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100 Not Out - My 100th Review
Member Name: Hishyeness
Date: 02/11/09, updated on 02/11/09 (165 review reads)
Advantages: A nice little milestone
Disadvantages: I haven't even got started yet!
It's hard to believe I have hit my 100th review. It doesn't feel like I have been here all that long, and as someone who averages around three reviews a week at the best of times, my 100 seems to have arrived astonishingly quickly. I don't have a particular "area" of expertise - I tend to write on anything that takes my fancy. If I can't write knowledgeably or passionately, I tend not to write at all, which is why I only really "pick up the pen" when I feel inspired by something.
DixieChick originally came up with the idea of asking fellow members to post questions, and I thought it was a fab way of marking the milestone. I had a very good response, but space constraints meant that I could only select a handful if I was to do the theme justice. There were lots of queries along the same themes, so hopefully, almost everything raised will be addressed in here somewhere. I have tried to use the ones that show a bit more about me and my personality, as that's what this is all about.
Before I get stuck in, it only remains to say a big, heartfelt "Thank You" to this community for making me feel so welcome. I am truly humbled by the feedback and comments I have received to date and am grateful for all of the encouragement and support.
> From Clara29
I have always wondered, What is the significance of your sign off? 8^)
This a question that more than a few people have asked over time, so happy to clarify. It's a sideways smiley, with the "8" representing my glasses, the "^" my nose (which, as Armenians, we always joke that we have big ones) and the " )" is the smile, which is a pretty good reflection of my general state of mind - I'm an eternal optimist and try to be happy most of the time. I tend to be quite forward looking, and will not dwell on much in the past, except to take the lessons learned and apply them in future. I've also been asked about my username, but that's already explained in my "About Me".
> From Sambam00
What do you miss from New York, & what did you miss from England when living there?
I am a big sports fan, so I miss going to New York Mets games, although with live streams on the 'net, I do get to watch them on occasion anyway. I miss Sicilian pizza and deli-style pastrami on rye sandwiches. I miss real dill pickles - the enormous ones they serve at all good New York deli's. I miss the New York resilience and attitude - the fact that it's a city that decides for itself whether you should live there or not instead of vice versa. I also miss the friends and family I grew up with. I miss Greenwich Village, yellow cabs, the subway and "fuggedaboutit". I was only eight when I left England, so I missed simple things like Marmite, the Magic Roundabout and Dr Who.
> From lazytowner
I notice in your profile that you and your family attend church, is faith important to you? In a world that is full of hate and pain does God exist?
Wow. What a question. How much time do we have? For the first part, my answer is easy. Faith is the most important thing in my life. It is the cornerstone on which everything is built. Without the foundations of my faith, my house - to quote the Bible - would be like that of the foolish man who built on sand. God exists and is very real to me. Hate and pain are the flip side to peace and love. Where there is good, there is also evil. The question "why do bad things happen to good people" is something that has been asked for generations and answered by many much more knowledgeable than me.
My faith is very simple. I believe in John 3:16 - and that I am saved, and as it says in James, I consider it pure joy whenever I face trials of many kinds, because I know that the testing of my faith develops perseverance and makes me stronger. It may sound like a cop-out to say that God has a plan and only he knows what it is, but I have seen good come from the worst possible circumstances - we are in turns naïve and arrogant if we believe we can see or understand everything. I see the safe delivery of my newborn son as indisputable evidence of answered prayer - others see it as solely a consequence of applied science.
Faith means different things to different people. Even atheism and agnosticism are acts of faith. Faith is believing wholeheartedly in something in the absence of hard, physical evidence to support it. Believing there is no God is just as much a leap of faith as believing there is one. I should add, finally (and I am aware I have barely scratched the surface) that I have faith - but I am not religious. One is based on free will, the other is based on habit.
> From rosebud2001
You like both Depeche Mode and Level 42 - two bands which seem very different to me in both musical style and image. What drew you to their music?
I owe my introduction to both bands to my cousin, who, at three years older was a role model and a big influence on my life. Funny enough, his love of Level 42 started to wane at precisely the time that I became more interested in them, to the extent that he politely declined an invitation to see them in concert with me this summer, but organised for us to go see DM in December at the O2.
In short, for both bands, their musicianship and creativity drew me in, but the lyrics kept me because they spoke to various aspects of my life. Like I have said in my various reviews of both bands, I have made an emotional connection with each at key moments in my life, and that's why the endure.
> From tink-er-bell
I would like to know what your ambitions were as a child or your dreams and did you ever manage to fulfil them?
I wanted to be a History teacher or university professor. However, coming from my ethnic background, I was always reminded that such an academic pursuit "would not feed a family" apparently, and was pushed into a more conventional "doctor, dentist, accountant, lawyer" career path. I was the first in my family to go to university, and as my parents were paying (we were in New York at the time), I was pressurised a little into opting for one of those professions. I rebelled and decided on a History major and Journalism minor, but ended up deciding on law as it intrigued me, was a career driven major, and would keep my folks happy. Nowadays, I aspire to be a writer, but don't have the application or discipline to make a serious go of it.
> From freud
If you had a dinner party & could invite anyone you liked (living or not) which one female & which one male would you invite & why?
