Wednesday, February 21, 2007

On Blogger I have an identity. I actually have a real life identity too, but I am talking about the little bio-profile that comes under my name on Chickenblog. It has a suggested list of “Industries” to describe the area a person might be occupied in, such as Health, Education, and Business. I chose Human Resources to describe my industry. Isn’t that great? I am the foremost human resource to my human family. I am a cook, shopper, cleaner, medic, homeopath, masseur, photographer, accountant, counselor, teacher, artist, life coach, designer, reader, interpreter, tutor, organizer, manager, navigator, chauffeur, nanny, gardener, heavy lifter, seamstress, mechanic, plumber, painter, motivational speaker, story teller, writer, decorator, quilter, manicurist, and I can operate a tractor, drive cross country in a 26’ RV, sweat copper, raise chickens, I can make movies on a computer and I once revived a goldfish using a modified CPR.

In my profile there is a space for “Occupation.” I kidded myself and wrote “Jack-Up All Trades.” Well I don’t really mess up everything I try, but I have tried a lot of trades. I have been a cashier, waitress, farm worker, copy room technician, teaching assistant, baker, prep-cook, theater usher, ethnographer, and magazine distributor. Of course I was a student for a long time. Now I am a wife and a mother, so there is plenty of opportunity to try my hand at all sorts of occupations.

My “Location” is California. I don’t like to be too specific and it’s fitting to be vague, because lately I don’t feel tied to any particular spot. You’ve probably heard all about our on/off/on/off Hawaii relocation plans, and for a few years we have researched and debated living in Wisconsin, Oregon, other California cities and even India and Shanghai. We’re still in California. My mental project is to emotionally reconnect with my home state; I spent a lot of time and energy rationalizing our move out of sate and letting go and now I can’t seem to feel connected to what looks like may be our long term home.

Next in the bio comes an opportunity to say something about myself. This is where I really come up short. I’ve read many interesting, descriptive profiles that often describe the purpose of the blog, interests and skills of the Blogger and other fascinating details. I slipped in my favorite Galaxy Quest quote: “Never give up. Never surrender.” I’ve been telling the boys it’s our family motto. I can’t say that it is a philosophy ingrained in my very fiber. It is more like a reminder to keep trying, to look for a way out or up or over. I think of myself as resourceful. I may whine a little, but I won’t walk away or succumb.

Interests. I listed a few favorites, like children and chickens. When I am on a road trip I rarely fall asleep. I can stay tuned to the road, the conversation, the sights and sounds for 16 hours and never doze. I don’t want to miss anything. It’s all interesting. I like flat, barren places that make me marvel that life can even exist in such a spot. I love tired, old cities with funky bars and undeveloped main streets. I like cacti, redwoods, truck stops, cows in fields, chickens, small towns, bumper stickers, fruit stands, canyons, mesas, buttes, mountains, deserts, valleys, farms, fields, boulders, junkyards, dogs, train depots, breweries, thrift shops, rivers, creeks, ponds, bridges, tunnels, elk, bald eagles, churches, gardens, surfers, cliffs, billboards… It’s all interesting.

The final categories are for favorite books, music and movies. I listed a small sampling. It would be ridiculous to name every favorite book or song. Which reminds me: I can’t believe I didn’t include Christmas music, which is vital for me. Every time I read the movie list I think how limited it is and I wonder how “Meet Me in St. Louis” represents me. Does liking that movie categorize me as a Minnelli fan or a Garland fan? Would I seem sophisticated if I only listed foreign films, then how does loving “Elf” make me seem? Maybe this is why I won’t put bumper stickers on my car, because single statements and phrases are wide open to interpretation, too simplified. I feel more inclined to rationalize, debate, elaborate and defend my points of view and interests, and then I want to listen to your point of view too. So, if you are wondering why I would ever call Dolly Parton’s autobiography a favorite, then call me, write to me. Let’s talk. There is more to know than what makes the list.

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