The 25 Random Things Meme.

I’ve been tagged repeatedly on Facebook, so I’m finally caving.  Without further ado….

  1. I worked as a concession vendor (walking the stands with trays of Coke) at Super Bowl 18 in Tampa in 1984. 

  2. I graduated first in my platoon during Marine recruit training in 1985, earning me a promotion and a free dress blue uniform. 

  3. I entered the first Star Trek: Strange New Worlds writing contest in 1997 on a dare. Prior to that, I had no serious aspirations of writing professionally. After all, only real writers did such awesome things, right? 

  4. My wife is my high school sweetheart. 

  5. At one time, I held a license to drive 18-wheelers. 

  6. My first job was at a swim and tennis club; groundskeeping, pool maintenance, and maintenance of the club’s clay courts. Despite this obvious opportunity, I never learned to play tennis. 

  7. I love audio books and audio/radio dramas. Such material currently outnumbers the music on my Zune by a factor of 4 to 1. 

  8. I was one of those who, in 1976, wrote to President Gerald Ford asking for the first space shuttle to be named Enterprise

  9. I was living in Hawaii in 1969 — all of two years old — when my parents took me to Pearl Harbor to witness the return of the Apollo 11 astronauts. 

  10. When I was a kid, I drew a lot and for a time wanted to be a comic book artist. Harsh reality soon prevailed. 

  11. The song to which my wife and I danced at our wedding? “Can’t Fight This Feeling” by REO Speedwagon. 

  12. My wife and I honeymooned in the Smokey Mountains in 1991. For our 10th anniversary, I arranged to spend our vacation at the same resort, and even in the very same cabin. The family who owns the resort remembered us, and even posted our picture from 10 years earlier on the door for us to see upon our arrival. 

  13. A few of my favorite books, in no particular order, are I Am Legend, One Day In the Life Of Ivan Denisovich, The War Of the Worlds, A Night to Remember, The Right Stuff and A Man On the Moon

  14. One of my fondest memories about my time in the service is running in those platoon formations, leading the platoon in singing running chants. 

  15. My favorite sounds are those of my wife and/or kids laughing. I can’t get enough of that. 

  16. I have never broken a bone. Until November 2007 and not counting my birth, I had never stayed in a hospital as a patient.

  17. However, many years ago, I tested positive for exposure to tuberculosis, and had to take special medication for a year to stave off infection.

  18. I’m a huge Batman fan, in all his various forms: Comics, movies, TV series, whatever. Superman is a close second. 

  19. I attended the very first game ever played at Tampa Stadium (November 4, 1967, age 5 months), as well as the Bucs’ last game there (December 28, 1997, age 30). The first event was a college football game. 

  20. I suffer from tinnitus, the result of being around too many things that went “BOOM!” 

  21. I remember faces, but I’m horrible with names. If we’ve only met once or twice, I’m almost certain to recognize you, and will almost without fail have to ask to be reminded of your name. Don’t take it personally 🙂 

  22. When I went to boot camp, I weighed two pounds over the minimum weight for my height. I gained 30 pounds during training, my physique changing so much that my mother walked past without recognizing me. 

  23. I own a fully-functional Star Trek video arcade game from 1982, which resides in my office and which I still play on occasion. 

  24. I became a fan of Rush thanks to my roommate while stationed on Okinawa. He was a huge fan and played the albums he had over and over. By the end of that year, I was hooked, bought everything they’ve ever put out, and haven’t missed a concert tour since 1990. 

  25. One chapter of my novel The Last World War features two convenience store clerks who are an homage to Dante and Randal from Kevin Smith’s Clerks. When I wrote The Genesis Protocol, I included a scene near the end of that book which uses an almost identical set up with the same two characters, though obviously located at a store closer to that book’s events. My intention was to establish a running gag in my original fiction whereby these two clowns would show up in a scene appropriate for the given story. My master plan died when my editor decided that a scene with a much different tone should end the book. Since then, I’ve not yet had the occasion to repeat the attempt. 

    (EDIT: 8/3/2011 – Readers of my stuff know that, since this blog entry originally was written, I’ve repeated the gag in Counterstrike: The Last World War, Book II. The original version of the scene as written for The Genesis Protocol is available here.)

Lay it on me.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s