The Official Jim Davies FAQ
- How are you?
This is the question I get asked most often. I'm fine. How are you?
- Do you have any tattoos?
No. Sometimes I write "late" in cursive on my wrist, so that
when people ask me what time it is, I can look at it and say
"Oh, it's late." I was thinking of getting it tattooed, but
people kept mis-interpreting it. They'd see it and say "Jim,
you're late." No, people, I'm not late, it's late.
- What's up?
See my answer above to "How are you?"
- Are you an organization?
No, the .org in jimdavies.org stands for organism. I am an organism.
- What are your favorite foods?
eggs cooked sunny-side up or hard boiled, toast, milk, wonton soup (picked that
up in China), corn flakes.
Lunch and Dinner: Think comfort
food. Roasted chicken and dumplings, green beans (with olive oil
and lemon juice), mashed potatoes, gravy, salsbury steak,
Chinese, Thai, Indian. Pizza (thin but not crispy crust with
olive oil, ground beef, green peppers, red pepper flakes,
pepperoni, mushrooms, sausage, with Tabasco green pepper sauce on
the side), gyros, BBQ ribs, beef stew, fried
chicken, cooked ham, havarti with dill cheese, fried cheddar
cheese, stuffed pork chops, roasted turkey, swedish meatballs,
burritos (but only if they have ground beef and refried beans in
Dessert: The Friendly's 5 scoop Reece's pieces sundae, Ice cream
(chocolate, mint chocolate chip, Edy's Thin Mint), Oreos, peanut
butter cup or chocolate chip cookies, milkshakes, peanut butter
cups, peanut butter M&Ms, Reese's pieces, little debbie snacks (swiss
cake rolls, nutty bars, oatmeal cream pies, devil cakes, devil
cremes), ice cream sandwiches
- What do you not like to eat?
Fish, sweet potatoes, brussels spouts, lima beans, lean
hamburger (fatty hamburger is more than okay), feta cheese,
chicken or barbeque sauce on pizza, miracle whip, fruit or fruit
flavors in chocolate (including bars, chocolate cake and
chocolate ice cream, excluding chocolate covered cherries and strawberries), rum raisin ice cream, alcohol or alcohol
flavors in food, liver, eggs fried to crispness . Generally I
prefer meats without sauces on them, with a few exceptions.
- Why do you give up something every year?
question is in reference to my tradition of making a new year's
resolution every year that lasts exactly one year. Ususally it's
giving something up, because it's easier to know for sure you
have not violated it at the end of the year. We make very
specific rules for what counts as a violation and what does
not. Why do we do it? It's a test of willpower and a good
conversation piece. It's also a tradition for me and my friend
Lou Fasulo, who shares the resolution with me every year.
- What things have you given up in the past?
- 2012: No orange food.
- 2011: At least one blueberry every day.
- 2010: No cold cereal. This means no breakfast cereal that is meant to be eaten cold with milk. I can't eat any of it. That includes Rice Krispy treats.
- 2009: No cold turkey. So I got to say "I'm giving up eating cold turkey," and watch people disambiguate. This went pretty well. I had to eat turkey at thanksgiving while it was hot.
- 2008: No soda (that's pop for my Canadian readers). This is in honor of the 20th anniversary of the tradition. Lou and I repeated the no soda thing. You think Coke tastes good? Try it after a year of abstinence.
- 2007: No sliced bread. And no, I could not slice it. Then it would be sliced, see? It was great fun asking Subway sandwich artists to rip the bread for me, since the knife cutting would have rendered it sliced.
- 2006: Say "I'm on my way, I'm making it" every time I get
money. That means every time I find money, get change, find
out there's been a direct deposit, somebody gives me money
they've owed me, or I open an envelope and see a
check in there for me.
This was a dismal failure.
