The largest score anyone got on my Facebook quiz was 50%. So, inspired by another blog I found one day, here are 48 things about me that you might not know. I’ll probably add them gradually as I think of worthwhile ones.
Why 48? – Well, first because I thought it would be cool to do it alphabetically, so there’s two for each letter except J, Q, X, Z because they’re statistically the least common letters and so will be more difficult. And second, see E1.
BEST / I’ve been Best Man three times – to Sam, Lloyd and Daryl.
CRESS / I’m allergic to cress. Not watercress, just the type everyone used to grow at school with cotton wool an empty eggshell – Lepidium sativum or garden/salad cress. While it doesn’t send me into anaphylactic shock, it does trigger an almost immediate reaction in my guts that sends me running to the toilet to experience a feeling I can only describe as like burning oil being pumped violently through my bowels.
EVEN / I prefer numbers that are divisible by 2. I guess this is because then none of them will feel left out; if a number’s even then each has its pair. If I was to write a list of digits in order of personal preference, it would probably look like this: 4, 6, 8, 0, 9, 2, 7, 3, 5, 1. I guess this might make me slightly synaesthetic. If you don’t know what that means, read Daniel Tammet’s book Born on a Blue Day.
GUITAR / Standard tuning corresponds to the notes EADGBE, and any guitars with alternative tuning usually belong to bands whose guitarists vary the tuning quite a lot between songs (e.g. Coldplay) and therefore find it easier to have multiple guitars with multiple tunings. Well, I tune my guitar to DGCFAD, i.e. a whole tone down. Why?
(1) Because when I lead worship, most of the songs written in E on guitar are too high for congregations to sing. With my tunings I can play chords in the key of E (which sound good) but the top notes are easier to reach.
(2) Most songs suit my voice better a key down.
(3) Even if I’m playing in a band with a keyboard, all I need to do is put a capo on the 2nd fret – and then the chords are easier to play anyway, because the frets are closer together.
(4) I like being different, basically…
HUGS – I’m great at giving them, so I’ve been told. This is possibly because I have a physique like Winnie the Pooh’s.
OLFACTORY / I have an extremely keen sense of smell – in fact, I’d even go so far as to call it a superpower. I know I’ve got the gift because I always smell things a good measure of time before others do, and I can smell (real) things that others can’t. This has practical benefits, such as being able to detect when something’s burning, or gas is leaking. It has gastronomic benefits, in that I really savour the flavours in food. It’s not so great when I drive past a sewage treatment unit, and it also means that pungent smells such as solvents, coffee and tobacco smoke stick at the back of my throat for ages – which is why, until smoking was banned in public, I detested going into pubs. On balance though, I’m glad I’ve got it.
PRESENTS / I have a fear of opening presents in front of people. This is probably due to when I was about 10 and had asked for a penknife for my birthday (because my dad had one). My mum said I was too young for one, but on my birthday after I’d opened most of my presents my mum said something like “Ooh, there’s one I almost forgot about” and handed me a small (penknife-shaped) gift. “I know what this is!” I said with glee, but after ripping off the wrapping paper I found a wooden keyring sculpted into the word MATTHEW. (I had somehow stumbled into collecting keyrings, a hobby I had quickly tired of but for some reason family and church people kept buying me new ones so I didn’t have the heart to tell anyone.) Now, I’m someone who really struggles to be dishonest, and so the lack of integrity it took to feign delight and pull a fake smile to mask my sheer inner disappointment has marked me for life. I’d much rather open my presents on my own and then thank people later.
TEETH / At least 2 of my adult teeth are missing. This means that I have 2 baby teeth on my bottom jaw that are half as high as all the others.
WIGGLE / I can wiggle both ears independently, and I taught myself how to do it.
YEARBOOK / In my 1997 Sixth Form Leavers’ yearbook, three of my teachers referred to my, hmmm, uniqueness, in their entries.
French teacher Mrs Howard-Wearn said her Funny incident involving the sixth form was “trying to fathom Matthew Little’s psyche”.
Biology teacher Mrs Morrell’s Favourite quote from a sixth former? – “It has to be from Matthew Little but there are too many to choose from.”
And in the same category my other biology teacher Mr Rowell (who was my favourite teacher) went on to list these quotes from me:
“Sir, is it more difficult to breathe underwater?”;
“Sir, on the whole is it better not to have a genetic disease?”;
“Sir, in a biology lesson when there was a war, the people with 3 arms managed to climb the mountain more quickly. Is this an example of variation?”;
In a discussion about the origins of life, one contribution in an American accent “Life is like a box of chocolates.”
All these things had quite logical explanations, but being an extrovert I often opened my mouth and said things before I’d thought about how they sounded first. But, like my class mates at the time, feel free to believe I was (and am) just a random nutter!