Here are my answers. I’ve been a bit indulgent and answered all your questions, so this is a long post. If it’s too much to process in one chunk, save it for a coffee break or only read your own answers. I don’t mind.
If we ever do this again, let’s stick to 1 question per person, eh? Actually, let’s never do this again. Lawks-a-mercy. My poor typing fingers.
What was your favourite holiday ever?
I went to Tunisia for 2 weeks and fell hopelessly in love with a beautiful French man. That was quite a good one. But a long time ago now though. I had a great time on the 3 holidays I took with my late grandmother too. She is much missed.
If you could go back and relive any memory that you have (but not change the events), would you? And if so when would you go back to?
I’m a bit anti-nostalgia so it doesn’t appeal greatly. If pushed, I would go back to the evening when I met my closest friend (the Saturday before Halloween in 1992, I recall) for amusement purposes, because I couldn’t stand his silly ways at first and it’d be hilarious to revisit that time and see just how much things have changed. He is now effectively a brother to me.
Do you believe in heaven? If so, what do you perceive it to be? What do you hope it to be?
I don’t believe in a literal place called heaven as a reward for good behaviour on earth or as half of a heaven/hell binary opposition, no. I don’t consider myself religious. My philosophy is bespoke, but a bit of Buddhism mixed with the esoteric theories of quantum physics, if you want to put me in a box. My idea of what you may call heaven is peace or a return to unity. This question reminds me of one of my favourite jokes, as told by George Monbiot:
Q: What did the Buddhist monk say when he went to the pizza parlour?
A: Make me one with everything.
If you could say just one sentence to Tony Blair, what would you say?
“You are under arrest; you do not have to say anything but it may harm your defence if you do not say something you later rely on in court.”
(OK, I cheated slightly with the semicolon.)
If you only had ten minutes to make yourself feel beautiful, and you had to choose one, would you, 1) ‘self love’, 2) do some Pilates or ballet stretches, or 3) put on perfume and lotion?
Self love? Do you mean masturbation? I’d never considered that as part of a beauty regime, but I’ll make a note of the tip. Right. Well, I’m perfumed and lotioned at all times, so I suppose it’d better be the stretches.
On a day when you are already feeling hormonal, (you do have those, I trust), what misused word makes you homicidal?
Oh dear. I can feel an attack of pedantry coming on, namely my standard rant that men have hormones too and are no less or more at the mercy of theirs than women are. But only because you made a point of saying “culturally feminine” in the preamble. Testosterone imbalances could be blamed for plenty of large and small disasters, only we call it “Boys will be boys” or “He thinks with his dick”. I honestly think men and women have equal susceptibility to the chemicals in each of their bloodstreams. However, we haven’t got all day, so I will answer the question in the spirit it’s intended: No, I don’t really have any PMS-related issues. Perhaps the day before the painters arrive, I have slightly less patience and am quicker to get annoyed. But I lack patience at the best of times, so it’s hard to tell. As for sloppy words, misuse of the word “ethnic” (as an adjective describing something of non-Western origin or aesthetics, like “ethnic bracelet”) makes my blood boil, but that’s 365 days a year.
What happened in blogoworld in the last 48 hours that sparked this off?
No one thing. Just more than the usual number of “YOU WHAT?!” moments this week.
You have posted a lot less about politics in the last few months. Do you feel different about blogging since you pulled back the curtain and showed us a little about yourself? Do you feel as though anything has changed?
That’s 3 questions in one, you cheeky squirrel. OK. Honestly? I feel there is little appetite for my old-style relentlessly political posts among my current set of readers. I am conscious of not wanting to be a preachy bore, endlessly shouting the same thing at people, and I’ve grown fond of our bloggy circle. As well as this, I have often seen other posts written better and more comprehensively than I have time to do (like here, amongst other places) and am often lazy enough just to let the writers of those posts take care of things. As I’ve mused before, this leaves me in a pickle, because that was the whole point of the blog in the first place, to give me a forum for non-frivolous writing. I’m also aware that I have created a Fox ‘brand’ which is impersonal and superficial. Personal revelations are only interesting to others up to a point; the most private, painful piece of information I ever gave on here met with silence, or wasn’t noticed. One single reader took it in, to my knowledge, because that person (Red) emailed me about it. Essentially, I’m trapped in a place where more information about me as a person is not appropriate, yet the totally impersonal political stuff no longer seems suitable either. The answer may lie in dumping the Fox altogether and starting again, which is possible as I have multiple domains sitting idle. But I can’t be bothered for the time being. Although my podcast may go out from a different domain. I’ll get back to you on that.
Has anything changed since I ‘came out’ as a woman? Yeah, but it’d take more than the space available here to answer properly. I get far fewer flirtatious emails from female readers now, that’s for sure. In general, people seem to respond less warmly than they used to, but it’s hard to pin that on any one cause.
What piece of your own writing are you most proud of? Question applies to blog writing.
God knows. I liked the things I wrote in the first half of the old Fox blog. I have a hierarchy of ‘greatest hits’ – in the sense of the most visited/linked blog posts – but that’s a different question.
Same question as above, only applying to all your writing.
