Subadei tagged me with the eight random facts meme a couple of days ago. With no further ado, here are the eight.
- All dogs, no matter what temperament or breed, like me, at least a little. I can’t recall a single dog that has been at all hostile to me.
- I am immune to fleas and mosquitoes. They simply don’t bite me.
- When I was 20 I fought in a toughman contest and got knocked out in the first round by a tough redneck about 25 pounds heavier than me. For the record, I was up by eight but the ref declined to let me continue. It taught me two important things, namely that while I can take a punch, I can’t take eight punches, and to be very careful about making promises in front of women you’re trying to impress (namely that I would fight in a toughman contest.)
- I earned the permanent enmity of a boss of mine with an artful quip. He once remarked “I’m pushing forty” to which I replied “yeah, from the North.” I found out later he was 54.
- While my speaking voice is abnormally low and quiet, my singing voice is abnormally loud. I present a challenge to the sound guy. Luckily for them my guitar style is loud too.
- I think Thomas Sowell’s theory of the constrained vs. the unconstrained view of human nature does more to explain Western intellectual history than anything else.
- I think “Bonaparte’s Retreat” is pound for pound the best song ever written. While the original Irish version is seldom played, the melody is simply more suited to acoustic instruments than anything else in the traditional catalog. The version on the first Doc Watson family album shines in it’s harsh minimalism, while his later more fleshed out renditions work almost as well. Norman Blake and John Hartford have good versions too. Doc’s version of “Lone Pilgrim” still has the most primal impact on me though, I’m not sure why.
- The life and writings of Eric Hoffer are a source of endless fascination to me. Albert Jay Nock and H.L. Mencken are close seconds. All three of them managed to unload their thoughts onto paper with a minimum of distortion. All three were also solitary and dispassionate observers of human nature.