Inspiring Blogger Take 2, the Epic Story Edition!

Hey everyone! Happy Wednesday – yeah I know I skipped posting Tuesday, but when you see the length of this post you’ll understand why! haha

A few weeks ago I did a post based on nominations for the Very Insiring Blogger Award, and rather than the 7 things I chose to do a ‘TMI post’ … which was fun. Since then, I have been nominated 4 more times for the award! Yay! So I wanted to take the time to do another post to share more useless info about myself!

very-inspirational-blogger

As a reminder, the steps for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award are as follows:

1. Thank the person who nominated you. Thanks again!
2. Add the Very Inspiring Blogger Award to your post-done
3. Share seven things about yourself.
4 & 5. Nominate a list of bloggers that inspire you and (5) Post on their blog about it.

I definitely want to thank Laura, Sara and Kate – two of my very favorite ladies and a new blog I am following!

I have decided to do ‘7 stories’ similar to Spiritual Creaminess … though not taking the ‘full post narrative’ approach! I decided to do a set of ‘small’ anecdotes … let’s see how it goes!

1. The Story of Our Dogs – And the Nearly-Fatal Cookie Platter

If someone ever told me I would pay $2000 per dog for pure-breeds rather than getting a dog from the pound … I would have laughed at you. Lisa and I had talked about it – we loved breeds like beagles and so on, but wanted the kids to be a few years older before getting a dog. As the kids started school we decided we were ready to start looking at dogs, but there were two fairly major things:

– Lisa had always had allergies (including significant dog allergies) … but after having kids they got worse.
– Christopher was already taking allergy shots, because if a dog licked him his entire face would break out with hives.

So we had to do some research, and find dogs that would work with Lisa & Chris’ allergies. We came up with a few breeds of terriers and poodles. The boys loved the looks of the small-ish terriers – Norwich, Norfolk, etc … not small and fragile like a Yorkie (more of a toy dog, really), but a classic ‘sporting’ terrier that was high energy and ‘sturdy’.

We found a breeder in our area and were able to basically ‘pre-order’ a puppy … basically we were on a wait-list depending on the size of the litter. We needed to sign a ‘no show’ and ‘no breed’ agreement, which was fine … and 8 weeks later we had our baby Rosie! She was all terrier – led by her nose and nearly boundless energy, she was mountain climbing with our cub scout troop at 3 months old, and has never stopped since.

Two years later we got Riley … by this point the breeder had closed their ‘shop’ and moved to central Massachusetts and focused exclusively on breeding and showing rather than being a full-service kennel as well. When we were getting Riley, they were still building out their house, yet had one litter of Norfolk Terriers, and THREE Weimaraner litters at once, with more than 22 babies all at the same time! Riley ended up with worms – they said they were having an issue – but even worse, we put Riley there to board because we were going on vacation a week later and thought it made more sense to board there … and he ended up with Lime’s disease, which deteriorated his vision. Yay.

But ever the indomitable spirit, that winter Riley taught us the value of crating. We used to have the dogs gated in the kitchen & dining room area of the house when we went out. They were too small to get over the gates, too big to get under or between them. It was holiday cookie swap time, and we had a big tightly plastic wrapped tray set for a party the next day … but since it was up on the counter, no problem – right?!?

Well … when we got home the platter was on the floor and there were NO cookies left and Rosie was panting and looking BAD … OH. NO.

What we surmised happened was that Riley got up on the chair, then to the table and counter, dragged the platter around and knocked it down … but then couldn’t get down to get at the platter. Rosie figured it out and ripped through the plastic and ate most of it before Riley jumped down.

Riley was fine – a little sick to his stomach, but no big deal. Rosie spent a week in the emergency vet center near us in a very bad state, really not good for a couple of days … but made it through. That week we went and bought a fold-up crate that goes everywhere with us, and they are in if we leave the house. As for Rosie, she STILL leads with her nose and with a ‘eat first ask questions later’ approach!

2. Taking a Pay Cut for a Better Standard of Living

I am not one to get into personal details such as money, but something Suz said about affordable beer reminded me of the learning experience I went through when job hunting back in late 2007. As Laura is talking about her upcoming move, Ange had a rather sudden move, and Sara recently moved as well. Whenever you move, you need to realize that you are getting into not just a different physical location – but perhaps also a different economic environment!

Before coming out to Corning, I had four offers – in Boston, Seattle, Charlotte and Corning.

