Another one of these social media personal profile quizzes was sent my way this morning. They’re a good way to get to know each other: I’m often surprised by what I learn about people. So, here comes my contribution:
NAME? Barbara, but they call me Barbie
NICKNAME (S)? Little Boz, ZenDog, Dink
WHERE WERE YOU BORN? New York City, New York
SIBLINGS? Three big brothers; but one of them, Tommy, has died.
WHERE DID YOU GO TO SCHOOL? I’m the product of 12 years of a strict, private, Catholic school education. It was grueling, but it gave me acute academic strength and strong spiritual groundwork that has served me well. I’m glad for it.
FIRST BOYFRIEND/GIRLFRIEND? Michael. He was 17, I was 16. We went to different high schools. My dad escorted me to our first date, and then hid around the corner. Michael and I still managed to make out for a while. Fun times.
COLLEGE? Yes, master’s degree in comparative lit, master’s degree in English lit, bachelor’s degree in journalism. I did undergraduate and graduate semesters at Trinity College in Dublin, Cambridge University in England, the University of Dublin, and the University of Edinburgh. I have no idea how I had the energy for all of it.
POLITICAL PARTY? I’m unaffiliated, which means I can’t vote in primaries, and that bothers me now more than ever. For this reason, I plan to change my status to Democrat before the 2020 primaries, although I hate to have to do that. I’ve never voted conservative; I often vote for third-party candidates like Nader and Johnson. I was a young activist on Nader’s Green Party political team in the 1996 election. I’m a strong supporter of Libertarian and Green Party values.
MARRIED? Yes, to the best impulse decision of my life. I waited a long time and kissed a lot of frogs before I found my amazing husband. I consider myself the luckiest girl in the world.
CHILDREN? Approximately 3.1 million children die from hunger or malnutrition each year – that’s nearly 21,000 children every single day. I chose to not have children, almost exclusively for this reason. I’m relieved and thankful every day that I made this choice.
PETS? My husband and I are the guardians of two insanely large, cute, and hungry dogs.
FAVORITE FOOD? Make sure to pluralize that to ‘foods’. I love a spicy dal, Thai curry, any kind of rice, bananas, spring rolls, oatmeal, mangoes, tsampa (but only in winter), vegan ruebens, watermelon juice, hot cacao, pineapple fried rice (the pineapple fried rice with tofu at Han’s in Granby is awesome), olives, hot tea, sun tea, raw garden veggies, salads, vegan black bean nachos, cranberries, sweet potatoes, vegan coconut anything, pancakes and waffles with maple syrup, popcorn, and the soymilk white maple at Moon Dog Café.
FAVORITE MOVIE? ‘Earthlings’ changed my life and prompted me to switch from a vegetarian diet to a body-and-soul vegan lifestyle. ‘Dead Poet’s Society’ always makes me laugh and cry and worship good cinematography. I’m a little too fond of the ‘Sharknado’ series of movies. Woody Allen is a great filmmaker, and I love his films ‘Annie Hall’ and ‘Hannah and Her Sisters’. ‘The Shining’ is my favorite horror movie and Kubrick film. I also love the Maysles brothers’ documentary ‘Gray Gardens’.
FAVORITE MUSIC? Gyoto chant, Bob Marley, DJ Drez, Rising Appalachia, Arterium, and any of the contemporary Hawaiian artists.
FAVORITE BOOK? Too many to choose from, but let’s start at the top, with the Dharma. In college, Rachel Carlson’s ‘Silent Spring’ launched me into the Green Party, and deep into political and environmental activism. Samuel Richardson’s epic novel ‘Clarissa’ made me fall in love with British literature, which I then decided to major in in graduate school. I’ve read Robert Lanza’s ‘Biocentrism’ about 100 times. And Hunter Thompson has always been my journalistic/literary idol.
WHAT DO YOU DRIVE? I reluctantly drive a busted-up, old 2004 Toyota Rav. Owning a car is not within my comfort zone. In my hometown of NYC, it was walking and public transportation all the way - I loved it, I was in great shape, I met new beautiful people every day, and I still believe that walking and public transport are the very best ways to get around. But there’s a serious dearth of public transport in Connecticut. Everyone here is tearing around in a car. One person per car. Madness. I plan on driving this Toyota until it falls into little pieces or spontaneously combusts. I don’t want another car after that.
FAVORITE PLACE YOU’VE VISITED? That’s super tough. I’ve been completely enchanted by many places. But my top spots are Paris, Hong Kong, South Hampton, Cambridge (England), Dublin (Ireland), Martha’s Vineyard, South Korea, Macon (Georgia), and San Francisco.
FAVORITE RESTAURANT? The Russian Tea Room in New York City (alas, it’s closed). Best blini in the world.
AFRAID TO FLY? I don’t like flying, but I do it. Being in an airplane inhaling other people’s germs for hours always makes me feel like I caught a cold. Yuck.
FAVORITE CITY? Please. New York City, the garden spot of the world!
PLACE YOU WANT TO VISIT? Tibet, Nepal, Moscow (Russia), Vietnam, Chang Mai, Oregon, and Wyoming.
PERSON YOU ADMIRE MOST? Wow, these are hard questions. First, His Holiness the Dalai Lama. After His Holiness, I deeply admire the late Hannah Nydahl. And then, the late, great Libertarian and unschooling activist Ned Vare.
PERSON YOU LOVE THE MOST? I’ve never been able to quantify love. I honestly can’t answer that.
DO YOU BELIEVE IN GOD? No.
DO YOU BELIEVE IN LIFE AFTER DEATH? There is no death, so no. That's a gross oversimplification, but this is a pop quiz, so...
WHAT SONG DO YOU WANT PLAYED AT YOUR FUNERAL? Whatever anyone feels inspired to sing, say, or dance. If silence seems fitting, go with that. Just remember that I loved you.