July 17, 2005
About Inner Geek
As a professor at the University of Minnesota, I teach, conduct research, and participate actively in the university and my professional communities. A student once asked me if I ever got bored doing research on the same topic - Never! Every day is different, bringing new opportunities for discovery and for building relationships. I am a family psychologist interested in the interplay between individual and relational development within family contexts. Favorite family drama: "Six Feet Under."
I'm also a musician, currently singing with the Waltham Abbey Singers and the Sch├╝tz Secret Singing Society. The latter is just a group of anywhere from 10 - 20 folks who gather monthly in someone's living room to sing, just for the joy and camaraderie of it. I also had the pleasure of singing for two years with The Gregorian Singers. These groups feed my love of Early Music and a capella singing in relatively small ensembles. I've also sung in the Motet Choir of the House of Hope Presbyterian Church and the Cathedral Choir of St. Mark's Episcopal Cathedral. Several years ago, I was on my way to a professional conference and used the flight to study the scores for an upcoming concert. I pored over the pages throughout the trip, rehearsing the music internally. At the end of the flight, the person seated next to me asked, "Are you a musician?" My instant reaction was to demur and say "no -- I just sing in a choir" --- and then I caught myself and confidently responded "Yes." An identity moment. A favorite book about musicians: An Equal Music by Vikram Seth.
I'm also a cat person - we have four wonderful Tonkinese members of our family: Pookie, Shadow, MacKenzie, and Sadie. Their personalities and interactions have been the source of many spirited conversations in our family - watch for occasional Friday cat blogging.
Technology has always been a strong interest - I use computers intensively in my research (both quantitative and qualitative), and I find technological advances stimulating and exciting - hence, recent posts about Google Earth and the VeriChip. I am co-author of a blog about Quantitative Family Research Methods. Favorite tech movie: "GATTACA."
My research concerns relationships in adoptive families. The relevant themes and topics address issues central to the human drama: the development of identity - one's own narrative - within the contexts of family and other interpersonal relationships. All of this must be considered within historical and cultural context as well as the perspectives of multiple disciplines. Favorite adoption movies: "Secrets and Lies," "First Person Plural."
Travel has enriched my life immeasurably - I've lived in very different parts of the United States: upstate New York (10 years), north central (8 years) and central Texas (17 years), northern California (2 years), and southeastern Minnesota (19 years). I will be moving to Massachusetts in 2008, so look forward to living in New England, where my sister and father now live. I've also traveled extensively in other parts of the United States and have spent various amounts of time in England, Wales, Scotland, Ireland, Norway, the Netherlands, Austria, Spain, Switzerland, Italy, Belgium, New Zealand, Finland, Germany, and Russia.... so far. So many more places to experience. A favorite movie involving exotic lands: "The English Patient."
I had no idea you've lived in so many places. It's funny how similar our interests are, and while I don't lean towards early music, I do have a passion for most genres of music. You know, you could post this information in an "About this Site" link on your blog. I'll show you how if you're interested.
Posted by: Kevin at July 18, 2005 8:57 AM
Thanks Kevin - Part of my intention in doing this post was to create an "about" feature - your suggestions on how best to do this would be appreciated!
Posted by: Hal at July 18, 2005 9:15 AM