Gut Rumbles

April 25, 2008

Five questions

Originally published August 18, 2003

A lot of bloggers are going around interviewing each other with five silly questions. If you agree to be interviewed, you get a link from the interviewee and you're supposed to link back to them, then interview someone else. It's kinda like a blog chain letter.

I don't want to play, so I just stole five questions from another site and decided to interview myself.

1) Paper or plastic?

I personally believe that this is a dumbass question. You have to ASK for a paper bag everywhere except a liquor store nowdays. We once had a paper bag plant in Savannah that employed over 400 people. Plastic bags put them out of business. The plant was closed and all 400 people laid off. But I manufacture pigment that goes into making plastic bags. Okay, SCREW a paper bag now that I think about it. Yeah, I'll take plastic.

2) At what point in your life did you feel like an adult?

I'm not certain that I feel like an adult all the time even now. I have a adult job. I acted as an adult when I buried my father. I sired two children, one of whom is grown. I have gray silver hair. In spite of it all, I still sometimes think of myself just as I did when I was a kid. I don't believe that I ever wanted to grow up.

3) Who was the best teacher you ever had and why?

Mrs. Virginia Woolsey in the fifth grade. The woman was a saint, she encouraged me to write and she made learning fun. She was what all teachers SHOULD be, challenging, inspiring and dedicated, but there aren't many around like her anymore. She died when I was in college, but I'll never forget her, and I'll bet she has a lot of other ex-students who feel the same way.

4) If you could go back in time and say or do something different, which childhood wrong against another would you correct?

The meanest thing I ever did in my life happened when I was in the ninth grade. We had a Class Geek named "Steve" that everybody picked on. He was built like a bowling pin, was completely unathletic and wore coke-bottle-bottom glasses that made his eyes look twice their normal size. He sported a receeding hairline to match his chin in the ninth grade. He was blessed with bright red hair and more freckles per square inch than you could count. Plus, he had a speech impediment that made him sound like a cartoon character when he talked. "My name ish Sctheve." Everybody called him "Mr. Magoo." He was the Ultimate Dork and was treated as such. Every class has one.

One day, he didn't dress out for PE. He was sitting on the bleachers in the gym when my friend, Roy and I (we were both on the football team) walked up to him. "Hey, Magoo! You're nor dressing out today? What's the matter?"

"I have a casesh of diarrhea." I looked at Roy and Roy looked at me. We grabbed Magoo by the arms and bounced him up and down until he shit all over himself. Yep, he had a case of diarrhea all right.

I thought it was funny as heck until Magoo started crying. Then, I couldn't believe what I had done. If some laughing, evil bully had done the same thing to me, I would have waited in the bushes with a baseball bat to get even the first chance I got. I would have busted the bully's head like a watermelon and beat the shit out of HIM, figuring that he deserved it. I was totally ashamed of myself. I tried to apologize, but it was too late for that. I was a thug that day.

That happened in 1965 and I still think about that incident about once a week. Yeah, I have a conscience and it bothers me when I remember Mr. Magoo. I never should have done that. That's one act that I wish desperately that I could take back.

5) Have you ever met one of your heroes? Who was it? Did they live up to your expectations or impression of them?

I always admired Joseph Heller because I believe that Catch-22 is perhaps the best American novel ever written. The book made me laugh, think and weep all eleventy-seven times I read it. I met him at the University of Georgia in 1975. He was the most boring, droning asshole I've ever heard read his own work, and I attended a cocktail party with him after the reading. He got shitfaced and acted like a total jerk.

Yeah, I was very disappointed in Joseph Heller. But he's dead now.

I met John Prine. too, and he's really a nice guy. He bought me a Guiness and talked music with me for over an hour in an Irish bar on River Street after he played a concert in Savannah. John Prine behaves in person exactly as you would expect from someone who writes songs the way he does. He is just a nice, friendly guy.

So, I'm batting .500 on meeting my heroes and liking them.

Hmmm... I wonder what I would think about glenn reynolds if I shared a nice, cold Blended Puppy at a bar with him some evening?

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