Tell us about the part of the world you live in - what do you love about it, and what could you do without? Is this your first choice of a place to live?
I live in La Crosse, Wisconsin, which is a nice small city, small enough where I'm still comfortable coming from a town of about 500 people. I went to school here, which I loved, and am currently working and applying to graduate schools. I love the mix of small town and big city that comes with the area; you can get the best of both worlds. Yet that sometimes means you get the worst as well.
My least favorite part really is the winter. Yet, since I've grown up in Wisconsin, I'm really quite used to it.Bruyere
I have known you for quite a while and have watched you grow as an individual. What are your words of wisdom for younger people going to college and starting out life on their own?
Well, it's a bit cliched, but my best piece of advice is do what makes you happy. I'll try to add some perspective and experience to make my advice less Hallmark:
I wasn't sure what to do with my life, like many young people in my generation. In past generations not so distant you were pretty much locked into your occupation early on. This is not the case these days. There are so many options in so many fields, so in my case, I tried a path a little less traveled and opted for Archaeology. Now the field itself was quite lovely, but I discovered it wasn't quite right for me. I wouldn't have been happy. I changed to English with an emphasis on Rhetoric and Composition, which might seem boring to some, but to me it was the right fit.
Lastly, I would recommend any college student reading this to not choose a major based on money. I have several friends who took jobs in Accounting or Finance or Computer Science thinking they were gold mines. In some cases they are, but I have plenty of friends who are miserable with the track they are on simply because they chose a field they thought would make them money and that would later earn them happiness. I've learned early and well that that is not the case. Do what you're passionate about. CellarDoor
Where do you hope to be in ten years, and what do you hope to be doing?
Honestly, I hope to have sold a book and be able to live off the profits, but as I'm probably more realist than romantic, that is more of a side goal or a dream goal rather. I want to go to graduate school to earn a doctorate and then teach at the university level. I'll probably be in school forever and rack up loads of debt, but I'd rather be paying off that and be content with where I am than to have a little extra cash and hate where I'm at in life.agony
Are you politically committed?
I'll have to answer this one with a little nuance. I'm not politically committed per se, but I consider myself an avid observer of politics. I have some fervent beliefs, but I try not to let them color how I see political issues too much. If I hear a conversation about politics between friends, I often stay quiet and let them speak their minds, while occasionally playing devil's advocate even against positions I agree with.
Honestly, I enjoy being an observer rather than an active participant.CellarDoor
It's a beautiful spring day and you have absolutely no responsibilities. What will you do?
Wow. To be honest I would probably sleep until 10am like any good college student. Next, I might go down to Riverside Park which is on the Mississippi River and read or write something. After that I would have a nice grill out with my friends and enjoy some beer.CellarDoor
You enjoy science fiction. What are your favorites, in any medium? What hidden gems do most people not know about?
I do enjoy science fiction and I'll add fantasy too, and the fact that it is sometimes seen as fringe or not mainstream upsets me a little bit. Mind you, some of the writing is really terrible. But I think what we've seen in the near past is really great writers starting to take up the pen in the name of the genre to produce some really good stuff. George RR Martin and Cormac McCarthy come to mind (though I wasn't greatly impressed with "The Road").
For television, there's also some great writing. "Battlestar Galactica", "Firefly", and "Farscape" really do a great job of doing what science fiction does best: reflecting on human issues in a way that tends to limit previous biases. In other words, looking at alien races can help us see ourselves because we are generally neutral to them at the start.Bruyere
What kind of music are you into at the moment? What moves you?
What a question. I'm an indie rock fan and I also enjoy electronica and experimental stuff. I generally don't enjoy pop music, and that perhaps has to do with my indie roots, but I'm really not an indie snob, I promise. I actually enjoy when someone recognizes an obscure band I love instead of sneering and saying that I found them first.
One of my favorite bands right now is Say Hi To Your Mom, mostly because their lyrics are so metaphorical and intellectual...even though they're not. It's kind of hard to explain, so I recommend looking them up if you're into that kind of stuff.uglybird
In the eight years since you joined, Funtrivia has certainly evolved. What change(s) do you have the most fun with?
I've certainly been here awhile and remember finding the site originally when I was 15. I was a bored student in some computer class and loved trivia and found the place randomly. One year later, I was in the same situation, but this time joined the site as a member and salivated at the thought of writing a quiz. I'll save more details of that for the next question.
In terms of the change I've had the most fun with, I suppose I can't be too specific, but I've been here long enough to see many changes and I can say that Terry and the editors are always looking for ways to improve. New ideas are always in the works and I think the site has done a good job of maintaining the original goal of quality trivia while adding lots of other goodies.uglybird
What do you remember about writing your first quiz, "The Origins of Fun"?
I was 16 or 17 and I wanted to write something quality, better than some of the earlier quizzes which had less strict standards. I remember writing it on paper, and since I only had extremely slow dial-up Internet in my small town at that time, it took literally several minutes to download a webpage to get the information I wanted to write the quiz. It was an experience.Bruyere
How has being at FT helped you develop your writing, editing or interpersonal skills?
It really has been a great way to sharpen my skills in all three ways. In terms of editing, it's superb. What some members don't see is that we occasionally get some real experts in the field of grammar who send corrections on really technical issues. We debate the merit of those corrections and often consult grammar guidebooks or online sources. I've learned so many small rules that I would never have known otherwise.
In terms of writing, it's been great. The biggest thing I've gotten out of it is to write to get your point across without that person knowing anything about the topic. I recently wrote a quiz about the science behind strawberries and it was difficult to balance the scientific jargon with what people are really interested in. Strawberries as a whole aren't technically fruits? Yes, and I had to explain why without looking like I'm talking down to or confusing the reader. It's helped a lot with clarity in that sense.Pagiedamon
You've edited in several categories at FunTrivia. Which one is your favorite and why?
I would really have to say World since it was the first I edited in and was my baby for a long while. I don't edit nearly as much as I used to or want to, but I always learn something new while I'm editing there. It's really quite diverse and I have to be on my toes as information from around the world can be found there.Bruyere
OK silly question here, you've got a date with a celebrity...who would it be and why?
Probably not too many people know this here, but I am a member of the LGBT community; I just wanted to preface that so readers aren't shocked when I say someone like Mitch Hewer, who plays on one of my favorite television shows and is British to boot. agony
If you were a superhero, what would your powers be?
Hm, I've always thought mind reading would be fun, but you always see the representations of it as horrible. Some things are best kept hidden.
If not that one, then Wolverine's regeneration power because really, he lives forever. And you also see representations of that one going poorly, but I think that I could travel the world forever and never get bored. Sad, yes, but life is already full of times of sadness, so it would be, to me, just perpetual life.uglybird
Finally, what should everybody know about you?
I try not to take any one thing too seriously and I also try not to be too absolute in my thinking. There are so many variables, so many small little things that we don't even have the smallest inkling of that people should really be as open-minded as possible. Thanks to all who took part.