1) Do you have any odd rituals or customs?
I don’t know if it’s a ritual so much as it’s random, but it’s definitely "odd" and has been going on for more than 7 years. James clipped this freakish looking monkey/ape/gorilla head thing from a brochure for the Boo Boo Zoo in Maui during our Maui/Kauai honeymoon in 1999. Knowing I get up for at least three bathroom breaks a night, he taped the monkey/ape/gorilla head thing to the bathroom mirror at the hotel -- which completely freaked me out, especially at 3 a.m. with a fuzzy Mai Tai buzz. Since then, the monkey/ape/gorilla head thing has been passed back and forth – with neither warning nor comment -- showing up in places like the driver’s license window of a wallet or the inside of a book; it's been taped to the side of a Diet Coke can and to the middle of a steering wheel; it’s arrived in the mail, etc.
2) Have you been craving any particular food(s) lately?
Yes. Lobster. And I still can’t bring myself to eat it. While I’ve enjoyed lobster in some frutti di mare dishes from time to time, I have not indulged in a straight up, hard core boiled lobster with tons of melted butter and lemon since summer 2005. And, believe me, this is no small task when you’re part of a family with a multitude of lobster traps bobbing around in the waters off Scituate and Cohasset. I place the blame squarely on David Foster Wallace, whose fantastic book of essays “Consider the Lobster” may have turned me off the aragosta for good. The title track essay, originally published in Gourmet Magazine, began as a piece on the Maine Lobster Festival but ended up a discourse on the ethics of boiling lobsters alive – “Is it all right to boil a sentient creature alive just for our gustatory pleasure?” The essay is quite graphic and could make even the saltiest among us squirm and cry. Wallace admits that his own way of dealing with this conflict has been to avoid thinking about the whole unpleasant thing. Me too. I’ve always made it a point not to be present for the lowering of the lobster into the pot and I’ve actually only done it once: Goy and I were making a birthday dinner for one of our roommates in Brighton. We hyperventilated over the stock pot with the writhing lobsters, trying to rise to the occasion like big girls: “Ok , ready...on the count of three... 1-2-3!” We dropped them into the pot and ran screaming from the kitchen. We stood quivering in the living room for a solid 15 minutes until we could compose ourselves enough to make some side dishes. That said, I’m trying to not to think about it and hope to indulge soon. It’s killing the old fish wife in me.
3) What is the best career advice you’ve ever received?
“Stop signing up for the fucking LSATS!” --- courtesy of an editor/friend.
4) Go to the Shuffle feature on your iPod. What are the first five songs that come up (no cheating)?
1. Porchlight - Buffalo Tom 2. Hey, Delilah - Plain White Ts. 3. Does Everyone Stare – The Police 4. Midnight Blue - Lou Gramm (yeah!) 5. I’m So Tired - The Beatles. Not bad at all. It could've been so worse as my pod has been polluted with SSDs (secret shitty downloads) courtesy of my brother P who downloaded a good chunk of the Back Street Boys catalogue without my knowledge during one of his visits. Not funny. Also, this random showing lends credence to LPD's theory that the iPod may have artificial intelligence. She noticed that all of her Christmas music started popping up on Party Shuffle last December. My pod has been busting out an abnormally large number of Police tunes lately. Maybe it senses our anticipation about the upcoming show at Fenway. Ok -- a huge stretch, but how cool would that be? Even freakier: The 6th song on Shuffle was "Read my Mind" by the Killers.
5) Tony Soprano: Alive or dead in this Sunday's finale?
You know it's going to be a total bloodbath, but I think Tony will end up alive. It seems too easy to just kill him off. I think some or all of his family will end up dead and he'll linger in the witness protection program, living out the remainder of his days alone and miserable, perpetually looking over his shoulder. Maybe in the final scene, he and Paulie Walnuts (who I hope has not betrayed Tony despite credible suspicion to the contrary) will walk off into the sunset together, Casablanca-style.