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5 Questions from peteralway - Phil's Rambling Rants
April 22nd, 2005
06:59 pm

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5 Questions from peteralway
1: When times are better, what do you do for a living--or what do you hope to be doing?

The only work I've ever done for a living has been computer programming in some form.  I'm currently looking for another programming job, but I can't work up much enthusiasm for it right now.  I'd like to work as a photographer, but it's a tough field especially for someone with as little motiviation as I have.  I'd like to work with big cats, but there aren't many jobs in the field at all, and incredibly few of them actually pay enough to live on.

2: Is there another field you wish you had gotten into?

I think if I were 20 years younger and going to college now, I would go into veterinary medicine.  Certainly some biology-based field.

3: Do you ever write your own songs, lyrics, or music?

I've never written more than a few lines of lyrics.  I've composed a couple of tunes in my life, and I wrote a tune for a Kipling poem once, but I never worked it into a performance piece.

4: When do you feel you had the best results conncting with an audience? What song, and what event?

At Chambanacon a few years ago (I'd have to think for a while to figure out just when it was), the big room was packed with people, and Howie had just finished making everyone laugh like crazy with the Birdie Song.  Just as the excitement was dying down, I stood up and sang Cat Faber's "The Word of God".  This was before it had been released on an album, and few people had heard it.  I played and sang well, and I felt that I had the full attention of everyone in the room -- 100 people or so.

After the song came out on albums, I found audience reaction never came close to what it was when I wasn't competing with what the song was "supposed" to sound like on the album.  This realization was so painful to me that I almost stopped singing the song, even though it's one of my favorite songs ever.

5: What is the single moment that struck you the most on your trip to South America?

There were so many moments when I was overwhelmed with the beauty around me I couldn't begin to remember them all.  More than once, I was in a place that seemed so beautiful that it didn't matter where I pointed my camera, what I saw in the viewfinder looked like a prize-winning photo.  Probably the most intense was when we went well up the river to a "rock cathedral" -- a cliff maybe 40 feet high, undercut into a shallow cave by the river, with loose rock, interesting plant life growing in the sheltered area, and a wonderful view of the river and the other bank.

The other candidate would have to be when Mishi, the tame ocelot at the lodge, first seriously started licking me.

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[User Picture]
From:peteralway
Date:April 23rd, 2005 02:29 am (UTC)
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As I recall the rules of this game, I can now ask you to ask me 5 questions...
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From:tigertoy
Date:April 23rd, 2005 03:16 am (UTC)
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Of course. And if anyone else wants questions, just ask.
  1. How did you come to write your history of rocketry books and get them published?
  2. Where would you like to travel that you've never been? What would you do there on your dream vacation?
  3. What would you most like to achieve musically?
  4. If you were made dictator, what problem would be your first priority, and roughly what would you try to do about it?
  5. You unexpectedly come into a million dollars after taxes. What do you do with the money?


[User Picture]
From:blur01
Date:April 27th, 2005 04:05 am (UTC)
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Sure, Ill take a set, baby.
[User Picture]
From:tigertoy
Date:April 27th, 2005 05:16 pm (UTC)
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  1. How did you get into con running, and what motivates you to keep busting your ass for con after con?
  2. I see very few black faces at cons, but the ones I do seem (from my perspective as the poster child for cluelessness) to be welcomed and fit in. What do you have to say about racial prejudice in fandom?
  3. You seem to be generous to a fault. I particularly remember when you gave Michael the hammered dulcimer, you said something to the effect that it just needed to be done. Have you ever regretted your generosity after the fact, or is it always worth it?
  4. You have, I would say, a certain reputation as a wild and crazy guy. How do you feel about that? Do you enjoy the attention it brings you? Has your reputation alone ever gotten you into trouble?
  5. You unexpectedly come into a million dollars (after taxes). What do you do with the money?
[User Picture]
From:blur01
Date:April 27th, 2005 07:41 pm (UTC)
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1. How did you get into con running, and what motivates you to keep busting your ass for con after con?

I think its the same as most people who end up doing it. You start off with "I could do this better". Shortly after doing it you quickly gain a lot more respect for the people you were, inadvertantly, disrespecting before. If I remember correctly it was probably Tracey's fault. Conamazoo.

