This was an idea that first got circulated on Facebook. The rules were simple — once tagged by a “friend” who wanted to know more about me, I was supposed to write a note with at least a dozen random things, facts, habits, or goals about myself. As usual, I got a bit carried away with it all and ended up writing 20 “facts”. It was a lot of fun writing, so now it’s time to share:
1. I believe in reincarnation. Based on dozens and dozens of dreams logged during my university years, last time out, I believe I was a German soldier who died on the Russian Front in WW2.
2. People have told me my family name is common in Syria and India, but it’s actually Scottish. Story has it, my ancestors were booted out of Scotland because they used to sneak across the border at night and do nasty things to the King’s sheep. We’re so baaaaaaad.
3. In my teens, I was scared to death of girls. Thankfully, I got over that, and now I prefer the company of women because of the unique qualities they offer – passion, honesty, humor and curves.
4. To put myself through university I worked in the mining industry, where I was exposed to high concentrations of lead, copper, zinc, and radon gas. To make it worse, I listened to a lot of heavy metal. On a full moon, I glow in the dark.
5. I love nuts. Put a bowl of any kind in front of me and I’ll eat them all. Immediately. No sharing.
6. I have a thing with my inner ear that makes me nauseous if I spend even a few minutes on a rocking chair, a garden swing, or a boat. Don’t rock me, baby, or I’ll hurl.
7. I believe there are only two kinds of beer fit to drink – in the summer, Weisz (white) beer and for all seasons, British and Irish dark ales.
9. I can eat almost anything. Indigestion is not in my vocabulary. Unless you count one night in Greece where I had a squid in its own ink, a bottle of retsina, a pack of menthol cigarettes, a chocolate bar, and a few shots of ouzo.
10. I like pseudonyms. In university I published a lot of poetry under the name Boris. In the 80s I wrote four trashy novels as Alan Marks, and in the 90s, a mystery as Aleister Foxx. I occasionally receive mail addressed to Occupant.
11. I’ve had three scary close encounters with wildlife – a bear and a wolf in the Northwest Territories, and a komodo dragon in Thailand.
12. I’ve had two near-death experiences – once in a mining accident where a co-worker was crushed to death, and another in a robbery where the perp put a bullet into the wall just inches over my head.
13. My favorite guitarists are Jeff Beck, Eric Clapton, Jimi Hendrix, Jimmy Page, Keith Richards and Stevie Ray Vaughn.
15. I’ve been playing James Brown for 30 years and I still can’t take him to the bridge.
16. I like complex people. If you’re a little crazy, have a dark family history and complicated relationships, and are trying to succeed with more than three professional ambitions, I want to be your friend.
17. I can’t go to sleep until I read something for at least a few minutes. Unless it’s a woman with Braille tattoos.
18. Astrology has illuminated my life for over 30 years, first as an intellectual pursuit, but more and more, as a spiritual calling.
19. I’m a typical Aries – aggressive, arrogant, brainy, brash, competitive, crude, restless, and reckless. You got a problem with that?
20. Although life sometimes seems a bit of a struggle, I consider myself blessed – I have a wonderful family, an angel for a wife, and a guru. It’s like winning the trifecta!