What narcissism means to me: The Facebook confession


by Rich Broderick | February 18, 2009 •  A little while ago, a friend forwarded a chain e-mail to me listing 25 facts about himself and asking me to list 25 facts about myself and then forward said e-mail to 25 of my closest personal friends, etc.

Ground Zero – Rich Broderick teaches journalism, serves on the board of the Twin Cities Media Alliance, and sometimes still finds time to write for the TC Daily Planet.

At the time, I was not aware that this was a Facebook convention, the only time I have actually laid eyes on a Facebook page being those occasions when I have had to instruct my students to shut their computers and attend to what is being said in class. But then I came upon an article in the paper headlined “25 Random Facts About Me,” and — what can I say? — a light bulb went off inside my thick cranium. So, herewith, for a world anxiously awaiting each revelation, no matter how inconsequential, about _moi_, my own utterly true list of random facts about me.

Let the social networking begin!

1. In addition to lungs, I have a pair of gills that make it possible for me to breathe under water.

2. I was part of an expedition that tracked down and trapped a live Yeti. In exchange for letting him free and keeping his whereabouts secret I and other surviving members of the expedition continue to receive payoffs from the Yeti Family Foundation, the yearly payments coming to us in the form of Yak droppings, which are used as currency in the high mountains of Nepal.

3. I saw Mama kissing Santa Claus!

4. My son was born while his mother was bungee-jumping.

5. My mother’s maternal grandfather, a riveter at the Belfast shipyards, got drunk on the job one day and failed to finish attaching a critical steel plate to the hull of a new luxury liner that was launched the following day. The name of the luxury liner? The Titanic. Fearing the official inquiry that followed the Titanic’s sinking, he fled to the U.S. where he later became one of Herbert Hoover’s top economic advisers.

6. I am a direct descendent of Adam and Eve (the genealogical table is 400 pages long, single spaced!).

7. When I was 15, the face of Jesus hanging on the cross appeared in the butter I had just spread on a toasted English muffin. Then I ate the muffin.

8. I have memorized every definition in the Oxford English Dictionary and can recite those definitions not only forward and background but also translate them into classical Sanskrit.

9. I am the biological father of three of Sarah Palin’s children.

10. My mother passed on to me my placenta. I keep it stored in my freezer. Or is that a flank steak I bought last week? Anyway, tastes about the same!

11. You may know me better by my pen-name – J.K. Rowling.

12. I was one question away from winning the 20 million rupee jackpot on the Mumbai version of “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire,” but lost when I was unable to list the endless names of God. It was torture!

13. Behind the mask, I am a law-abiding citizen.

14. Unlike what is apparently the norm in Hollywood, I was born an infant and have aged progressively as I’ve gotten older – although, come to think of it, if I live long enough I may very well end up back in an infantile state: toothless, incontinent, and babbling incoherently.

15. I am Elvis.

16. I feel no ill-will toward Paris Hilton. Or Lindsay Lohan, Simon Cowles, Britanny Spears or any of the other celebs offered up by the media during the Three-Minute Hate. On the other hand, I generally hate the media. Hmm…

17. I put my pants on one leg at a time. Skirts I just slip on both legs at the same time – is that normal?

18. I wrote the song.

19. I was a chronic bed-wetter until I was the age of 18 months (or so).

20. I am a compulsive origamist.

21. When I was seven, my shadow was stolen from me – an event that led me and my siblings on an exhausting adventure into Never-Never Land. I never did get my shadow back but returned home with a lease on a time-share on Skull Island. Interested in sub-leasing for a week or two?

22. Speaking of which, the pirate’s life is the life for me!

23. Last time I checked, I was 75,437,667th in line for the Presidency.

24. In 1985, I was the victim of an attempted abduction by aliens who claimed to be from a planetary system located near Alpha Centauri. Fortunately for me, these aliens were only 7 inches tall and I was able to use my martial arts background to subdue all 25 of them. They continue to live in our attic, subsisting entirely on cobwebs and musty air — a close equivalent to their native diet back home.

25. Don’t look now, but I’m standing right behind you even as you read this…