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epitaph

Just spent several hours setting up a profile at classmates.com. Can't remember why I did that, but it felt important when I started.

So, your profile.. They use a survey wizard of sorts to get a series of anecdotes out of you, and then present them in a different order, with headers that lose the spirit of the original questions and hide the fact that anything of any value might follow. In short, the process makes you look stupid.

I'll be changing a lot of my answers soon to counter that, but wanted to post my work here with the context still intact. If you were hoping to understand me for any reason, there's good insight in some of this.


Bio:(maximum of 2000 characters)
I used to wear intelligence as a badge of superiority. Stopped that. Have friends now. Go figure.

I'll replace that with something more descriptive later.


What was high school like for you? What sorts of things were you interested in during high school? (Check all that apply)
Band
Music
Hanging out with friends
Other, pleasee describe: Creative writing


Which song or band will always remind you of high school?
"Sexy and Seventeen" by the Stray Cats.
"Don't Stand So Close to Me" by the Police.
"Hot For Teacher" by Van Halen.
"The Homecoming Queen's Got a Gun" by Julie Brown.
The question was so stupid, I had to turn it into a joke. I'm nervous that people will take that answer seriously. May change it.


Who was the teacher that influenced your life most significantly and how did he/she do so?
Mr. Bishop back in middle school accidentally cleared up a powerful concept for me: Homework is a study aid, the means to an end. If something helps you absorb the material, embrace that. If something doesn't help you learn, abandon it and find something that does. It doesn't matter what works for you, so long as something does.

This was simultaneously liberating and devastatingly cruel - The next four years of my life were spent playing martyr, challenging teachers to fail me when they knew I could easily teach their class. It seemed all-important that I make them understand the injustice they were condoning by not acknowledging this simple idea. But while I did shake up some routines and make people think, I'm not convinced I was the catalyst for change I set out to be. My legacy there is an endless stream of amusing horror stories, and a GPA you wouldn't wish on your worst enemy.

In retrospect, that was probably a mistake.


Do you have a particular high school memory you'd like to share? (At least any that would be fit for publication!)
I'm trying to remember something positive, since that last answer turned out so grim. The best memories occurred off campus, at marching band competitions. Shared accomplishment is an amazing thing, the culmination of not just your work but everyone's. And watching the other bands on the field complimented that sense of achievement with the knowledge that other groups of people were experiencing the same thing. I don't know if you can relate to anything I just said, but if you ever get a chance to work with people towards achieving some common goal, don't pass that up. There's strength in numbers.

Note: those two answers are not presented in sequence, and that last one gets displayed under the header "My most vivid memory?", so it's pretty much getting thrown out when I have time to write a better answer.


Cast your mind back to when you graduated from high school, what did you really want from your future? (Check all that apply)
Go to college and continue my education
Succeed in a career path I'd already picked
Figure out how to make lots of money
Travel around and see the world
Find someone to marry/start a family
Make the world a better place
Pursue creative interests (writing, art, music)
Become famous
Other, please describe: Defy physics, Rewrite history.


What did you decide to do immediately after high school? (You may check more than one.)
Went to school
Started working
Other, please describe: "Extra" work for TV, Films


How far did you pursue your education?
...there's no space for "other"


What school - or schools - did you attend?
Ventura College
Los Angeles Valley College
California Institute of the Arts
California State University Northridge
Moorpark College
ITT Technical Institute
Learning Tree University


Are you..?
Single


Do you have any pets? (Check all that apply)
I have a dog(s)
I don't have any critters


Tell your friends a little bit about your pets.
Fo'paw barks at strangers, and everyone's a stranger. She frantically wants things, but can't seem to figure out what, exactly. She'll run after a thrown ball, but only to supervise it's landing. Retrieving the ball, while clearly imperative, is ultimately someone else's responsibility.


Do you want to tell your friends about your kids?
I don't have any to talk about.


What do you do now? (You may check more than one.)
I work a full-time job
I work part-time
I'm retired
I'm looking for work
I'm self employed/Own my own business


What industry do you work in?
Arts/Entertainment/Recreation


What is closest to your role or area of responsibility within your company?
Artist/Designer


What's your job like?
Fixing computers is like being on call to receive corrective dental surgery at a moment's notice when you know there's nothing wrong with your teeth. Graphic Art jobs are like being enslaved and sold at auction to yourself for a small fraction of what you should be worth. Website Maintenance is like being paid to breathe. And Writing Music is like manipulating the heavens.


We're interested in letting you see how different classes and schools have done financially (your individual income will not be published). Please enter your annual income.
Under $25,000


Looking back a year or two, what have been the big events in your life? (hold down the 'Ctrl" key to select more than one)
Continued with my education
Changed career paths
Started my own business
Attended a musical or theatrical event
Participated in a musical or theatrical event


Looking ahead, what are the big events coming up in your life? (hold down the 'Ctrl" key to select more than one)
Continue with my education
Change career paths
Start my own business
Take a major trip
Relocate
Attend an athletic event
Participate in an athletic event
Attend a musical or theatrical event
Participate in a musical or theatrical event
Retire


When you're not working or chasing kids or paying bills, what do you like to do? What do you do for fun? (hold down the 'Ctrl' key to pick more than one)
Books, magazines & reading
Computer hardware
Computer software
Electronics
Entertainment, Events, & Movies
Family
Fine Arts
Games
Internet
Music
Science & Technology

    [empty checkbox] Classmates.com Specials and Promotions
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You know, for a service users pay for, this site really does get in your face with the marketing opportunities.


Now that you've been out in the 'real world,' what is your primary goal in life? (Check all that apply)
Continue with my education
Succeed in a career path I've already picked
Find an interesting career
Figure out how to make lots of money
Make the world a better place
Pursue creative interests (writing, art, music)
Become famous
Other, please describe: Defy physics, Rewrite history.


What do you think your classmates would find most surprising about you or your life now?
I could go for shock value, but I think you'd mostly be surprised at how little of my life you were even aware of. I keep a low profile. Which, looking back, is pretty surprising in and of itself.


Do you expect that you will attend your next class reunion?
Yes


ClassMates is considering creating a "panel of experts" - members who would participate in studies four or five times a year (via a survey like this) to share their insights on issues, products and events. Would you consider participating?
No
(see "marketing opportunities" comment above)


Now that you've had time for all of those memories to come back to the surface, was high school The Best of Times or The Worst of Times?
The Worst of Times


...and that's it.

Comments

( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
russian
Jan. 22nd, 2002 12:33 pm (UTC)
Argh, it seems the comment I posted embarrassed my friend, so I deleted it. But HELLO, nonetheless.

And keep in mind, I shall be watching you. *cue up X-Files theme*
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )

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