Now anyone familiar with those locations can guess hat no two have the same standard of living (well, Boston and Seattle would be closest). That makes evaluating offers very difficult – and also meant a load of time making lists and using spreadsheets. Ultimately it came down to Seattle or Corning – much as I love Boston, I saw now future with the company and the economy was already flailing there.

Seattle and Corning are very far apart in terms of pretty much everything, but for us the main things were good schools, decent house, not a huge commute, and overall cost of living. In Seattle, the best schools were either in super-expensive areas or a long commute … and the more we looked, the more the compromise wasn’t going to work. But along the way we had to get past the $ number on the offer … and that went back to something I remember as a 23 year old sitting at a job fair with a guy who was about the age I am now, offering me unsolicited advice:

Don’t get so focused on the dollars that you lose sight of what goes into them.
Corning is pretty much a one-company town, so coming here meant committing to this company, because if things didn’t work out we’d pretty much have to move. But at the same time we were able to get an all-new house with more than twice the square footage as we had back in Townsend … and the schools are incredibly well resourced and equipped (so long as you are in one of two ‘Corning employee centric’ towns, that is).

So while the number on the offer might be smaller, that doesn’t mean you are actually getting less.

3. The Strip Club Story

Despite apparently being a creepy basement dwelling troll (according to GOMI, anyway), I really have never had an interest in strip clubs. In fact, one major thing I told my brother before my bachelor party was NO strip clubs; heck, I’ve never been to a Hooters! The whole thing … well, I shouldn’t have to elaborate on exactly WHY it bugs me at this point of my blog-life …

But I have been to a strip club … once.

It was the fall of 1985 and I was a college sophomore and an ‘associate member’ (pledge) in my fraternity, and one activity we had to do was called a ‘pub chase’. The drinking age was just shifting to 21 with everyone 19 and older when it changed was ‘grandfathered’ … so it was a different time. The rules of the ‘pub chase’ were that we had to find a bar and stay there from a start time until a finish time, and if we weren’t found we would ‘win’ and they would serve us dinner, otherwise we would have to serve them the next night. The interesting question you probably DON’T have is how we check in at the end of time? We call back to the fraternity house at the end, then the brothers check in to get our location. Ah the days before cell phones!

We were given an hour head-start, and since Saratoga is relatively close to Troy, it wasn’t a big deal to get there. When we did we hit a gas station and asked about local bars, then went to a ‘local’ bar (that was way too obvious) and asked some guys at the bar about the most off-beat bar they knew. One guy responded immediately and we said ‘no, that was too quick’, then another guy had an idea but the bartender shot that one down as too familiar for college kids. Then someone on the periphery said ‘ooh, I got it – Shooters’. The rest of the crowd was silent and puzzled, then a couple of nods started as they realized where it was and explained to those with no clue – we had our place!

So we head to the bar … a non-descript dive in a non-descript small plaza on a less traveled road way outside of the normal popular areas. And we waited … and waited … and no one showed up. Every time a car entered the plaza we thought we were done. But not – no one ever showed. So we won. And let me be clear – we were NOT supposed to win. This was SUPPOSED to be an exercise in futility, concluded with us buying drinks and then cooking dinner and serving MORE drinks the following night as the brothers had a laugh at our expense and we ‘learned’ something. Being honorable guys they followed through on their end … but were not pleased to have lost. But that is another story …

We called the house and let them know, said our goodbyes to the bartender (this was NOT a hotspot), and headed out.

As we were on a road none of us had traveled (I forget, maybe 9N?), we got directions back to Troy from the bar, and headed out. A short distance down the road there was another bar, but as we got closer it was clear it was a really awful looking strip club. The person driving said ‘let’s go in’ … and while for a couple of us it was very much ‘not our bag’, we were all pumped up after winning the challenge so we went with it!

And once inside the no-cover-charge strip club and it was every bit as bad as it seemed from the outside. We were informed they were in between shows so we sat down. Half us WERE ‘grandfathered’ and half were not, so we got a mix of beer and soda (though alcohol to kill anything in the glasses was probably advisable). Soon there was a girl wearing very little clothing carrying a boom box onto the small ‘stage’. She pressed play, started dancing and taking off the little clothes she was wearing (and yes, it was as sad a situation as it sounds, even without hte filter of time and age). A few people threw dollar bills on the stage, but largely the crowd was quiet and motionless – we all found it more than a little bizarre.

