20 Things About Me – BringmemyTofu
February 18, 2009 in 20 Things About Me
1. My father is an alcoholic. For many years, he kept it a secret from everyone around him, sneaking drinks when he had a moment alone. He was never a fall down drunk. He never was the person who had to apologize after a night of embarrassing drunken antics. He never raised his hand to me or my sister. He simply hid it away in the dark, lonely place where we keep those things that scare us the most.
2. One morning, when I was 17, my father woke me up and pulled me into the bathroom. He had to provide a urine samples periodically during his treatment, and he needed me to fill the cup for him. If I had been stronger, I would have said no. Perhaps that was the day that he finally decided to stop drinking for good, because he saw how sad I was. My father has been sober for 7 years now, and I couldn’t be more proud of him.
3. I regret not being able to support my mother more through that whole process. She was incredibly strong for my father, and was willing to give every inch of herself for him and his well being, but it wore her down tremendously. I never knew how bad it was for her during the “dark years,” as she now refers to them, and how close she was at one point to leaving him. It was her or the booze. Luckily my father made the smart choice.
4. I never thought I would miss my parents as much as I do when they decided to move down to Florida.
5. My father was a professional actor for 30 years (no wonder he drank). I know that I am biased, but he is one of the most talented people I have ever seen on stage. It breaks my heart that he never got back what he put in to the business. He now teaches drama at a small university, and is having his own little renaissance as an artist in South Florida. Sometimes you just have to get the hell out off New York.
6. I love musicals. I don’t usually prefer the big, splashy productions, but my favorite musical of all time is Les Miserables. I used to act out the entire show with 2 of my friends when I was in grade school. My absolute favorite song is “Stars,” sung by the antagonist, Javert.
7. I love being from New Jersey. I love all the baggage that comes with it; the jokes, the dirty looks (that doesn’t really happen), the social stigma. When I traveled around in Europe, and was asked if I was from the US, I would say, “no, I am from New Jersey.” Surprisingly, that joke doesn’t travel as well as one might think.
8. I faked an ankle injury to get out of high-school football practice for 2 weeks. It was glorious.
9. I am a vegetarian who gets a perverse thrill from playing the video game Buckhunter. (I used this one in the Facebook 25 things. Does it still count?)
10. For a long time, I had serious body issues, but I didn’t know how to deal with them because boys aren’t supposed to care, and certainly not talk, about those types of things. I attempted to cope by trying to be the most agreeable person in school. I was a yes-man. If someone called me an idiot, then by golly, I was an idiot. If someone called me “fat kid” I said thank you sir, may I have another. I still, to this day, have a problem with public displays of affection, because I never believed that it was appropriate for someone who looked like me to flaunt the fact that they were sexual. I’m getting better though. Wanna make-out?
11. I think there should be mandatory waiter duty for every teenager in this country. My years as a waiter (in a country club and French catering hall) taught me more about people than almost any other experience in my life. Well that, and being a grocery store cashier.
12. I also think that teenagers should have a shitty first car. My first car was a 1989, 4 speed Hyundai Excel hatchback. It was built without a mirror on the passenger side door. If and when I ever went more than 40 miles an hour, the speedometer needle would shake violently. I am 6′ 4″ and my mother always said that when I was in that car, I looked like bear at the circus that drives around on the little scooter. I put Dave Matthews Band (sorry, Unfun) bumper stickers all over the back of that car, and I loved the fact that it was such a piece of junk. A lot of kids in Bergen County, NJ were driving Audis and Mustangs, but I had my little “shit on wheels.” I miss that car.
13. I have loved meeting, so to speak, and interacting with the folks on Gawker, and now Wordsmoker, over the past 8 months. Yes, I am pandering. Tough shit. It has gotten me through a tough year at work.
14. My girlfriend is the most important person in my life. The fact that she loves me as much as she does boggles my mind.
15. I have lost both of my grandmothers in the past 12 months.
16. I love the movie “Sleepless in Seattle.” I can’t help it, I just do. Whenever it is on, I have to stop what I am doing and watch it. “You’ve Got Mail,” on the other hand, was like getting throat punched repeatedly.
17. I am not a crazy sports fan, but when it comes to the Yankees and the Dolphins, I am pretty die-hard. I say this as a way of trying to balance out #6
18. I hate being a ad salesman.
19. My friend Nick and I once learned the dance moves to “Bye, Bye, Bye” by *N’SYNC and performed it at our junior prom. It as very well received. I also went to an *N’SYNC concert at MSG. Did I mention I am a big football fan?
20. I met Bill Cosby when my father got a part on his show. Not the first one, but the second one. I think it was just called “Cosby.” Anyway, Mr. Cosby told me to sit on the floor because chairs were reserved for the adults, and told me that my haircut looked ridiculous (it really did). It was pretty awesome.