Tuesday, March 15, 2005

An interview in five questions 

I have finally finished answering five interview questions from Badaunt of Present Simple. Those with photographic memories will note that one of these is not a question that Badaunt asked of me. It is, however, an interview question that she asked of another blogger.

As she wrote, "the rules go that the first five people to comment will be interviewed by me... If I could do it, so can you." And so can you, too. I promise I'll be gentle.

1. Which of your cats is most like you, and why?

Lyra is most like me, or perhaps I should say that I am most like her. We share some obvious characteristics: we are female, smaller and rounder than many of our kind, and gray. (My gray is perhaps more like Sasha’s multicolored tabby fur than Lyra’s consistently colored coat, but Lyra and I both have silver linings in the right light.)

We like people immensely, are very affectionate and vocal, and are also rather shy and afraid of being badly treated.

2. Somebody said something to you once that you think is absolutely not true... but sometimes you wonder. What was it?

My violin teacher, Mr. Hess, used to say that every day that one (meaning, of course, me) does not practice, one loses half of her (me again) technique. He was not talking about the mechanics of playing, but about that facility - control, fluidity, speed - that comes with everyday practice. While I understood that regular practice was important, I did not believe that a day off would result in such a great loss.

I am living proof that, if one leaves the violin in the closet for, let's say, a decade, even one's feel for the mechanics of playing will eventually atrophy... I am thankful that the knack came back more easily than when first acquired. Although I know that I'm now a much more sophisticated musician than when I was studying with Mr. Hess, I do not have the technique that I had at 18, when I played almost every day. At this point, I use my musicianship to cover for flaws in technique... and wish that I had time to play every day.

3. Who is someone from your past you'd really like to meet again, and why?

Someone I'd really like to meet again is Grandaddy Reed, my maternal grandfather. He was 20 years older than my grandmother, and died when I was 5. Although I have few memories of him that aren't related to photos, I understand that he and I adored each other, and that I mourned his death, in my childlike way, long after he died. He is the only one of my grandparents who did not live to see me grow up, the only one with whom I was never able to discuss his/her life.

Grandaddy Reed was born just before the turn of the last century into a family that owned a ranch and ran a trading post, known as Ultima Thule, at what is now the southern Arkansas-Oklahoma border. At that time, it was the last place in 'civilization' to buy supplies before heading into Indian Territory. I would love to know about his childhood in that time and place. He drove an ambulance in France during WWI; I imagine that, were I to somehow be able to meet him now, he still would not want to talk about that. I would like to hear his stories about his life with my grandmother, my mother and my aunt. I would like to hear his stories about his relationship with the little girl whose pajamas were embroidered 'Grandpa Loves Me'.

4. What was your biggest fashion mistake?

Thick, pale blue legwarmers, over jeans, with heels, on a 5'-1" frame. *shudder* That's all I can bring myself to say.

5. What's the last thing that made you laugh unexpectedly and loudly and without restraint?

I liked this question at Tiny Hands so much that I had to answer it... and then I couldn't remember what exactly the answer would be. It was this past weekend, as there was much surprised laughter during our band rehearsals and the socializing that followed.

I do remember the last time that I saw Paul laugh in this way. This past Sunday, he was writing on his computer in the room next to where the band was rehearsing. The tune we were playing, called 'Nonesuch, or, A la mode de France,' is a well-known English country dance tune from the 1600s. It has an early music feel, and we were playing it in as proper a fashion as we could manage on two violins, muted French horn and piano. After a few times through the tune, all of us switched instruments... and began playing the tune, in a very period-appropriate four part harmony... on kazoos. Paul just about fell out of his chair, he was laughing so hard. This made me lose it on my kazoo. (I will have to practice more before the dance, as I'm sure there will be laughter there as well.)

These are not the only '5 questions' interview answers on this blog. Because Melinama decided that posting her answers at her place was against her blog policy, she tucked them into the comments on one of my posts, here.

Badaunt's other interviewees have answered their questions, too: Mel of Actual Unretouched Photo, Tiny Hands of as told to (your name here), and TorryGirl.