Brando failing to make a cool hand gesture for this blog post photo.
Where did you come from?
I’m a Southern boy; I was born in Memphis (my Mom was raised behind Graceland) and I was raised in a small town called Russellville on the other side of the Mississippi River in Arkansas. I can have an entire conversation about barbeque and corn bread (y’all). I went to a small public college in my home town that had cows grazing next to the parking lot. The Arkansas River Valley was a beautiful place to be raised but after college, I wanted to see the world, and more specifically, New York City. I bought a one-way ticket (thank you, Cass Elliot) and landed in Brooklyn on a warm summer night in 2005. I finally settled in the amazing burg of Astoria, Queens and I still miss the sunsets over the Triborough/RFK Bridge. I worked at a small, private retirement fund a block away from Wall Street and across thestreet from the World Trade Center. NYC was amazing but after six years, it was time to move on. I flew to California in August 2011 (boy were my arms tired…) and now I call San Francisco home.
What skills are you most proud of?
I’m most proud of my ability to complete personal profiles on blogs. My second most proud of my time organizing for the same-sex marriage equality push in New York State. I was at the right place at the right time and I’m astonished that I participated (in my small little way) to a movement that has finally brought somany amazing, dynamic, committed people together. We organized, educated, reached out, reached in, regrouped, travelled to Albany, cried, went back to Albany and celebrated as we watched history being made. As a result, I was able to legally marry my fiancé, Alex, on August 1, 2011. The next day, we moved to San Francisco. The planets aligned to allow us to get married in New York as ourfinal act as citizens there.
What bag did you walk in the door with on your first day here?
My messenger bag is an old soldier who’s seen every nook and corner of New York City. It’s a worn leather bag that’s polished into a sheen on the inner side and ragged and crumpled on the outer side from rain, snow and life. One’s messenger bag is an extension of himself. I’d receive a new messenger bag for Christmas or abirthday over the years but I kept going back to the Old Soldier. Now I carry my rad new Custom Messenger Bag with graffiti and grey wool with lime green logo! I’ve retired my leather bag. Sorry, Old Soldier.
What is your wildest dream job, real or imagined?
I’d love to be a tour guide. Back in NYC, I was a licensed NYC Sightseeing Guide and I took tourists around the sights of Manhattan on the weekends. I really like interacting with people and history stuff, so being a tour guide would be great. I’m still learning the ins and outs of San Francisco but who knows; maybe I’ll try my hand at giving tours on theweekend as a hobby. We’ll see…
What is your favorite song to sing aloud when you are alone in the elevator, the car, or a deep wooded forest?
I have a deep, deep addiction to karaoke and if that’s wrong, I don’t want to be right! My favorite Friday night is at a friendly karaoke bar (not too crowded…) with a beer while crooning Lou Rawls’ “You’ll Never Find Another (Love Like Mine)”. He croons, he soars, he’s amazing. I want to be 1/5th as cool as he is.