I'm smart, thoughtful, creative, adventurous, active, and a good
listener. I am an academic by profession, but have an activist side
that is growing. I travel internationally a fair amount for work
and for fun, and love exploring new places, at home or away. I am
easy-going and don't get bothered when things don't go as
planned--either I am that way naturally or I have learned that from
working in places like Moscow and Cairo. I love laughing at the
funny things about daily life.
What I’m doing with my life
Working at a great job that allows me to pretty much decide what I
want to do. Figuring out what it is that I want to do in my job.
Running along the lake with my dog, and thinking about preparing
for a marathon. Meeting new people in the hopes of finding the
Also, I'm on the board of a large animal shelter/welfare
organization in Cairo, and have founded a charitable organization
in the US to support that work in Egypt.
Favorite books, movies, shows, music, and food
Books are my work: I read, write, and teach them, and they can take
over my home and office sometimes. For fun reading, I am in a
Russian mood right now, classics and contemporary. If you have read
Andrei Makine and liked him, let me know. The New Yorker is usually
a joy too.
I tend towards independent and foreign films. I missed the Chicago
International Film Festival this year, but next year I might just
try to watch every film. Man of Iron and Man of Steel are two old
favorites from Poland. Current comfort films for me are Train
Station for Two (a Soviet-era romantic comedy) and The Best Exotic
Marigold Hotel (if that doesn't put you in a good mood, nothing
will). Moscow Does Not Believe in Tears; Four Months, Three Weeks,
and Two Days. I want to see more Spanish-language movies. I tend to
like British television: Coupling, Downton Abbey.
The Chicago Diner, Native Foods, Mexican/Tex-Mex (I grew up in
Texas and ate it pretty much everyday, so a black bean burrito for
me is confort food), just about anything Asian (north, south, east,
or west, such as Indian, Thai, Chinese, Malay/Indonesian), Ras
Dashen (no other Ethiopian restaurant in Chicago comes close),
sweet potato fries. I will try anything--just not meat. That's just
my preference, but it doesn't have to be yours.
The six things I could never do without
Soy chai lattes
Books, movies, music (seems fair to put it all under one
Laptop and blackberry (likewise)
My dog Lola (although she is emphatically not a thing)
I spend a lot of time thinking about
Pretty much everything I have written about here, and much more.
But I also value, and am trying to do more of, taking a break from
thinking, whether by exercise, meditation, or music.
You should message me if
You are self-aware enough to know what being honest and open means
and to know why it matters so much; you are curious about the
world; you are a combination of serious and silly; you want to
learn from me and want me to learn from you; you would enjoy
helping me figure out what kind of large-screen television to get