Memes and Quizzes

“If My Childhood Plans Had Panned Out…”

A couple weeks ago, there was a cute little cartoon making the rounds titled “If My Childhood Plans Had Panned Out…” It easily lends itself to a fun mental exercise with several components to think about, so naturally somebody turned it into an Internet meme. (Thanks, Michael May!)

I chose to make my own responses to the questions raised in the form of photos, which I will place after the fold to save y’all some bandwidth. And for the record, I defined childhood for this thing as being between the ages of seven and 10, which for me would’ve covered the years 1976 through ’79. Click through if you’re curious…

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20 Songs

I missed out on the heyday of the “let’s see what’s on your iPod” meme by about six years — what can I say, I’m a late adopter, part of that whole “analog kind of guy” thing — but I’ve actually got an iPod now, so when I ran across a variant of this old blogging chestnut on Tumblr last night, I couldn’t resist playing along.

If this is too passe for your tastes, feel free to surf on, but I feel like I’m finally filling a hole in my soul by participating in one of these.

Okay, maybe this experience wasn’t that profound, but it was kind of fun to see what a random sampling of my musical tastes might turn up. Fun for me, at least. Maybe not so much for you. But who’s writing this blog, anyhow?

Right, so, moving on, here’s the intro/instructions:

You can learn a lot about someone by the music they listen to. Hit “shuffle” on your iPod or MP3 player and write down the first 20 songs. No cheating or skipping songs that are shameful. That is the fun!

My list:

  1. Calling All Girls — Rick Springfield
  2. Windy — The Association
  3. The Harder They Come — Jimmy Cliff
  4. Shake Your Groove Thing — Peaches & Herb
  5. Fall from Grace — Stevie Nicks
  6. Heaven Knows — Robert Plant
  7. Ask the Lonely — Journey
  8. Sweet Talkin’ Guy — The Chiffons
  9. Listen to Your Heart — Roxette
  10. Mule Skinner Blues — The Fendermen
  11. The Road Home — Heart
  12. Nothin’ at All — Heart
  13. Some Gothic Ranch Action (instrumental from the soundtrack of Rancho Deluxe) — Jimmy Buffett
  14. Hot Girls in Love — Loverboy
  15. I Can’t Stand It No More — Peter Frampton
  16. Real Man — Bruce Springsteen
  17. Dance Hall Days — Wang Chung
  18. Don’t Look Now — Creedence Clearwater Revival
  19. La Bamba — Los Lobos
  20. Son of a Preacher Man — Dusty Springfield

Okay. Interesting that the first selection was my main man. I swear I did not set that up. I do wonder, though, exactly how that Shuffle algorithm works. You see, I can go for weeks without hearing anything from a particular genre — oldies, say — and then all of a sudden the machine is kicking out “Sweet Talkin’ Guy” and “Windy” and “Mule Skinner Blues.” Not to mention two songs by the same artist coming back to back… that doesn’t seem terribly random to me. In any event, I suppose this is a reasonably good cross section of my likes: mostly ’70s and ’80s pop-rock, some older stuff, nothing newer than ’89 or ’90, and some Jimmy Buffett thrown in for good measure. Probably nothing my Loyal Readers didn’t expect, right?

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The Mighty Cave of Cool Survey

Nothing like a nice meme that you can work on a little bit at a time when your world is too crazy to allow for proper blog entries. These “quiz things,” as Jaquandor calls them, are getting harder to find; I guess they’ve become a bit passe these days, rather like blogging itself, really. But I still enjoy them, especially when, as I mentioned, I’m too busy to really do much else.

Here’s a pretty good one I found over at Michael May’s AdventureBlog

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100 Things I Love About the Movies

I noticed this semi-meme list thingie over at Michael May’s Adventure Blog the other day and thought it looked like something I ought to do. There are no rules, really; it’s just an exercise in free association that asks you to name 100 things you love about movies. I interpreted that as things that made me fall in love with movies, or that rekindle my love for them when I see them again. Anyhow, it’s a list of movie-related stuff I like… how could I resist that?

