Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Interview by Feral Mom

I've been reading "Gone Feral" for quite a few months now. When I first started blogging I was merely reading what friends wrote, but soon began linking over to see what THEY were reading in turn. I'm sure most of us cyber-writers do the same thing: "Hey, what blog is THIS that my friend John likes?" And we click away, expanding our blogoverse and ignoring the far more compelling work that we OUGHT to be doing. ("What's that you say? Finish my doctoral thesis? Pshaw! I'm much more interested in surfing over to 'Rate My Poo!'") Anyway, I'd noticed that several friends-of-friends had stumbled upon the filthy ramblings of Feral Mom ("Vinnie Fitzpatrick" to her friends), and I was immediately drawn in by her compelling prose, coupled with a 12-year-old-boy's bathroom humor. She seems really smart (apparently working on a PhD in English), and has a fondness for wine, cats, and good rock-&-roll. ("Good" being a relative and highly opinionated term here...) So, when she recently gave an interview for another blogger and offered to do her OWN version, I couldn't pass up the chance. Besides, as Suze correctly put it: we all love to talk about ourselves, don't we? I don't blog under a nom de plume (or guerre, for that matter), and so I feel pretty transparent to my handful of readers. But, for those of you who didn't know me before "Cranial Flatulence," here forthwith is the interview from Feral Mom. Enjoy!

Whence the name, Animal? And which animal?
There are two sources of inspiration behind my longest-lasting college nickname. The first comes directly from Muppet fame: I'm a drummer, and while I'm not neon pink and fuzzy, I do tend to move around my kit quite a lot. I follow a drumming heritage from Peter Criss back to Gene Krupa. Peter has said that he considers himself to be a swing drummer, only playing in a rock band. His style is certainly that of Krupa, but he doesn't MOVE like Krupa did; I do, only amped up a few notches.

Basketball Band - 1990ish

The second - and more deviant - meaning behind my moniker comes from marching band. I eschewed with great disdain the social Greek structure in college, but I will admit that the Marching Chips (hooo-WAH!) was its own "club" of handy friends and bed mates. The "animals" (as a collective) were a subgroup of the band, dedicated to raunchy behavior and good times. On road trips, we even had our own bus! We were generally the hardest-drinkin' folks in the band, with the dirtiest minds, who loved to sleep around and engage in all sorts of purile endeavors: singing dirty ditties, hazing new recruits with silly sexual pranks, etc. Perhaps only coincidentally, we were also generally the best MARCHERS in the band. Anyway, when I first joined the Marching Chips, the percs kept themselves pretty well apart from the rest of the band...much to my dismay, as I discovered that "perc parties" consisted mostly of getting stoned and listening over & over to Vinnie Colaiuta drum licks, two activities which pretty much precluded any chance of getting laid. During my sophomore year my girlfriend (a trumpet animal herself) convinced me to ride Bus 4 back from one of the road trips, and I apparently created something of a sensation on that fateful eve. The rest of the animals took VERY kindly to having a perc "defect" to the other side, and so was born my "public" drumming persona. The rest is not only history: it's classified, and further attempts to unlock what we did in those days will be met with a stern "No comment!" that would make Tony Snow greeeeen with envy.

Marching Band: 1987ish

If you could be a member of any rock band, living or disbanded, which one would it be?
Truth be told, I'd rather be MYSELF in a rock band, rather than taking on someone else's mantle. But, for the sake of the question, I'll give it a try. Musically the logical answer would be "Peter Criss," since he's been my drumming guru since I was a wee lad. But, honestly, I like the spotlight MUCH too much to be trapped behind a drum kit, so the more honest answer would be (surprise, surprise): Paul Stanley. He's a great front man, he's a great singer, and for me he just epitomizes what a successful rock star ought to be.

What was the most frightening moment of your childhood?
Hmmm...that's deep! Uh...I don't know? I honestly had a pretty idyllic childhood (hence my constant bouts with nostalgia), and I also have this habit of either avoiding or forgetting unpleasantness. I DID feel a lot of stress during one year of elementary school - 3rd grade? 4th? - when I was missing a lot of school due to a common tonsilectomy. My mother was ALSO sick around the same time, with gall bladder issues, and I was giving myself stress-induced stomach aches. Ahh, the harbinger of pent-up stress panic to come! I gotta loosen up more...