Then the song ended and there was silence between songs while the girl continued to dance, and suddenly from the other side of the bar a guy said, not too loudly … “I got a boner”.
The music started again, I looked at the other guys and we all nodded that we were ready to go. But before leaving we all left a dollar – I said ‘that moment alone is worth at least a dollar’. We headed out to the car and were all howling with laughter – when we got back to the house no one could believe we’d actually gone IN to that place, and the story has lived on.

4. I Only Ran >5 Miles ONCE Before 2012 … By Accident!

I have talked a lot about my running history, saying that until 2012 I never really ran more than ~15-20 miles per week. But back in the early 1990s I was traveling for work and was in Gainesville, FL doing installation and training on a research instrument at the University of Florida, and of course I wanted to head out for a run.

So I glanced at the map I got from the car rental place – again, pretty much no cell phones, no web, no GPS – and saw a route that looked like 4-5 miles. It was winter and due to flight schedules I had come out on a Sunday, so I was actually running in the late afternoon.

So I was out running, it was about 70 degrees (compared to snowy and 20 back home), and I really wanted to relish the time I had – so I looked down the road and saw another set of lights a short distance away and kept going, figuring adding another block wouldn’t be a big deal. But without a map or GPS, I didn’t know that at the next light the road sloped sharpy away, and didn’t have another intersection for a while. And since I was only planning 4-5 miles … no water.

So I kept running … and running … and running and was finally back heading towards the hotel. I got there, drenched and exhausted – and I checked my mileage, again using the basic estimate off the map. I had done over 9 miles … about DOUBLE my longest run to date … and a distance I wouldn’t see again for another 20 years!

5. Don’t Worry – Everyone Speaks English!

In high school I took Latin, and while it is not really taught anymore, I give it a lot of credit in helping me with linguistics through the years. Lisa says it is more that I am a natural with languages, but I think Latin helps!

When I was working my first job and doing the joint project with a professor at UPenn, the lead scientist at the main company research center in Germany was also involved. So naturally there were visits all around, and finally I was headed to Germany! I had taken some time to learn German, and it seemed to flow pretty naturally, and I had practiced on a couple of German-speakers and felt OK.

Side story – this was the year before Lisa and I got married, we were engaged but she was still living in Albany. The weekend before I left, our friends were getting married – actually they were Lisa’s friends, but all four of us quickly became friends and I ended up as an usher at their wedding. Cut to the chase, Lisa got ‘blotto’ at the wedding, and was in rough shape the next morning … but I had to drive back to Boston, grab my bags and head to the airport. Her father was giving her crap about being sick and hung-over, I was trying to say goodbye … it is one of those ‘funny looking back’ moments.

So I flew to Germany, and given it was 1991 I was surprised to see airport security with full military gear and automatic weapons by where they were checking passports and bags. Again, changing times. I was able to get through customs, get to the train station, get a ticket and head towards Karlsruhe. There wasn’t a lot of conversation needed, and it gave me the chance to say a few words in German.

Once in Karlsruhe I was supposed to grab a cab to the facility – and the driver didn’t speak any English. Fortunately I knew how to put together enough sentences to get myself where I needed and pay him for the ride. I had flown the red-eye so I got in relatively early in the morning, and actually had a bit of time before people arrived – so I wandered around the area a bit, and ran into shops and people … none of whom spoke English either at all or very well. It set me off guard a bit, but I was rolling with it – again thankful for my studies and skills.

At the research center that day, I was ‘buddied up’ with an American ex-pat for most of the week who enjoyed having an English speaker, but laughed at my being told I didn’t need to speak German. Sure, he said – if you plan to not do anything local you can get by. And since my desire was to actually experience the culture – Karlsruhe is in that area that has gone back and forth between Germany and France through the centuries and bears marks of both cultures.

So I spent every evening the rest of the week entirely out of my comfort zone, mangling the German language with people who enjoyed my attempts and youthful enthusiasm … I had great food, great beer and a great view of the culture I’ll never forget.

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6. Lost at Sea!

For our honeymoon we went to Sandals in Antigua, and it was just an incredible time – we didn’t join in too many group activities (except when Lisa volunteered me to play with the band), no separate boys & girls things … just the two of us having an absolute blast the whole time. We played lawn-chess, took out kayaks, lots of tennis, hot & cold baths, read on the beaches, had fancy and casual dinners, did snorkeling, hit town and so on. Like I said, it was awesome.

