Thursday, November 29

Eight Things About Me (A Meme)

I'm almost running out of interesting things to share about myself... honestly, I'm a pretty boring person. But since Mr. McGregor's Daughter and Muum both tagged me for the latest meme to circle the garden blogosphere, I decided to dig a little deeper and see if I could play along. So here's my list:

1. I was very excited to find my first few gray hairs last year. (I'm 31.) My Mom has beautiful silvery-gray hair, and I secretly hope that I have inherited it. If I discover in a few years that genetics has granted me this wish, I'll end my once-per-year lowlights routine and let my mane go completely au naturel.

2. My very first concert: The Violent Femmes at Bogart's in Cincinnati, 1995. I still love music but I may have outgrown my concert-going phase... I haven't bought a concert ticket since 2004. But over the years I've seen a lot of shows, including: Pearl Jam (x12), Radiohead (x3), Bob Dylan, Joan Osborne, Ozzy Osbourne, L7, Guided by Voices, The Melvins, The Butthole Surfers, Green Day, REM, Crosby Stills Nash & Young, Beth Orton, Gordon Lightfoot (don't laugh--he was wonderful!) and many more.

3. I took the ACT 5 or 6 times when I was in high school, trying to get a perfect 36. My scores were all only a point or two below that, and it just cost around $25 to take the test, so I figured it was worth a try. This is particularly interesting when you read the next point:

4. I almost had to leave college after my freshman year due to my terrible grades. I had never had to study for anything in my life and was too stubborn/proud to ask for help when I began seeing grades below A's and B's... and by the time I failed Calculus for the second time, I was pretty much at a total loss for a way to turn things around. (Luckily, my request for a second chance was granted and I spent my sophomore year on scholarship probation with a new major and specific goals to meet.) I still feel a large amount of guilt and shame over this, and that I am not at least "earning my scholarship" by working in a noble profession or job makes me feel even worse.

On a side note, I don't think that my two younger brothers know how proud I am of them for their own college successes... but I am. Particularly of Craig, because I know how hard he worked for every good grade he received on his way to a degree in mechanical engineering. That seems much more worthy than receiving a free ride to school and then almost squandering it.

5. My "real name" is Kim, not Kimberly. My last name is a mouthful in its own right, so Mom figured that she wouldn't add to my misery by giving me two long names to fill out on tests and other official forms. Why name me Kimberly when everyone would call me Kim anyway?

6. I am very good friends with my former husband. (Doesn't "former" sound nicer somehow than "ex" does?) We probably would have figured out that we shouldn't get married before the wedding, if we had both lived on our own longer after college... but honestly I have no regrets. Instead, I feel very lucky that there was no acrimony and that we are still in each others' lives. But I do admit that I miss my friendship with his Mom. We still keep in touch but of course it isn't the same.

7. I have posed nude for an artist before. For sketching, not photographs! (And it had nothing to do with attempting to recreate a scene from a well-known chick flick, either. Ugh.) No, it was just one artist generously providing the subject matter for another artist who wanted to hone his skills... although I'm thinking that I might have benefited more from the experience than he did. I know for sure that it helped me to shed some of my own inhibitions and insecurities.

8. I'm not sure whether I believe in any kind of afterlife, but if there is a heaven I think that you should get all of the answers to the outstanding questions you have had in your life once you get there.

Why am I the shortest one in my immediate family? Does Coco think that I am a good dog owner? Could the fact that my Mom and I both have trouble growing aloe be something genetic? Where did the diamond I lost out of my engagement ring go? And was that--or the fact that he insisted on a diamond engagement ring when I wanted something else entirely--supposed to be a sign?

Maybe the answers will just fill the pages of a book that they will hand you, and you can go through it page by page at your leisure. Or maybe when you step into heaven, the knowledge will just swarm into your head. Since I seem to have not ever grown completely out of that "But why?" stage of childhood, I'm sure that I would have a very thick book to go through and so I hope that it is the former. Unless they have gardens there to tend, of course. Then I could probably find a much more enjoyable way to pass eternity! *grin*

Reasons for these photos, from top to bottom: Silver sage the color of my mother's hair, one not-so-perfect fallen flower, my first (and way too small) garden bed at the house my former husband and I bought together, and a begonia photo that both shows some interesting illumination and reminds me of yet another question: Why does cool foliage entice me to buy moisture-loving plants that I know I won't be able to keep happy in my dry garden?


Carol Michel said...

Interesting! I love reading these and finding out more about different garden bloggers. Why indeed?

Meagan said...

See, I dropped Calculus before I could fail it, so instead I failed intro to engineering. Just as well I suppose. You certainly shouldn't feel ashamed for having had a scholarship... I think the government should be ashamed for pulling more of us off scholarship and onto loans.

As for your outstanding questions, I think I can answer one of them. Coco thinks you're God(ess?) but she wishes you'd bestow more turkey and bacon and steak and chips and bread and cake and lamb and...

Kylee Baumle said...

Kim! That was lots of fun! I'm so glad you shared. :-)

I thought of you tonight because Ottawa was on the local news. It was about the parochial school there having to hold classes in a gymnasium after the flood. I didn't hear the very beginning, but I think it was on because they're back in the classroom??

A wildlife gardener said...

I feel I know you a bit better, Kim. I like your name too. Thanks for sharing :)

Lisa at Greenbow said...

