The title of this blog was inspired almost 40 years ago when I drove into West Virginia for the first time. I was on my way to check out an apartment that had been rented on my behalf near WVU, where I would finish my undergraduate degree in Chemistry. After I entered the state, I hopped on a 10-mile segment of the then unfinished I-79, the sign said “Welcome to West Virginia” with “No Facilities” screwed onto the bottom.
The sentiment of that phrase has morphed from a whiney complaint of an 18 year old student who didn’t fully appreciate how lucky he was to even be attending college, to a badge of honor. In fact, “no facilities” has dominated my life and livelihood. As a systems developer, I have made my living creating what wasn’t included by the architects and builders. The systems that could be but weren’t, are the things I have spent 30+ years designing and building. Outside of work, I enjoy making things; furniture, cabinetry, new spaces in and around our house are all fertile ground for my hobbies.
I have other blogs, technical work-related things, but I’m not going to point them out here. This blog is for the stuff that doesn’t fit over there, the things that stir my interest but can’t be precisely packaged, categorized or targeted to a specific audience. I hope this blog attracts some of my existing readers, but I am not trying to build an empire of influence. As I mentioned in my profile, I enjoy woodworking, cycling, and photography. Previous hobbies have included a 30-year love affair with a Triumph Spitfire and routine maintenance of a couple of Dodge pickup trucks. Automotive work is a hobby I set aside as the Triumph aged and cars became more sophisticated. I still enjoy building and maintaining mechanical contraptions. I am a member of Toastmasters, and the topics I write about here are some of the things I speak about there.
I have a small but loyal family that I may introduce over time. They are important to me, but they share information about themselves, or they choose not to share and I respect those choices. The topic I started this blog with, influence, is centered on this family, they are the people who consistently influence the course of my life.