But one of the most memorable / embarassing moments was when we took the two-person paddleboat out. It was getting later in the day, and we were having fun and headed out pretty far from shore … but then the tide started going out and we were struggling to get back in. Now we were both young and in good shape, and also full of pride so we weren’t going to give up easily.

We kept paddling and slowly we overcame the tide and started making progress towards shore … but then a power boat came up and one of the very friendly but insistent beach workers said ‘ya mon, we want to go home now’ and they had a great chuckle at our expense.

And when we got to shore, everyone there was joking with us – one person saying the boats weren’t made to go to other islands, and so on. It was funny but definitely embarassing!

7. The First ‘Date’ That Nearly Wasn’t

My beautiful picture

I write all the time about my family, most of all my wife Lisa. That is because she is the center of the universe and has been for the majority of my life at this point. This year we celebrate 22 years of marriage, and have known each other more than 27 years. But there was one pivotal night that could easily have destroyed any chance of a future, but instead cemented our relationship and made us inseparable. I wrote about it here, but I think it is a pretty cool story, and want to share it again.

Lisa and I met in college through a mutual friend at a fraternity party at my house (Theta Xi). It was fairly typical – girls traveling as friends, but as soon as our friend met up with her boyfriend, she ditched Lisa. We hung out at parties several times that year (she was a senior, I was a junior), but never connected after she graduated. To each other we were just nice people we had met and would never see again.

Fast forward to after I was out of school and living back in the Boston area. Our friend was coming out for a visit, so the three of us got together and had a pretty fun time, but I was in the midst of my weight loss and she was living in a crappy apartment and dealing with other stuff, so neither of us made contact and we didn’t connect again until the following spring. Again our friend was visiting, and she and I met and then headed to Brigham & Woman’s Hospital where Lisa was working. When she came out … well, it is a moment I won’t forget. I was in a totally different place, and so was she and we hit it off from the first moment and it was just an epic great day.

Lisa was planning to head to Albany the next weekend and I had planned to visit the fraternity, so I offered her a ride there (we were coming back on different days) and we had a great chat across the 3.5 hour drive. We both wanted to hang out again, so set up to go out the following weekend. When she was back we made more specific plans – we were going to head to Chinatown for dinner, hang out around various places in Boston, and generally just have a relaxing night. Oh, and most importantly, we decided that a great central place to meet would be the Dunkin’ Donuts at Park Street station.

The only problem – there are TWO Dunkin’ Donuts at Park street … one on the inside that only people coming from the north can see, and the other on the street where people coming from the south would depart!

You can probably see where this is heading – in an era before cell phones, where there was no way to reach each other unless we checked in at home, there was little to do but wait. I hung out up top for about a half hour, then hit a pay phone and called her answering machine (cost me a dime, too! Talk about old school!) Waited some more and then called again. During that time I did head back into the station as far as I could go without paying again a few times.

Needless to say I was pretty crushed. I was dressed nicely and ready for a great time.

The last time I headed down I hit a crowd coming up from the trains, and looked through to see if Lisa was there. But then as I came back up and looked back over towards the train station – guess who I saw emerging from the other stairway? That is right!

And as I headed over, Lisa turned and spotted me … and we ran and met each other with a massive hug! After a little bit we got a bit awkward and separated and all of that anger and disappointment quickly turned to laughter as I pointed out the Dunkin’ Donuts up top and she pointed out the one below! From there we had a great night in Chinatown, Faneuil Hall, and so on. We walked around and ended up back at her Somerville apartment late, where I crashed on the couch.

She had gotten dressed up as well and looked really nice, and we had the most fabulous time. I call it a ‘date’ because we wouldn’t kiss for more than two months after that. We had grown into friends so quickly, and she had a neighbor who spoke to me in a way that seemed to assert ‘territory’ with her, and honestly I didn’t think she was into me ‘in that way’.

When I look back at the beginnings of our relationship there are two moments that come to mind – meeting eyes with her that day at the Brigham, and the hug and subsequent night in Boston. You see, we had communicated only a casual ‘hanging out’ … yet both of us were very much dressed up. And neither of us gave up – it meant a lot to both of us. Nor did we hold grudges or seek to assign blame – it was an honest case of miscommunication, and it dissipated as we had a great night, turning now into one of those stories our kids have heard hundreds of times.