2. I see very few black faces at cons, but the ones I do seem (from my perspective as the poster child for cluelessness) to be welcomed and fit in. What do you have to say about racial prejudice in fandom?

Depends on where you are. In the Midwest, I have found most people and most groups to be pretty inviting and tolerant. And now that I answer this question, I begin to be concerned with my initial gut choice of the word "tolerant". But moving on...
I've been to conventions where I couldnt get involved / invited into a conversation to save my life.

I think I could count on one hand the number of african-american convention goers when I first started. Unfortunately, I'd only need 1 more to count the numbers from my last convention.

Sci-Fi isnt something "we" arent into, it just seems that either most do not know about conventions, or most dont care to attend.

3. You seem to be generous to a fault. I particularly remember when you gave Michael the hammered dulcimer, you said something to the effect that it just needed to be done. Have you ever regretted your generosity after the fact, or is it always worth it?

An interesting fact about me is that I try incredibly hard not to regret anything. I could add in there "for longer than a few minutes...". There are a few things in my life that I do regret that I havent really shaken but they revolve around definite forks in the road that would have lead me in radically different directions, along different paths, to where I am now.

That hammered dulcimer brings me some of the most incredible joy I've EVER had. That was a gift given out of a very deep love for a person and it makes me even more happy to know that, unlike myself, he's spent quite a bit of time playing it.

Ill take this time again to thank Scott May for helping me smuggle it out of the faire! And you for bringing that memory up... it has warmed my heart.

4. You have, I would say, a certain reputation as a wild and crazy guy. How do you feel about that? Do you enjoy the attention it brings you? Has your reputation alone ever gotten you into trouble?

Reputation alone has, yes. I've found that people expect certain things of me even having never met me. One of my favorite stories is having the girlfriend of a friend get angry with me, after the fact, for NOT hitting on her. After all that she'd heard about me, she was certain that I would make some advance on her and when I didnt it triggered a "I must not be good enough cause 'the guy that hits on everyone didnt even hit on me!' reaction.

I've had that "reputation" come up in an interview at a small education based company I used to work at. At the time I was amused, but it was probably a legally grey or black question that shouldnt have been asked.

Has my reputation ever gotten me in trouble? Constantly. There are just some things that, even if I didnt do them, I couldnt convince a jury of my peers of that.

I don't, in general, enjoy tons of attention. I find that I can rise to it, but usually I like smaller groups where I can spend more time listening than speaking.

5. You unexpectedly come into a million dollars (after taxes). What do you do with the money?

Its not like I havent though about this quite a bit.

First I do everything in my power to shield myself from anyone ever knowing I have it. Next I hire someone smarter than me to manage it in such a way so that it grows rather than gets completely blown. I know myself well enough to know that immediately the short list of friends that I have would no longer have debt issues. While I think I'd likely want to pay all of their debts to 0 immediately, I'd probably have the STM person (Smarter Than Me) make arrangements to pay them down over time.

[User Picture]
From:blur01
Date:April 28th, 2005 01:34 am (UTC)
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Bet you didnt know that there was a maximum number of characters you could post...
[User Picture]
From:tigertoy
Date:April 28th, 2005 04:51 am (UTC)
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Actually, I vaguely did, from browsing through the FAQs looking for something else a while back. But I have no idea what the limit is. I didn't think it was anything you needed to worry about.
[User Picture]
From:blur01
Date:April 28th, 2005 03:01 pm (UTC)

Too Beaucoup

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Lets just say you got about 1/2 of what I actually wrote there.
[User Picture]
From:tigertoy
Date:April 28th, 2005 06:31 pm (UTC)

Re: Too Beaucoup

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Ah, that is why you should post the answers in your own journal, and only respond in mine with a link. I know the limit on the size of main entries is way more than the amount of text you posted there.
[User Picture]
From:blur01
Date:April 28th, 2005 06:47 pm (UTC)

Re: Too Beaucoup

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Bah -- Then I'd have to come up with questions for other people and I am not entirely sure that I'd be able to do that justice.
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