For some odd reason, at several jobs I've had, co-workers have called me "Nicolai"...which is perhaps the only true nickname I've ever had. I suppose that once people find out about my views, they come to the conclusion that I'm a commie, so they "bolshevize" my name into the Russian version. But, I've taken a liking to it. I actually love it when a woman calls me "Nicolai".
Well, when I moved to Portland, I saw on a map that there was a street near where my brother lives called "Nicolai St". So, this past Fourth of July, I finally got my photo taken there in my "patriotic" American flag shirt (that I only wear a few times a year since I've first bought it in 1994).
For today's post, forget about raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens, bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens. Below, you'll find a few of my favourite things...
Country -- France
City -- Paris
American City -- San Francisco
State -- California
County -- (Tie) DeKalb in Georgia and Marin in California
Architecture -- The Sydney Opera House
Architect -- Maya Lin
Mode of Transportation -- Train
Car -- Maserati
Car that I'd buy -- Scion tC
Place I've seen (nature) -- The scenery around Coeur d'Alene, Idaho
Place I've seen (manmade) -- The inside of the chapel at the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church in Berlin, Germany
Street -- Avenue des Champs-Elysee, Paris, France
Street in the USA -- Massachusetts Avenue, Washington D.C.
Stretch of Interstate -- I-64 between Williamsburg and Richmond, Virginia
Square -- (Tie) Times Square in New York City and Place de la Concorde in Paris
Monument -- Jefferson Memorial, Washington, D.C.
Historical Site -- Williamsburg, Virginia
University -- University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Virginia
Small Town -- Concord, Massachusetts
Mid-sized City -- Portland, Oregon (of course!)
President -- Thomas Jefferson
Presidential Library -- Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum, Springfield IL
Vice President -- Al Gore
Secretary of State -- Madeleine Albright
Senator -- Barbara Boxer of California
Member of Congress -- Representative Earl Blumenauer of Oregon
International Political Leader -- Nelson Mandela
Political Prisoner -- Aung San Suu Kyi
Continent -- Europe
Continent Shape -- Africa
Country Shape -- Australia
State Shape -- Texas
National Anthem -- "Nkosi Sikileili' Afrika" from South Africa
Country Flag -- South Africa
State Flag -- California
State Capitol Building -- Hawaii (because it's original; the design is symbolic of being a volcanic island--sure beats modeling it after the U.S. Capitol building)
Sea -- The Mediterranean
Ocean -- Pacific
Island -- Tahiti
World Historical Period -- The Renaissance
American Historical Period -- The Revolutionary (1760-1789)
Historical Figure -- Napoleon
Novel -- "The Bonfire of the Vanities" by Tom Wolfe
Writer -- Jack Kerouac
Writer (Living) -- Michael Crichton
Nonfiction Book -- "Spirit Matters" by Michael Lerner
Painting Style -- Impressionism
Painting -- Monet's "Water Lillies"
Painter/Artist -- Paul Gauguin
Political Philosopher -- Jean-Jacques Rousseau
Motion Picture -- "The Sound of Music"
Director -- Terence Malick
Actor -- Tom Hanks
Actress -- Audrey Tautou or Frances O'Connor
Comedy -- "9 to 5"
Romantic Comedy -- "Roxanne"
Drama -- "Dead Poets Society"
Action/Adventure -- The "Star Wars" saga
War Movie -- "Casualties of War"
War to study -- The Civil War
Music Group -- U2
American Music Group -- Dave Matthews Band
Album -- "Cruel Crazy Beautiful World" by Johnny Clegg and Savuka
Male Singer -- Johnny Clegg
Female Singer -- Madonna
Song -- "What a Wonderful World" by Louis Armstrong
Music to Meditate To -- Enya
Female Music Group -- Bananarama
American Female Music Group -- TLC
Concert Ever Attended -- Johnny Clegg and Savuka in 1990
Concert Seen On TV -- Madonna's Blonde Ambition Tour (1990)
TV Show -- Moonlighting
Reality Show -- Big Brother
Talk Show -- The Charlie Rose Show
TV Station -- ABC
TV News -- ABC World News Tonight
TV News Anchor -- Peter Jennings (I grew up on him); now Anderson Cooper
TV Journalist -- Diane Sawyer
Food -- Italian
Dish -- Lasagna
Restaurant (Chain) -- La Madeleine's (New Orleans and Atlanta)
Restaurant (Non-Chain) -- L'aragosta in La Maddalena, Sardinia
Coffeehouse (Chain) -- Caribou Coffee
Coffeehouse (Non-Chain) -- The Waypost, Portland OR
Drink (Non-Alcoholic) -- Chai Latte
Drink (Alcoholic) -- Amaretto and Coke
Place I've Lived -- Fulda, West Germany (1985-1988)
School Year -- My Senior Year (1989-1990)
High School Teacher -- Thomas Malone, U.S. Government (1989-1990)
Subject in School -- History
College Professor -- Darren Hawkins, of the Human Rights Capstone
College Course -- Political Geography
College Roommate -- Matt Baker
College Experience -- Washington Seminar (Spring Semester 2000)
High School Crush -- Vicki Garcia (Sophomore year, 1987-1988)
College Crush -- Yudelka Castro (from the Dominican Republic)
Life Experience -- Navy Basic Training (1991)
Road Trip -- My 1999 Spring Break trip to the Pacific Northwest
Vacation -- South Africa in 1994
American Vacation -- Christmas in Hawaii in 1997
Color -- Green
Type of Living Accomodation -- Loft Condo
Gift Ever Received -- Ballot to the 1994 South Africa Election (from my Dad for Christmas in 1995)
Surprise -- When Nathan Hagman called this past January that he was in town for a week.
Item to get -- Handwritten letters
Childhood Memory -- My family's visit to Thailand when I was 4, during the Water Festival
Adolescent Memory -- Acting in the play "You Can't Take It With You" as the IRS Man
Young Adult Memory -- My port visit to Toulon, France in April 1992
College Memory -- The discussions Janell, Jantzen, Matt and I had at the apartment complex in D.C.
Coincidence -- Crossing paths with my 7th grade friend in Naples, Italy in 1993 (8 years later) who never kept in touch so it was really such a shockingly unlikely event that convinced me that God exists and snapped me out of my "atheist period".
Job I've Ever Had -- Submarine Squadron 22, La Maddalena, Italy