Let’s address the elephant in the room first. Whenever I introduce myself to someone, their first response is usually, “Huh? What’s it again?” I’ve experimented with pacing, tone, exaggerated lip movements, creative rhymes … all to no avail. So I broke down and devised a pronunciation key (see above) that’s especially useful for those “Hi, My Name Is” nametags at conferences and networking events. If you still have questions, hit me up and we can talk about it. Otherwise, hopefully this quick primer does its job and eliminates a needless barrier between us. 🙂
I’ve been a husband since 2008 and father since 2019 and appreciate what both roles mean, foremost that they’ve pushed me to understand myself and my wider community in all sorts of ways.
After college at Ohio State, I joined the Air Force and spent a decade deploying across the Western U.S. to bunkers–picture a steel boxcar suspended inside a concrete egg on four giant pneumatic shocks–80 feet below ground with a crew partner. The two of us stood ready behind one of the world’s most powerful instruments of strategy. The job can be busy with daily maintenance, 24/7 security operations, and constant revision to hardware and software. Despite the responsibility and unique heritage, my fellow “missileers” and I grew up in “one of the world’s worst cultures” according to author Daniel Coyle. Then in 2014, a select group of Air Force senior officials directed an overhaul of the nuclear operations culture. I was lucky to be involved on the ground floor, almost from the beginning. I left the Air Force in 2021 still believing my first training assignment in the new system (“post-FIP”) the most formative leadership experience of my career.
In the year leading up to my military separation in 2021, I struggled in search of my next “mission.” The original plan had been graduate school, to pursue a PhD. But the time wasn’t right. I needed exposure to the “real world,” whether in the private sector or something else I couldn’t identify. I put doctoral work on a longer timeline and sought full-time employment. And I kept reading. And writing.
My eclectic background makes for a variety of interests and I used to apologize for having so many (translated: no specialization or “expertise” whatsoever). I’ve stopped apologizing for two reasons: 1) I think we’ve seen many times in history that both generalists and specialists are necessary to solve our world’s most complex problems, and 2) when I step back from all the pressures of work and the world, my true passions rise to the surface and separate from the rest of the noise. Today, I’m a student as much as a professional, writer, and teacher. I write mostly about physics and the philosophy of mind, and where the two intersect (spoiler alert: it happens often).
I’ll leave it there for now. Take a look around the site and reach out to say hi. I can’t wait to hear your thoughts on any one of the mysteries I explore about this grand universe of ours.
The Wisdom of Others
The future of leadership is braver leaders.Brené Brown
Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Imagination is more important than knowledge.Dr. Albert Einstein