Praises and Peeves that tell you about me:
1. I’m impatient with scientists who dismiss the supernatural without consideration; and non-scientists who dismiss scientific conclusions that don’t give the answers they like.
2. Extreme opinions are annoying, and destructive to a civilized society. “Moderation in all things” — except moderation, of course! See also my Declaration of Independence from Political Rants.
3. When I hear live music, I want to dance.
4. I have never owned a white car.
5. I love live performance of any kind. Anything pre-recorded is a poor second.
6. Some of my favorite foods: Brut; IPAs & Belgian ales; dry-rub barbecue (no sweetener in that rub, please); avocados; escargots; New Mexican food; dark chocolate; hard cheeses; and everything that my wonderful wife cooks. But not all in the same meal, please!
7. When I’m working on a project, it’s likely to wake me in the middle of the night or the early morning.
8. I keep a notepad next to the bed. If something nags at me, I write it down — that frees my mind to relax and go back to sleep. Sometimes, however, I have trouble reading what I wrote when morning comes.
9. When I see a “funniest” video of someone falling down and probably getting hurt, I don’t find it funny.
10. I have a short attention span. But if something captures my interest, I can Zen into it and happily spend a long time.
11. Entertainment is entertainment, and I enjoy it live. However, in the case of a technical or business talk, one that’s trying to convey information, I much prefer a transcript to a video recording. Why? Because I can read more quickly and more selectively than the speaker speaks: the written version communicates faster and more effectively to me. But if there’s a choice to attend the talk in person, that’s better yet, because being a part of the scene captures all my senses, and it may also be possible to ask questions and learn more.
12. I have a collection of gnome figures, most of them following Rien Poortvliet’s designs. Due to limited space at our current residence, most of them are resting in boxes.
13. I own more books than is healthy, and more than I can ever read.
14. My singing voice has always been baritone, but as I get older it is approaching the bass range.
15. Science has many answers, but science does not have all the answers. To me, this seems analogous to the incompleteness theorems in mathematics.
16. I fantasize riding a futuristic spaceship across the universe, through a wormhole in time, arriving on Earth to meet a younger version of my self. What could I say to him? The future is continually branching, and he will almost certainly wind up on a different time line than mine. But perhaps a word about Love, or the stock market, would help that distant yet so close twin of mine.
17. I love my GM Volt, which is a beautifully engineered and eminently practical car. It’s a shame that GM has not done a better job of explaining its benefits to the public.