I finally had an “Ah Ha!” moment. My first since realizing that you can’t microwave leftover Macaroni & Cheese unless you intend to use it as spackle.
For weeks I’ve been struggling for topics to write about because our daily lives haven’t really been all that interesting in this same span. I’ve been tethered to my desk designing and coding for 14+ hours a day, leaving precious little time for sleep, nutrition, and bathing. It’s difficult to explain the various aromas in this office, but suffice it to say, you can be very glad that you’re on THAT side of the monitor.
As many of you know, I intended to throw apprehension to the wind and write at least three times a week. A personal commitment that lasted ALMOST an entire week. The goal was to just “write to write” and not overthink the topics of choice.
The problem? I just can’t do that. I’m simply not the kind of blogger who can regurgitate my every day life through a keyboard and feel good about it. I don’t want to just fill my pages with words so they exist, I want to feel like they belong there.
As noble as this sounds, my daily life as of late has resulted in a topical depression. It’s difficult to find the motivation and inspiration to write when your days are filled with code and pixels. Without life events to help get the creative juices flowing, I’m left with a vapid pool of nothingness. And until you all ask me to wax poetic about CSS, PHP, and Photoshop, all of which are known cures for insomnia, I felt I had no choice but to let the cobwebs form.
Until I came across a post by one of my online buddies, Jenna from Mommy Jenna, who had come across a post by another one of my online buddies, Ivette from WAHMBAHM. In these posts, they quickly answered 48 random questions about themselves so that the Internet could boost the odds of successful identity theft. After all, what bank is going to turn down a request for a cash advance when you confirm that your favorite lunch meat is Brown Sugar Ham? Who else but the real you would know such intimate details?
I’ve long been aware that I’m a reactionary writer. I need to be prompted. I think this is why I enjoy fluttering around Facebook and manhandling everyone’s Wall posts with snark and charm. I need the interaction. I need something to be said, asked, or shown to get the gears turning. I can’t just sit down and dream up topics. I need a trigger.
And within these 48 questions, I found plenty of them. So, once a day, every day, I’m going to answer these questions one at a time. While I suppose I could just blast ‘em all out in a single post, what good is a one-word answer going to do us? How are we going to build a more cohesive relationship if I don’t intimately explore the topic of my favorite lunch meat? I mean, could you *really* say you knew me?
I look forward to this, because standing before me are almost two month’s worth of writing prompts. If anything, it’ll get me back to where I feel I belong and need to be. I’ll still be sprinkling in “real” posts as I work through the list, I just need to forewarn you that the “real” posts may not be as exciting as my revelations about ham and tonsils.
Day 1: WERE YOU NAMED AFTER ANYONE?
The world is fairly void of famous Greg’s. Beyond Kinnear, Norman, and Judge Mathis, the A-List is a short one. While I do share my birth year with some famous faces, including Mariah Carey, Vince Vaughn, Uma Thurman, Tina Fey, Matt Damon, and that Theo kid from the Cosby Show, I could only find one famous person from that era in Hollywood with the first name of Greg. Academy Award winning actor, Gregory Peck.
Recognized as one of the greatest male stars of all time and named to the International Best Dressed Hall of Fame in 1983, his accolades were many. While my parents didn’t name me after this famous actor, my witty friends saw to it that I was given the nickname, “Gregory Pecker.” Not exactly the namesake one seeks unless given in honor of his size and girth. Which of course, it is.
With famous people out, I referred to the family tree. Nothing. Stumped, I phoned my mother who explained the regal history behind my name:
“We couldn’t think of anything else we liked. Greg just sounded like a strong name.”
I was kind of hoping for some heroic story, like being named after a guy my dad shared a foxhole with in ‘Nam. A guy who ignored all danger to himself and dodged Vietcong bullets to rescue a litter of puppies who were stranded in a nearby rice field. Instead, I was simply named Greg by default.
Had I been a girl, my name would have either been Emma or Hannah. Emma was the name of my great aunt who burned to death at the age of two when her dress caught fire. And Hannah was probably the name of some stripper my dad met at Sugar Nippers, a Dayton hotspot in the late 60′s.
As for my middle name, it hails from my dad’s favorite cousin in New Hampshire. My mom stammered and paused when I pressed to know WHY I was named after him, so I’m pretty convinced that he was just the cousin who gave my dad the best weed.
So, to answer the question, “Was I named after anyone?” The answer is murky. But it appears the inspiration behind my name is rooted in two factors:
Unimaginative parents. And doobies.