Friday, 3 September 2010

What Are Your Quirks?

What are your quirks?

I love the word ‘quirk’ and all it’s variations: quirky; quirkily; and quirkiness. It’s the sound of the ‘q’ and ‘k’ I like the most.

I’ve been thinking about how I am quirky, or what people might find peculiar behaviour. Here is the list I came up with (feel free to laugh but please don’t call the men in white coats):

  • I cannot use notebooks. Instead I write lots of post-it note messages to myself, which can become incredibly chaotic. I think it goes back to having terrible handwriting and not being able to keep a neatly written exercise book at school - it bugs me no end if I make a mistake or the pen blotches.
  • The post-it notes I use have to be the yellowed lined variety. The downside to this is that they are expensive. Once, I found them on a half price sale at WHSmiths and bought every pack on the shelf. Also, when I write stories by hand, I have to use the A4 yellow-sheeted pukka pads. Nothing else will do.
  • I read magazines backwards, starting at the back page.
  • If I buy a book from a bookstore, it has to be in mint condition. If it’s from a charity shop, I’m not bothered by the condition at all.
And a non-writing quirk:
  • When I eat a meal, I never eat it all. I leave a little of everything, and have to be ravenously hungry to empty my plate. It's always been a source of amusement with my family and friends, but I never thought anyone else noticed. I was wrong. At work the other day, someone asked me if I was feeling okay. I asked why, to which he replied I hadn’t left bits of food like I usually do. Oh dear. My secret is out.

What are your quirks? Do you feel brave enough to share?


  1. It's funny, I am often described as quirky (it seems to pop up every time I solicit a bit of blurb from someone) but I'm not entirely sure what my quirks actually are - maybe it's just a skewiff way of looking at things.

  2. Hi Ellie - I love your post-it quirk! And I WISH I left food on my plate. I always clean my plate (childhood rule that carried over). Other quirks...hmmm...if I make a mistake while writing I throw the paper away and start over. I'm a bit of a clean freak and perfectionist. There are tons more, I'm afraid!

  3. I love your quirks. I have so many post-it notes all over the shed and around the computer area in the house and they drive my family mad.

    I also leave some food each time and it drives my mother mad with irritation.

  4. Lisa - LOL. I do love my post-it notes. My parents gave up trying to get me to empty my plate somewhere in my teens! I'm the same when writing by hand, though I've finally taught my monica-from-friends brain to accept that when I am handwriting a story it is only in rough.

  5. Debs - Another post-it note fan. Yey! I'm not alone. I try to keep a limit on them, but they do adorn the desk, walls, bedside table and so on. I wonder what it is that makes us leave a little food on our plates? No doubt there is a Freudian explanation.

  6. I too am a "leave-some-food-on-the-plate" person! Very rarely do I eat it all! Except when it comes to sandwiches! For some reason I eat them totally! My other quirk is that I really can feel irritated by crooked bath towels! The ends must be hung over the rail evenly!

  7. Ya know I don't think I've ever seen lined post it notes! My goodness that really is a rare thing! Well why not - as long as you are happy!! :-)

    My writing quirk... I like my !!!!!!!!!!!! LOL!
    My non writing quirk... I love marmite. On everything..

    Take care

  8. Oh crumbs... where doI start? Post-its at work, notebooks at home. Nothing green in the house unless it's a plant. No lit candles in front of mirrors. Saluting single magpies. Are they quirks?

    I guess this is my biggest quirk though.

  9. Quirky Fun. I love it! I have lots of little notepads that are supposed to be for different things, like novel notes, blog ideas and short story ideas. I can get into quite a pickle if I don't have the right one to hand. I have post-its but as hubby is fanatically tidy the'd probably all end up in the bin!

  10. Does OCD count as a quirk? :D
    Plenty of others if it doesn't.
    I used to refuse to be in the room if I was turning the light off, if I couldn’t manage that I had to close my eyes during the switching (still do that a lot now), refuse to wear watch on left hand (even though I'm right handed), I have hundreds of 'routes' and 'patterns' I have to follow when out and about, and even around the house. If I channel surf I have to go back to Channel 1 to start, I even have a certain order to check websites (which can NEVER be broken). I do manage to hide my quirks quite well and it makes me wonder if everyone else is as mad as me but we're all reallly good at hiding it? :D

    p.s. I have lots more quirks, but those are far too strange to admit publicly :D

  11. HI- those are some good quirks.
    When I'm writing or concentrating- in the middle of thoughts- I tap my pen or chew it. drives people crazy.

    I always write my first rough draft on paper before I do anything else with it. I have lines of notebooks with first drafts of stories just randomly. :)

    and last I love to swish my head back and forth- as in shaking my head no- only I'm doing it because I love the way my hair feels gliding through the air lol

  12. I definitely have some quirks. Let's see, what to share . . .

    I love melted cheese and cooked tomato sauce, but don't like the cold, uncooked version of either one.

  13. One of my strange quirks is that I have to "recover" everything near the item I take off of the shelf in a store. I guess it comes from working so many years in retail management. :-) For those who haven't worked retail; recover is to face the next item and pull it to the edge of the shelf near the other items. I'm no longer in retail but it's a hard habit to break and it drives my family crazy!!

  14. Greyscale - I eat sandwiches whole as well. Love the quirk with bath towels. Mine don't have to be even, just hung up!

    Old Kitty - You either love marmite or hate it, and I love it. But not on everything LOL!!!!!! (I've included lots of exclamation marks just for you)

    AJ - Those are some great quirks, AJ. I've heard of the magpie salute before, something to do with it being bad luck if you only see one?

    Madeleine - Thankfully the LSO knows better than to remove any of my post-it notes LOL. Now if only he'd develop a quirk for doing all the housework.

    Steven - I think quirks can be described as OCD. I do the channel surfing thing! Thanks for sharing.

    Summer Ross - The the head swishing thing sounds great. I must try that! Thanks for sharing.

    Janel - That sounds yummy. Not sure about eating it cold either. Thanks for sharing.

    Judy - OMG. We are so alike. I work in retail and sad though it may sound, I recover shelves when I'm shopping! In the UK we call it facing. Thanks for sharing.

  15. One thing I'm very particular about is tea. Not many people can make it strong enough for me. Except for my mother. I don't know what she does to it but hers is like paint-stripper!

  16. Ellie, I love this post! Isn't it fun learning about others' quirks? Some of my writing ones are: (I don't use post-its for "writing" ideas, but I use them for many other things!) When I jot down notes to myself, to remind me to write about something later, it's usually on little pieces of paper that get strewn all over the place! I finally read somewhere about punching holes through all of them, and putting them on a loose binder ring. It works wonderfully! I flip through them, tear off a couple I'm going to write about that day, and voile'! I cannot handwrite anything longer than a sentence or two! When I was younger, I had pretty handwriting, but not anymore! It's all gotta be done on my laptop!

  17. I love ALL of your quirks! They aren't bad quirks to have at all. I share your book quirk - mint condition from bookstores but secondhand doesn't matter. I guess the difference for me is pricing? If I'm paying full price for a book, I'd like to think I'm the first one touching it.

    I use hand sanitizer after I touch a menu in a restaurant. I won't eat until I have. I try to make anyone eating with me use it as well. Is that such a bad quirk?

  18. Joanne - You and your mum are just like my mother; you can stand a teaspoon up in her tea it's so strong!

    Becky - The ringbinder idea is brilliant. Perhaps I could do that with all my post-it notes?

  19. Jennie - I'm glad I am not the only one with the book quirk. Also, I think santizing your hands after a menu is probably a very good idea!


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