Of course, today this entire thing would have been solved in two quick texts and a chuckle. I wonder how that would have changed things?

Do you have a story from the time you met someone in your life?

Nominations

I have been following a couple of new blogs and wanted to get them to share some TMI stories in whatever way they wanted. Here goes:

Sami from Peace Love and Ice Cream has just re-started her blog after several months away!

The Running Schlub

Comments? Still awake? Alive? I apologize if you planned a post for today, but apparently I used #allthewordz!

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22 thoughts on “Inspiring Blogger Take 2, the Epic Story Edition!

  1. Fun stories! Gosh, sometimes when I think about life before cell phones, it’s hard to imagine how anyone ever got past little mix-ups like yours! I remember anxiously waiting around for friends who never arrived, being worried when people didn’t show up etc. It’s crazy how dependent we are on phones now!

    • Totally! Lisa is away for the day for work, and was able to blast a quick text that she arrived safely, which I got while in the lab. What could have otherwise taken so much effort (call, leave message, me back to desk and listen to voice mail, etc) is now something that takes 3 seconds and is amazingly easy and convenient!

  2. This post is so fun. That Dunkin Donuts story is probably one of my favorite first date (or almost-non-date) stories I’ve ever heard from anyone. I can’t believe you guys got lost at sea in a paddleboat!! I have trouble with those things in the harbor downtown. I can’t imagine taking one out in the ocean! I’m glad you guys got safely back to shore. πŸ™‚

    • Thanks! Folks have said it could be a scene in a movie, and at the time it could easily have been … now it is anachronistic but cute πŸ™‚

      And we had done loads of kayaking, snorkeling, and so on … so we figured no problem. We were wrong πŸ™‚ And safety was never a real issue – with the resort they don’t let you out of the harbor area …

  3. I can relate to Rosie’s insatiable hunger, both myself and my dogs! Just last night, Ducan was begging Jeff for a bite of a raw Anaheim pepper. That dog likes veggies like none I’ve ever met before! Foster just loves junk food, as the half dozen cookies HE ate once will attest.

    • Yeah, some dogs lead with their stomach to be sure! We are so lucky – 4 lbs of cookies loaded with chocolate on a 12 lb dog? Um, probably should have been fatal.

      And totally agree on the self-hunger … there are times when I just can’t manage to refill after a long run!

  4. Wordy McWordison. But these are truly great stories, and I love the insight into youngun Mike. Strip clubs skeeve me out. Alex has been to a few–mostly in Vegas, when his friends wanted to go and well, sometimes that is just what you do in Vegas–but I am in no way shape or form worried about him there. He doesn’t do fake basoombas, as we call them (in reference to the hilarious balloons strapped to some women’s chests. One time, a stripper was being really really aggressive with him at someone’s bachelor party (in Vegas) and was like “don’t you like them?” and he just flatly said “No, they look ridiculous.” That’s my boy πŸ˜€
    Good lord, of all the things the my dogs have eaten. Let’s see, we have found out that paper towels do NOT get broken down in the stomach (and in fact retain their design); angel food cake and Snackwells are apparently more tasty with the plastic still on…. and when you get older, get the young one to knock over the can, then you get the goods. Thanks, Peach (my old black lab growing up).
    I’m so glad that you and Lisa figured out the mishap, even if you had to go around in circles (harhar) but you ended up being Jelly Donut to her Boston Creme. Or however you want to look at it. Happy Anniversary, you crazy kids. I can only hope that Alex and I enjoy half as much love and happiness together as you two so obviously have. It just makes me so happy every time.

    • Totally with you on the strip clubs, Suz! As I said, I’ve not been to Hooters and find THAT morally objectionable … so, yeah. Actually back in the 90s some companies in the semiconductor world thought that bringing visiting engineers evaluating equipment out to strip clubs was a great plan. After making it politely known I wasn’t interested, one of the sales guys persisted (aw, c’mon sort of peer pressure stuff) … and I made it clear that since I was the primary decision maker for both a multi-million $ purchase and a joint technical project, they should be looking to ‘entertain’ rather than piss me off! πŸ™‚ They took the hint at that point πŸ™‚

      Had to laugh about what ‘passes through’ – yeah, Rosie has a taste for paper and we can differentiate paper towels from napkins from tissues, and also Nerf Darts work their way through untouched as well! haha

      Love the Boston Creme reference … guess what Lisa’s fave donut was? πŸ™‚ Thanks again for all of this!

