Kat Seidemann, Random Facts

As a getting-to-know-you exercise I was tasked with sharing seven facts about myself. When I read the funny examples I realized that I am not that interesting. Then I worried this is going to make my memoir really boring. But I remembered that those stories are not just about Me. Still I felt up for the challenge. As I sat down at my desk I noticed a squirrel on my balcony and wondered what I had that I could feed it. I had some chia seeds– if I fed him those and he came back again would that make him a chia pet? Having a pet squirrel reminded me of the novelty hamster pants which always come up alongside kale chips in my Amazon shopping recommendations. I like kale, but those chips are disgusting; they look like fungus on seaweed. I suspect the hamster pants would taste better. The thought of kale made me hungry, so I went to the kitchen where I realized I had only gotten halfway through making a pot of coffee, which reminded me that I had started laundry, like last night…or was that two nights ago? So after I poured the water into the coffee pot I went to restart the laundry, but on my way to the laundry room I noticed that a picture in the hallway was hanging askew. These are wonderful vintage photographs of my grandparents and great grandparents taken when they were young. The age of the photographs means they aren’t on acid-free paper and have begun to fade, so I need to scan them into the computer to preserve them. This project has become particularly important now that my little sister is having her first child. That sense of urgency brought me back to my PC with a stack of framed photos, but, after staring at the screen for a minute, I felt that something wasn’t quite right; that’s when I realized I didn’t have a cup of coffee. Then I noticed a distinct lack of fresh-brewed-coffee-smell, so back to the kitchen I went. Once there, I noticed the unshelled peanuts sitting in the pantry and I felt guilty because surely a winter-bound squirrel would rather have peanuts than chia seeds. BUT you can only put the peanuts out when the squirrel is right there or you get Steller’s Jays stealing the food and lurking around, making their terrible Steller’s Jay noises. The jays’ raucousness made me think of camping in California. Northern California has jays in the Redwoods, but I have never seen any jays in palm trees in Los Angeles. Palm trees remind me of Puerto Rico. Puerto Rico was once covered with dense, jungle-like rain forest, but when the colonists came they cleared it away so they could plant sugar and coffee. Strangely, Puerto Rico is one of the few places that replaced these areas of monoculture with teaming biodiversity without any help from, and against the hindrance, of humans. This made me think about frogs, which brought me to lizards and in particular the tiny lizard that fell off the wall and landed in my uncle’s hot frying pan. This made me sad and I began thinking about California again. I lived in Concord, CA for a short time when I was very young. It turned out to be a terrible neighborhood. There were a lot of kids, but they weren’t nice kids. Two older boys told me if you chopped a lizard in two you would get a full lizard from each half. I liked lizards and thought the more lizards the better so I let them chop the one I’d been watching in half. For several days I returned to the bush where the cleaved lizard body was, but it was still two halves of a very dead lizard. Finally my mother wanted to know what I was so fascinated with in that bush so I told her. Even after she explained that the boys had tricked me I was still hopeful. The next time I went to the bush the severed body was gone. Thinking of my mother reminded of coffee again, so I went to turn the pot on…


So, one fact about me is that I have ADD, but I wasn’t diagnosed with it until I was in my thirties. When you grow up with untreated ADD your brain forms non-typical neural pathways leaving you with less ability to block random input. Having ADD explains a lot of things about my life. It also means it might take me awhile to get to the next six facts.

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