Five Things About Me Meme: Bananas And Co

Monday, December 18, 2006 0:05 | Filed in Blogging, Life, Memes, The Pickards

I’ve been viciously tagged by Joe Dolson to take part in a meme where I have to describe five things about myself that probably aren’t common knowledge.

This is a tricky one, because some of my offline friends will know plenty of things about me that won’t particularly be known online, so I’m not going to worry to much about this — I’ll go for things that I think the majority of my audience won’t know about. I will make no apologies for anything that turns out to be more widely known than I expected.

Anyway, I’m going to tag Karl Dawson, Mike Pickard, Steve Pugh, and rather more optimistically Joe Clark and Jeffrey Zeldman to see if they are prepared to join in the “five things about me meme” too. Well, if you don’t ask, you don’t get…

Anyway, here goes:

  1. I used to like Rick Astley. For those of you who haven’t heard of Rick Astley, he was a product of the Stock, Aitken and Waterman teenie-pop stable. In my defence, I was about twelve at the time, and at the age of about fourteen I discovered what music sounds like if you have someone who can play musical instruments…

  2. …and from there I quickly went down the heavy metal/thrash metal route, taking in such bands as Anthrax, Suicidal Tendencies, shading into the more industrial Ministry and of course Lard. Pure chewing satisfaction. From there I got more into punk, and if I had to define myself by a musical genre, it would be punk.

    However, the first band I ever saw live however was a school band called Bananas of Deth (don’t ask). Surprisingly, when I googled them, I did find a reference on MySpace. It appears that The Gilamonsters (“terrifying death n’roll mayhem”) contain an ex-member of the Bananas of Deth (I think it’s the “axeman”, Jimmy M). Indeed, it appears that prior to this post there was no other reference to the band. So there you go, Bananas, this one’s for you.

  3. I’ve worked in computing since 1997 (starting my first ever full-time job the same day the country got a Labour government — thank you Tony), and have had an interest in computers ever since I owned my first computer, the ZX Spectrum, in about 1983. Despite that, I never, ever, wanted to work in computing, because it was deathly dull subject only suitable for geeks, and chose not to do it at all at school. I instead pursued a degree in Biology (which didn’t go as well as it could have, as I pursued drink and women more often), and then became unemployed.

    After being unemployed for a while I got on a “Training for Work” course in COBOL programming, which I discovered wasn’t as deathly dull as I’d expected, and relatively straight-forward. I had obviously been denying my geekiness, and remaining in the closet until that point.

    Now of course with my own website, my passion for web accessibility and so on, there’s no denying I’m a thoroughbred geek. Still, you love me really…

  4. I finally learned to drive in 2002, passing my test while my wife was pregnant with our first child. The test itself didn’t go that smoothly — or at least the manoeuvres didn’t.

    Firstly, I had to reverse around a corner into a parking bay. My instructor had been drumming into me that it didn’t matter if I wasn’t central, what did matter was that I wasstraight and that I was between the lines, and if I achieved both, I should stop there, and not muck on trying to get more central and cock it up.

    Sound advice. So I did. I was close to the line on my side — about one centimetre inside it — but I was in the line. Unfortunately, the examiner couldn’t see the line on my side, so had to get out of the car, walk round to my side, make a note on his clipboard, walk back round to the passenger side again and then get in. That did wonders for my nerves, I tell you.

    But if I thought that was bad, the reversing round a corner manoeuvre was worse. I was halfway round the corner when another car pulled right up beside me, beeped their horn loudly and wound the window down. So I asked the examiner what I should do.

    “Do what you feel is appropriate to the situation,” said the unhelpful bastard.

    So I made a big show of checking all my mirrors, looking around me (not that I was taking anything in), and put the handbrake on before winding my own window down.

    A woman in her thirties then shouted across from the other car, asking if I knew the area, and could I give her directions to such-and-such road.

    I very politely said that I was afraid that I was unable to help because I didn’t know the area myself, and I couldn’t offer to spend any more time trying to help her as I was in the middle of taking my driving test. To which she mumbled an apology and sped off.

    Fortunately, I managed to get through the rest of the test — picking up a few minor faults, but not enough to fail me — hurrah! But I’ve always thought if I can cope with nerves in that situation, I should be alright regardless…

  5. I was in a school quiz team who were beaten finalists. We had been neck-and-neck with the other team until the quizmaster (obviously a remarkably thick teacher, not that I’m holding a grudge) asked the question “in which US state is Little Rock?”

    This had been on the news, owing to the fact that Bill Clinton — who was then standing for the presidency for the first time — was from there. Easy! I thought, and buzzed in.

    “Arkansas!” I said.

    “Wrong, we’ll pass it over…”

    “Arkansas!” they said.

    “Correct!” said the moron who was running the quiz.

    To be fair to him, they had pronounced it differently to me. To be a little less fair, I had been the one who had pronounced it “arkan-saw”, which I still understand to be the correct pronounciation — certainly that was the one used by the residents of Little Rock they had interviewed on the news programme I’d seen the night before. And that threw us completely: we had been just nudging ahead, and had we got the bonus questions we would have probably had a sufficient lead to hold on and win.

    As it was, I was practically incandescent with indignation, the other team went on to win and that useless bastard cheating bastard useless quizmaster teacher bastard moron was never — I believe — made to pay for his incompetence.

    And now, I can still remember it — some fifteen years later — just like it was yesterday, and I’ve still not forgiven the dirty rotten swindler. Reminds me a bit of a line from Therapy?

    Remember, I know where you live
    And I know you’re on your own
    I may forget I don’t forgive
    I’m always home
    Therapy? — Turn

    Although on closer inspection, particularly of lines one and two, that makes the whole thing sound a little more sinister than I had intended. It was just really the “I may forget I don’t forgive” line I had meant. Honest.

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9 Comments to Five Things About Me Meme: Bananas And Co

  1. Mike Cherim says:

    December 18th, 2006 at 12:38 am

    I tagged Karl already… he’s got to do it now.

  2. Michael Jensen says:

    December 18th, 2006 at 2:25 pm

    I just updated your tags at the blog tag tree!

  3. Mark Forbes says:

    December 18th, 2006 at 9:17 pm

    Heh. Bananas of Deth. Now that’s a name I’ve not heard in a long time…

    And the Arkansas thing was terribly annoying. Mind, all these years, I’m still mildly annoyed about getting the Gestapo and SS mixed up.


  4. Joe Dolson says:

    December 19th, 2006 at 1:15 am

    So, I’ve got to ask: how’d the other guy pronounce it? Like “Kansas”, I’m presuming? The joys of being judged by people without a clue…never ends, I think.

  5. dotjay says:

    December 21st, 2006 at 10:36 am

    Your quiz story reminds me of when our quiz team (well, me) was certain that there was such a thing as a “Copper Spaniel”.

  6. JackP says:

    December 21st, 2006 at 5:52 pm

    @Joe – yup
    @Dotjay – “Cocker” I presume?

    With comments like that I’ll expect to find a Delta Lady somewhere round here in a minute…

  7. dotjay says:

    December 22nd, 2006 at 12:33 am

    “Cocker” would be correct. I think we still got points for “Copper” anyway, so I’m happy – but embarrassed!

  8. Thought Leadership says:

    December 29th, 2006 at 12:20 am

    Charity Tag Meme

    As a blogger, people may know you, but how good does anyone ever really know anyone? One way to get to know someone better is for them to talk about charities they support. What if bloggers were to go down a path of thinking about some of the peo ……

  9. John says:

    May 10th, 2011 at 4:13 am

    This is a great article and a great website. I liked it very much

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