Tuesday, October 19, 2010

More about me.

Morning all! Just remember to shoot with any questions you feel like asking me this week. :-)

Also, I've won another award! Unfortunately I won't be able to pass it on just yet. (I have a major project due in the near future.) I will, however, do so as soon as I can.

OK... On to the post. :-)

Today I'll answer a few more me-related questions.

Nancy asked:

Do you have a major in school or are you just getting some required classes done?

And The Golden Eagle Asked:

When did you really start to write and consider yourself a writer?

What do you enjoy most about fencing?
What do you think is a defining characteristic about yourself?
Do you enjoy meeting new people?

Thanks so much for asking these questions, guys.

Do I have a major?

Technically I'm majoring in Investment Management, although I'm currently more concerned with finishing the subjects and getting the credits. I realized last year already that I would never enjoy working as an Investment Manager. 

The hours are much too long, given that I won't be able to see the job as the passion of my life. Plus I've heard about too many Investment Managers that got stroked at or just before the age of forty due to the endless stress of trying to predict the Stock Markets, when any good stock market's motions are essentially chaotic. 

When did you really start to write and consider yourself a writer? 

Well... I can't really remember exactly when I started. See, my Grandmother is a published writer and has been in the business for almost forty years. So I've seen writing as a possible thing for me to do since I became aware of what she does for a living. 

I think I was nine when I wrote my first poem. I wanted to finish an anthology at that time (nothing wrong with my ambition, eh?), but got distracted by dolls and playing with my cousin. For some reason, I didn't do well with writing essays for school. 

Still, when I was about eleven, it occurred to me to ask my Gran how to write. I got my first distinction for an essay and never looked back. In fact, I started to complain to my Gran that the word limits given for the essays were much too short. I'd done this quite a few day, until my Gran suggested that I should maybe write a book. 

I blew the idea off, but in December 2001, about two weeks before my thirteenth birthday, my first character walked into my head and wouldn't go away. So I started a novel about her instead. Due to circumstances beyond my control, I let it go. But by then I considered myself a writer and I was waiting for my next inspiration to strike. 

What do I really enjoy about Fencing? 

Oh many things. Number one would be the history associated with it. Fencing goes back to young nobles training for duels. Contrary to common belief, people didn't actually use fencing to duel - fencing was MUCH too regulated. Yes, there are rules to duels, but the fighting was allowed to be quite dirty - especially if the
duels were to the death. Anyway, sparring with rapiers and sabres were considered martial arts. 

Fencing, on the other hand, was considered one of the Arts along with music, dancing and (I think) sculpture.

Even in modern times, fencing is steeped in old traditions. For example, if you lose without honor and throw a tantrum, you can be banned from the rest of the competition. Same goes for failing to salute your opponent, or saluting your opponent with your mask on. When we finish fencing, we shake hands with our opponents, but always with the non-weapon hand. It goes back to duelling (in this case to first blood), when shaking the free hand with your own was considered a sign of goodwill. Of course, it also freed up the weapons hand to slaughter the beast if he tries to hurt you.

The other thing I love about fencing (it came a close second) is the fact that my adrenaline starts pumping the moment the mask covers my face. I get to change who I am from a cultured normal(ish) person to a cultured but lethal person. Just like in my writing, I get into a zone. It doesn't happen often, but the zone is where I can hit the opponent the moment s/he makes a move that opens up a target - purely on reflex.

Needless to say, fencing is a great stress and anger relief. There is something incredibly calming about hitting something (or someone) while only doing it with a percentage of the force you could have used. (You can get red cards for brutality if you injure your opponent).

There are many things I love about fencing, but I'll move to the next question before I start waxing lyrical about it.

What is the defining characteristic of myself?

Oooh... this is a tricky one. I have many characteristics that take turns as needed to define who I am in a given situation. 

Currently, though, the characteristic that takes up a large part of who I am is the fact that I'm permanently in a state of motion. If I'm not, I am incredibly frustrated with where I am and what I'm doing. 

I always want to learn more and do something new and different. I can only settle in a given place for a few years. Stellenbosch is a wonderful place, but half way through last, my wanderlust came back to stay. It might or might not have triggered my I-DON'T-WANT-TO-DO-THIS!!! phase. After all, there's nothing that reminds one that you're doing the wrong thing as realizing that you're in the wrong place. 

