Saturday, June 30, 2012

A Girl Named Frank...

Before I head into today's blog post, you will undoubtedly be pleased to hear that I have cleaned out my vegetable drawer (erm the day after the last post actually...and where did June go???), and moved the basil plant outside.  So those of you that were going to form a posse to come lynch me over this can just stop it right now!

Oh, wait, that was a posse to come lunch me.  I actually am up for that.  

Today I'm going to tell you the story of how I ended up being called Frank during my junior year of high school. But first I have to explain to my US readers that  Grade 8 is the same as 8th Grade.  It seems to be confusing so I thought I'd throw that out there.  Also in deference to the confusion that is wrought over said use of Grade either before or after the numeric modifier, I actually spent a good deal of time trying to figure out that Grade 11 (11th Grade) is Junior year.  Because my "high school" was Grades 8 through 12 (8th through 12th Grade) so those freshman etc. labels didn't work so well so I never learned them.  You're welcome.

Next time I'm adding French to the translation above.  I think it might make it clearer.

In said high school, the first three years (yo, bitches, I'm a writer! I can work around the whole 'grade' debacle!) had remedial, regular, and challenge classes based on, well whatever they base that stuff on.  In the latter two years, the classes diverged into two groups, people planning to move on to University levels and those more geared toward trades, or technical schools.  I had been in the challenge classes for the most part, with more or less the same group of people.  Then in junior year, the classes/students all changed.  

To an introvert like myself, such a drastic change is stressful.  (That sentence by the way is a massive understatement, and we won't go into just how hard the first weeks were for me to manage so many new people.  Plus, teenager!  Angst!)  I also really didn't like the spotlight or the attention on me in any way.  

For those of you that only know me online, I also have a stubborn streak.  People that know me in real life generally have that part figured out.  :P

Throughout my school years, at the beginning of each new class, the teacher would always ask me what name I went by.  See, my Mom had put both my first and middle names on the registration so teachers would always ask if I went by Pamela or Dianne.   I've gone through a spate of variations on those, but I've noticed people tend to start with Pamela, then shift to Pam or Pammie depending on relationship.  Throughout high school my nickname was Pammie Di.

It was English 11 where the teacher, who also doubled as a drama teacher and general asshat (colored in no small part by the story I'm telling) was taking roll call the first day and asked me the question.  Only he threw me for a loop when he asked if I went by Pamela or Pam.  So I responded with "Both."  Because it was true.  

That answer was not well-received.  "What is your preference?"  My response was "I don't have one."

I'm not sure where his head was at in this, as an adult I'd love to know what was prompting the arrogance that followed, but I was really happy that my stubborn nature completely stomped on the introvert during the following conversation.

"You have to have a preference."

"No, actually I don't.  It's my name.  Either can be used and I'll answer."

"But there must be one you prefer."

"No, there isn't."

"What do you want us to call you?"

"Either of those are fine."

"You have to have a preference."  

By now this exchange had been going on in circles for several minutes, and if I'd given it any thought I'd have likely been mortified at the attention.  As it was, he was mostly just pissing me off by not allowing my perfectly reasonable answer.

It was about at that point that the guy beside me I didn't know, obviously done with it all, called out loudly, "Fine, we'll call you Frank."  I laughed and told him that was fine as well.  Fortunately it was enough to get the teacher to back off and move on to the next person.  (Fortunate for him, because when stubborn mode is on, I can outlast anyone.  ;)  )

I don't remember what the teacher ended up calling me that year.  But I do know that I got called Frank by pretty much everyone in that class, in the classroom and out.  It was to the point where I'd be in the mall and someone would call out Frank and I'd turn to look and respond if it was me.   

Oddly enough, that one incident became a huge learning experience for me in terms of meeting new people openly and without fear.  And the guy who named me became a really good friend through my last years there, and a lot of fun to boot.  

Now when anyone asks me what I'd like to be called, it's easy to answer too.  "No preference, you'll figure it out."

Monday, June 4, 2012

I've been missing you...

Did y'all miss me?  I'm pretty sure you must have because I've been missing myself and if it's gotten to the point where I miss myself, well you know it's bad.  I didn't even know I was missing.  Or that my aim was that crappy.

The reason I haven't been around is largely work-based but I'm also wrapped up in other writing projects at the moment so haven't been giving my blog the time and attention it deserves.  As evidenced by the fact that I completely missed the month of May.  Bad blogger!  Bad!  No cookie!

The other problem I'm finding is that I get these great ideas for blog posts at 2 am, and they're so clear that I'm sure that I'll remember them in the morning, and then, well, I don't.  I'm going to put that down to the lack of sleep in the wee hours of the morning and not the fact that every single day of my life I'm aging and the brain cells that I have accumulated appear to be undergoing spontaneous combustion. a result, this morning I decided to jot as much as I could down from the wee hours mental rambles.  And now for your viewing pleasure...

1.  I need to clean out the vegetable drawer.  Seriously, this is the stuff that keeps me awake at night.   KEEPS.ME.AWAKE.AT.NIGHT.  And I can now hear you all asking, well, why don't I just clean it out and be done with it?  Because I keep forgetting it needs to be done when it's daytime.  Or when it's evening.  Or when I'm at home.

Apparently lower brain owns this and higher brain could care less.  Frankly I suspect that higher brain should just stab lower brain, but lower brain has some automated mechanism to stop that.  No wonder I'm awake, with those two fighting all the time.  And I doubt yelling "Settle down you two, don't make me come in there!" will really work. They know I'm squeamish about blood.  And brains too.  Bastards know way too much about me.

2.  I bought a basil plant that needs to be planted somewhere but I'm feeling so lazy about it, I'm considering just making (more) pesto and being done with it.  Of course, I still have the pesto from the last time I made it (the great food processor debacle of 2012), so that's kind of a lame decision.  No, I'll just have to wait until the plant dies suck it up and deal with it .


Okay I'm back.  It's really not my fault, I was paged to Facebook to attend a thread about my boobs.  And not one that I started either.  *ponders if my boobs need their own page*


3.  That part above about no cookie is a total lie.  I have a cookie on my desk right now.  SUCKERS!

4.  I forgot the rest of my list.  

5.  Oh yeah, I made a note on my phone (technology, bitches!).   A shampoo bottle rant!  Why oh why do the manufacturers insist on making the same shaped bottles but with openings on opposite ends of the bottle for shampoo versus conditioner.  Seriously, it's hard enough finding my hair first thing in the morning never mind trying to figure out how to open them.  

And how the heck am I supposed to tip whichever one upside down to get the last dregs when the top of the bottle is slanted.  Now I need to make my husband McGyver something to get the bottle to stay up so I can get my full money's worth of this stuff.

It may look pretty but did we do any sort of a usability test in the real world? No?  Thought not.  That's the last time I believe one of those commercials with all the scientists standing around in lab coats telling me how awesome their stuff is.  I'm no scientist and I can figure it out.  Hmph.

6.  #5 is a first world problem.  It might even only be a my world problem.

7.  I make way too many lists.

I have another idea for the next blog post so stay tuned.  Don't fall asleep.  And don't wake me if I do.