Question Time Over Coffee — 11/26 Edition

Rory, over at Earthly Comforts, has once again posed a number of intriguing questions this morning. Let’s see if I can come up with some equally intriguing answers.

You have a dinner party and may invite four guests from the following categories one fictional, one dead, one alive, and a naked chef [wearing an apron only but no clothes underneath – or if you wish for whatever reason your chef can be wearing underclothes – pants/top]. Who will you invite to eat, and who will you ask to cook for your dinner party?

Woo, this is a doozy. Let’s see. Fictional: James Bond. Dead: Sean Connery. Alive: Stephen Colbert. As to who will be the naked chef wearing nothing but an apron, I’d go with Beyoncé. I don’t know if she can cook, but watching her try wearing nothing but an apron would more than compensate.

Have you ever slept on / in a hammock?

Yes, I’ve fallen asleep while in a hammock once or twice.

Do you find it easy to maintain friendship with other people?

We’ve moved around a lot, so it has been challenging to maintain long distance relationships with close friends over long periods of time. Since we moved to our new house in 2020, just as the pandemic hit, it’s been difficult to make new friendships, even with our neighbors, with whom we’re essentially on a “Hi, how are you” level.

Are you a person of ethics? If so, how does that impact your daily life?

Despite the fact that a lot of people believe that atheists have no ethics, I consider myself to be a very ethical person. I can’t really say how it impacts my daily life as I know of no other way to be other than ethical.

Are you decisive or indecisive as a person?

It depends upon the magnitude and time sensitivity of the decision. If it’s a big decision, I’ll spend a lot of time and effort researching the options before making the decision. But once satisfied that I have all of the information I need, I will be decisive. If it’s a relatively inconsequential decision, I’m usually less decisive because I won’t have spent a lot of time on it, but I’ll just do whatever’s easier or quicker at the moment.

Why do people hold double standards?

Because people are innately egocentric and hold themselves to a different — could be higher, could be lower — standard than that to which they hold others.

What is your most unhealthiest but guiltiest pleasure and why?

I eat a half pint of Ben & Jerry’s Stephen Colbert’s Americone Dream ice cream almost every night.

What is your process of writing a new post for your blog?

I open up the WordPress iOS app on my iPhone and start tapping away on my virtual keypad.

If you were asked to create a Top Fifteen Book List holding books that you felt everyone should read at least once in their life and would never regret reading what titles would you include?

Wow, this is a tough one. Here are the 15 that immediately come to mind.

  • Tolkien’s “Lord of the Rings” trilogy and “The Hobbit.” Counts as four books
  • The first three books in Isaac Asimov’s “Foundation” series. Counts as three books
  • “Shogun” by James Clavell
  • “Tai-Pan” by James Clavell
  • “Rosemary’s Baby” by Ira Levin
  • “Watership Down” by Richard Adams
  • “Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance” by Robert M. Pirsig
  • “The World According to Garp” by John Irving
  • “Catch 22” by Joseph Heller
  • “Catcher in the Rye” by J. D. Salinger

How important is it for you to know a person’s real name? [Be this online, off line, social media, or blogging]

In real life, very important. In blogging, not important at all. And I don’t participate in social media, so….

When at school what were your top five subjects that you were passionate about? Why was this – what did you love about them? Are those five subjects still present in your life today in any form?

History, social studies, civics, geography, and English lit. Why? I was more inclined to the liberal area and to the humanities at the time than I was toward science and math. And I would say that all of those subjects are still relevant in my life today, although in my later education, I did gravitate toward science.

Are you a photogenic person? Are you eager to appear in family or friend snaps? Are there many photographs of you from and over the various stages and ages of your life?

I’m not un- or non-photogenic and I don’t shy away from being photographed. But because I was mostly behind the camera taking the pictures, the vast majority of photos are of my wife and kids and friends, rather than of me.

With regard to the paranormal, do you choose to not believe because there is nothing to believe or because you feel it is safer to not believe? Are you a non-believer or a believer?

Paranormal, as I understand it, means beyond the scope of normal scientific understanding. Scientific understanding is always expanding, with new insights and discoveries occurring regularly. Thus, what might have been considered to be paranormal a few hundred years ago may, today, be within the scope of contemporary scientific understanding.

That said, I don’t really believe in the paranormal, per se, like telekinesis or clairvoyance. To the question, “Are you a non-believer or a believer?” my answer is that there are a lot of things I believe in. But when it comes to the existence of a supernatural, omnipresent, omnipotent being who created the universe, us, and every around us, I’m most definitely a non-believer.

How are you with meeting strangers/new people who might or could become new friends? Is there a process you adopt to identify if they are the right fit for you?

These days, I very rarely meet strangers and/or new people. In the event I would, though, I have no “process” I follow. There’s either commonality and chemistry or there’s not!

SoCS — What’s On Your Plate?

For this week’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt, Linda G. Hill has given us “on your/my plate.”

Back in the day, when I was still working, I had a lot on my plate. Between managing my team of product consultants and software developers, working with installation managers, sales people, senior executives, prospects, clients, and vendors, as well as caring for and providing for my wife and kids, my plate was constantly full. Sometimes overflowing.

And I loved it. I thrived on the pressure of meeting deadlines, fulfilling client expectations, demoing our software solutions to new clients, running meetings and webinars, closing new business, and finding a balance between work and family. It all gave meaning to my life. It defined who I was.

And then I retired. For five decades I had defined myself by my work, by what I did for a living. I woke up one day and that was all gone. Not only did I not have all of those job responsibilities anymore, but my kids were grown up and out on their own.

I felt a sense of panic. Who was I if my identity was my work and I was no longer working? I remember telling my wife that my plate was now empty and I didn’t know what to do with myself.

But the good news is that my plate is still full. I’ve got grandkids who give me tremendous joy. I’ve got my blog, which enables me to interact with fellow bloggers from around the world. And I’ve got a wife who is happy to keep adding things to my “honey do” list.

So, in spite of my early fears that upon retirement my plate — my life — would be empty, the reality is that what’s on my plate today, in retirement, is just fine. I can now define myself by who I am, not what I do.

Now how about you? What’s on your plate?

FOWC with Fandango — Offer


It’s November 26, 2022. Welcome to Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (aka, FOWC). I will be posting each day’s word just after midnight Pacific Time (U.S.).

Today’s word is “offer.”

Write a post using that word. It can be prose, poetry, fiction, non-fiction. It can be any length. It can be just a picture or a drawing if you want. No holds barred, so to speak.

Once you are done, tag your post with #FOWC and create a pingback to this post if you are on WordPress. Please check to confirm that your pingback is there. If not, please manually add your link in the comments.

And be sure to read the posts of other bloggers who respond to this prompt. Show them some love.