Friday, December 18, 2009

Fall 2009

Well, I suppose the biggest thing that happened to me this year was turning thirty. How's thirty? Not as good as twenty. Almost immediately after my birthday God decided to demonstrate to me the unique joys of getting older by subjecting me to a series of injuries. Thanks, big fella. First my knee, then my foot, and to round things out, my shoulder all began to fail me. My invincible youth is now officially over. I curse fast drivers, complain about today's youth, and take naps. Well, at least it's been a good run.

On the professional level, I have moved from working with kids to working with fire. Kids are harder. Now I work for the New Orleans Fire Department as a fire-fighter. In the past I have worked in wildland firefighting, but this is very different. For one, there is a lot of downtime. During this time I wash dishes or go over the truck. Maybe take the aforementioned nap. When we get a fire, however, it is much more technical. Because structures are involved, the visibility is very low and there are more hazards. In wildland fire, even though the fire is much, much larger, the open air allows a less intense experience. All in all, I really enjoy the job.

Still in graduate school as well. My thesis is coming together as well as can be expected. At times I am really excited about the subject, and other times I feel overwhelmed by the complexities. Basically, I am still writing on urban parks and their role in the transition from Victorian to Progressive America. While this seems to be a pretty narrow focus, I found myself compelled to study a wide range of topics in order to truly understand the process. I should be done with the program by June. In addition to the classes I also picked up a gig as a graduate assistant. Mainly that means grading papers. The extra money and the experience have been great.

2009 has been a big year for my family. In early November my sister Whitney and her husband John welcomed Marnie Jean Hupf to the world.(Get a kick out of my sister with her blackberry moments after giving birth. What is the world coming to ?) My brother Peter graduated from business school at the University of Washington. And my twin brother Thomas graduated from law school and has moved to China to be a lawyer. Lauren is still saving the world through her work in non-profit.

Merry Christmas to you, dear reader, and your family. As for me, all I want for Christmas is the Saints to win the Superbowl. Who Dat!