8 Things about me...
Terri tagged me to do this, so here goes!
1. I totally hated school and avoided it at every opportunity. This reached its peak when I was 14-15 when I went to schools so rarely that my mom was taken to court and ordered to make sure I went. Bad boy, I know.
2. When I was a child, my dad suffered from mental problems, with the result that he was constantly in and out of hospital and finally left us for good when I was 10. This instability affected me a lot and was the main cause of my not wanting to have children when I was older. I was such a miserable teenager that I was convinced that I would be a terrible father. Other forces were at work, though, and I don't think I do too badly as a parent. My dad now lives around the corner and we get on well - I understand his problems and know it was not deliberate.
3. I am not a risk taker. Growing up with Dyspraxia (although I did not know I had it at the time, I just thought I was weaker, clumsier and slower than everyone else in the world) made me naturally cautious. The last really dumb thing I did was to go sledging with a friend of mine. He had a wonderful wooden sledge and there had been a fantastic snowfall in the night so we headed to the steepest slope for miles around, sat one behind the other on the sledge and let gravity do the rest. After the fastest, most terrifying ride I have ever had, we found ourselves on collision course with a shelter, tried to steer away, almost made it and BANG hit the shelter with such force that the sledge smashed into pieces and we both thought we had broken our left legs (which took most of the impact). Our legs were fine, if a little tender, but the sledge was beyond salvage.
4. In my 20s I worked permanent night shifts in a factory that produced pellets of coloured plastic which were then sent off to other factories to be made into things. Although the money was good I detested the place and a lot of my colleagues. I would go home in the mornings covered in coloured dye, blue, green, red... Sleep was also very hard to come by as our eldest daughter was young at the time and I wanted to spend time with her and my wife. My sleep deprivation became so bad that at one time I was surviving on energy drinks and ginseng pills. Even then I would find myself falling asleep on my feet.
5. I used to own an Irish Setter that was totally mad. I walked him along the beach and at low tide he would chase the birds that walked around on the sand looking for food. He would often get so carried away with this that he would 'not hear' me when I shouted for him to come back. This would mean that I would have to chase HIM, often for a fair distance. The worst case was the day I chased him 5 miles along the coast to the next town before he realised I was there. He was a truly dumb dog, but great fun.
6. I suffer from terrible travel sickness in cars, buses and coaches, and as a teenager earned the nick-name "John the Puker".
7. After I stopped working at that dreaded plastics factory, I did a short course in office skills. It was great in that it introduced me to computers and led directly to the job I now have. One of the optional parts of the course was short-hand, which I decided to do for some strange reason and I actually got quite fast. The rest of the group were all women and I think they found it funny that I was there. I never got to use it in anger, though. And no, I did not do it so I could be in a class of women!
8. When I was a child, my mum worked in the local corner shop. As a result I ate huge amounts of sweets and was a rather fat child. I stayed like that until I was about 11 when I started growing upwards. I must have doubled in height without gaining any weight, as by the time I was 17 I was tall and painfully thin, gradually settling to a better weight during my 20s and early 30s. This put me in the rather unusual position of being far better looking (or at least far happier with my appearance) at 40 than I was at 20.
I am now supposed to tag someone - Chris? AmazingBrenda? Anyone else?