meme me in st. louis


I have recently been “tagged”, as it were, by two upstanding gentlemen: Chris “Chip” Chapman and Steven Garrity forwarded their wish to hear a List of Things about Yourself. Their own lists were very entertaining, but as for me, what could I possibly put on here that you don’t already know? Or, for that matter, what could I say that you still give a shit about?

That I can write in both Gothic and traditional calligraphy? That I can decipher Morse Code up to 35 words a minute? That Vince Guaraldi used to sleep under our piano when I was a toddler? That I believe Jason Torchinsky to be correct: cheese is the best ingredient in any dish that contains cheese? That I hate Dook like God hated Gomorrah?

No, fair readers, I will attempt to start my own internet meme. A meme so oddly random and uncompelling that you will all rush out and do the same. Let’s call it “26/52”. I put it to you, Chip and Steve, and all the rest of you: who are the 26th and 52nd entries in your address book?

Yes, you heard right. Your computer’s address book, your Blackberry, your Palm, your Rolodex, or even your ratty, hand-scrawled Jonathan Taylor Thomas Tiger Beat datebook calendar. You want me to go first? Fine.

Number 26 in my Address Book: Ricky Bell.  Ricky is one of my favorite people on God’s green earth; infinitely affable and always fun on any trip. If he’s quiet, yes, he’s judging you, but that’s because you’re doing something stupid. Loves the Heels, seems to love his adopted town of Chicago, and damned if it ain’t been too long since I’ve seen him.


with Ricky, flying a kite in Kitty Hawk, September ’89


lining up a pool shot in our barn, 2002

Number 52 in my Address Book: Anthony M. Calogero.  Anthony was the best friend I had at That Internet Job back in the salad days of 2000-2001, when we were the last of the original boom companies still breathing oxygen. We gossiped, griped, laughed, sent each other those early internet forwards (Korean kickboxers breaking their shins, etc.) and if it weren’t for him, I would have self-destructed in that job way sooner than I actually did. Anthony, I hope your dream of the Perfect Stereo Sound System has come true, dude!

RIGHT. So what’s your 26/52?!?

15 thoughts on “meme me in st. louis

  1. Anne

    Aww, my personal address book is on my home computer. So I scrolled down in my office email addy book, which does include some personal friends.
    #28: Roger M., a professor at NC State. Used to be a research prof here at Brown. Two of our kids were the same ages and went to a co-op preschool together, which meant we parents were often together on our “duty days” at school and, of course, on frequent play dates. Of such bonds are lifelong friendships formed. The kids in question are now ages 18 and 16. We see them whenever they come back north to visit family. Ian, I’m sorry, but Roger’s wife holds an important administrative position at Dook. Still, she is a wonderful person. :-)
    #52: Beverly B., one of my best-friend classmates and my suitemate at Brown senior year. She’s a corporate lawyer in DC now, her husband too – part of the growing African-American elite. She and my other bestie from college and I had a fabulous reunion at Atlantic City last June. Love her.
    OK, that was fun. Thankfully, both of my ‘hits’ ended up being friends, not work contacts. As you may have inferred, my email address book is not organized alphabetically.

  2. Salem's Little Sister

    My 26th is Courtney C.- A tween I taught horse back riding lessons to when we lived in Charlotte. She was always quiet in the barn, but lit up like a fire cracker when she rode.
    Number 52 is Charlotte J.- She was a volunteer at Equest, my therapeutic riding center in Dallas. She had been there for years and was a seasoned volunteer(leader of horse/sidewalker-keeps riders on). I was a newly certified therapeutic riding instructor, all of 24 and I looked about 16, plus I kept calling everyone “mam” which doesn’t exactly put you in the authority position. I dreaded the classes she volunteered for because she was always pointing out some tack issue I missed or would openly question my methods. It made me nuts and I grew to seriously not like her. I would spend so much time preparing for that class and scrutinize my equipment and make sure there was nothing she could point out as incorrect. Mind you, she was just a volunteer, not another instructor or staff member. As the weeks went by, I got fewer and fewer comments and I stopped calling my volunteers “mam” to take back my authority. So . . . ah ha moment, Charlotte spurred me on to become a more careful, precise instructor mainly because I wanted to shut her up. Trust me, there was no altruistic reason for her criticizing me. She was just kind of a bitch and I learned to deal with it. We later became great friends and I got to give her riding lessons in our volunteer classes and I tortured her ass.(Insert snicker here)

  3. Claverack Weekender

    #26- 6 foot girl (gonna sweat when she digs) dated in college and kept up with through the years. Now married with children.
    #52- At some point if you have enough money in the bank, they give you the name and number of some actual humans you can call when you need something. #52 is one of those people. Probably 2nd most useful service I have… (Behind pediatrician that actually answers his cell phone nights and weekends.)

