Every day on my drive to work, as I turn onto Oglesby Road for the final half-mile stretch, I unlock my car doors. Sometimes I actually think to myself, “I need to unlock the doors so that people can reach me if I’m in a crash.” Mostly though, I do this without conscious thought.
- It’s very unlikely that I’ll ever crash on this half-mile stretch of straight, low-speed country road, the single piece of road that I am most familiar with (having spent my entire life traveling over it).
- It’s even more unlikely that any crash on this stretch would incapacitate me, or require people to open the doors from the outside.
- I don’t do this at any other time. Ever. Yet I do it every day.
- I think the auto-locking car doors are stupid. They’re a nuisance and not a convenience. I have no idea when this became a standard feature or why. But have I ever searched how to de-activate the option? No.
Every time I get milk from the fridge, I sniff the container before pouring. I don’t always check the date, but I always sniff the container.
- Though I have had sour milk in the past — and have even had sour milk from an unexpired container — this has only happened a couple times in my entire life.
- Lately I’ve begun buying the ultra-pasteurized milk, the stuff that lasts for six weeks or more. I usually finish a carton nearly a month before the expiration date. I still sniff the container every time.
- I don’t sniff ice cream or any other dairy product. Only milk.
- I sniff all milk containers I use, even those in other people’s homes.
I sniff books, too, but not because I think they’re going to go bad.
- The first thing I do when I get a book, or when I pick one up in a store, or at a friend’s house, is to sniff it.
- I’ve always sniffed books (and magazines). I can’t remember a time that I didn’t.
- I put my nose against the pages and fan them, getting a good whiff of the paper, the ink, the cover, the binding.
- I have an unwritten, unordered classification for types of smells. If I wanted to, I could write down an entire taxonomy of book smells. There are general categories, of course — musty, smoky, newsprinty, new-y, etc. — but there are also minute gradations — like a late-seventies Harvey comic, like a Del Rey sci-fi paperback, like a grade school library book, like a European food magazine.
- I’ll frequently smell a book and think something like “Aha! This book smells very similar to that book on dirigibles that I smelled at that thrift store we went to with Jenn in 2002.” Seriously.
I am addicted to the internet.
- My e-mail program polls for new messages every sixty seconds. Sometimes I check manually between automatic checks.
- I check my friends’ weblogs many times each day.
- When I post something on the comic book forums, or on AskMetafilter, or anywhere else, I check for responses over and over and over again, sometimes for days after the post.
- I cannot allow myself to use an RSS reader because when I do, I subscribe to dozens of feeds. I check them each morning, and then I refresh constantly, craving the next hit, the next news story, the next new link. RSS readers kill me, make me permanently attached to my internet connection.
- I write twice as many weblog entries as I actually post. I have scores of fragments saved to my hard drive. I want to post them all, but generally forget about an entry if I don’t finish it when it’s started.
- I own seven domains. Each domain (but the latest) has a web site, though not all of the sites are fully functional or especially useful.
Odds and ends: I am pathologically incapable of following the “clean as you go” program; I “mess as you go” and then clean in bursts. I bathe every day, sometimes twice a day, somtimes three times a day, but I rarely shower. I loathe shaving, and would be wild and hairy if Kris would let me. I cannot help but make smart-ass remarks, even though I know it’s a learned behavior I picked up from my father, a behavior I disliked in him. I love to sort things, and always have: alphabetizing books, organizing the cooking spices, sorting a box of baseball cards, ordering a directory of mp3s. I seem compelled to not put fuel in vehicles until the last possible moment. At home, I drink very little water, but in restaurants I go through the stuff like it’s nothing, consuming a liter or more at each meal.