1. I am a native of Southern California, but have never really felt like I fit the SoCal stereotype.
2. In fact, I am only a 1.5th generation American. (Mom is from England, and my paternal grandparents were Russian immigrants.)
3. In spite of not fitting the SoCal stereotype, I have felt the need to keep my hair its once-natural shade of blond, no matter how badly it wants to be dark.
4. I was also the captain of the freshman cheerleading squad in high school, as well as the school mascot (complete with a bear suit) my senior year—in spite of the fact that I was pretty much the polar opposite of pep.
5. I thought being a cheerleader would be a good way to get a boyfriend in high school.
6. I never had a boyfriend in high school.
7. I wasn’t just a cheerleader in high school; I was also a star defense attorney on the mock trial team (we won county and went to state!), won a best supporting actress award for my portrayal of Mrs. Schwartz in the school musical Fame, played on the tennis team, took AP math and English, was voted Class Clown, and was basically a total renaissance girl in every sense of the word. Except for the whole dating thing.
You don't want to be my boyfriend?
BUT I'M A CHEERLEADER! (AND a best supporting actress.)
That's me out of my bear-suit on the far right...
8. I used to love to travel (I’ve been to Australia, Thailand, Hong Kong, England, Italy, France, and Ireland, among many other destinations), but now I find it kind of exhausting and would rather stay home and relax with my family.
9. In spite of my extensive travels, I am a total geography ignoramus (most of the time).
10. In fact, when people discuss world issues and current events, I often remain silent for fear of sounding like this Miss Teen U.S.A. contestant:
11. I also tend to look up words on a regular basis to make sure I’m using them correctly.
12. My earliest childhood memory is of being taken to a child psychiatrist named Dr. Fox because—in my very young mind—I thought my parents wanted to find out if I was a genius like my brother.
13. It turned out I was not a genius like my brother.
14. In fourth grade, I won second place (and a trophy!) in the school spelling bee and was also promoted to the fifth-grade spelling class. That made me feel better about not being a genius.
15. My mom is a former superior court judge (she was also a deputy district attorney specializing in sex abuse/child abuse cases).
16. My dad is an accomplished author and former university biology professor who specialized in malaria.
17. My brother is an accomplished TV writer and executive producer (his credits include Frasier).
18. Nothing makes me happier than the unconditional love I feel for (and from) my husband, son and dog.
19. The lead singer of Carolina Liar (surely you know of them? If not, you must check them out!) is my ex-brother-in-law and was one of the groomsmen in my wedding. (He is also one of the nicest, most talented and all-around awesome guys ever and deserves all the success he’s had. YAY, CHAD!)
Look! It's Chad Wolf(inbarger), lead singer of Carolina Liar!
20. I’m incredibly proud of my family so oftentimes, instead of talking about myself, I talk about them hoping people will think I'm as cool as they are.
21. In college, I was crowned the “Watermelon Queen” thanks to my adaptation and live performance of Julie Brown’s “The Homecoming Queen’s Got a Gun” (which was changed to “The Watermelon Queen’s Got a Gun,” natch).
22. I once spent a summer studying in Dublin, as well as a year studying at University College Galway—partly because I was obsessed with U2 and thought if I went to Ireland I might meet them and make them my new BFFs. (I never met U2—but I did once get their manager, Paul McGuinness, on the phone for my boss, and also got to tour their offices at Windmill Lane in Dublin back when I worked in the music biz.)
23. I have a very hard time functioning before 9 or 10 a.m. “I am not a morning person” is a serious understatement.
24. I tend to disparage myself for my maternal (and other) ineptitudes on a far too frequent basis; in reality, I do think I’m pretty good at the things I do—including being a mom.
25. I can’t believe I’m already at #25. There’s so much more to me than all this minutiae! (Note: I didn’t have to look up minutiae. That’s one word I know all too well.)