Tagged by KF in the midst of holiday madness, I just now had a chance to participate. So with all the caveats KF outlined in her opening foray assumed here as well, on to five things you quite possibly don’t know about me:

  1. I have a terrible, terrible memory. Which makes creating a list like this sort of hard, actually. My wife can remember every moment of her life since she was 2 years, 5 months, and 11 days. I’m making this number up, because I can’t remember the actual age she has claimed in the past – see, because I have a bad memory – but you get the general picture. On the upside, I’m crackin’ good at puzzles and analytics. I would probably take the GRE analytic section again just for fun.
  2. I wrestled in the 103 lb. weight class in middle school. It was as amusing to behold as you might imagine.
  3. I held a license to operate a fork lift, cherry picker, and crane. I also, for several years after, received on a quarterly basis a “radiation dosage report” at my parent’s address (much to my mother’s alarm). In the time between undergraduate and graduate school, I worked as an “engineer technician” at an electron beam accelerator facility in Newport News, VA. I helped build particle detectors, so that when the beam hit a target (a gas, e.g.), sub-atomic particles spun off in all directions and hit these detectors (which translated these contacts into electronic signals).

    [more pics here]

    I strung a lot of cable (and by a lot, I mean miles and miles. And miles.) This was significantly better than many of my previous jobs, which included greenskeeper (lower pay, though 4 seasons of free play was awesome for my golf game) and puppeteer (crap pay, and hot as the dickens, though plenty of free time in between shows to lounge around the pools at Water Country USA – pretty great for a teenager).

  4. For most of my childhood, I refused – REFUSED – to ride a roller coaster, as I was deathly afraid of them. This is actually surprising for a guy who grew up going to Busch Gardens (“The Old Country!”) for a large portion of his childhood (easy, and at the time cheap, entertainment that kept the kids busy during the summer months). So, I would spend all my money in the arcades (which is likely something you would know about me). This phobia lasted until I was seventeen years old, and shamed into addressing it in order to – you guessed it – impress a girl.
  5. The only bone I’ve ever broken (touch wood) is my left arm, which snapped during the incredibly dangerous game of … Laser Tag. That’s right – in a game involving ranged lasers and avoidance, making it the antithesis of a contact sport, I managed to break a bone. Advice: do not attempt a leap-slide-turn-and-shoot manuever into a ditch on a moonless night. Somewhere in between the “leap” and the “slide,” the pop of my ulna brought my attention to the fact that the ditch was deeper, wider, and in fact proportionately different than I had remembered from my daylight observations. Amazingly enough, I was sufficiently calm to walk home, still clad in Laser Tag paraphernalia – giving me a vague cylon-esque appearance to the dog-walkers in the neighborhood – enter my parents’ room, and announce that “Well, I think I just broke my arm.” It was then that shock came swooping in for the win.

So, that’s it. Five totally useless bits of information about me. You’ll be happy to know that my arm healed nicely (and got me out of 7th-grade gym class, so it was a wash really). I love roller coasters now, though I need to take a deep breath to get through the first run, after which I’m golden for the day. My radiation report always came back with a big “0,” so all my weirdness (and that of my children) is either honestly learned or honestly genetic. My wrestling career lived a short and pinned life. And I probably won’t remember this post, so if you run into me one day, and good naturedly say “So, been wrastlin’ lately?” with a light jab to the shoulder, don’t be surprised if I look alarmed.

With that, I remind Chuck, Matt, George, and Jason J. of their obligation to KF’s tag (see bottom of her post), and tag in turn the remainder of the Herders. That’s right – Dave, Natalie, Marc, Calamity Jane, Ryan, Kari, Birdcage, and all the rest of you – this means you.


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