Kim, short and sweet as you sound.
Believe me I won't laugh about Gordon Lightfoot (because I just love him) if you don't laugh at me for not knowing who in the world is the Buttonhole Surfers.

You should not even look back at our scholarship days in any way except to say it was a learning experience. That is what college is all about. You are a productive citizen and very gifted.

In answer to your very last question, becasue you like them and there is always hope.

lisa said...

Fun post, Kim! Don't feel bad about college-my parents (hard-working and NOT rich) got me a student loan for college, and I blew it all in one semester! I dropped or flunked every single class except lifesaving/lifeguard, in which I got an A. My final GPA? 0.4!! (Damned decimal anyway!) But I got to see the Rolling Stones, buy cute clothes, party, and realize I was too homesick and tired of school for college just yet. So I came home, paid back the loan, and worked as a lifeguard until I could decide what to do. And my real mane is Lisa, not Elizabeth, and people STILL shorten it to "Lis"! BTW...what did you want instead of a diamond engagement ring?

Matron said...

Superb photos! I enjoyed reading your blog and will visit again. Love the photo of your garden assistant Coco. Come have a look at mine in action!

agentXXX said...

hee hee. the femmes seems like such a long time ago, as does your freshman year grade debacle. i was thinking about father matt the other day, and telling steve about how you would always have to write ages of journal entries in one fell swoop....and look at you now :) quite an interesting, if not unexpected meme.

Unknown said...

These are really interesting, Kim, and it seems we have quite a bit in common. I hope that my hair eventually turns all white/silver too, like my former mum-in-law's was--and it was beautiful. I flunked calculus twice too but switched majors with no qualms, and later collected two degrees on scholarships while in my mid-thirties. And I'M great friends with MY former husband too, who is a very good man--and I like his wife, too!
The questions you ask are intriguing too, and asking "But Why?" is never a bad thing. Great post!

Unknown said...

Carol, that's the other reason I thought I should play along--because I really enjoy everyone else's meme posts!

Meagan, lol... you're definitely right about that wishlist of Coco's! Although I don't t hink that she's ever actually had lamb, come to think of it. She did get to enjoy half a loaf of bread the other day because her stupid owner (me) forgot to put it back in the fridge after taking it out to get to the milk for my cereal. *sigh*

Kylee, oooh... I hope that they are back into the school, then! They had divided the local gradeschool gym into classrooms, used parts of the high school, etc., since the beginning of the school year.

This past weekend when I was at home, my Dad and I took me past a ton of houses that are still standing empty. Some will need to be torn down, but the owners are waiting on insurance settlements and are living with friends and relatives in the meantime. My sister-in-law's brother and his family are still living with his Mom, even. Crazy.

wildlife gardener, thanks! Any chance that you'll be picking up the meme, too? (I never usually "tag" anyone for these things, but if you want me to...)

Lisa at Greenbow, I'm not giggling at you not knowing them... but I am giggling at them being renamed the much nicer "Buttonhole" surfers! Speaking of nice, I like that last idea of yours, that there is always hope.

And you're so right. I learned so much during my college years... and some of it was even in the classroom. :)

lisa, I would LOVE to see the Stones! Hey, at least you got the lifeguard training that helped you pay back the loan, right? :)

I wasn't quite sure what I wanted rather than a diamond engagement ring, but something interesting and vintage/antique would have been great. And preferably not diamond!

Matron, thank you--and I will. :)

agentxxx, of course nothing surprises you about me anymore! *grin* You know me too well.

Ah, Father Matt... thinking about him always makes me smile. If only more people in the world were like Father Matt. You know, I almost created a blog post here about him when I read the article they published in the UD Quarterly after he passed away this year... maybe I still should.

jodi, that gives me hope... I'm not to my mid-30s yet, so maybe I'll follow in your footsteps and get a couple of degrees that are more amenable to what I wish I could do during my mid-30s. I can only hope! (By the way, my former husband has only had one serious girlfriend since we ended our marriage... and I'm not the only person who doesn't like her. None of his other friends did, either, as agentxxx can attest.)

Anonymous said...

Kim: We all learn more from our failures than our successes and that is true in life and the garden! You are a person of the ages! I never would have guessed that you are the ripe old age of 31! I have shoes older than you! WEll, maybe not but you get the point! Keep up the great writing and your fall photos are beautiful also! Oh, and blogger no longer allows me to post with my URL attached! I guess they only want blogger URL's to show.

Mr. McGregor's Daughter said...

I'm so glad you participated! You came up with lots of neat things (especially having the nerve to pose nude.) I always politely referred to the band as the BHsurfers. I hope I too have enough courage to go gray when the time comes. I think I have 2 or 3 gray hairs now, but they aren't visible. Don't feel guilty about college; I wanted to drop out of law school 1/2 way thru 2d year (I had a scholarship too). My dad talked me into finishing, but I never wanted to practice law & I have never appeared in a courtroom. Coco doesn't even get to the point of wondering whether you are a good owner. I'm sure the thought never enters her head. When you are going to be home, will she get away with sleeping on the couch while you're gone & when is she going to eat are probably the only questions in her little doggie brain. If you want a good take on heaven, you should read "Dog Heaven," a kid's book by Cynthia Rylant. It always makes me cry (I miss my dogs).

Anonymous said...

Hey me too. I also made impressive scores on those standardized tests, won a great scholarship and then went on probation for my college grades. And I still feel guilty about it too.


Melissa said...

I love your idea about getting a book of answers when we get to heaven -

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