Sunday, January 25, 2009

Five on Five

Sweet Kacy was kind enough to pass three awards my way the other day. Without delving into the details I do want to share five addictions and five online inspirations with FFF readers.

Addiction #1: When I was little I had a friend who lived in a house that was always full of animals (and children and plants and LIFE in general). They had three cats and two dogs and bunnies and hamsters and a beautiful aquarium. When they moved to a hobby farm and expanded their menagerie I was simultaneously jealous and heartbroken. That home environment was totally discordant with my own, but it suited me so much better. And now here I am with multiple dogs, cats, goats and horses of my own. LIFE!

Inspiration #1: All Horse Stuff. Kacy gets out and works her crazy thoroughbred mare almost every day. They ride the trails, they do dressage in the arena, they take jumping lessons, they go to the beach, they try new things and they are always improving. Washashe is similar to Raven in many ways, and Kacy's "just get out there and do it" attitude really rubs off on her readers.

Addiction #2: I've never smoked, I hardly drink at all (David calls me "Sarah Half Glass" because that's how much wine it takes to get me tipsy), and most recreational drug use is long behind me. My only physical addiction is to good caffeine -- swill need not apply. I can skip a day if I must, but why would I want to?

Inspiration #2: Bikes, Birds and Beasts. Carol and I are kindred spirits when it comes to coffee, and Carol is an inspiration to me because she lives like I want to be living in another ~30 years. Joyful, thoughtful, curious, engaged, caring, honest, independent, active...all these adjectives that come to mind.

Addition #3: David and I started doing crossword puzzles together last year and I am hooked. Both my parents were crossword fiends and I disdained them (crosswords, not my parents) for years as a result -- it seemed like an intensely uncool way to pass the time. But now that I've stopped caring about being cool it turns out that crosswords are awesome!

Inspiration #3: Rex Parker Does the NYT. Almost every day Rex Parker does the New York Times crossword puzzle and then blogs about it. David and I discovered this several months back when we were looking for answers to a very tricky (medium-challenging according to Rex) puzzle. I had never thought about the art of making crossword puzzles before reading this blog, but now I find myself formulating well-reasoned opinions about them.

Addiction #4: My primary function in my professional life is problem solving. The other things (writing papers, applying for grants, attending conferences) tend to drain me, but when I am on the edge of getting an answer that I have working towards I literally start to vibrate. Sometimes I get so excited that I can barely type, and coworkers have noticed that I get very flushed. You know you're a total nerd when computer output gives you an adrenaline rush.

Inspiration #4: Funder's Good Idea. From her blog I gather that Funder is another problem solver and she makes me want to try new things. Driving a horse trailer? She can do that. Trimming her own horses' feet? She can do that too. Shooting a pop can from 100 yards with a hand gun? You betcha. Being a lawyer? Sure thing!

Addiction #5: Although I am codependent with the internet in general, I rely heavily on Facebook for updates about my friends and their doings. Most of my high school peeps still live in Ontario, but Facebook allows me to feel like I haven't lost touch with them. Long time FFF readers might remember that I hate to talk on the phone, so I am horrible about maintaining long-distance relationships that way.

Inspiration #5: Those Who Wander. I have only met Erica and Jamie once or twice, but they are close friends of some close friends. Sometime last year Jamie quit his high-paying job, they sold their Vancouver home, bought a fixer-upper motor home and hit the road with Kea (8), Tiegan (5) and Ryland (2). They don't know how long they will be on the road or exactly where they will end up, but right now they seem to be having fun in California.


Unknown said...

I did not call anyone "Sarah Half-Glass". I may have used the term "Sarah 100-ml" in honour of a friend of ours who is widely known as "Jenny Three-Beers". The gentlemen who read this blog (but don't comment) will agree that it's a mixed blessing to have a drinking partner who leaves you with 80% of the bottle to finish by yourself.

"poducr" - a manufacturer of mp3 players

Black Jack's Carol said...

Well, gee, thanks, dp. I'm honored:) Funny, because I look to you and your blog for honesty, commitment to your loved ones (animal and human), a quick eye and mind, and stimulating turns of thought.

I think you and I have all of your addiction #2 points in common. We do wine whenever Bill cooks, but, as much as I enjoy it, I don't think I manage even a half glass on most nights.

I dunno, David. if Sarah says you called her "Sarah Half Glass" I tend to believe her. Women remember conversation details better than guys, don't you think?

EvenSong said...

As for crosswords, Al definitely has that addiction, and I occassionally get hooked (when my brain's not already drained from work). My grandson finally got past the "Grandpa wants a can of peanuts" Christmas rut, and bought him a GIANT crossword book this year.

The other thing we do is race: we get the local paper from our 93 year-old dog-sitter (another story), and I can pick another one up from the recycle bin at school (and recycle it twice!). I'll do a couple of single copies to warm up, then we'll see who finishes first on the doubles. (Lately he's been trouncing me.)

The other funny thing I've done with crosswords is prep for the GRE, back when I was getting ready to apply to grad school. I had enough math background to be relaxed about that, but I wanted to build my vocabulary skills for the verbal section, especially the analolgies. Though, like you in your youth, I had always hated crosswords previously, I did them for a month before the test--and aced it! (19 consecutive quarters of grad school later, and I have a job that helps me afford my horsie lifestyle!)

dp said...

I can see how they would have been helpful for the GRE. My GRE story is the stuff of legend and far too long to relate here. Suffice it to say that it's the only time I've ever paid a cab to wait for me, and it involved me and several ladies at the driver's licensing office sorting through a HUGE bin of expired licenses to find mine. They wouldn't let me write without exactly the license I had registered with. I ended up only having 3/4 of the allotted time and being quite shaky, but I did fine. One of these days I will also graduate and then maybe get a tractor with a front-end loader. Not that I'm obsessed or anything.

Grey Horse Matters said...

All very interesting facts and inspirations. I can identify with some of your addictions but the computer one, ugh, I'm usually ready to throw it through the window. They give me a lot of trouble until I figure some frustrating problem out.

allhorsestuff said...

Man DP, I did NOT expect those kind words but, I will take them!
It is SUCH a privilege to have this mare. I have to make our relationship work and that means respecting her and finding what ways I can relate to her uniquie wounded personality. She is soo much like me that, I am learning about myself as I work with her!

I love all you told us about yourself here~ Animals are home, with good Coffee in hand -while solving an art ladden C.W.P. and all the while, your mind/body is high from output you input. There is nothing you can't do, with friends as inspirations. Like me the PHONE IS NOT YOUR THING, and leaving it all behind to adventure does call to your soul. I love it and will visit all your recommended sites!

I just learned your name, Sarah. That fits you!

Rising Rainbow said...

Sarah Half-Glass made me giggle. I've never heard that before but I do get the drift. LOL

Chelsi said...

Hey! Just stumbled over from Laughing Orca and thought I'd say hi as I noticed your 5 things about the Fraser Valley (and figured out that we live just a township away from each other.)

What pretty horses you have!! I will be back.

Great blog.


Chelsi said...

btw, I am a "Chelsi Half Glass" for sure. I actually fell off my chair once after having a half glass of red wine! It's sad! lol