  4. emma

    #26 – Tristin C. – my oldest friend. We met when she was 4 and I was 5 – she had just moved in across the street. She moved away in middle school, but we have managed to keep in touch. (She just tagged me on the same meme you first discussed). Her parents were much younger than mine, so I thought they were fun to be around. Tristin’s Mom told her about the birds and the bees – Tristin told me. I didn’t believe her. The stork made a hell of a lot more sense to me.
    #52 – Franz and Jean H. – my husband’s grandparents – live in Gastonia. He was a ECU quarterback, tried out for the Red Sox once (back in Ted Williams day), was a POW in WWII and when the army brought Gran his belongings saying he was MIA and probably dead, she slammed the door in their face and said, No he is not. I know he is still alive. About a month later, she was proven right. They are two amazing people in my book.

  5. LFMD

    #26 – my daughter’s friend, Carrie. I dare to guess that the majority of the numbers on my cell phone are for Helen’s friends’ home numbers, so that I can set up playdates with the parents. Carrie’s family is interesting. There are 6 kids in the family: one set of twins, one set of triplets, and one singleton. They all have red hair and are wicked smart.
    #52 – my dermatologist. I visited the Dr. once two years ago, when I was freaked out about a mole on my arm and was convinced it was skin cancer. All those summers on the Jersey Shore tanning/burning myself! Had an all-over body check, everything was fine, and I have not been back since. Don’t even remember the doc’s name. . . . just listed her as “dermatologist.”

  6. Tanya

    Wow. So at first I thought, “oh great, I’m going to feel inadequate because I don’t HAVE 52 peeps in my address book. But I was pleasantly surprised when I got to #52 and was only on the “H”s. I DO have friends!
    So #26 is my former boss who is now retired. He was CEO of the utility co I work for. I just saw him this morning in fact. He’s heading up a Reality Check exercise in my communities – we’re talking about planning and growth for the region. Cool exercise. And I would lay down in traffic for this man. :)
    #52 is, interestingly enough, Home. So I called and checked in with the new nanny (#3 in 3 months). Everyone is doing fine.

  7. Hamp

    Hey Ian–I’m not generally one to comment, but in this case it’s warranted. In going through my email address book, #26 happened to be none other than…Ian Williams. #52 is my old college friend Sarah from William & Mary who I lived with for a time in DC after grad school.

  8. Greg T.

    #26 is a random person I worked with on a project a few years back.. I don’t think I ever used the number and after this exercise, I will be deleting it. Sadly, #25 & 27 were pretty much the same.
    #52 is Ruth Cook, our live-in English nanny when I was an early teen (1982-4?) She was was living (on a tourist visa?) in the US to be near her boyfriend from the UK that was a swimmer at NC State. She was drop-dead gorgeous, had a modelling portfolio, and would always undo her bikini top in the back to avoid tan lines. The last time I saw her was 1995 when I visited her and her family in England on my way back from a semester abroad in Russia. I had honestly forgotten that she was in my address book at all.
    Cool exercise – and much less effort than trying to conjure up 25 interesting things people don’t already know.

  9. kevin from NC

    #26 in my book is barb wiedemann an old friend from my volleyball days that was on the faculty at UNC until recently and now she is on staff at the NC Museum of Art. Barb’s first hubby died from cancer and she created a bike ride in his honor that has raised $1000s for cancer research. She has been a wonderful friend and supporter for years and i wish i saw her more often than i do.
    #52 is Jenny Bradley.. a great friend and supporter and fellow cyclist. She is one of the most down to earth people i know.
    (can you tell I file my contacts by first name)? This was fun!! k

  10. GFWD

    Kevin from NC, this time I’m not kidding. I really do think I know your Jenny Bradley. She does the MS rides annually and was a classmate of mine in law school.
    My #26 is my Uncle Patrick and a fellow West Wing nut, but he’s a UCONN fan.
    My #52 is a guy named Al R. who was a year ahead of me in law school and served as the student body VP (I believe) the year before I held that title my 3L year at Carolina.

  11. xuxE

    dang it is a small world, i just did the 25 things thing on fb late last night.
    26. – cool friend movie editor/singer/musician (late nite dates) wish i had time to hang out with her more and make music.
    52. – a good thai food spot. pumpkin curry (panang style with chicken) is the best food in the universe.

  12. Peter Rukavina

    #26 – A woman named Sue who’s my technical contact at Yankee magazine’s fulfilment house.
    #52 – My old friend Nancy from Ontario. We used to watch thirtysomething together.

  13. GFWD

    Kevin, she just wrote to me and said it was a small world. I told her that you might not believe me after I cried wolf in my post from the day before.

  14. Steven Garrity

    You can’t make up NEW memes. The whole idea is to follow blindly and do what everyone else does!
    #26 is customer support at a place where I bought a backpack for my wife.
    #52 is apparently a stranger.

  15. Kelly

    #26 Chip Sutherland, entertainment / Music lawyer and manager for our clients Sloan & Feist. Exactly what you’d imagine an entertainment lawyer to be like. Cool dude.
    #52 Heather Armstrong, AKA Dooce.


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