At this writing I am 66 years on the planet. My highly kaleidoscopic CV includes stuff like: — Community and professional theater, 10 years, nearly every position/role, onstage and backstage — Travel globally, including transcontinental hitchhiking (US, CA and EU), transoceanic sailing voyages Atlantic and Pacific — Environmental and political activism (off & on as the need seems to present itself) — Husband & father (37 years) — Co-founder and staff member of a highly unique K-12 school — Owner/operator of a VW Van repair shop (now morphed into a custom camper outfitter) — Regional (Middle East) document control systems builder and regional manager for a US-based F500 architectural/engineering concern — Musician and occasional writer
My first skeptical project was a report/presentation in the 7th grade (1967) on the topic of UFOs, in which I demonstrated several methods of spoofing UFO sightings. My thinking over the years has evolved since then. For the first half of my life so far I wasn’t particularly interested in “skepticism” per se. I experimented casually with all kinds of ideas, searching (as many do) for the possibility of something actually supernatural, looking for answers to the big questions (what happens after death, is it possible to affect physical reality with the mind, etc.). Towards the end of that period, as evidence for those (and many other) questions repeatedly failed to materialize in anything like satisfactory and believable form, I began to let go of the need for answers, and have become much more interested in finding better questions. I began to be more and more interested in what it actually is possible to know - how life works, physics, chemistry - and in the processes of scientific discovery.
The SGU played a big role in really cementing this world-view for me - it gave me entry into what has become a new extended family. My first skeptical conference was QED 1 (2009), and I’ve been to several since, including TAM, Skepticality (Bay Area Skeptics annual).
At this point in my life, I’m seriously looking at how to help people everywhere develop an appreciation for reality, primarily by improving my own ability to engage in meaningful conversations (verbal, written, possibly online via podcast/Youtube). I think that I am a very solid example of a person in the median. I think I am nothing special (except in the ways that we ALL are special), intellectually, physically, emotionally, financially. And because I think that is true of me, I imagine it is certainly true of many, many others who are in the process of aligning their own worldview in ways that are meaningful to them, reflective of reality and ultimately more effective in the “pursuit of happiness” (if happiness is taken to mean an existence more harmoniously in line with living on this planet — or wherever we find ourselves eventually).