In the meantime, my responses to the original four queries:
1. Please link five journal entries of yours you consider the most biographically significant, and briefly explain your reasons for selecting them.
- 40-Year-Old Landmines & The Price of Vengeance (captures my conflicted feelings about death penalties and the psychology of vengeance)
- King of Masochists (nearly every guy I know can tell you about that one woman in his past who haunts him - this is the story of mine)
- How Guile, Cunning & Subterfuge Beats an Ivy League Degree (a sardonic rant about a summer internship involving social engineering, fraudulent post-it sticky notes, and a $400 fountain pen)
- Decade and One: Two Paths Untaken (a speculative journal entry from an imagined life eleven years into my future)
- Invisibility, Vendettas and the Power of Words (thoughts on anonymity and the importance of audience feedback)
2. Your home is on fire, and you have five minutes to rescue your belongings. What do you save? Why?</blockquote>
Box of old letters and memorabilia I've received from various people in my life (ex-girlfriends, pen-pals, etc.) It's the most irreplaceable part of my past, and one that I want to keep.
Laptop computers. All my significant work is in their drives - and I don't back up my data as frequently as I ought to. :)
High-capacity magazines to my firearms. Thanks to passage of the Brady Bill (which, among other things, banned magazines that can hold more than ten rounds of ammunition), used high-cap mags have skyrocketed in price and have become erratic in availability. If I have the time, I will naturally retrieve said arms as well. :)
Everything else I own can be purchased later, and not worth running into a burning building to rescue. :)
3. An eccentric billionaire offers you US$50,000 and tells you to spend it within a week. Stipulations: you are not allowed to purchase investible instruments (stocks, bonds, gold bullion, etc.). Any money you do not spend will be gone by week's end. What do you buy?
- $12,000 - Copper-Level membership at Front Sight
- $4,000 - Executive Protection Course at the Bob Bondurant School of High Performance Driving
- $5,000 - Training in advanced functions of Photoshop, GoLive & Flash
- $7,000 - SIG Sauer P220S Sport (.45 ACP) & SIG Sauer SSG 3000 Precision Rifle (.308 Winchester)
- $5,000 - Canon XL1S Digital Video Camera
- $4,500 - Cervelo P3 race bike
- $2,500 - 20 made-to-measure French-cuff shirts from Ascot Chang (my wardrobe is a bizarre mix of discount-outlet jeans/freebie T-shirts, and hand-tailored finery. Virtually nothing in between the two extremes. May as well add to latter ... )
- $5,000 - Apple G5 w/23-inch HD-cinema display
- $5,000 - Donation to the National Disaster Search Dog Foundation which screens pound dogs slated for euthanization, and trains them to become FEMA-certified search-and-rescue dogs. The compounded coolness of saving animal lives to save human lives appeals powerfully to me, and it would be gratifying to make a contribution to such a cause.
Whoo, I'm pooped. I will try to wrap up #4 tomorrow, and then start with the Q5s that I owe those of you who were kind enough to play along.