I was asked this in several different ways, but to answer the question, the one male would be King Henry VIII. I have always been fascinated by the Tudor period, and as Henry was such an influence at the time, I would love to get under the skin of his real character and to know the man for who he was, rather than who he has been portrayed by various vested interests in the annals of history. Besides, given his appetites, he'd make a fab dinner guest.
As for the lady, that would be Helena Bonham Carter. She is not only one of my favourite actresses, but when I was asked this very same question at an interview for my first job as a lawyer, I used the same answer, and when asked why, I said "because she's fit". I got the job. Quite aside from that, she has also played fantastic Tudor roles - ironically losing her head on both occasions (as Anne Boleyn and Lady Jane) and I think it would make for an interesting dinner party should King Henry also grace us with his presence.
> From Hildas
What made you join DooYoo and what keeps you here?
I started out on the other side and was pointed in this direction by a member there who thought I would prosper here. He was right. I actually enjoy aspects of both sites because despite their similar functions, the communities have a different feel. I like the instant recognition you get here in the form of Crowns, and the various competitions also keep me interested. What keeps me here is the community, which despite the knock it gets from Ciao users, is actually quite good. On both sites you get more out of it the more you invest in it. On a more general note, I write on both sites as a creative outlet. My day job also involves writing, but its dry and repetitive. DooYoo is a great way to vent.
> From emmachilcott
Do you think that you have already experienced the best day in your whole life, or is the best yet to come?
It would be pretty depressing to think that my best days are behind me. Optimism is an innate part of my character, so I have to believe the best is yet to come. Without a doubt, the day my kids were born were the most special I have ever experienced, but so was my wedding, so was diving with Manta Rays and so was finishing the London to Brighton Bike Ride the first time. I guess what I am saying is that every experience is different and it teaches you, and leaves you with, different things. As such, it's a little difficult to define what is "best". Apologies if that sounds like a lawyer's answer!
> From carlmcq
What's the longest you've ever spent writing a review for DooYoo
Two days. I typically take a couple of hours to write a first draft and then refine it by re-reading it at least two or three times, before reading it again the next day with fresh eyes. But the op piece I did on Capital Punishment as well as the recent one on obesity took a lot of thought and various re-writes before I was truly happy with them. I feel blessed and grateful that they were crowned as I thought both - for different reasons - represented the best of what I had to offer.
> From DixieChick101
If you got given a time machine, and was given the chance to just got to one time/place in time, where would you go and why?
That's a very hard question - because as a history buff there are so many events I would love to have seen "live". High on the list would be the Apollo moon landings, the birth and/or crucifixion of Christ, Moses parting the Red Sea, the Kennedy assassination, the burning of Rome, the Great Fire of London, the first performance of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony, and Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address. However, without a doubt, the one thing I would love to see - and this sounds so incredibly selfish - is my own birth!
> From Fiver29
If you had unlimited funds where's the one place in the world you always wanted to go to and why.
Easy. Egypt. I have always been fascinated by the culture and ancient Egyptology, but my biggest far is that the real thing will never be as good as the impression of it that I have in my mind. Being able to visit the pyramids, the Valley of the Kings, the temples of Karnak and Abu Simbel would be magic. But the chance of it happening without the tourist hordes, hawkers and beggars is probably nil. That said, it's high on my agenda, although it will probably have to wait until the kids are much older.
> From keeperofthematri
What three things would you change about the world we live in and why?
I am assuming I can keep things sweet and simple and not worry about practical consequences? If so, I would: (a) ensure that every penny we pay in tax is used effectively and efficiently. The return we get on our taxes in the UK is abysmal (something like 20p in every pound); (b) I would allow any and all of the peoples in this world who want self-determination to have their own patch of land to call their own, provided that they agree - irrevocably to their borders and stop squabbling over them; and (c) I would ensure that the money we give to charity actually ends up in the hands of the neediest instead of getting swallowed up in admin fees and greasy palms, and, to extend the theme, I would ensure that no one who needs medical attention is deprived it solely on the basis of cost.
> From Jedimastergray73
If you were king of DooYoo for the day what changes would you make and why?
I think photos in selected categories would improve the reviews (especially travel and categories that require a lot of description) as well as allowing some limited formatting in reviews. I would also incorporate a spell checker into the submission page to help people with their spelling. Lastly, I would move the "Somewhat Useful" tab from under the "Very Useful" tab and relocate it to prevent accidents and mouse slips!
> From Cat19
If you had an extra two hours in every day, what would you do?
That's a no-brainer for me. I would spend it with my family and friends. No one ever spent their last moments wishing they had spent more time at work, and life also has a habit of stealing time from those that are closest and dearest to you. You think your family and friends will always be there, and that they will forgive you for being busy. You take them for granted. However, life - and time - is precious, and there is no excuse for not spending as much of it with the people most important to you as possible. My priorities in life are simple. God. Family. Work, and then everything else.
Thanks to everyone who contributed and apologies to those whose queries I didn't get to. That was good fun and I hoped you enjoyed reading it as much as I liked writing it.
© Hishyeness 2009
Summary: Sharing a little about me, one review at a time...