Throw Down the Gauntlet

In the truest sense of egomania, I believe that the mere act of my discovering something on the internet means it is about me and I must respond to it. Everything is a challenge, not especially of the validity of my opinions (though it usually is), but more of my ability to be more clever than whomever.

A co-worker named Cynthia added me on Facebook today, and I found that she has a list. Gauntlet thrown down. Gauntlet picked up.

Here is the list, with my shrewd comments after each item in italics:

  • I am weird. If people say you’re weird, screw ’em. If you’re not weird, your boring.
  • I am creative. I hope you are. 99.9+% of all the people I know are not only not creative, they’re kind of afraid of being creative.
  • I am a big fan of androgyny/gender bending. Go for it. Like what you like.
  • I love British humor. So did I when I was 15.
  • I am a flapper at heart. I don’t know what a “flapper” is, so I guess I have to Google it. Hang on. … Oh, flapper! Sure, I can see that.
  • A lot of people think I’m gothic. Well, maybe they’re right, although I like to think I’m more complicated than that. I think you mean “goth,” which is a trend with young people in America. “Gothic” refers to an extinct East Germanic language, spoken by the Goths.
  • My religious views are very complicated. Inquire within. Within. I get it. Ha ha.
  • I may or may not be from another planet — I’m not sure. Is this supposed to be one of those remarks about being sociologically isolated? ‘Cause interplanetary travel is impossible, at least from here to any other habitable worlds, due to the whole time/speed/distance thing.
  • I am obsessed with fashion, but I don’t keep up with trends. This sounds like a koan. “Bring me water in a bucket of dryness.”
  • I smell pretty darn good. It’s never a good idea to think this without some outside verification.
  • I love food; I’m a “pesco-tarian.” Food isn’t love, and it doesn’t love you. Break up.
  • I am highly narcissistic. Sometimes I feel that if I stare at my reflection long enough, the word “Narcissist” will change into “Richardist.” Okay, not really.
  • My favorite movies are horror, horror-comedy, or just plain trippy and/or mind boggling. As you know, I think 98% of all cinema is unwatchably stupid.

There was a time when I loved these psychological parlor games, but their very popularity has tainted them. If you like making lists or bullet points, which I do, at least try to make them salient and not just a half-mysterious cry for attention. I’m not saying this list was that, but lists about your psyche always have the potential to be self-indulgent and pretentious.


  1. “I am a flapper at heart.”

    Unlike Richard, I do know what a flapper is, having repaired several toilets in my time.


    “What’s a flapper?
    “A flapper is a rubber mechanism in your toilet tank that is the moving part of the flush valve, sealing water into the tank and allowing water to exit the tank when you flush.”

  2. Also: My favorite movies are the ones with the biggest advertising budgets and lots of one-liners that were terribly original 25 years ago but have now been repeated in every movie since then.

    Preferably with breasts and slow-motion explosions.

  3. if anyone can watch the movie “dead alive” by peter jackson (yes, that peter jackson) without cringing, they’re probably in prison. and even then they’re damn liars.

    also, the “zombies” in that movie don’t care if you hide in man-made structures; they’ll just push down the walls.

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