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Interesting question for me, given that I recently (just about a year ago) legally changed my name. I deliberately chose every part of my new name, which was a mixture of old and new. My first name is new, something I created for myself because my old first name never fit me. I kept my original middle name for several reasons - in honor of my parents, who chose it, and in honor of my French godmother, whom I love and miss very much. I turned my original last name, which I am very attached to, into a middle name, and my husband took it too. Then I took his last name, because I love him and I wanted to honor him and his family name.

We deliberated about what to do with our last names for a long time. I didn't want to completely lose my last name, and I didn't want him to completely lose his, and I refused to hyphenate, but we couldn't find a way to combine them that worked for us, so this was the solution we came up with. The last hurdle was me deciding that I would be okay with being called by his last name once I graduate from vet school - I'd gotten used to thinking of myself as Dr. W and had to ask myself if I was okay with being Dr. G instead. I was.
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I've thought about this a lot, actually! The answer is Fresh Air, and I would totally talk about my comic book and all the relative weirdness in my life. It is my dream to be interviewed by Terry Gross. I hope to be famous enough, soon enough, to pull it off!
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Always an interesting question. I appreciate a good body as much as anyone else, especially a good female body, but what really turns me on is somebody's mind. One of my biggest celebrity crushes is Rachel Maddow, and while she's certainly not ugly, nobody would put her at the top of the physical attractiveness scale. But it doesn't matter. Her mind glitters, sharp-edged and flashing like a sword, and it gives her an inner glow that makes her smoking hot.

My current partners are not the height of physical attractiveness. They each have their physical bits that I enjoy, certainly - Chris's back (yes, I have a thing for a nice back), Sue's skin & hair - but what drew me to each of them was what was inside, not how they looked. I think, when people hear the old saw 'it's what inside that counts,' they take it with a healthy dose of skepticism. Everyone wants someone pretty or sexy or handsome or hot, and it's easy to assume everyone is shallow, since the general public appears so good at shallowness. But the old saw really is true, at least for me. It really is the inside that matters - the mind, the soul, the heart. The body becomes attractive when the spirit within it strikes the right sparks.
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I choose C.

My idea of the perfect vacation is going to exotic countrysides and seeing the wildlife, followed by talking with local wildlife researchers about their current projects. A little nerdy, perhaps, but that's what I love. My fiance and I plan to take a trip like that to Tanzania and Kenya for our honeymoon.
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Interesting question. I have had several defining moments.

I'd say the first one was the first time I realized I was in love. I remember it very clearly. It isn't that that love defines me now or defined me then, but that the moment when I realized I was in love was symbolic for a massive change that was going on in my life. I was turning from an arrogant, self-isolated child who believed that other humans were not worth my time, into a slightly-less-arrogant, involved, compassionate, and loving person.

The second defining moment was the day in the spring of my first year of college. I was sitting on the hill in front of the dining hall staring out at the landscape of the Shenandoah Valley, and I felt as if Nature walked up beside me, put a hand on my shoulder, and said 'you work for me now.' Again, it was a symbolic moment - the moment in which my life-path was chosen. That was the day I decided to be a biology major, and that biology was my calling.

The third was the week I heard about the death of Steve Irwin. Chris told me, and I didn't believe him at first. I admired Steve Irwin, and had always said that my dream job was to be the female Steve Irwin, but I didn't expect his death to hit me so hard. I was working as a kennel tech at the time, and while I enjoyed the job, it didn't really have any potential for advancement, but I hadn't really thought about what I was going to do after it. Steve Irwin's death made me rethink what I was doing with my life, and that's what made me decide to go into veterinary medicine.

The most recent one was the moment in February when I decided to propose to Chris. As it turned out, he proposed first, but my decision to do it was important in a lot of ways. And I did get to propose to him afterwards, the day our torcs arrived, although maybe it doesn't count if your partner has already asked you.

Defining moments are kind of fun. I look forward to more of them.
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My dog, my cat, my computer backup, my phone and its car charger, my laptop, my wallet, and my car keys. Chris can take himself out.

1) My dog and my cat depend on me.
2) My computer backup is my life. Most of you know that I have a story I've been working on for a long time. You may not know that I started writing this story when I was 9 years old. That means that with the exception of my family, this story has been with me longer than anything else in my entire life. My computer backup has everything I've written on it so far. Losing it would SUCK.
3) If you must leave your house forever, you should bring your phone so you can contact people.
4) My laptop, I'd grab, because it's portable and valuable.
5) If you have your wallet, you should have everything you REALLY need to start again - picture I.D. and access to your bank account.
6) Obviously, it helps to have your car.

If I had extra time (unlikely) I'd grab a handful of portable food, which I usually have in abundance - a couple of protein bars, a bottle of water, something like that, so that if it were not possible to get to a food store for a day or two, I would have something to eat.

The absolute minimums are dog, cat, wallet, and phone.
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If I can assume that whatever two foods I pick could be enhanced with supplements to provide me complete nutrition, the answer would be cheese and shortbread, which I would tire of after a couple days.

If I can't assume supplementation, I'd want to try to get as complete nutrition as possible, and I'd be forced into eggs and tomatoes. I'd tire of them after a day or so, and succumb shortly thereafter to mineral deficiencies.

If I can choose whole-meal-type-foods (like soup) then I'll take beef vegetable soup and tuna salad, made with as many vegetables - and as big a variety of vegetables - as possible.

On a side note, I shot a dart-gun today. Twice!


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