In a small east coast town, atop a quiet and secluded member of a wooded set of brotherly mountains that stood watch over a medium sized, river valley city, I did grow up. Acres of forest were my backyard and daily endeavor. They were infinite, mysterious, enchanting and encouraged a sense of high adventure which to the present I retain; though to be sure, these days most of such occurs in my mind, equally boundless.
My father worked in finance for one of the divisions of the state, while my mother taught English, and at home, a sense of old world propriety regarding the language, among other aspects of society, which to a young, neck-or-nothing, blood-of-the-fancy was a constant source of annoyance. Up the hill and though the woods (literally), was the home of my grandfather, a surgeon, who came from a line of medical men – dentists, doctors and such. My great uncle even founded and owned a hospital, down in our valley city, fitted out with the latest technology of the day – the day being the early twentieth century in his case. My other grandfather was a coal mine engineer, equipped with pencils, compasses, drafting paper, triangles, stencils and the like, and when I was young I thought it was quite normal for my father, having a similar sense of mathematics and geometry, to make architectural changes to our house and surrounding lot. I became something of an accidental apprentice during a few of these reforms, initially helping to produce a work-shed for my father’s tools and ideas, and graduating up to designing and co-building a large deck that spans a significant portion of the back of the house. It’s load capacity is top-notch, as it should be, considering the snowy state.
I’ve been a musician most of my life. Though I do not derive a living from such (nor do I care to), I dedicate anywhere from twenty to thirty hours per week to musical adventure: I’ve composed a violin serenade, a symphony for full orchestra, a piece for a small string orchestra and soloists, a piece for harp, viola and flute, a small poetic scherzo for full orchestra, and tons of other more forgettable material which must be laid by the lee. I’ve become a competent and nearly mature classical composer in my mid-thirties, and am excited to pursue several other piece on my wish list, with the skill that’s taken almost half my life to nurture and polish. And I’ve had a brief dalliance with film composition, but the workload (fourteen hour days) turned out to be physically beyond the limits of my poor hands.
My mind is very mathematical and science oriented: I’m clever at seeing things mathematically that others cannot, though I’ve thoroughly wasted my talent in the pursuit of musical construction. However, I do own a bachelor’s degree in the field of pharmacy, which entails a given proficiency in chemistry, statistics, calculus, physics, and biology, though presently I mostly focus on (at the armchair level) climate science, energy and efficiency science, equity investment, and the economy (which are all intimately coupled).
My pharmacy job allows me the possibility of little, or conversely, abundant work at my pleasure, which then provides funding and time for my compositional journeys. I can’t hardily recommend it as a full time career, unless one commits to becoming expert in a clinical setting.
Our modern American culture is hyperfocused on consumption, secondary to mass propaganda authored by the masters of mankind, with design to secure large streams of income and profit for themselves. Would it at all come to pass that we may break this dependency on consumption as a means to proper social interaction? Here's an excerpt to a 'first date' I wrote for a story I work on as a hobby:
'We did little to deserve each other, than what we did those few moments rising into the morning sun. Sure, such were no less soluble than any of the hundred scents conjured by the flourishing warmth, yet they did raise to the highest power what was, just be-fore she existed, seemingly ordinary countryside. I fear the younger audience might tend to find love a hole to be occupied as soon and as frequently as possible; its depth discovered by fervent thrusting. Perhaps I am grown simple, that it may, with equal credibility, be just the accidental brushing of her hand to mine, as she gestured at some creature I pretended to see for the sake of her excitement, roused out by the starting day....'