  5. Wow, you gave me a lot to respond to! HA! First and foremost, you know my Yorkie Morgan, while he is small, he would take offense to you calling him fragile πŸ˜‰

    As far as taking a pay cut for a better standard of living, I agree with a lot of your rationale when thinking about your move after leaving MA. I know that I don’t want to work in Boston once Ashton is in primary school, its just too far and I don’t want to miss his after school activities, etc, but with that will def. come a pay cut for me. However, I have already resigned to the fact that as long as it isn’t so significant that we have to drastically change our lives, the benefits of working closer to home and not spending 3+ hours a day in a car is worth the cut for a much better work/life balance and standard of living.

    I took Latin in high school too, I always said it helped me with the SATs and with learning other languages!!

    I laughed at your story about your first date with Lisa and the two D&Ds. I think back to what life was like before cell phones and its amazing. We have come such a long way with technology, and while it hinders us in a lot of ways, you are always just a text/call away from connecting with someone if you need to!

    • No offense to Morgan! We were concerned with our boys being both large for their age and not well coordinated! haha

      It was funny when I dropped the pay cut thing in as a title (a while ago, this took me a long time to complete) I had no idea where I was going. But it is a challenging thing to deal with – because there are so many things to consider that factor into your ‘real’ cost of living.

  6. I like stuff like this πŸ™‚ great way to learn more about bloggers! I’m glad everything worked out with you and Lisa meeting again and finding each other. It’s crazy to think about how easy it is/would be to miss meeting our significant others and how different life would turn out. If my one friend hadn’t been dumped by her bf and asked for a girls night or we had gone to another bar first that night or his one friend didn’t act creepy when he was talking to me or any number of things, Joe and I would never have met, and then I’d be sad to say the least haha.

    • Thanks Caitlin! I love it when bloggers do this as well – I will admit to being slightly nosy that way! πŸ™‚ It is still funny looking back to that moment at Park Street as so fundamental to our relationship … and it is a great story now!

  7. Love that dunkin donuts story! My husband and I had an interesting first “date” that was really supposed to be a work hangout (we worked together at the time) that only we showed up to. Everyone who hears that story thinks he must have set that up but it was completely random. The “work hangout” turned into our first date and it lasted 9 hours! We stayed “friends” for a few months after that before really becoming a couple. If other people had showed up that night I honestly don’t think we’d be together now. Or would we?

    The cell phone thing is so strange. My mom had a long commute home when I was a kid and since she would give my dad a vague estimate of when she left the office we never knew when to expect her and I remember my dad anxiously waiting for her every night, which turned into me doing the same thing. Not terribly traumatic but would’ve easily been solved with a cell phone!

    • Love your story Michele! You really never know how things might have turned out, y’know?!?

      And my dad worked northwest of Boston with a long commute, and what I really remember is the Blizzard of 78 where everything was shut down, and we were seeing scenes of non-moving cars on 128, and no way to communicate … fortunately he made it home, but it took him about 5 hours to do the 45-minute commute!

  8. Why wasn’t Charlotte in the running?
    And some schools still teach Latin, my ex had two boys in school here in Dallas and they both took Latin through HS. Do you think it would help with a language like Chinese? I’m almost at the point where I’d study Latin for a year and go back to Chinese if I had an inkling that it could be marginally easier.
    Love, love, love the DD story (that’s confusing, the Dunkin story, not the strip club!). So lucky that you both knew the other was worth waiting for and you found each other.

    • First – latin is NO help with Chinese! haha I took a ‘Chinese at lunch’ class through Corning a few years back, which was just enough to have a couple of colleagues visiting from Shanghai smile and appreciate the effort, but basically laugh at me πŸ™‚

      As for Charlotte … well, frankly the schools are SO much worse than in the areas I am used to (Mass, NY, NJ and Pacific NW) that it was pretty shocking. So that was a huge factor … but there was something about the company as well. It had been bought, and while there were claims it would be autonomous, one person I talked to during my two-days of interviews, and another person I spoke to afterwards left me with really bad impressions. The division got seriously restructured after the economy tanked and folded up completely a few years ago.

    • It really is amazing how many things in our lives would have been different with a cell phone. There was an article about how much of Seinfeld would have been different with today’s tech.

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