16. My favorite color is green, but when I was 11 my family moved into a house in Idaho Falls just off St. Claire and my room had purple-and-black-foil butterfly wallpaper and purple shag carpet and I thought it was the most beautiful room ever.
15. I have six piercings and five tattoos. None of the tattoos are butterflies.
14. All of the children I have birthed are girls. 100%.
13. My family lived off-base (USAF) in Taiwan during monsoon season when I was about 9. Our house was enormous with high ceilings and wood floors, and unfurnished except for our beds and maybe a dining room set. During one particular storm, my parents put wide, brown packing tape across all the windows to keep the glass from shattering into the house. When the storm had passed, my brothers and sisters and I peeled off all the tape and made "cool-ee" balls and had the mother-of-all tape-ball battles while skating through the house on roller skates. It was most epic.
12. My earliest memory is of fireflies (in Kentucky, I am told) and how I thought the riot police looked like big bugs in their helmets (in Ohio, I am also told). The next is of living in Texas and thinking that rattlesnakes could crawl up the outside of the doors in the night. I think I might have been four years old. I have been afraid of snakes ever since.
11. I got chickenpox at my first ever sleep-over birthday party.
10. Once I dropped a can of floor wax on my big toe and it got infected under the nail, so my father took me to his clinic on the military base (USAF) and sliced open my toe with a scalpel to drain it. 35-ish years later, there is still a faint silver scar.
9. My first kiss was from a boy in my 3rd grade class who then followed me home after school the next day and beat me up. I don't recall his name.
8. My first hero was Errol Flynn after I saw Robin Hood on Thanksgiving Day the year I was in the 4th grade in Bakersfield, California. My second hero was Speed Racer from the original cartoon series.
7. My first love was a girl named Stephanie. We were both in Mr. Everly's 5th grade class in Tustin, California.
6. I had a pet turtle that I regularly fed raw hamburger and lettuce. When he died, my mother wrapped him in tinfoil and we buried him next to the back porch stairs. As far as I can remember, I have had eight dogs, innumerable fish, two parakeets, a pair of mice, frogs, a salamander, and three cats. I currently have a pair of zebra finches named Jack and Delilah.
5. A palmist at a dinner party in a remodeled brothel in Butte, Montana once told me that I was a pathological smoker and would never be able to quit when I told her that I would wake up in the middle of every night and smoke a cigarette without getting out of bed. So I didn't quit; I just haven't smoked a cigarette for about seven years now.
4. The nastiest black eye I ever got was playing basketball with a bunch of guys where I took a head-butt to the brow that knocked me clean out. The very next day, I had to get a new driver's license and appear in court on a driving infraction. The judge took one look at me, reduced my $300 fine to $25 and waved me out of his courtroom. I got a replacement driver's license not long afterwards because whenever I had to show my ID at the grocery store, the checker would do a double-take at my picture and then glare at my husband.
3. I am the same age as the Super Bowl and have been a fan of the Indianapolis Colts since they were in Baltimore.
2. There is a newspaper photo of me in a 4th of July parade, riding my horse Lucky and wearing the only tall cowboy hat I have ever owned - black felt.
1. I know that I cry when I am full of joy but not always when I am sad, things can happen as quick as a single breath that can never be taken back, a broken heart feels like empty space and tastes like metal, and time does not heal all wounds.