Aug 30, 2007

Flannery asks, I answer.

Flannery Alden has been kind enough to interview me! I answered 2 through 5 pretty quickly, but had to really think awhile on question #1. I don't mean for the answer to be too depressing...

Thanks a lot Flannery, here you are...

1. You have been blogging for over a year now (since August 23, 2006). How has it changed your life?

It is a bunch of things to me:

It is a release for my thoughts about being a parent of a special needs child, although I don't do nearly enough posts on that subject.

It is a collection of friends I have never met (well, most of you) that I sometimes feel closer to than people I know.

It is a release of my quirky sense of humor. I use humor to sometimes mask the hurt I feel inside. The old expression "I laugh so that I don't cry" applies very much to my life.

2. Since things are more like they are today than they ever were before, how's work treating you? What do kind of work do you do?

Boy, you really did go way back into the archives! I have been in the computer field for a hell of a long time now, since back when they were kerosene powered! I became interested in computers in the Navy, then became a field service tech when I got out.

I have had many different positions in all the companies I have worked for, technical support, training course design, and now technical writer. I really liked my first job as a field service tech though. I got to go to a lot of different companies and meet a lot of people. And, since the operators were predominately women, that was a touch of heaven for a young single guy!

3. I once considered a career in music therapy, but couldn't handle the "therapy" part for reasons I won't bore you with during your interview. Can you please explain how it works and what benefits Skyler receives from it?

I would love to hear about how you almost got into the field, let me know sometime.

Music therapy works by getting patients involved in playing an instrument, or banging on a drum, or vocalizing to music. Other kids that have played with Skyler have physical limitations like him, or developmental delays, or a mix. More can be found here.

The benefits differ with each person, but what it does for Skyler is help him develop rhythm, arm control, and vocalize more. He also creates songs to sing on his communications device. Jenni (our music therapist) has got more communication out of Skyler than anybody else in his life. I think it is because music is so universal in all of our lives, and everyone likes it.

4. How's your sister doing?

She is doing great. She and her husband Chuck still live up in Idaho Springs, Colorado in the house we grew up in. We have always been close, and got along really well. People always wondered why we didn't fight much, and I tell them it's because I knew when to shut up.

She blogs also, but doesn't post a whole lot. Check her out on my blog roll, she is "Mountain living with two men".

5. If you were to host a blogger get-together in your town, what would the day look like? Where would you take everyone?

Give everyone a day just hanging out, getting to meet and get to know one another better, and get used to the altitude. Because when you visit Colorado, it's all about the mountains! Then, the next day we head for the mountains to site see. I would take everyone up to the top of Mt Evans because I used to work up there, and you could all say you have been on a 14er because it is the highest auto road in North America. I would also like to take everyone on a raft trip! I have had some of the best times of my life on raft trips, it is a great experience. If you haven't visited here, you are missing out on one of the best places in the world. And no, I don't work for the Chamber of Commerce...


  1. Blogger Central: Boulder, CO September 23rd!

  2. Great answers! It's good to find out more about you. Thanks!

    As far as music therapy goes, it sounded like a career I could have in music that would pay worth a damn. But when I stepped into my first Music Therapy class and realized it was more about "therapy", I backed away slowly.

    It was one of those things that should have been obvious to me, that I would be using music to help people work through difficulties, but it wasn't. At the time, I didn't want to be any kind of therapist. My grandmother was a therapist (a primal scream/womb regression therapist [yipes!]) and I really didn't want to follow in her foot steps.

    So, I floundered around in college, wanting to be a teacher but not wanting to be in the education department. I ended up with a B.A. in Classical and Medieval Studies. Eventually, though, I became a software trainer, then an instructional designer, then a jack of all bureaucratic trades. With this new job, I'm back as a software trainer and technical writer and I get to teach doctors what to do!

    I'm hoping it's as wonderful as it sounds and I'm not having a moment when I should have realized what I was getting into.

    I'm glad music therapy is working for Skyler. It sounds like Jenni is doing wonderful things with him.

  3. Great Q&A. This is my first time here, although I've seen you in comment boxes. Now I need to go back and read up.

  4. have they taught him the Rundgren song, "Bang a Drum All Day"?? personally *I* find that very, VERY therapudic, especially the verse:

    "everyday when I get home from work/
    I feel so frustrated, the boss is a jerk/
    so I grab my sticks and head out to the shed/
    and I pound that drum like it was the boss' head!!"

  5. I hope your sad days are less then your happy days. Please count me as one of your blogger friends

  6. SV: It's on the calendar baby!!!

    Flannery: Thanks again for the questions. Jenni is a real special person to us, she went to college on a Viola scholarship heading towards symphony work. Then she took a course about therapy just to fill a credit and it changed her for life.

    We should talk about ID work sometime, I was a training course developer at Sun Microsystems.

    Thanks for dropping by Beth, I need to head over to your place also!

    a ghost's story: Thanks for coming over! I need to take that song to heart also.

    Cheer: Thanks very much, you are indeed a good blogger friend!

  7. OK A Ghosts Story, I'm a bit slow but I figured out it was you, doh!

  8. You have the best sense of humor old cubie, and I really miss it every day. Thank god you blog now.

  9. Dear Skyler's Dad...

    I am extremely lazy so if we were to ever meet, it would have to be where I can sit down and have helps me with my social skills.

    PS...I enjoy vodka.


  10. GKL: Miss you the most my friend!

    Dirty: Doesn't alcohol help everyones social skills? Doesn't alcohol help just about everything?

  11. I have a fascination and aversion to mountains. I love reading, learning about them. But whenever I drive through them, I assume certain death is around every corner.

  12. I'm in for the raft trip. Great answers to some tough questions!

  13. Grant: There was an incident awhile back where a car drove around a corner to have a boulder twice it's size drop right on top of it. When it's your time to go, nuthin you can do about it!

    Dale: Thanks! And thanks for dropping by.

  14. Dearest Brother,

    I think we get along so very well because we were twisted out of the same warped mold. Our Dad's sense of humor (dead skunk in a locked co-worker vehicle) with a little (I hope) of our Mom's common sense.
    We don't have a big family, but we do get along.
    Love you