Writing Challenge Day 30 [MAKEUP]: Yourself

Well, that’s it. The final post. I’m a day behind, and I really botched the schedule of this challenge, but oh well. I’m dragging my butt across the finish line.

So the final prompt is myself. Well… crap. What can I say about myself that isn’t already in my bio?

I’m a goofy-looking guy with a goofy personality. I know people taller than me, but not many. Being a big guy has some advantages, sure.

But I don’t like it. I haven’t been able to purchase shoes normally for years. I don’t get the pleasure of walking into a store and finding a style I like. They invariably don’t have it in my size. I’m lucky if they have ANYTHING in my size. Instead, I have to order my shoes off the internet, and have them shipped. Even then, it’s hard to shop by style, and my options are rather limited.

Overall, I like to think I have a good (although highly self-deprecating) sense of humor, even if my friends find it a little strange sometimes. And unfortunately for my boss, who probably wishes I’d shut my trap for once, I’m not shy about saying what I think, especially when I’m unhappy with something.

Overall, I’m ok with being me. There’s nothing horrible about it. There are a couple benefits. But if I could change something, I wouldn’t mind having smaller feet, being a little less hairy, and a lot smarter, thinner, and better looking. Not so much to ask, is it?

Check out our other participants here –

Niki: Sometimes I Write

Becky: Free2B2Much

Tracy: CountryRoadChronicles


Writing Challenge Day 29 [MAKEUP]: A Random Person

At an estate sale after my grandfather passed away when I was little, I stumbled across a collection of books. These books didn’t look like the colorful, illustrated books I had at home. They were relatively nicely bound, they had the titles impressed on the front – they looked official; they looked important.

They were the complete works of Frost, Shakespeare, Poe, and Conan Doyle. I’d been tasked with taking stuff out of the garage and putting it in the “for sale” area, but instead I approached my mother with the books and my best “Pleeeeeeeeeeease?” expression. It didn’t take much convincing.

I read much of Poe and Shakespeare. I read ALL of Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes stories. I couldn’t get enough.

One thing I always loved about Sherlock Holmes was that throughout the story, the clues are laid out for you – you can solve the mystery yourself, if you know how to interpret the clues. I never did.

Most modern adaptations of Sherlock Holmes are concerned with his interactions with Dr. Moriarty and Irene Adler, but in the books, these characters only appeared in a few stories. Most of the stories were more ‘one-off’ affairs, sort of like a TV episode, where everything is wrapped up at the end of the story.

In the books, Sherlock Holmes was obsessed with cigar ash. He had categorized, catalogued, and could recognize the ash of any tobacco. He was also obsessed with disguises, and in contrast with some recent depictions, only rarely fought – though he was quite capable of doing so.

One thing that has made it into most adaptations, but which surprised my young mind nonetheless, was that Holmes was a drug addict. Specifically, a heroin user, albeit an arguably high-functioning one.

It’s been said that Sherlock Holmes was based off a real person that Conan Doyle had met. A doctor that was so astute in observing his patient’s symptoms that he could tell you with little to no difficulty exactly what ailed any particular person without much need for examination. I don’t know how true that is, and it must be seen through the lens of outdated medical practices and beliefs (which were much simpler), but it’s still a fascinating thought nonetheless, don’t you think?

Oh, also: Sherlock Holmes NEVER said “Elementary, my dear Watson”.

Check out our other participants here –

Niki: Sometimes I Write

Becky: Free2B2Much

Tracy: CountryRoadChronicles


Writing Challenge Day 28 [MAKEUP]: A Historical Figure

Oh lord. A historical figure. The amount of leeway here is frightening. Anybody? Throughout history?!

Eventually, I decided on Gregor Mendel. Who’s that, I hear my readers who didn’t pay attention in biology asking?

Gregor Mendel was a monk. He’s also more or less the father of modern genetics. Wait, what?

It had long been understood that you could breed two things with desirable traits and produce an offspring with that desirable trait. But until Mendel, no one had really troubled themselves too much with the WHY? part of the equation. Mendel, however, wanted to know what was going on.

So he experimented. With pea plants. He noticed that some of his plants were yellow, some were green. Some had wrinkled pods, some had smooth. Some were tall, some were short. So he started breeding plants. And breeding plants. And breeding more plants.

And he discovered that if you bred two plants with opposing characteristics (yellow/green) for example, all their “children” would be of ONE variety. But THEIR children would show the other characteristic about 1 out of every 4 times. Eventually, he solidified this into the concept of dominant and recessive genes. You can chart these pairings, and predict their offspring, using what looks like a tic-tac-toe board (Punnet Squares, if I recall my lessons correctly).

I like Mendel’s story for two reasons. One, everybody knew this was a thing, but Mendel actually looked below the surface and searched for the WHY. He was curious. I love curiosity.

Also, it’s not often we owe major scientific breakthroughs to monks.

