a year in food and life

Tagged- 8 things you didn’t know about Superspark August 30, 2007

Filed under: Diversions — superspark @ 8:21 am

My first tagging…does this mean I’ve “made it” as a blogger? Jill tagged me several weeks ago and her “8 things” was so cleverly illustrated with photos that it made me want to blatantly steal her idea and run with it. Or if not, to come up with some new and creative spin for my own “8 things”. Weeks later, with all the intervening things that have happened along the way, my ambitions have fallen and simply getting this post done seems to be the priority. Plus having just returned from a mini-vacay in Maine and Boston, I haven’t cooked a lick in a week. So on that note, apologies to those who just wanted to see some food…

Eight things you didn’t know about Superspark

1) I lived in Norway while doing research for my dissertation. I was above the Arctic Circle. Way above it, so far north that my friend Amanda used to say I could circumnavigate the globe by running around in a circle (get it? ha!) There were reindeer and Northern lights and oh so much snow. More snow than you could imagine and all the way into June. One of my more unusual adventures during my time in Norway was a trip to Kautokeino (a town in what Americans know as Lapland), where I was “hired” to help out with a festival of Sami film and culture. Among our other duties, we constructed an ice cinema (yes, that’s right, benches and a huge screen made of ice!) and did roadie work for a joiking version of American Idol (called “Sami Idol”, no less). Good times…

2) Given that this is more-or-less a food blog, it only seems right to at least mention food. Though I love cooking and my horizons have grown year by year, I still remain a pretty darn picky eater. Among the things I would really rather not consume, if I can help it: mushrooms, capers, olives, dates, and beets. If you feed me any of these things at a dinner party, I’ll probably politely eat them (if I can’t find an easy way to hide them in my napkin), but I won’t like it!!!

3) I met my husband in junior high school. Which is not to say we were high school sweethearts- he was sort of theater-y, I was…well, who knows what, and truthfully, we were little more than acquaintances. Fast forward 15 years or so, our 10 year high school reunion was approaching, e-mails from long-lost classmates were circulating and in the midst of the hubbub, Dylan e-mailed me to say hello. Three years later, we’re happily married and I think some of our high school friends are still in shock.

4) While I’m a pretty fit person, I’m by no means athletic and yet somehow I found myself playing rugby in college. This never fails to surprise those who meet me, given that I seem to land on the girlier end of the spectrum, but I spent three years tackling, pushing, and sweating with the best of them. I was lucky to escape with no worse injury than losing a toenail, but needless to say, never again. These days my athletic pursuits rarely venture beyond the treadmill or the weight room at the gym.

5) I’m an anthropologist by training. A biological anthropologist, to be exact. Very broadly, that means I studied human evolution, but more specifically, my PhD thesis examined how evolution has shaped the female reproductive system to respond to ecological cues, like food availability and workload. Unfortunately, though I found my own research interesting (at least in theory), I quickly found that I had a hard time feigning interest in those creepy non-human primates and that the world of fossils is not nearly as interesting as the movies and television would have you think. So I guess I’m best classified as a lapsed anthropologist who has transitioned into public health. These days I’m doing research on women and children’s health, with a particular eye towards how prenatal and early postnatal development affect health later in life.

6) I just pulled my first all-nighter ever. Yeah, that’s right. I managed to make it to age 31 never having stayed up all night. Admittedly, I’ve stayed up until the dawn on the rare occasion (almost always for fun, not work), but have never found myself having to stay up all night and into the next day, skipping sleep altogether. It finally happened this week when, with a big deadline looming, the rest of my work team seemingly vanished into thin air and I was left to do the revisions to an $18 million dollar per year grant proposal on my own. Sort of nerve-wracking, especially for a perennial student like me who’s new to the working world, and I ended up plugging away through the night- at an office that wasn’t even mine, no less! Mouth fuzzy, eyes bleary, we submitted the revisions the next day at noon and though I never want to find myself in that position again, I have to admit there was a little part of me that was impressed by what I can do when I put my mind to it. (As a side note, added after I wrote this, 2 days later I had to stay until 4 am for another round of revisions- I really don’t get paid enough…)

7) I can read while running. Lest you picture me running through the streets, dodging traffic with a book in hand, I should clarify that I only do this on a treadmill and only when I’m extremely bored and my iPod has died. And never when running faster than 6.5 mph. Nevertheless, I’m told this is unusual and that I must have exceptional nuchal ligament stability. Go me.

8 ) I play a mean game of “celebrity”. My favorite thing to do on a weekend is a dinner party followed by games and one of the ones that always seems to stir the masses is celebrity, partly because it’s a different game each time, shaped by the participants. And you need nothing more than paper and pens (and well, at least 5 friends) to have a rousing evening of entertainment. For those who are intrigued, one version of the rules can be found here. If you’re like me and have an embarrassing love of trivia, especially of the variety that might be found in, say People magazine or US Weekly, I think you’ve just found something to do this weekend.


2 Responses to “Tagged- 8 things you didn’t know about Superspark”

  1. Congratulations on getting tagged then!

  2. I can confirm your celebrity skills! That was a fun game.

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