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Five Things

Craig tagged me so now I don’t feel left out.  Oh, and Keyvan did, too, but I’m just finding it.  Sorry about that!

Here’s five things you may not know about me.

1. Like Scott, I’ve never had a cavity (nor even fillings to prevent cavities).  I was blessed with unusually strong teeth, though at the expense of not having a few.  I only had 3 of my 4 wisdom teeth (woot! only had to get 3 pulled!) and I was missing permanent incisors on the bottom (doh! had to get implants!).  Not sure how I lucked out on the dental front; my dad’s got strong teeth, too, but my mom and sister not so much.

2. Many know this, but I’m an Army veteran.  I enlisted in 1995 while in college as a 75F (Personnel Information Systems Management Specialist or PISMS), an MOS (Military Occupational Specialty) I never used (though I was an “honor graduate” from both BCT and AIT).  I served in the Ohio Army National Guard, and after returning to school (and getting married) in 1995, I joined ROTC at the suggestion of my drill sergeants and commanders.  I was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in 1997 and joined a Combat Engineers (Mechanized) unit in Columbus, Ohio.  After moving north to Kent, Ohio, I transferred to the Individual Ready Reserve (IRR) in early 2001 where I thought I would serve out the rest of my time.  Then in 2004 I was surprised to learn I was being called to active duty, and spent the better part of a year in Iraq as a combat engineer platoon leader, finding and destroying IEDs and munitions dumps (and maintaining a blog).  I resigned my commission as a Captain in 2005, and have my honorable discharge, so I am now completely out of the Army.

3. Although I got my BS in Computer Science Engineering from The Ohio State University, I originally attended the University of Chicago after high school, with a full ride scholarship from the US Air Force.  I attended classes for all of one quarter, mid-way through which I learned that there was a problem with my scholarship.  Eventually it would play out that the Air Force had an issue with my scholarship because I’d had knee surgery for a soccer injury as a sophomore in high school.  Enough of an issue that they basically rescinded the scholarship, forcing me to drop out of school since I had no means of paying the (quite high by my standards at the time) tuition.  I ended up owing U of C quite a few thousand dollars for that one quarter, which took me several years to pay.  As a result of the Air Force’s kind gesture, I lost the opportunity to get the typical scholarships and financial aid one ususally receives as a high school graduate entering one’s first choice college (there’s almost zero financial aid for transfer students), so I ended up working an average of 25 hours per week through college at OSU. 

4. I’m a student of karate at a local club.  My current rank is green belt.  My progress is not what I would like it to be, mainly due to my lack of practice on my own time which I attribute to owning my own business and spending way too many hours working (or blogging and reading mailing lists).  That said, I’ll be pleased if I achieve my next rank this year, and eventually I would like to attain a black belt in my style.

5. I’m a gamer.  Not just computer games or XBox, but real boardgames, dice-and-paper role-playing games, etc.  My favorite role playing game is GURPS, though I also like Shadowrun.  I’m a fan of cheesy board or card games like Zombies and Munchkin, and simple miniatures games like Desperado and Aliens.  My dad got me into gaming when I was 8 years old, and he’s been playing games one night a week since before I was born.  We still play once a week, along with his brother and a few of our friends, alternating different games and different people’s houses every week.

Now I’m supposed to tag 5 people.  Trouble is, most folks have already been tagged.  Here’s my picks:

Mohammad Azam, Paul Litwin, Brendan Enrick, Zach Bussinger, and Ryan Olshan.

Published Sunday, January 14, 2007 3:45 AM by ssmith
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