Shelley: 25 Things

Jo Thornely
3 min readFeb 12, 2023

Facebook, bearer of good memories and bad comments, has its ups and downs. Sometimes it’s a place where odd chain-letter style activity occurs: someone tags you in a post with instructions, you follow those instructions, you tag others, and so on. Usually they’re annoying, sometimes they’re alright.

Fourteen years ago in 2009 there was one that I didn’t mind at the time and, now that I’ve found Shelley’s, I’m delighted with. Shelley was tagged in a post that asked her to list 25 facts about herself, and they’re listed, verbatim, below. I like them a lot. One or two of the facts cause a sharper-than-usual intake of breath, but I like them. A lot.

25 random facts about me

1. I had some fairly serious heart defects at birth, one of which was surgically corrected the following day. I am alive to type this because of some Very Clever Doctors.

2. If I was to go back to uni, there’s no doubt in my mind that I’d study science, despite only a passing interest at school.

3. I am a freelance technical writer. Lots of people don’t know what that is. But the people who pay me money do, and that’s the main thing.

4. I have a First Dan black belt in Seido Karate.

5. I read the Bible from cover to cover when I was about 12 years old, just to see if I could. The middle bit was a tad dry.

6. I have broken two toes, and no other bones. One toe broke when I dropped a drawer full of CDs on my foot while working in a record shop; the other when my front-kick was blocked by an opponent with a very sharp elbow (Osu Senpai Yuichi!).

7. The relationship I have with my twin sister is as good as a relationship gets. I almost feel sorry for people who aren’t twins.

8. My most frequent recurring dream is about toilets. I wish it was about good-looking naked blokes giving me wads of cash, but it’s about toilets.

9. Many people (including my husband) have assumed upon meeting me that my name is short for Michelle. It isn’t.

10. In 1994 I was ranked number 44 in NSW in women’s eight-ball. It wasn’t necessarily a sign of a mis-spent youth, but I did skip a few tutorials.

11. I am a stickler for the rules of English spelling, grammar and punctuation. That doesn’t mean I don’t make my fair share of typos and other mistakes, but they can seriously ruin my day. And no, I don’t routinely proof-read your emails.

12. I decided that I didn’t believe in God in my early twenties, but have only recently been able to declare myself as an atheist without feeling guilty. Religion is strong stuff, but I think it’s the wrong stuff.

13. Three things I enjoy, despite other people thinking I’m a freak, are:
— abdominal crunches
— document formatting
— crochet

14. My two children are the funniest people I’ve ever met.

15. I consider myself very lucky that my figure doesn’t necessarily reflect the almost rabid fervour with which I love food. I cook it with passion, talk about it with enthusiasm, take pictures of it occasionally and eat it with little grunty noises.

16. I am a skeptic (or sceptic, depending upon your preferred spelling). If something hasn’t been proven scientifically, then I’m probably not interested in it. That means I can be quite a drag in conversations about astrology, psychic ability, ‘alternative’ medicine or new age woo woo.

17. I’m very, very good at getting pregnant. I only wish I could pass on that ability, now that I don’t need it anymore.

18. I often miss playing and writing music, and believe that I will do both again one day.

19. The bike that my husband bought me for Christmas is the first one I’ve ever owned.

20. My love of boats and sailing is only just strong enough to cancel out my terror of waves.

21. I can’t imagine a room in any configuration except its current one.

22. I hope I live to an age at which being a slightly deaf, cranky nanna and complaining about teenagers, idiots and shoddy current affairs programs is more appropriate.

23. My top and bottom incisors have never touched.

24. I make awesome sandwiches.

25. I had no idea it would take me this long to write 25 things about myself.