Friday, November 23, 2007

One Hundred Reasons To Back Away Slowly-Bernie

A collection of lists. Take the challenge. 100 things about yourself. Streaming flow of consciousness, as personal or as general as you care to make it...but make it count. You might learn something about yourself and I promise it's better than 20 questions!

Meet Bernie. Another friend of mine from Y360.
I promise you this is a GREAT read.
Then again he's a Great man.

A couple or more of people have asked me to have a go at this 100 thing that's flying around at the moment so I thought I'd give it a go. Most of these things will be incredibly boring and some perhaps a little odd. Such is life.
It will be sure to be disjointed because I'm only going to write things out as they occur to me and in no particular order. Such is second life.
1. My waist is two inches bigger than when I left school. 30" up to 32".
2. I walk at least six miles every day.
3. I'm frightened of 'Punch and Judy' puppets.
4. Don't have a television.
5. I worked three years for Road Traffic Police.
6. Then one and a half years as a debt collector.
7. I have no tattoo's or body piercings.
8. Once I tried to swim in The English Channel. I can't swim.
9. I have a licence to drive a tank up to 45 metric tonnes but it may have expired.
10. I went through a red light in a handbrake turn at 50mph in the middle of town on a Saturday morning and skidded sideways sixty feet along the pavement (sidewalk).
11. I've lost count of the number of autopsies I've attended but it runs into hundreds.
12. Spiders terrify me. I used to keep a pellet gun so that I could shoot them at a distance. One ricoched around the room and stuck the spider to my forehead.
13. I've been fingerprinted.
14. I never have a knife on the table pointing towards me in case demonic force throws it at me. Same goes for having one behind my back.
15. I've had to sign the Official Secrets Act (twice).
16. A friend and I once crept into an Airforce base to take some photographs. We were discovered when we went into the mess in the evening for dinner (in 'borrowed' uniforms).
17. I once knocked a policeman unconscious.
18. Brought up Catholic I have been Taoist for over twenty years.
19. During one week I was offered jobs in Sweden, South Africa and Canada.
20. I've been trained to fence with both french foil and sabre.
21. A friend almost severed my right thumb with a broadsword.
22. When my postman consistently left my front gate swinging open I chased him down the road with a wooden pole.
23. I'm given to understand that when I lose my temper I look like Lee Van Cleef in a bad mood.
24. I don't do drugs.
25. At gravesides I talk to the people as though they are sitting down there listening.
26. I have a second level belt in Su-Kempo (there are only five levels).
27. I believe I can remember previous lives.
28. My detestation of decorating is exceeded only by my loathing of gardening.
29. During long operations at the hospital where I used to work I was quite happy to eat my lunch in the (unsterilised) prep room and watch the operation through the glass window.
30. While standing on the autopsy table to take a photograph I almost slipped and fell into an open chest cavity.
31. When I was seventeen my father died and I became head of, and responsible for, my household.
32. At twelve years old I tried to climb to the top of the suspension bridge over the Mersey (about two hundred feet) I lost my nerve half way up. I have vertigo now.
33. I have my Teachers Training Certificate and taught at college for fifteen years.
34. I can make three different types of explosives from everyday household items.
35. I have absolutely no body clock whatsoever.
36. Twenty one years ago I gashed my left hand up badly enough to be off work for three months, it still won't work right. It's possibly the best thing that ever happened to me.
37. I have nightmares almost every night.
38. I've been a witness in court (usually prosecution) over two hundred and fifty times but have never served on a jury.
39. The only time I tried to exercise just for the sake of it in the last twenty five years I gave myself a hernia.
40. When I was twenty four I accidentally impaled my opponent on a french foil. When I took him to casualty he had to sit sideways on a chair because the sword went in at the front and out at the back. It was so hard not to laugh.
41. I love the smell of rain in the morning.
42. My stereo system is made of wood with the various openings carved to represent gothic arches, the controls are bronze. It was a gift from a friends mother and I treasure it very much.
43. At seven years old I was almost trampled by a herd of stampeding cows. For the next twenty five years every time I ate steak I thought about that. (revenge is sweet).
44. When I was in traction there was a clear plastic bag filled with water to provide the weights. One of the surgeons put two goldfish into it so I'd have something to watch. The nurses used to feed them.
45. I've streaked.
46. I was booked to do a parachute jump for charity four years ago but couldn't do it because of number 39.
47. I've hidden on rooftops twice to avoid detection by the police, both times with somebody on my friends list.
48. When I proposed to my German friend it was by telephone at two in the morning. She said yes straight away.
49. I never drink milk.
50. Panzer was right. This is harder than you might think.
51. After two years as a photographer I became so bored with looking at naked girls I used to make excuses not to take their pictures.
52. I have more swords, war axes and spears than anybody else I know. I mostly use them for gardening.
53. In the summers when I worked at the hospital I used to climb onto the roof to eat my lunch and sunbathe.
54. During the late sixties I sometimes used to fall asleep on convenient bits of grass, parks and so forth. Once I woke up with a strange girl in my arms and never found out her name.
55. I don't believe in ghosts.
56. Lecturing at my local college I had to designate an assembly point for fire drill. I designated the pub over the road.
57. I've drunk alcohol almost every day since I was fourteen. My liver may well be bulletproof.
58. I've asked to be cremated and my ashes scattered from the old bridge into the Danube at Regensburg. They will play 'Wild Horses' by Alison Krauss at the service.
