GET TO KNOW ME TAG – Guilty Secrets Revealed!

I stole this from Natasha Harmer at Films and Things.

I know it’s hokey, but I’ve been filling out stuff like this since I was old enough to apply pencil to paper. I’m a sucker for silly quizzes in woman’s magazine and questionnaires promising to tell you “what kind of dog is right for you” or “which computer do you need?” I wouldn’t listen to the answers anyhow, but I just love answering the questions. I know it’s dumb. Surely you all do something equally dumb. We all have guilty secrets. I also read the back of cereal boxes. Maybe you have a secret passion for Harlequin romance novels? Someone must read them …


So. Here is my “everything you didn’t think to ask me about me because I’ve probably told you already” questionnaire. Feel free to steal it from me and fill in your own answers just like I stole it from Natasha. I didn’t create it and I’m sure neither did she.

I’m sure no one knows where it originated or why. On the Internet, no one knows you’re a dog.

Are you named after anyone?

My great-aunt Malka. She died right before I was born and in Ashkenazi families, we name kids after recently dead relatives, even if we barely knew them or actively disliked them. Don’t ask me why. I have no idea and neither did my mother.

When was the last time you cried?

When I was writing about dogs the other night. I cry about dogs. And cats. And horses. I cannot watch or read anything about harming animals. But that’s just tearing up. Really seriously cried? Probably when my brother died four years ago.

Do you have kids?

A son. And a granddaughter.

Owen and Garry

Owen and Garry

If you were another person, would you be a friend of yourself?

Yes. But I would have to tell me to shut up a lot.

Do you use sarcasm a lot?

Not so much anymore. Mostly, I grew out of it. When I was younger, I was very sarcastic. As I got older, I discovered many people can’t handle sarcasm; it hurts their feelings. One of these people is my husband. So I dialed myself way back and life is better. I still use a lot of irony though, especially in my writing.

Will you ever bungee jump?

No. Not even if I were a great deal younger and less broken. But I’d still ride the Cyclone. I rode two of the four biggest, baddest roller coasters on the east coast of the US last summer. I’ve been limping ever since.

What’s your favorite cereal?

Rice Crispies, but I don’t really eat them anymore. Not in years. I like the idea, though.

What’s the first thing you notice about people?

Their age. I want to know if they are close enough to my generation to know what I’m talking about without my having to explain everything.

What is your eye color?

Very darkly brown.


Scary movie or happy endings?

Anything with a really good script. Happy endings are preferred but not mandatory.

Favorite smells?

Someone else cooking dinner.

Summer or winter?

Autumn and spring. And if YOU lived in New England, you’d agree.

Mumford River in Autumn

Computer or television?

Computer, if I had to choose one or the other, but I watch TV on television and do everything else on a computer. Or Kindle, which is just another kind of computer anyhow.

What’s the furthest you’ve ever been from home?


Do you have any special talents?

I’m not sure how special they are. I write a lot, what with having this blog and all. I take pictures. I talk pretty well. I used to play the piano almost professionally. Note: There is a monumental difference between “almost professionally” and “professionally.”

Where were you born?

Brooklyn, New York

What are your hobbies?

The aforementioned writing and photography. I can’t play piano anymore. My wrists are gone.

Do you have any pets?

Dogs. Bonnie the Scottie and Nan the Norwich Terrier. Plus a share of Bishop the Australian Shepherd and Amber the dachshund. I used to have cats too. And ferrets. And parrots. Tropical fish too, but I’m not sure if they really count as pets. Right now, we have a lot of ants. If I think of them as pets, maybe I won’t be so freaked out.

Bonnie, Nan & Garry

Favorite movie?

Is that a fair question? There’s someone who has just one favorite movie? How about a favorite genre? Which would be comedy.

Do you have any siblings?

An older brother, deceased. A younger sister, somewhere in Virginia.

– – –


Lost in Rhode Island

I used to commute from our house in Uxbridge, Massachusetts over 100 miles to Pfizer in Groton, Connecticut. In a desperate and hopeless attempt to find a shorter route, I experimented with various combinations of back roads. There was no truly direct route and it was such a long drive, I didn’t think I had much to lose.


I have been lost for most of my life. I’ve been lost all over the United States, England, Wales, Ireland and Israel. GPS technology was relatively new and while some people had them, most didn’t. Including me. I had an atlas, but whatever road I was on never seemed to be on the map.

One evening, at the end of my long drive home from work, I got lost in Rhode Island.

I wasn’t a just little bit lost. I was completely turned around, totally confused. It was dark; I was low on gasoline. I didn’t recognize anything; it all looked the same.  Eventually I realized everything not only looked the same, it was the same. I was driving in circles.

Rhode Island Road

I called home. At least my cell phone worked. It didn’t help. Since I didn’t know where I was, I couldn’t tell anyone how to find me. I was much too embarrassed to call 911.

I drove around for what seemed forever hoping to find a familiar road or see some kind of landmark by which I could orient myself. Eventually — tired, hungry and humiliated — I found my way home. I had been no more than a few miles from my house. The following day, I bought my first GPS.

There’s a moral in this story, but I have no idea what it is.