I can’t answer that without giving a load of identifying information. Actually, that’s a smokescreen; right now, I can’t think of anything which makes me punch the air in triumph.
what band do you hold in the most affection? Not necc. the same as asking you who your favourite band are.
Babes in Toyland or Le Tigre. Or A-ha. Or The Smiths. Or The Slits. Or Public Enemy. Or Voodoo Queens. I haven’t included any of my friends’ bands in this list, because that’d skew the answers considerably, but I hope they already know I love them dearly.
guitars or keyboards?
Both, for god’s sake. That’s like asking a person to choose between vitamins and minerals.
hairy or smooth?
Whatever. Each person is different.
toe-may-toe or toe-mar-toe?
I’m British. You can guess.
How has blogging / reading blogs changed you (if it has)?
Aside from making me quite an irritating host/companion (“You ARE going to turn that bloody computer off at some point, I trust?”), it hasn’t changed me on any fundamental level.
What’s your poison?
I don’t smoke or take drugs and I don’t drink very much. When I do, I drink vodka.
How have your experiences been with birth control?
It’s never failed me, so no complaints. If you mean how do I feel about my chosen form, it’s fine. The benefits currently outweigh the negatives. It may not always be the case, but it’ll do for now.
The fox is known to have and spread mange to dogs, yet your coat remains glossy and healthy. How do you address this problem in your daily life? And do you prefer to raid the henhouse, or would you rather have someone leave a freshly killed fowl for you?
I find a balanced diet works wonders for my crowning glory. Best if other people kill my fowl for me, I am squeamish and hypocritical.
what’s your definition of a brilliant evening?
Good company. Anything else is interchangeable.
how much different would your Real Life friends tell you you are from the Urban Fox we know? And in what ways?
Like I say, I don’t think any reader would claim to “know” me as a person at all. Presumably the difference is that to my Real Life friends, I am a real three dimensional person with a real life, not a text-based entity with a silly name. That’s a pretty major difference.
what’s the best pop record ever made?
Ain’t Nobody by Chaka Khan.
describe your journey to your most usual/common place of work
Walking, if I can help it. I will happily walk for hours to get somewhere.
what’s the nearest takeaway to your house?
what hangs on your bedroom walls?
Currently nothing apart from a Zen calendar. I’ve been meaning to paint them.
How do you drink tea? Hot or cold? Black or with additives? How often do you drink it?
Hot (i.e. the correct way) with the tiniest possible dash of milk, 3-8 times a day. This reminds me of another joke:
Q: Why do Marxists only drink herbal tea?
A: Because all proper tea is theft.
Does chocolate come into the American definition of candy? I don’t like any of what we Brits refer to as sweets.
Do you think every person has one true love, or many possibilities? Is love subjective?
Many possibilities. Everything in human experience is subjective.
Do you have any phobias that make no sense? [i.e. dark, heights, lunchboxes, men with moustaches]
I get a bit wibbly at extreme heights when I’m not enclosed, e.g. top of Eiffel Tower, but I can go up that high if I am boxed in, e.g. not scared to look down vertically from plane window. Fear of unenclosed heights doesn’t really count as totally senseless though, does it?
what was the name of the first blog you visited? Do you still visit?
Honestly can’t remember. Probably a LiveJournal belonging to a random acquaintance. I almost certainly don’t still read it.
What’s your favorite color?
Deep blood red, closely followed by purple.
Which would you rather, assuming you had to choose one – blind, deaf or mute?
I can’t answer questions like that, I would be horrified to lose any faculty. Sorry, that’s not really taking the question as it is meant, I know.
Have you met any of the bloggers on your site, and we just dont know it? Are you willing to identify them?
Earthboundboy is a Real Life friend. None of the other Real Life people who read this leave comments. I have never met anyone I know primarily as a blogger.
EARTHBOUNDBOY of no fixed abode asks:
If you could choose to be re-incarnated as a non-human earth-dweller, would it be
as an actual Fox, or something different?
First of all, you’re cheating the system because you already know me. Ha. Secondly, no, I’d be a lion or a tiger.
Do you do voodoo?
No, but I do do duvets.
Will you post a photo of yourself?
Nothing is certain.
Why this change? A few months ago, you were an elusive legend – are you hankering for some reality, dear one?
What an odd question. I have plenty of reality. I don’t live inside the screen. As for the reasons for the change, I can only cite the same thing I always blame when I swap my furniture around, and that is boredom. Plain and simple. Anyway, I doubt learning how I take my tea is going to give anyone any deep insight into the core of my very being.
If you could fix one thing in the world right now – one conflict or suffering, one area, one result – which would it be? “World peace” is not an option – I want specifics.
I would instil the gift of empathy into those who do not have it. If all people could feel the suffering of others, they may think twice about inflicting it. If you’re talking about genuinely achievable ideas, I’d like to see corporations ousted from global power, as they are literally destroying the very ground on which we walk. Laws should be introduced to prevent corporations having the legal protection of individuals while avoiding criminal culpabilities for directors. That’d be step 1.
See, we got to end on politics. I’ve gone back to my blog roots. Thanks to everyone for participating. Have a lovely weekend.