Authors Answer 83 & 84

It nearly didn’t happen again, and it’s going to be a short one because I just saw the time. Eep!

Without further ado, AA 83: Can you tell us one quirky fact about yourself?

This is one of those times when your mind just goes blank. The quirkiest thing I can think of right now is that I’m technically named after my brother.

It’s like this: my dad has (well, had) three brothers and one sister. Two of his brothers never had any children, the third has four daughters. With my dad being the youngest of the five, he was clearly the only one left to carry on the family name. (Bear in mind that this was the early sixties, and while my dad’s sister had sons, they of course had a different surname.) Lo and behold: my brother was born, and at that time my grandfather was pretty much on his deathbed (I never knew him – I was minus eleven when he died). My mum wanted to call my brother Eric Alexander, but with my grandfather about to die and being really really proud to finally have a grandson, she grudgingly agreed to name my brother after him: Johannes. She also figured she might as well get the other grandfather out of the way, so my brother’s second name is Elbert. In everyday life he goes by Hans.

When my sister was born there was no naming after anyone, nor anything specific that I’m aware of. My sister is called Irene Theodora.

And then I came along. I wasn’t planned – as far as I heard it my mum switched contraceptives and things didn’t go quite as they were meant to. I hasten to add that I was very much wanted, just not planned. But when it came to a name… Well, there were those names that never got used for my brother… So I’m Erica Alexandra. If I’d been a boy, I’d have been Eric.

See the quirky facts about other authors in the original post on Jay Dee’s blog.

AA 84: Do you have an unusual talent? What is it?

I used to be able to put both my legs in my neck, but I haven’t tried that in years. I probably need to limber up considerably for that.

I can still recite several things I learned by rote when I was in primary school, mostly biblical things. My school firmly believed in hammering things into your head, and it must have worked, given that I still know these things nearly forty years later. They are mainly things like the twelve sons of Jacob, all the books of the old testament (I learned them in blocks, so I might put some blocks in the wrong order, but I can name all of them.) I can still recite the entire second commandment (in Dutch, of course), which is really quite an achievement given that it’s about five or six verses in total.

I can also still recite the advert for the German Partyline which was played to death on MTV Europe back when I had that on virtually all the time while at home as background noise. (This was back in the days when MTV still actually played music most of the time.)

Wieder mal gelangweilt? Interessiert in ein neuen Weg Leute kennen zu lernen? Nimm einfach den Hörer ab und ruf an: null null eins acht null neun fünf sechs drei viermal die null! Und ein super Fete wartet auf dich, die Partyline!

Ahem.

Let’s just say I have a really good memory for really useless things.

Original post can be found here.

 

 

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