I was tagged by Paul, and was on vacation when it happened. Here are five things you didn’t know about me.
- I fought like hell to get a job at Microsoft. I was beat out by Keven Markham for a consulting position (which I am SO glad I never got), beat out by Doug Turnure for a Developer Evangelist position (hell, the guy worked for DevelopMentor in its heyday, hard to compete with those creds), passed over for a sales position (which I am also grateful that I didn’t get), and finally got the job that fits as a Developer Evangelist with Microsoft’s Communications Sector. I am now an Architect Evangelist with the Communications Sector.
- I went to Georgia State University and paid my own way through to get a Bachelors of Business in Computer Information Systems. Actually, I am still paying off those damned student loans. I was a Computer Science major and took most of the programming classes, the rest of what I had left was math and physics. I hated Calculus, and pretty much every class I took built upon the last semester. Rather than work through classes I hated going to, I switched majors. When you go from College of Arts and Sciences to College of Business within the same university, you might as well start over as a freshman… hardly anything transfers. It was worth it: I went from being a solid “C” student to being on the Dean’s List for the last 2 years of college, and I struggled to bring my GPA over a 3.0 (finally did it). Yeah, the jokes about “Lots of people go to school for 7 years… they’re called doctors!” still sting a bit.
- I met my wife at The Gap. My ambition at the age of 18 was to move to Panama City, Florida, and I was working at The Gap and saving enough money to get down to Florida and live for a couple of months. When she walked in looking for a job, I ran to the manager and said, “Hire her! She’s beautiful!” We started dating a couple weeks later, and have been together ever since. She got me to go back to college. We recently celebrated our 10 year wedding anniversary. Every time I achieve something (writing a book, speaking at a conference) she reminds me, “I knew you when you were hanging socks.”
- I used to be damned good at sports, playing football and baseball. I tore my ACL in 8th grade, and had to wear one of the first knee braces. It looked like the braces that Forest Gump wore… it was made of metal and used these huge rubber bands to hold it onto your knee. Elastic pulling on your leg hairs actually hurts worse than tearing your ACL. I took up swimming, and was the only diver in our high school. I was decent, even won a few swim meets.
- I have been horribly out of shape for a long time (OK, a lot of people could immediately tell that one). Around Thanksgiving, I joined a gym, hired a personal trainer, and have been going to the gym nearly every day since. I have lost a bit of weight, but more important is that I feel so much stronger. Before joining the gym, I could barely walk on the treadmill for 5 minutes, and now I work out for about an hour between the treadmill, elliptical machines, exercise bikes, and stairmaster. I have been playing roller-hockey and soccer with my son, where before I would just watch. That feels good.