But you can imagine how I'm feeling eighteen months later. I'm fighting really hard not to count down the days to the end of my studies. That's also a big reason I want the job at Qatar. I want so badly to go somewhere new.

Do I enjoy meeting new people? 

Oh yes I love it. Can't really explain why, though. I guess it's because I'm largely an extrovert. I can talk to people about almost anything, and I love hearing their thoughts and feelings about things. 

I do, however, have very high defenses. So although I meet a lot of people that I will easily go out with, or enjoy meals with etc. and who remember me enough to greet me when we bump into each other, I have precisely four close friends. I basically stack people I know/meet into a hierarchy e.g. Close friends, Friends, Friendly Acquaintances and Acquaintances. So I'm friendly with everyone, but I'm friends with just a few. I just think that it's a lot better to maintain a few close friendships that are worth it rather than to waste time on shallow ties.

That's it from me today, but those were my last questions, so please feel free to add some more. They can literally be about anything. Have a great day all!


  1. I think you might be right. Maybe one day I'll find a place to settle.

    Thanks for dropping by. :-)

  2. You fence! I feel like I've missed something but that sounds absolutely fantastic and so bloody cool! Awesome!!

    Also, you should tell us more about your Gran... what did she write?

  3. Melissa fencing is an awesome sport. I hope I'll be able to continue with it, wherever I find myself next year. Btw it's never too late to start. ;-) I'll tell you about my Gran tomorrow.

  4. It was great to learn more about you!

  5. It's great to learn more about you. I was always interested in fencing, but have never done it. It's really interesting to hear about it.

  6. Thanks Golden :-)

    Quinn fencing is awesome, I generally recomment it to anyone I meet. ;-) Thanks for dropping by.

  7. HI, Misha! I found your blog on Sharon's and thought I'd hop over and check you out. Great to learn so much about you at first glance. I love that you always want to learn more... I think the day we stop wanting to learn more is the day we give up as human beings.

  8. Hey, thanks so much for joining! I hope you enjoy the blog.

    I agree with you completely.

    Someone once said (I think it might have been Pascal) that he hoped that he would never think he was complete because that would have meant that he stopped growing...


  9. Fencing sounds far more fun than banking ;)

  10. Fencing does sound like fun. Although I feel a little unsure; I even blog with my mask on :)

    I’m with Melissa, and would like to know about your gran.
    The enigmatic, masked blogger

  11. Oh Beth it's more fun than I can describe. Thanks for dropping by. :-)

    Hahaha Blogger, then fencing will make you feel quite safe. ;-)

  12. Investment management to fencing to writing poems when you were nine. I bow to your greatness.

  13. Lol thanks Elana, but you're making me blush. ;-P

  14. Misha, it's great to learn more about you! Thanks for posting these questions and answers. That is awesome that you're into fencing. I can't wait to read more about your Gran, too. :)

  15. It was fun to learn more about you.

    "...but got distracted by dolls and playing with my cousin." I know writers who have stopped writing for less important reasons.

  16. Thanks Shelley. I'm glad that you are enjoying my posts. Thanks for dropping by. :-)

    Hahaha I know what you mean, Theresa. At that time me and my cousin probably played more than we breathed. ;-)

  17. What fun to learn more about you!

    Your grandmother sounds like a wonderful person. I wonder if I've read one of her books.

    And I know what you mean about characters walking into your head and not leaving. ;)

  18. Misha, great to learn more about you! It's fun to get insight into the bloggers we meet and read from every day :)

    Also, I've popped an award up for you on my blog too (well, it'll be there as soon as I hit 'publish' on the post), but don't feel obligated to do anything about it (lol). I know you're very busy, and sometimes that can make awards more stressful than exciting. So, no worries!

  19. Awesome! I couldn't write essays in high school either! Love learning new stuff... Fencing, very cool ;o) That's really great about your Grandma, nice to know someone who's been through it, I bet.

    Great post!

  20. Kathi my Gran is wonderful. I doubt you've read her books, since she's published in Afrikaans. Thanks for dropping by. :-)

    Thanks so much Faith! I'm honored. I will get to the awards as soon as I manage to create some time. Have a great day. :-)

    Erica I knew there were others like me! It always sounds strange that I used to fail at essay writing. :-)


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