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The Seagull - An Autobiography

I was born on the 24th day of September, 1977 in a small town in Nebraska.

I was named after a story written by Richard Bach called Jonathan Livingston Seagull.  It pretty well described my philosophy at the time and in many ways still does today. The book tells the story of a seagull who is bored with daily squabbles over food. Seized by a passion for flight, he pushes himself, learning everything he can about flying, until finally his unwillingness to conform results in his expulsion. An outcast, he continues to learn, becoming increasingly pleased with his abilities as he leads a peaceful and happy life.

One day, Jonathan is met by two gulls who take him to a "higher plane of existence" in which there is no heaven but a better world found through perfection of knowledge. There he meets other gulls who love to fly. He discovers that his sheer tenacity and desire to learn make him "pretty well a one-in-a-million bird." In this new place, Jonathan befriends the wisest gull, Chiang, who takes him beyond his previous learning, teaching him how to move instantaneously to anywhere else in the Universe. The secret, Chiang says, is to "begin by knowing that you have already arrived." Not satisfied with his new life, Jonathan returns to Earth to find others like him, to bring them his learning and to spread his love for flight. His mission is successful, gathering around him others who have been outlawed for not conforming.

As it turned out, I am a lot like Jonathan - although I don't think my mission has yet been achieved. It seems that I can't be satisfied with the status quo like most people. I always have to strive for something better. Over the years, I've learned that I'm happiest when I'm designing something or helping others. I've found that I'm also a teacher by heart.

My journey has taken me through several planes of existence and I've learned many things. Although my memory of the past is sketchy at times, I thought I would share some of my travels with you.