It'd really depend on the moment. Being all organizery and such, I'd whip out some web searches and figure out which friends were available to be kidnaped onto my trip, what kinds of things they'd probably be interested in, what exciting events are going on at that moment and what the best way for us all to meet up would be. It'd be best if it could be a road trip with lots of friends, but with only 2 weeks to play with maybe we'd have to fly to one place, rent a car, and then road trip. The important thing about spontaneous long road trips with friends is the drive time itself is serious bonding time. If you fly to an event you don't get to talk because you're too busy being tourists. We'd go to a folk music festival, or a massive demonstration/protest, or some beautiful place for camping, or some convention-like gathering of people.
Sure with $2k I could probably go anywhere in the world, but with only 2 weeks to spend, I think we'd get a lot more bang for the buck out of a domestic adventure.
2. What makes you feel alive?
Bicycling, dancing, and having a really successful event come together well. Being outdoors with nothing to do but be, moving my whole body to the point of absolute exhaustion, and solving a complex problem.
3. Have you ever been to a Ren Faire? If so, what do you like about them? If not, why not?
I've been to the one in Bristol Wisconsin twice. Both times were pretty fun. I had no idea what to expect the first time. I never really got into the dress up and acting bits of it, I was there with friends. I REALLY loved the music and often would leave my friends to just sit and listen to the various players for hours at a time. I fell in love with the Hammered Dulcimer there. The games and performances are fun. I'm attracted to any large gathering of people with a festival atmosphere. There's a sort of palpable energy in the air that I'm addicted to. It's the second best rush to the backstage moment the curtain goes down at the end of a play.
4. What do you like about Buffy? Got a favorite episode? Favorite character?
Buffy is nearly perfect television. Joss Whedon is a nearly perfect television writer. I love that Buffy is about real life. I love that we can all relate to the crap that the gang goes through on a daily basis. Fighting monster's is the easy part for them, growing up and working together is the hard part. Buffy can be funny, scary, depressing, dramatic, musical, or romantic and yet the episodes never seem out of place. It all just works. The actors managed to develop an incredible ensemble together, they're all really superbly developed and well acted characters and the whole strength of the show is in their interactions and growth through interaction.
I also like that the problems they face on Buffy are complex. I used to be a big fan of Trek but it always bothered me that with so many collective seasons, the show always approached complex problems with a moral sledgehammer. The good guys always knew the right thing and they always did it. They were never more than superficially tempted by evil. They were too perfect. Buffy's characters are human.
I don't think I can possibly name a single favorite episode. My tops are The Zeppo, Hush, The Body, The Wish, Band Candy, and Once More With Feeling. My season ranking order would be 6,3,2,1,5,7,4. Buffy's strength is in it's highly developed ensemble cast and so as such I couldn't pinpoint a single favorite character. Andrew and Faith are both pretty cool though.
5. Tell me a story from a time when you were the most happy.
Here are three different times. Happiness through: friends, romance, and meditation.
In high school, one summer, a group of friends and I took what was supposed to be a 4-day 80 mile bike ride in northern Illinois across the Wisconsin border with camping each of the three nights. This was the first time I'd really been completely out of any adult supervision for so long. I mean I'd been a really independent kid but there's always a parent or teacher or resident councillor or security guard or something around somewhere keeping tabs even if they are giving you free reign. Anyway, the weather was absolutely perfect for those days. The trip formed this incredible bond that was an intense version of the perfection of that entire perfect utopian summer. We dealt with various disasters on the road, we talked, we contemplated, we felt the world around us, we swam in Lake Geneva, we sat around a campfire, I lost my virginity on that trip but I really didn't have to for it to have been so perfect. Sadly, one of our member's bikes completely broke down on the second day. His front fork just fell off the bike. So we had to call in our parents with a pickup truck to save us. I could have lived forever on that bike ride.
During college, I found myself caught in the center of a complex, soap operatic, and somewhat mutually-destructive love triangle (we referred to it as a love polyhedron because it was so much more complex than a 2 dimensional object). But that isn't the story. The story is that day that we admitted our feelings for each other over pizza and the time (I think it was the same night) we spent what seemed an eternity making out in the driveway before turning around to face the realities of the complex world that lived outside of that kiss. I could have stayed forever in that driveway.
I saw Kodo perform at the local performing arts center during college. I showed up 30 minutes before the show and it was sold out but I got in at the very last possible minute on late release seating. I got one of the best seats in the house, right in the center aisle right at the point where the stadium seating starts going upwards so I was as close as possible while still not having to crane my neck. Anyway they performed for 2 hours straight and for that 2 hours there wasn't any sound in the room besides their thundering rhythms and our periodic wild applause. The room was acoustically perfect, the audience was perfectly silent. Every movement of every drummer, the finest detail of every sound, was studied meditative perfection. I swear the beating locked into something deep and primal in my brain and set my neurons to ticking right. I walked out after the show feeling blown away, it was a cold winter night and an ice storm had recently hit. I looked up into a bare tree covered with a thin layer of ice and I just stared at that tree for at least 15 minutes. I was oblivious to the cold, the people around me, places I had to be, or any other thoughts. I just stared at the perfect beauty and complexity of the tree and felt wildly content with the world. Smiling a huge grin. I could have stared at that tree forever.
The way this age-old meme works is that if you would like to be interviewed with 5 questions from me, just post a comment to that effect.