Wednesday, May 23, 2007

8 Things About Me

Bellezza has tagged me with the 8 Things About Me meme. I'm a little slow getting to it, but I will give it a shot. One thing that occurred to me as I pondered the issue is that since I am not anonymous in this venue I can't really post some of the most interesting things about myself. What things? You know, things like my secret and superhuman powers, my prowess as a Lothario, my charm, my consistent good judgement, stuff like that. People who don't know me might think I was bragging, and those who do know me might, well, rupture something laughing. It's hard to stretch the truth if you're as visible as I am. So, since I can't list 8 stupendous and exciting things about myself, I will have to stick to the mundane and pedestrian facts.

Here goes:
  1. I'm a Leo. I don't put much store in these things, but I find it curious that some of the characteristics ascribed to Leos do seem to fit, at least the ones that I would like to be identified with. Let's ignore the others, the less flattering ones, shall we?
  2. I was born in the Chinese Year of the Rooster. In less politically correct times, roosters were often called 'cocks.' A female companion and I were dining in a Chinese restaurant many years ago, and she asked me in what year I was born. I glanced at my place mat and reported, reading straight from the Chinese Zodiac printed on it, that I was born in the Year of the Cock. She laughed hysterically for so long that it caused a stir among the other patrons in the restaurant. Did I say something funny?
  3. I'm a libertarian politically. I discovered very young that I didn't like being told what to do and that I didn't like pickpockets and other thieves. I know better what is good for me and my family than any politician or bureaucrat. I am infinitely more responsible with money than anyone, anywhere, in any government, and I detest having my money stolen and squandered.
  4. I am very laissez-faire about what other people do for fun, as long as I don't have to pay for their doctor or hospital bills as a result of their drug or alcohol use, or support their families because they are too irresponsible to do so themselves. I don't use drugs, rarely have a drink, don't smoke, but have no problem with anyone else partaking of these vices. I may think them foolish to do so, but it is really none of my business.
  5. I can be very focused on what I want and on reaching goals I set for myself. But I also have a touch of fatalism in my outlook. My lifelong motto, called into service whenever the fit hits the shan, is: "So ist das Leben." Translated from German, it simply means: "That's life." Things happen sometimes that we have little or no control over. In those circumstances we can either cower and whine or shrug it all off and carry on living. I always choose the latter option.
  6. I have been an entrepreneur since I was about sixteen years old. At age seventeen, while attending high school, I started a teenage nightclub called Club Unicorn in St. Catharines, Ontario, and have had many businesses since then. I like being able to follow ideas to see where they lead. The experiences I have had were often frustrating, sometimes exciting and profitable, never boring. I don't like being bored. Actually, I'm not sure that I know the feeling.
  7. I believe that, barring unforeseen developments, Canada and the United States have seen their best times. Some other areas of the world are more free, have more economic possibilities for people with ideas and drive, and are more fun. Parts of Southeast Asia, East Europe, and Central and South America have many possibilities for young people who want challenges and excitement. My favourite place right now is Panama. If I live long enough, I would like to invest in Argentina, Ecuador, and possibly Uruguay as well. We'll see.
  8. I have been at peace with myself for a very long time. Life is never about making other people happy. It is about living the best life you can. I am who I am. I make no effort to be liked. I try always to be fair, honest, reasonable, kind, compassionate, but never because I want to be liked for these things. I do them for their own sake, because they are the right things to do. These things are what we should all try to do in our lives. They make us better individuals. There is no need to define ourselves by whether or not other people like us, or somehow give us their stamp of approval. Some people will never like us, or what we believe, or what we wear, or even how we look. So what? Who cares?
And there we have 8 Things About Me.

Are you still awake?

I won't bother tagging anyone else, but if anyone chooses to take up the meme anyway, let me know I can learn more about you too. After all, after having given you so much information about me, it's only fair, right?


  1. My goodness,

    I just read eight things about you and it was like old times.

    You've mellowed well. I giggled and smiled through parts, then too I sat back and realized how much your clarity has positively influenced me, although I might even to be arrogant enough to think that maybe your mellowing was somewhat encouraged by my influence (but I doubt I was that powerful then), and the truly enjoyed the whole experience.

    There's both quantity and quality that are important. I don't know how many you are reaching, but those you are must be shining.

    all the best


  2. First of all, you're not slow in the least; I only tagged you two days ago. My brother is also a Leo, but you're much more rational than he is. Your cock joke makes me smile, too. I enjoy reading about your "more liberal than me" philosophies, and I stand in envy of the way that you don't live to please others. ("Life is never about making other people happy." I so agree, but seem unable to live this.) Don't ask if we're still awake, you have fascinating viewpoints. Thanks for participating!

  3. Mario: Thanks for dropping in and commenting. I hope things are going well for you. We are all influenced in some way by each other, hopefully in a positive way. Nice to 'see' you!

    Bellezza: Thank you. Behind my rather staid facade, there is a ribald jokester trying hard to get out. It's always great to see your comments.

  4. Interesting. I agree with you on two points.. well, three really. I also don't care that much what other people choose to do as long as they don't legislate it or mandate it for me, even through attempted manipulation. I agree about Canada and the US. (The stuff you sent me on Panama was awesome! If I wasn't already so committed to Thailand, I would have left for Panama last week.. :) and, three, I am also largely at peace with myself.

    Interesting 8 points! :)

    I'll take it on in the next couple of days.. although I'm not sure there's really anything new for me to reveal. :)



  5. Freddie: let's all get together and strut our stuff! Roosters rule! But... wait a minute, aren't you a girl?!

    Chani: I'm glad you enjoyed the stuff I sent about Panama. I am certainly also very interested in Thailand myself, but like you have chosen one place to concentrate on, and Panama is it for me.

  6. If for some reason, Thailand falls apart (its government is doing some truly stupid things right now), I would definitely consider Panama. Absolutely!


  7. You're an interesting chap. I like the way you don't beat around the bush. My Knight is like that too.

    I would like to know why Panama is your favorite place. You see my mom was born and raised there. My Abuela Caky was born and raised in Ecuador. She moved to Panama when she was in her 20's. Every summer, my Abuela would take us to go visit our cousins. I have wonderful memories of Panama.

  8. Hello, Lady G: I visited Panama first in 2005, purely out of curiosity and because I had heard there were investment opportunities there. I fell in love with the natural beauty of the country and its very open and friendly people.

    From a purely practical point of view, it has a stable and growing economy, isn't overburdened by regulation, has a keen interest in protecting ecosystems, and..., unlike some other countries in Central and South America, isn't likely to be overrun by a bunch of zealous colonels wanting to make the country into a military dictatorship. Been there, done that, with Noriega.

    I enjoy the country very much.

  9. I'm glad you two have met, Atavist and Lady G. It's fun to see your comments on one another's blog as well as mine.