30-Day Writing Challenge – 10 Interesting Facts About Me

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I was jotting down this list for day four of the 30-Day Writing Challenge in my ever present notebook while I was waiting at the pediatrician with my son earlier today. I asked him if there’s anything interesting about me. Right away he offered, “You have books out and you know a lot about hockey.” Since most of you know that I have books out, I’ll start with hockey… Here are my ten things (and hopefully they are interesting)…

#1. My son is right, I know A LOT about hockey. I don’t mean to sound arrogant, but I know enough to have been a linesman in college for men’s intramural ice hockey. I know enough that I bore most people, except for the most ardent fan, when I get started talking about my beloved New York Rangers. I have been a rabid New York Rangers fan since I was four years old. In seventh grade I cut the newspaper photo out of from every game article, pasted it in a binder and wrote my own take on the game—which brings me to number two…

#2. I really wanted to be a sportswriter from the time I was thirteen years old. I even applied for a job at Sports Illustrated Kids right out of college, but they weren’t hiring at the time. I did get to act like a sportswriter in 1996 when I featured the NHL All Star weekend festivities in Boston in my column. My press badge allowed me to cut to the front of the line to pose with the Stanley Cup. Best use of a press badge ever. Being a sportswriter is still my dream job, though that dream is likely unattainable at this point. At least I can tweet about hockey and satisfy a tiny bit of that desire…

#3. Last hockey fact: Former New York Rangers player and current Arizona Coyotes general manager, Don Maloney, ran over my foot when I was fourteen years old and waiting for his autograph after an open practice. When I finally got his attention, I simply said, “I love you.” What can I say? He was my first real crush.

#4. Another Don, Don Henley of the Eagles, wrote me the kindest letter and enclosed a crisp $100 bill in 1994. A radio station was having a “Dirty Laundry” contest to protest the Eagles high ticket prices. I wrote a letter to the Eagles (this was before email, of course) stating that I thought their concert was worth every penny, even though I spent my food money on a ticket. Don Henley told me that they had another, smaller, contest for “Sweetest Person” and I won that. That letter was hanging in a frame on my wall for years. I tried to thank him in person at the next concert I went to that he was playing—the Newport Rhythm & Blues Festival—but, I couldn’t get close enough. It was right then and there that I decided to become an arts reporter / music journalist, so I could get my hands on a press badge, which brings me to my next item…

#5. I was an arts reporter and music journalist in the mid to late 1990s and got to meet some of my idols. I interviewed Mike Peters of The Alarm—I still feel horrible that I never found a home for the article I wrote about him. If I can ever find it, I will publish it on my blog. I also met my teenage idol, Howard Jones, who invited me onto his tour bus where I promptly turned into a fourteen year old, even though I was twenty-eight. All I could say was, “You’ve always inspired me so much,” or something like that. He was kind and charming. I met some other very cool musicians, writers, artists and other amazingly talented creative folks. I even had cover stories for a newspaper and music magazine.

#6. I have a rescue page on Facebook called Lucky Dogs (and Cats) and love to play matchmaker, sending friends to the shelter when I’ve found the perfect dog for them. I have rescued three dogs, one of whom is three-legged. (If I had room, I’d rescue all the animals in the shelter, even the feral cats no one wants.) My first rescue, Sadie, was from the town animal shelter. My next rescue, Coco is a Sato—a feral Puerto Rican street dog, who’s a big mush now. I adopted Scruffy, another Sato, two weeks after my beloved Sadie lost her two year battle with cancer. He arrived missing a leg, with his tail cut off and his ear sliced in half. We don’t know what he endured before he arrived, but we know it was horrific. Please remember, adopt, don’t shop! (Had to get that in…)

#7. I was a photographer for my college newspaper and had a photo on the front page. Photography has always been a passion of mine—I even majored in photography and creative writing junior year in college. But, it was a “Bachelors in Individual Concentration” and I didn’t have enough time to earn the credits I needed to graduate with that major, so I switched back to English.

#8. I had big hair in the 1980s and 1990s—very big hair—and not a day goes by that I don’t wish it would come back in style. My life would be so much easier. Though, I am a curly girl all summer. And it can get pretty big. Only rarely will I attempt to smooth out my tresses during the humid months. See the photos above and below to know how truly big my hair was in the late 80s. People would tell me all the time that I looked like Susannah Hoffs of the Bangles and make me sing Walk Like an Egyptian. And on my honeymoon in Antigua I was mistaken for Mariah Carey…

#9. I’m addicted to lip gloss and have been since my very first strawberry flavored roll-on gloss. My favorite now is C.O. Bigelow Mentha Lip Shine and C.O. Bigelow Mentha Shimmer Lip Tint from Bath & Bodyworks. I always have three tubes in my handbag and mix the colors (usually Bare Mint, Violet Mint and the clear Lip Shine). I’m also addicted to Doublemint peppermint gum. I guess there are worse addictions…

#10. I’m very short—4’11 3/4″—yet I never wear heels. Or at least I rarely wear heels. If you read yesterday’s post, you know why (hint—if you break your ankle in six places, heels aren’t your best choice, even thirty two years later). As an aside, I was one of the tallest girls in my grade up until about fifth grade when everyone started catching up and then passed me. In fact, I haven’t grown since I was thirteen (or maybe twelve)…

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Photo of me holding the practice puck Don Maloney gave me about a month before he ran over my foot…

A photo of me and the Stanley Cup at the 1996 NHL All Star Fan Fest

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The letter from Don Henley… I found a blurry photo of it on Facebook; I’m not sure where the original is…

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One more big hair photo – this one may be even bigger than the last…

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