25 Random Things About Me
© The Rev. C. Joshua Villines
January 26, 2009
This actually turned out to be a really enjoyable exercise. My thanks to the Facebook friends who encouraged it:
1. I rarely drink anything besides water (sparkling or still, I do like variety you know). The usual alternatives are juice or a fruit smoothie.
2. I have worked as: a soldier, a private detective, a pastor, a game journalist, a technical writer, a bodyguard, a security guard, a (poor) interpreter, a photo-processor, a professor, a police instructor, and a stay-at-home dad. I'm currently looking for more jobs that start with "p." (And I was a paratrooper when I was a soldier, so there's a preponderance of p's already.)
3. I value time with my wife and son over anything and everything. I don't care who you are or what the personal or professional gain might be from attending a particular event, I will blow you off to spend time with Brigit and John Francis.
4. I love Science Fiction and Fantasy novels.
5. I really like rainy days.
6. I am highly selective about my close friends, and fiercely loyal to them.
7. I never outgrew my hippie idealism from college.
8. I think that doing something because "most" people or "normal" people do it is a really terrible idea. In fact, I immediately question the logic or quality of an idea or behavior if it's popular.
9. My wife is my best friend, and our relationship is one of affectionate intimacy. I'm amazed by how many people don't seem to want this from a spouse, and instead spend much of their lives bitching about how little they have in common with the person they married.
10. I like organizing physical objects and ideas. This is obvious if you open any drawer I've been near (mine or otherwise) and if you read my research. I like taxonomies and putting things in boxes, which drives my dear friend Katy crazy. (I've put her in the "doesn't like to be put in a box" box.)
11. I love roots music and old shape note gospel hymns.
12. I enjoy banal TV programs and feel good movies (especially with gratuitous nudity and/or explosions), and I usually have the TV on while I'm working.
13. I want to grow up to be Grandpa Martin Vanderhof from Frank Capra's "You Can't Take It With You."
14. I think the profound spiritual insights of our ancestors in the faith should be preserved without fettering them with the cultural assumptions of the eras in which those ancestors lived. If that sentence makes sense to you, you'll understand my theological writings and public stances on social issues. If it doesn't, no amount of explaining on my part will help.
15. My greatest hope for John Francis is that he will grow up to be someone who thinks deeply and loves generously.
16. Fresh-baked bread and sharp cheese is one of my favorite combinations in the world.
17. I used to write a lot of poetry, now I write a lot of prose. I think that what I lost in artistry I gained in clarity.
18. I've learned more from Dad than I have, cumulatively, from everyone else in my life.
19. I wish I were more kind.
20. When I think about the number of stupid things I survived to learn the lessons I have learned, I am tempted to lock John-Francis up until he's 30.
21. I can design web pages from scratch using a text editor, but I prefer not to.
22. I have never done any illegal drugs or smoked cigarettes. I hate both vices with a passion, the former because it makes you stupid and the latter because it killed three of my four grandparents.
23. Although I test as an extrovert, and think of myself as one, I rarely enjoy parties with large groups of people I don't know these days. I find I like fewer and fewer people the older I get, and that my tendency to speak frankly offends most people.
24. I think scientifically calibrated personality assessments are useful, and that Internet ones can be fun, so I keep results from both here: http://www.villines.com/personality_tests.php .
25. Nearly all of my diverse skills have something to do with words or weaponry, and I think it's important that every person be willing to use both to defend those who are in positions of vulnerability.