at first listen is awful, but has such a simple charming quality that it always makes me feel instantly better after the previous song.

(Some people say I give too many details and can't seem to get to the point. I don't know how I got that reputation.)

10. If the Earth was about to be destroyed and you were allowed to save only one work of literature to represent your home planet, what would it be?
Probably Kon-Tiki by Thor Heyerdahl, or a Mark Twain anthology.

11. What sport would you like to play (that you do not already play)?
Pool, if thatís considered a sport. Playing pool is like a tuxedo. You can be really ugly and smelly and gross, but as soon as you put on a tux (or, if you are a good pool player) you are instantly a babe magnet. Not that I necessarily want to be a babe magnet, but I think there's something very cool about being a good pool player.

12. What sport would you like to abolish (that hasn't already been abolished)?
I agree with Stefan: hunting for huntingís sake is all wrong.

13. Tell us a little about the worst job you ever had:
Working at CVS (for the non NJ-ites, a CVS is like a Walgreens). The manager looked like a rat, and he hit on all the high-school girls (which I was at the time). I worked the cash register and always handed out too much change. Iíd get yelled at after every shift for being short in the cash drawer. ("Short in the cash drawer" sounds like a euphemism for something sexual, doesn't it?)

14. What is your earliest childhood memory?
I remember the moment where the doctor slapped me to get me to breathe immediately after I was born. I distinctly remember thinking, "Heeeey now, what was that for?" I also remember being weighed right after being born, and the scale was very cold.

15. What was the first record you ever bought with your own, hard- earned money?
Again, I think Iím with Stefan here again... Juice Newton's "Queen of Hearts" on 45. The B side was "Angel of the Morning." The neat thing about my copy of that 45 was that the labels were reversed, so if you wanted to play the B side, you had to play the A side. It was purple.

16. If you were forced to be on one of those idiotic TV talk shows, which one would you opt for? Why?
Oprah; because I know the people who watch that show are generally "nice" people, who are easily brainwashed. I could use the Jedi Mind Trick (TM) on them and rule the world.

17. If you could communicate with one particular specie of the animal kingdom, which would it be and why?
Dogs. I think dogs constantly say, "Iím a dog, Iím a dog, Iím a dog, Iím a dog-- dog dog dog dog dog, that's what I am, a big dumb dog, I'm a dog," and I think itíd be fun to hear that all day.

18. Which holiday ought to be stricken from the calendar?
Any holiday deemed by Hallmark; e.g., Secretaries Day, Friendship Day, etc.

19. How would you make automobiles safer for everyone?
Make it impossible for humans to drive them.

20. Was this a fun interview or should it be stricken from the records?
Phun! Funn! Funne!