Alien abduction stories—utter baloney, eerily convincing, or the story of your damn life?
I'm a split personality: my left brain insists that when we die, we feed the worms. My RIGHT brain wants to believe that I'll be met in the "afterlife" by everyone I've ever known & loved...including pets. Hence with alien abduction: while I believe utterly that "aliens" (i.e., non-human, off-Earth life forms) DO exist, I kind of think that the concept of a shipful of them taking some redneck from the plains of Texas aboard and "doing stuff" to is him pretty hard to swallow. Hauntings, alien abductions...there's some tantalizing, hard-to-otherwise-explain "evidence," but I suppose it would actually have to happen TO ME in order for me to drop my subscription to Skeptical Inquirer.

What are three random things that piss you off?
Oof, you want me to limit this to JUST THREE?!? Okay, if you insist:

1) I hate it when I've made plans days in advance, and then something happens to cause the plans to change. I HATE IT. This could even be a GOOD change, it doesn't matter. Something about the way I think of the future - and what I'll be doing in it - makes me totally incompatible with change. Gosh, that makes life FUN for me, doesn't it?!? Since, you know, pretty much anything can happen. I try to roll with it (cue REO Speedwagon here), but Miss Tessmacher can attest to the fact that I'm just squelching my irritation and stress. See *above* for "panic attacks, History of."

2) Careless driving. I've already posted about this, so there's no need to elaborate. And I KNOW that most of the time these incidents aren't directed at me PERSONALLY. Still: I view careless driving as one of the harbingers of the downfall of society. People who only think of their own needs while driving are simply telegraphing that that's how they go through LIFE: thinking only of themselves, and to hell with how their actions affect other people. Grrr!

3) Little incidents which prove I'm not "in control." Case you hadn't noticed by now, I'm a bit of a control freak. So, when little things happen to pull that delusional rug out from under me, I tend to blow my top. Gotta fill the water jug, but I'm kind of in a hurry? GUARANTEED that some water will sploop out the spout, thus necessitating a clean-up. Tired & just ready to get in the damn bed? Sure enough, I'll have forgotten to bring my bite guard downstairs to clean while I was getting ready for bed. You know: those kinds of little things. Ugh. Drives me bonkers just THINKIN' about 'em.

So, there ya go, Feral! Thanks for the invite, and for reading: I still figure you blog circles around me, so I consider your interest in interviewing me to be a compliment of the highest caliber. Cheers!


Blogger Jenn-Jenn, the Mother Hen said...

A fellow "band geek". Woo hoo! Evidently there be lots of us in blogdom.

9:53 PM  
Blogger Steph said...

I love the contrast between the drunken, promiscuous metalhead badass of yore and the anxiety-ridden control freak who likes everything just so.

8:02 AM  
Blogger Mike said...

Steph... there was no contrast. i was there. Animal fell deeply in love with every promiscous conquest which led to pseudo-drunken nights of high (drunk) anxiety trying to figure out how to get the conquest to love him as much as he loved them. Since every one was "the one". A downward spiral of self pity from bad relationships.(which may explain our friendship, as there's a little projection going on here)

We spent our final semester at Central as roommates, constantly watching "the lonely guy", "annie hall" and "about last night". Commiserating over lost (true)loves while screwing every young co-ed (who were mistakenly impressed by our maturity) that would let us be the pagans we were always unsuccessfully trying to be.

What a great semester!!!

it would sometimes suck when you reputation got in the way of reality.

10:38 AM  
Blogger Tess said...

Can I just say that I actually went over to "Rate my poo" and almost lost my lunch?! And if you're such a control freak, why is it that you claim to never see dust, nor would you wash the carpet, unless I ask, if/when Ramona vomits?

12:07 PM  
Blogger Jenn-Jenn, the Mother Hen said...

Ramona? Did you guys change the name based on how easy it is to type? (I just had to ask, because Ramona IS a lot easier to type than Roslyn, however, you shouldn't let him change your mind just because he can't type it without a bit of a stretch. LOL!)

1:41 PM  
Blogger Steph said...

Ramona is the beloved cat of the Miller/Harding household. I think they're asking for trouble giving their daughter an "R" name as well, personally. They're going to be mixing up the two before they know it. My mom even did that, even though my name is "Stephanie" and the cat's name was "Apricot."

2:21 PM  
Blogger Animal said...

Steph, that was so funny...it's like a David Sedaris moment!

6:43 PM  
Blogger Suze said...

well, steph, my mother occasionally calls me by your mother's name. "jose--bonni--SUSAN!"

animal. DUDE. answer my questions already. i'm getting impatient over here.

(just kidding. i'm really not that pushy in real life. really. ask steph.)

10:24 PM  

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