68New Orleans, United States
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My self-summary
I've been inquisitive about the natural world for a long as I can recall, and I've spent most of my working life pursuing those interests. But I've had wide-ranging interests beyond that, stemming from curiosity about different cultures and peoples, how political systems work, why we think we know what we think we know. I guess I'm a pretty curious guy. Along the way, I spent a lot of time in remote natural settings - mostly scientific field camps in places marginally accessible by float plane, and I remain very comfortable and at home in such places. I'm continually amazed at what a miracle it is that we all happen to be here at all, and all the intricacies of how nature (and we) work. I prefer to leave the world unburdened by my beliefs, as I'd rather just watch and see how stuff unfolds, what sense can be made of it, and what's enduringly mysterious.

I've been very fortunate, having had a career that's taken me to lots of interesting places, including internationally. But I have a lot of empathy for those less fortunate, and a healthy amount of respect for the role that sheer luck plays in most of our lives. I've been dirt poor and (currently) pretty well off, and I know that were it not for an outstanding education and light complexion I'd still be dirt poor, and like as not in jail.

I guess all this makes me a sort of curious atheistic mystic. But I'm not a big fan of "let's pretend", especially when it's patently self-serving, obviously contradictory, harms others, and otherwise jeopardizes our abilities to enjoy this place. And I've spent a fair chunk of my life facing down such perspectives in pretty contentious public forums.
What I’m doing with my life
Trying to make the most of what time I have left while leaving this place a little better off.
I’m really good at
Making the best of a situation. I'm very practical and very good at data analysis, both the formal kind and the how to make a decision about your life kind. And thinking weird thoughts (e.g. humans as terrestrial reef-building creatures...).
The first things people usually notice about me
I've been described as "looking somewhat harried and perpetually disheveled, with an enduring expression of bemused curiosity".
Favorite books, movies, shows, music, and food
Books: Russia (by Hosking), Quiet, The Medusa & The Snail, Harry Potter series, The Lord of the Rings, anything by Tuchman, Twain, Dostoyevski, Steinbeck...classics generally, and philosophy (esp ancient, Kant/Hegel/Marx, Nietzsche/Heidegger/Sartre; movies: Animal House, Gandhi, Brazil, Galaxy Quest, Lincoln; shows: I don't really watch any TV; music: blues, classic rock n roll, world music...bands and musicians I really like include Da Doors, Da Stones, Da Talking Heads, Dire Straits, Ry Cooder, Jorma Kaukonen, Vas, Eric Clapton & Jeff Beck, Ben Harper, Bela Fleck, generally most things intricate and emotive, with a compelling beat; food: Chinese (authentic), Thai, Cajun, French, Indian, Indonesian...
Six things I could never do without
Clean air, clean water, an interesting place to walk or hike, music, a computer, and friends.
I spend a lot of time thinking about
Well, women. But I also think about sustainability stuff and climate change, what is it really that makes for political and economic stability or is that just another mirage like it is in ecology, history. And women.
On a typical Friday night I am
Reading something, writing something or out on a walk
The most private thing I’m willing to admit
The most private thing I'm willing to admit is that I'm a very private person, becoming pretty open once I've decided I trust you.
You should message me if
You think I sound interesting and have things that interest you that you'd like to talk about.
The two of us