Generally I avoid “meme” games. This is the second one I’ve seen which offers the grand possibility of producing some information I’d like to have about other people.
So, the tag: I hope we’ll hear from Only Crook in Town, David Parker at Another History Blog, Clio Bluestocking, TexasEd, PM Summer at Mug Shots (I hope the site’s not dead!), Michelle at Living Classroom (a fun place to learn, I think), Garr Reynolds at Presentation Zen, and elementaryhistoryteacher at History is Elementary.
I got tagged by Brian at Laelaps. Here are the rules:
1. Players start with 8 random facts about themselves.
2. Those who are tagged should post these rules and their 8 random facts.
3. Players should tag 8 other people and notify them they have been tagged.
Here are my 8 factoids:
1. I love the flavor of some stewed plum, baby food — it makes a great flavor surprise between two layers of a good cake.
2. Henry Mancini is one of my favorite composers and recording artists. I may not have the largest collection of Mancini in existence, but it’s good — thanks largely to KSL AM’s purge of vinyl from their library in the late 1970s, and a lifetime of collecting. My wife won my heart (again) when she tracked down a good copy of the Mancini-composed and directed soundtrack album for “Hatari!” It still sounds better than any CD.
3. I had a nice, rather long conversation with Mo Udall about his running for the presidency, in 1972, in an elevator at the Salt Palace during the State Democratic Convention, in Salt Lake City. He carefully detailed how no sitting member of the House of Representatives had made the leap to the presidency since, oh, the time of Isaiah, or Habakkuk, and said he wasn’t going to run. One of the great attractions of graduate study in Tucson in 1976, for me, was the chance to work on Udall’s campaign. But, they didn’t need volunteers in Tucson in 1976.
4. I was chased out of the Mormon church (in Burley, Idaho) by a woman who insisted kids shouldn’t draw pictures of dinosaurs to represent God’s creation. She told me dinosaurs were fictional. I considered the fossils I had collected (at the ripe age of 7), decided she was crazy, and dropped out with my parents’ consent. It wasn’t for another decade or so that I discovered the woman was teaching “false doctrine” for Mormons. I didn’t go back.
5. Solo hiking was a key pastime of my youth, in the area around Mt. Timpanogos, just opposite the site where a kid was killed by a black bear last week. It helped me get over a fear of being alone. I don’t think my parents — or anyone else — ever knew where I was. I also don’t think there were any bears for at least 100 miles, then.
6. See the “G” on Little Mahogany Mountain, just in front of Timpanogos? In 1970 or 1971, as studentbody president, I got a 25-year lease on that site from the Forest Service. I wish I had a copy of that lease now.
7. I have odd areas of ignorance, and they are many. I didn’t take any biology courses until college. I never could pass calculus. I always have to look up the rule against perpetuities
8. One of my greatˆn grandfathers was a Mormon polygamist named William Madison Wall. He was the first person to drive a wagon up Provo Canyon, which he promptly claimed for his own land holdings. He drove the team up the canyon scouting a place to put a small town, now known as Wallsburg, where he put in a farm and four of his eight wives. The wives didn’t all get along, so he put four of the dissenters on the farm in Wallsburg — the canyon was impassable in winter, and he had peace for nearly half of every year. Part of Mr. Wall’s claim was the backside of Timpanogos, including a little ski resort where I learned to ski, known as Timp Haven. The end of my family that ran the ski resort didn’t open it on Sundays — interfered with church, don’t you know — and so they were happy to unload the land and the ski resort to some crazy actor who made an offer. He renamed the resort Sundance in honor of his recently-completed movie. The actor was Robert Redford. He once graciously pulled me out of a snowbank after a particularly spectacular crash. Nice guy. I ran into him for years in odd canyons and towns all over the west. He usually asked that I not identify him to other people, who had not recognized him. I’d love to have inherited a piece of that land, but Redford has done better by it than anyone ever had reason to hope was possible.