59. My ex-wife once told me that she would dance on my grave. I'm quite looking forward to that.
60. I have a Swiss Army Knife with a memory card inside for files and pictures. It also has a tiny pair of scissors so I suppose I could disarm bombs too. At least I assume I can.
61. Once I was in a trench and a tank ran over me. It made me really really muddy.
62. The only time a friend persuaded me to go on a ferris wheel it broke down while we were at the top. He rocked the carriage back and forth while I tried not to be sick. Yes, I do indeed have vertigo.
63. When I locked myself out of my house I asked the police to help me get in. It took them three quarters of an hour. All the downstairs windows were armoured glass and the solid doors had half inch bolts top and bottom. I've been called paranoid.
64. I've also been called stubborn but I like to think of it as determined.
65. I assume I can do anything I try my hand at until I'm proved wrong.
66. I once caused $5,000 worth of damage to an RAF flight simulator. See 65.
67. One evening I ran around a corner and tripped over a block of concrete and knocked myself out. When I woke up in the hospital I signed myself out and went over the road to the pub. My friends were waiting for me in there.
68. I can paint with oils and draw with charcoal but I couldn't paint myself into a corner with watercolours.
69. I have an appointment to meet one of my friends in the largest bar of the biggest city on the planet nearest to Alpha Centauri in the year 3000. I expect to be there.
70. In a rented office a friend and I decided to knock down an inconvenient wall. It was a supporting wall and the building had to be demolished.
71. At an American Civil War re-enactment I took photographs from behind a Union cannon while the Confederate cavalry charged us. It was very noisy and smokey. A Confederate infantryman almost stuck me with his bayonet by accident.
72. I can still sit in a full lotus.
73. The sight of my own blood or anybody else's doesn't upset me.
74. I've never been to a city in Germany where I couldn't find an Irish bar within an hour.
75. Yes, I do use such phrases as 'come hither poppet' and 'good oh' in real life.
76. Last year for my birthday I grew a beard and moustache as a present to myself. I looked like a nanny goat so I shaved them off again.
77. I have never, and do not now, own a pair of trainers or a baseball cap.
78. Six years ago I was knocked down by a motorcar. It doesn't hurt as much as you might think.
79. I love to fly but I'm absolutely terrified of take-off's and landings.
80. I bake my own bread and sometimes it turns out like cobblestones. I like to think of it as keeping my teeth healthy.
81. I've only had my hair trimmed once in the last three years.
82. When my youngest daughter was a baby she had a chest problem and stopped breathing. I had to give her mouth to mouth for twenty minutes until the ambulance arrived.
83. I detest unexpected visitors. All my friends know this and ring before they call around in case I won't open the door.
84. I'm extremely mistrustful of firearms. But, nobody has ever been killed by the nervous twitch of an axe finger.
85. I'd love to have one of those Greek helmets with the horsehair plume such as they wear on the film '300' but I can't think of any conceivable social occasion when I might wear it. I'd feel pretty silly sitting at the computer with it on my head.
86. Years ago I stole a flying helmet from the Air Force. I used to plug it into my sound system and use it as stereo headphones with the dark visor down. Tapped my feet a lot and nodded my head. I've only just realised how that must have looked.
87. My favourite painting is 'The Night Watch' by Rembrandt. I also like the song of the same name by King Crimson.
88. I made my fireplace out of polished antique pine and the brass rail on the top is over a hundred years old. I like old things.
89. Gregorian chanting is a type of 'music' I like very much. A highlight of a trip to Bavaria two years ago was to listen to a sung mass in a one thousand year old chapel.
90. I have a lucky Buddha on top of my PC tower to keep it safe. The only time I have PC problems is if I've taken it off for dusting or something and forget to put it back.
91. When I went to a dolphinarium there was a big sign which said 'don't put your hand in the water'. When I saw a dolphin swimming by I put my hand out to touch it, it felt like it had broken every bone in my arm. But, I got to touch a dolphin.
92. No male on my dad's side of the family has ever lived past sixty, every male on my mum's side has lived past eighty. I'll have to wait to see how that works out but I'm hoping for some sort of superadditivity where I last past one hundred and forty.
93. I probably spend more on cigarettes and alcohol than the Gross Domestic Product of Poland. One day I may give it up.
94. I feel more comfortable in a three piece suit and a tie than I do in casual clothes. My favourite sports jacket was Harris Tweed.
95. I get along better with girls than I do with blokes but I've got a fairly good idea why that is.
96. When I was setting up a computer system in a local factory I pretended that there was a basement under my office where I would relax at lunchtimes and listen to music. I was so convincing that when I arrived one morning the factory manager was in my office looking for the trapdoor.
97. Taking some advertising pictures featuring a car called a Ford 'Rattlesnake' (there were only two of them in the country) the model kept slipping off the bonnet so I told her to dig her feet in. Her stilleto's caused $2,000 worth of damage to the car.
98. My favourite books are 'The Odyssey' translated by E.V. Rieu and 'La Morte D'Arthur' by Mallory.
99. My ambition (at the moment) is to buy one of those replica Spitfire aircraft that are made in Australia and learn to fly it.
100. Now that I've finished this I'm going to celebrate with a drink and a cigarette.


TheWannabeGourmet said...

Bernie, every time I read this list I find something new.

I was right, it IS a great read, on many counts.


TheWannabeGourmet said...

you know bernie after reading this thru I want a blog on each one you've listed. there's homework for you.