Check out our other participants here –

Niki: Sometimes I Write

Becky: Free2B2Much

Tracy: CountryRoadChronicles


Writing Challenge Day 27 [MAKEUP]: Someone You Only Know Online…

…but would like to know in person.

I don’t have much choice here. Pretty much everyone I interact with online are people I have met in person. Whether that’s people I knew in person and later found online (like the folks from Dry Bones, or the previously mentioned ‘Samus’), or people I originally met online and then met in person (like fellow blogger Bill Davis or my now ex-wife).

So this post is about P Irate Rule. What can I say about P Irate? The fact is, after much thought, not much.

A long time ago, in a Facebook far, far away… Niki and I used to play Draw Something through the app on FB. I don’t even know if that app is still functional. But it was more multiplayer, and one of the people we ran across was P Irate. We liked the way she played, the cut of her jib, if you will, and invited her to play with us more often. One thing led to another, as they say…

Since then, have I learned much about P Irate? Well, I gather she has a SO, and she posts a lot of funny stuff on FB. That’s about all I know. But I’d love to buy you a coffee if you ever make your way to northern France. Do pirates drink coffee? Maybe a beer then.

Check out our other participants here –

Niki: Sometimes I Write

Becky: Free2B2Much

Tracy: CountryRoadChronicles


Writing Challenge Day 26 [MAKEUP]: A Coworker

A coworker. I’ve got a few of those. Which coworker do I write about? I’ve already written about a couple of them.

A lot of folks in the translation department are parents. Nearing on half. And since the depart of our Russian translator, I’m the only father on the team.

One of the ladies on the team, aside from being every bit as much a coffee addict as me, has a daughter just a bit younger than Matthew. But they’re close enough in age that they hit the same phases around the same time, more or less, and we’ve passeda fair amount of time sipping coffee and discussing, and at times, whining about, our children.

She and I disagree on some aspects of parenting – what to let the kids watch, for example (you mean you DON’T let your daughter watch Terminator?!) – but we agree on quite a bit more, and I know I can always count on her for a wise and valuable second opinion, or at least just reassurance that I haven’t scarred my son for life.

So, coworker of mine, I owe you a coffee. Meet me at my desk at 9:30. ;)

Check out our other participants here –

Niki: Sometimes I Write

Becky: Free2B2Much

Tracy: CountryRoadChronicles


Writing Challenge Day 25 [MAKEUP]: Your Favorite Alien

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An old image of Invader Zim I created specifically to serve as an avatar.

Those that know me will perhaps not be surprised to learn I had much less difficulty with this prompt than with many of the others on the list. There are a lot of options to choose from. Spock. Paul (Paul nearly won). E.T. Mork from Ork.

But… my favorite alien has to be Invader Zim. Period. Zim, as you might have guessed, is an invader. Or rather, he desperately wants to be. Sadly, he’s horridly incompetent, and not terribly bright. But what he lacks in skill, he makes up for in passion. Almost.

The series, appropriately titled Invader Zim, begins with him showing up uninvited while Invaders are assigned planets to overthrow in preparation for the Irken Armada’s next operation: Operation Impending Doom II, and making it awkward until the Almighty Tallest (they choose their leaders by height – I would be a god) assign him to a “mystery planet”, which turns out to be Earth. If you’re wondering what happened with Operation Impending Doom I, well… Zim happened.

The rest of the series follows his desperate, megalomaniacal, and ultimately ineffectual attempts to assess Earth’s weaknesses and take control, thereby proving himself and making the Almighty Tallest proud. Words cannot adequately express the sheer level of awesome absurdity that this show attains, so I leave it to you to discover in your own time.

Check out our other participants here –

Niki: Sometimes I Write

Becky: Free2B2Much

Tracy: CountryRoadChronicles


Writing Challenge Day 24 [MAKEUP]: An Author

 

Deep Thought

Some of my previous artwork – suddenly relevant

Despite being an avid reader all through my childhood, I regrettably did not discover Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy until my twenties. However, once I did, I immediately read through all the books, pausing only to eat and sleep.

I fell in love with the books in the first chapter of the first book. Douglas Adams spends much of a chapter introducing us to a character, setting up her story, then…

Has her run over and killed, followed by the line “This is not her story”. At that point, I was nearly falling out of my chair with laughter, and I knew I had to read the rest of it. So rather than blab on and on, here are some excellent Douglas Adams quotes:

In the beginning the Universe was created. This has made a lot of people very angry and been widely regarded as a bad move.”

“There is an art to flying, or rather a knack. Its knack lies in learning to throw yourself at the ground and miss. … Clearly, it is this second part, the missing, that presents the difficulties.”

“The ships hung in the sky in much the same way that bricks don’t.”

Check out our other participants here –

Niki: Sometimes I Write

Becky: Free2B2Much

Tracy: CountryRoadChronicles


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