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What, Another TV Meme?

I know I just recently did a TV-themed meme, but this one (already done by Jaquandor and SamuraiFrog) looked sufficiently different to be worth the time, and besides, last week was one of those weeks when I couldn’t seem to produce an original and coherent blog entry to save my life — even the weekend was a washout, thanks to a overnight snowstorm that brought down tree branches all over the Compound and left me with a chainsaw in my hand for most of yesterday — but I could answer a couple of questions here and there in between doing other things. Maybe I ought to try one of those “Ask Me Anything” deals like Jaquandor and John Scalzi both do…

Anyhow, the meme begins below the fold:

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Five-by-Five TV Meme, Preceded by a Bit of Ranting

I struggled all last week to compose one of my occasional political cris de couer, this one motivated by the nonsense currently going on in Wisconsin. If you’ve been in a cave for the last month — and I know at least one of my Loyal Readers whose circumstances could be described as such — Wisconsin’s Republican governor is using a budgetary crisis, which he seems to have engineered himself, as a pretense to try and force his state’s public-sector labor unions into giving up their collective bargaining rights. In shorter words, he’s union-busting. But he’s not busting all the public-sector unions. No, he’s only after the ones whose members tend to vote Democratic. The Republican-leaning police and firefighter unions are safe. Which means this whole exercise is transparently partisan and blatantly ideological. I’m not interested in debating the pros and cons of unions — Kevin Drum pretty much sums up my opinion here, and says it better than I could anyhow — but the more unsavory political truth of the Wisconsin deal makes me mad. It is only the most obvious example of how Republicans nationwide are trying to take advantage of a shaky economy to ram through a radical right-wing social agenda that they haven’t managed to accomplish in decades of trying. In other words, they’re trying to kill things Republicans hate on principle anyway, while saying they have to do it to get the economy going.

Bullshit.

Here’s the thing: if you really care about cutting the deficit, then you’ve got to be willing to at least consider letting the Bush tax cuts expire. The tax rates during the Clinton years were hardly onerous — they were lower than the taxes in the prosperous 1950s — and they’d go a long ways toward balancing the books. And you also ought to be trying to find a way to convince the wealthy — who seem to think they’re above paying taxes — that they are still part of this country, even if they live behind locked gates, and it’s immoral of them not to contribute to the common good. Oh, and you’d get serious about making corporations pay their fair share too. And while I’m pipe-dreaming anyhow, how about re-regulating the financial industry that caused this mess anyhow? And sending a few CEOs to jail? Or at least taking their solid-gold parachutes away from them and giving the money to the employees who got laid off to bolster the stockholders’ dividends last quarter… but noooo, that’s class warfare and we can’t have that. Not unless it’s being waged on the middle-class people who actually do the work in this country and are fast on their way to becoming vassals of a new feudalism. The sad thing is, a lot of them seem to actually want that…

Yeah, anyhow that’s the gist of what I’ve been trying to write, but the damn thing just hasn’t wanted to come together in a satisfying way, so tonight I decided “Screw it, let’s do a nice harmless meme.” And as fate would have it, SamuraiFrog recently provided one…

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Hey, I’m Sirius Black!

Which Great Witch Or Wizard Are You?
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I can live with that. Sirius was awesome, with his surface-level air of the swashbuckling rogue — I’ve always been drawn to those rogues — but also a grim and regretful side, which is much more like, well, me.

Perfect.

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Halloween Meme

I know, I know… I really ought to be working on that recap of my recent road-trip vacation, not to mention a couple of other topics that are growing less timely by the second. But Halloween is fast approaching and I’m having trouble focusing on those other entries, so I’m going to give myself a break and do a quick meme that’s been going around. I first spotted it at SamuraiFrog’s Electronic Cerebrectomy.

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