Favorite childhood toy?
A stick. I used to wander around our backyard waving a stick around. My parents thought I was weird.
Favorite childhood game?
Dirt-clod wars. We didn’t get snow, so we would have fights with the hardened clay that was all around. Sometimes they had rocks in them. Those carried penalties for the thrower . . . My god, sticks and dirt. I was a little barefoot hillbilly . . .
Favorite childhood candy/cereal/treat?
The almighty Snickers bar. They’re still my gold standard for what’s in a candy bar - chocolate, peanuts, caramel, nougat. Pay Days, which are like Snickers minus the chocolate and nougat, were an acceptable substitute.
What of your interests, preferences, obsessions (movies, TV, toys, food, clothing, etc.) might be considered childlike or childish? Why do you love this stuff?
I can find almost religious significance in “Looney Tunes” and “Merrie Melodies” cartoons. Bugs Bunny, for example, is a trickster folk hero, like Br’er Rabbit or Anansi. The best part is, those cartoons just get funnier the older I get. My sense of humor is a little bit meaner than it was when I was little, so when Bugs Bunny is a complete jerk to his enemies, it cracks me up.
Did you have these interests as a kid? Were they developed as an adult, were they denied to you as a kid?
I watched a lot of cartoons, yeah. My appreciation for them has gone up now that I realize what a craft animation and voice acting are (in addition to the reasons given above).
Ever feel any stigma from colleagues/parents/friends about childlike tastes or mindsets?
I don’t mingle much with coworkers (these people aren’t my friends, just people I have to be around to make money), so I never know what they think. My dad died when I was still pretty young, but knowing him, he probably wouldn’t be too fond of the fact that I still haven’t grown out of all that kids’ stuff. My mom seems to acknowledge it as part of my personality and leave it at that. My wife is a rejuvenile too - our honeymoon featured eating steak and watching Dora the Explorer in a furniture fort we built in our hotel room.
Do you think childlike tastes are related to childishness -- i.e. are rejuveniles more gullible or easily manipulated, less responsible or self-sufficient?
I don’t know. I notice a few of those traits in myself, so maybe. I don’t want to pigeonhole a bunch of people I’ve never met as immature, though.
Are you a grown-up? If so, when did you become one? If not, when will you become one?
Legally, I became an adult on my 18th birthday. Mentally . . . I’ll let ya know.