- 2005: No Fruit. This idea was so ridiculous Lou and I
had to try it. We can't eat whole fruits or fruits manipulated
such that you could reproduce the effect with a knife. So no
peach slices, but you can eat peach jelly. We are not counting
tomatoes, even though they are fruits, because they are not
treated as fruits in our culture. That is, we're using the
popular, not the scientific, definition of fruits.
- 2004: No watching television. Specifically, this
means no broadcast, where broadcast is defined as one central
entity sending a signal that could be watched by people in more
than one building. So DVDs and Videos are fine, for the most
part, unless they were recordings of broadcast. DVDs of TV shows
are okay because they were not recoded from the broadcast, but
from the same entity that generated the broadcast. The hardest part of
this one was in bars and restaurants. Sometimes there's nowhere
to sit that does not face a TV. You end up catching your eyes
wandering to the TV and you have to catch yourself. Annoying.
- 2003: No eating Hamburgers. Where a hamburger is
defined as a ground beef patty. This one was painfull,
because I eat a few hambugers a week, even though I could eat
turkey or garden burgers. But believe me, they are no substitute
for a good burger. I found myself eating a lot fo cheesesteaks. I
screwed up one day, bigtime: I ate 12 Krystals (mini burgers). I
wasn't thinking of them as burgers! Note that every violation
I've ever done has been accidental, never giving in to temptation.
- 2002: No Little Debbie products. Normally I eat a
lot of these.
- 2001: No french fries.
- 2000: Floss every day. This was the only "positive"
resolution we had. The trick to doing something every day is
routine. The problem is when are you going to floss? If you floss
before bed, you will likely screw up because sometimes you go to
bed twice in one day: you go to bed after midnight one day and
before midnight on the next, and you end up flossing twice in one
day and none on another. So I got in the habit of flossing when I
got up, which only happened once per day. I missed one day.
- 1999: No cake. The hard part of this one was the
definition. We decided on this complicated, but at least,
consistent definition of cake. Something was cake if it 1) had
the word cake in it, or 2) sufficiently resembled prototypical
birthday cake. That means no birthday cake, twinkies, crab cakes,
pancakes, funnel cakes, swiss cake rolls, ice cream cakes, etc.
- 1998: No ice cream. I ate a decent amount of frozen
yogurt, but man, it's just not the same.
- 1997: No pork. I missed bacon a lot. I had to be
careful about buying hotdogs. But since there are whole cultures
who need to avoid pork, these things are fairly well labelled. I
only screwed up once: I ate fried pork snacks in Mexico city that
I thought were cheese. What are you going to do?
- 1996: No salt and pepper applied to foods after
preperation. This means that we can put salt or pepper in
something we are cooking, but not on it after we or anyone else
is done cooking. We also decided that asking someone else to
apply salt and pepper for us is still applying it, using the
other person as a tool, so that was disallowed as well. My
girlfriend at the time ended up putting salt and pepper on my
grits, even though I never asked her to do so.
- 1989: No swearing. What's so difficult about this
one is that, unlike trying not to eat something, the actual
swearing comes immediately after the "decision"
to swear. I gradually swore less until it was gone completely
after about three months. After that I got a girlfriend who, for
about eight months, never heard me swear. I couldn't wait for
- 1988: No soda. Where a soda is defined as a
non-alcoholic carbonated drink. I messed up on this one only
once. I was in Amsterdam and my mother bought me an expensive grape
drink that neither of us thought was carbonated. I swallowed a
sip before I realized it had carbonation. I
refused to drink any more of it. She was a little annoyed but also proud. I was a junior in high school.
- Would you just meet me for coffee?
If this is Caterine Zeta-Jones asking, the answer has always been and
remains "No." We're both married, and not to each other. Get used to it.
- Do your glasses hurt?
No, they're probably more comfortable than yours.
- Do you have to pedal a lot on that bike?
No, the amount of pedaling depends not only on the wheel size, but on the gearing. My strida is geared to feel like a typical lowest gear on a three-speed, which is most comfortable for riding on a flat surface.