December 7th, 2009

storyteller doll

A Holidailies Introduction

Since Holidailies inevitably brings new readers, I thought it was worth posting an introduction.

Fauxklore is a pun on folklore. One of the things I do is tell stories and some of my stories are original ones, based on folklore. There are a handful of folktales I tell straight, usually ones from cultures that are far enough removed from my own that I'm not comfortable with too much tweaking. But things seem to happen to others and I often look back at sources a couple of years later and am surprised at how little of the story I tell is really there in the sources. I also tell personal stories and a few historical ones. I have been vaguely working on two things that I intend to turn into fringe shows. One has to do with freaks and the other with women mathematicians. I do not spend nearly as much time working on these as I should.

I spend somewhat too much time working at my day job, where I advise senior government leaders on military satellite systems. What I like about my job is that I'm not doing the same things all the time. (I am a firm believer in the short attention span method of career planning). There are annoyances (e.g. having to review a 400+ page budget document in two hours to figure out if it has any impact on our programs) but they're tolerable ones.

Travel is one of my major obsessions. I've been to every U.S. state and between 58 and 65 countries, depending on what you count as a country. I have travelogues up at but I am way behind on travelogue writing. My most recent trip was to Peru. My next major trip will be to western Canada (British Columbia and Alberta), including going to the Olympics in Vancouver.

Other things I do are various crafts (primarily with textiles and paper, though I tried my hand at glassblowing this past year), reading (mostly murder mysteries), dancing, gaming and puzzles. Anybody who knows me knows I am an ardent Red Sox fan. I also go to the theatre a lot.

I grew up on Long Island, went to MIT for undergrad and Berkeley for grad school and then lived in Los Angeles for 17 years. I've been in Northern Virginia since 2002. My retirement plan involves New England, with a condo in Punta del Este, Uruguay for the 4 months of the year that New England is uninhabitable. Except for the days, that is, when I decide I really want to live on a boat. Which would mean owning a lot fewer books and a lot less yarn.

That's probably enough to start with.