After school ended in '88, Dad got a consulting job for the Dept of
Health....in Egypt! The rest of the family tagged along with him, and we
got to see all the sights! The people there were very friendly, but this
was before the big Christian/Muslim turmoil that has been unsettling the
country of late. We met one Christian named Megde. He said that the
Christions in Egypt were descended from the Pharoahs. I'm glad we left
before that boiled over. This trip provided the first
awe-inspiring sight of my life: The Sphinx. I got to stand between its
paws...it was tremendous. I'd recommend it to you, but I don't think they
let you get that close to it anymore. I also got to go inside Mycernus
(the smallest of the three great pyramids), and climb on of Mycernus'
smaller "wives' pyramids" I don't think they let you do this anymore,
either. Bummer! Egypt did provide a highlight of a childhood of travel.
My parents' families lived in North Dakota, Virginia, Minnesota, Seattle,
Arizona and California. And we were in Rhode Island. My parents valued
travel over all the other luxuries you can pick from, so we did a lot of
it! I have pictures, if you want to come look at them. I'm not going to
scan them all to put on the web, though! :P
Kingstown Junior High
My life has seemed to have been a succession of broadening horizons.
The first one was when I went from my family to nursury school. The
second major horizon expansion was seventh grade. West Kingston
Elementary was the smallest of five schools feeding into the Junior High,
so I had a lot of new faces to get used to! Two of these were my favorite
teachers: Mr. Gannon and Mrs. Schaffaroth. Mr. Gannon told a lot of
jokes and I think I learned a lot from him. He was a history teacher.
Mrs. Schaf was a Phys Ed teacher. I think one of the reasons I liked her
was that I just liked gym, and moving around. This affinity was instilled
in me by Kristina Kelly-Shumate, my gym teacher from elementary school.
She had all sorts of neat programs, like having everyone jog and record
thier miles, trying to get the total to reach Los Angeles. Mrs. Shumate
made me think that I could do physical things, whereas before, I thought
all I could do were school things. I owe her a great deal for making me
who I am today.
But seventh grade wasn't all gaining friends. I was spending a lot of
time with Evan Blackwell, who I became friends with when he moved to town
in 4th grade, but Nick wasn't in any of my classes anymore, and he was
dating Cristy Balch, so I didn't see him much anymore. I tried my hand at
girls, too, but for some reason could form the words, "want to dance?" or
"wanna go out?" I couldn't even call her on the phone! I'm referring now
to Jenn Smith, who I fell in love with in Art class. Dave Coleman thought
she was pretty neat, too, and at the end of 8th grade, they started dating
officially. I paid for my hesitation. I remained starry-eyed over Jenn
until 10th grade. I was pathetic by my current (1997) standards.
School wasn't too bad, but I was ugly and pimply and braced and
obnoxious...I often like to box my memories of Jr. High up into one
package and dispose of them. But can you really dispose of memories?
School went ok; I got B's in math and english in 7th grade, but
rallied to straight A's in 8th grade, beating out a newfound friend, Bill
Palm, by a whisker. Bill and I, I came to realize, think much the same
way. In Home Ec, though, I outdid him - his average was 99.13, and mine
was 100. Ha! I say that because in 7th grade, he had gotten straight A's
and I was jealous. When you got straight A's in this school for a whole
year, you got an award, which the students called a "nerd plaque." Bill
had one from 7th grade, and we both had our hopes up for one in 8th. The
last class left was Wood Shop. Bill was a scout, and I had a dad with his
own shop, so you would think that we'd have it made. But when we got our
report cards, there was a problem. Bill got a B+ in shop! I laughed! I
got an A! I told him it was too bad that he was losing his nerd plaque
because of Shop. But as it turned out, they had ordered the plaques a
month earlier, so they had ordered one for both Bill and myself. We would
go on to get identical SAT scores and (I hope!) almost identical College
Degrees. He a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering and me a B.S. in
General Engineering (with a Mechanical concentration).
I tried out for the baseball team in 7th grade and didn't make it. I
hadn't ever played baseball, but I liked it as far as hitting a ball
around the backyard. in 8th grade I tried out for the basketball team and
didn't make that, either. I had played a lot of basketball, with Nick, my
Dad, and others. I felt that I should have been on the team, but I wasn't
picking 'em. So in the spring, I joined the track team. No cuts there!
Jerseys for everyone. I picked up shot put and sprinting. Nick was on
the team, too, and he did the same events. He was a lot faster than me,
but I did better in the Shot Put. We were both on the 4x100m team: he ran
1st leg, and I ran 3rd. I loved running the turn, that's why I ran the
200m as well. In the state meet, we won the overall title, and I got 5th
or 6th in the shot. I really like sprinting. I like going fast, and
feeling the air rushing by me. I won the Coach's Award, along with Nick
Moretti and Kristen Comerford I think, and that remains one of my most
The end of 8th grade brought a new revelation to me. At the end of
the year awards ceremony, I won awards for math and science and my nerd
plaque and I realized that I was smart! I had confidence in myself as a
smart person. This confidence would carry my all the way to Swarthmore.
South Kingstown High School. I think my Student ID # was 94108. Wow.
How 'bout that memory? 94 for my YOG and 108 for where I was in
alphabetical order. I was betweeen Nikki Horn and Dan Hunt. High School.
I once again succeeded in falling for several girls, but now, I succeeded
in CALLING them! That was a big first. I think that was Jenny Nuuttila.
Homecoming 1992. Oh, and I managed to attract them, too!
Sophomore year - both Holly Rocco and Faith Bancroft. I actually dated
Faith for a little while, but she would call me up and expected me to do all
the talking! So I told her that I was too busy with school for a
girlfriend. I felt bad about that a year or so later, since it was such
a heartless way to break up with someone. But boys will be boys, right?
Actually, I wasn't really a typical boy. I was totally at a loss when I
heard Jason Monahan say, "he was just usin' her for, you know, his needs."
Needs? I needed good grades and food, how is a girl gonna supply that?
Of course, the focus of my high school years was grades. I did ok,
getting straight A's sophomore and senior years, a B in AP US History, a
B in Honors Western Civilization, and a C in Honors English. That C was
freshman year. It took me 7 years to finally start to get a real clue
about writing prose. You may have noticed that I haven't applied any of
the things I learned in this document, but I read a lot, and I hope some
of that shows itself here. As long as there aren't too many grammar
problems that make you wince! :)
I continued to enjoy using my body for things - intramural basketball,
4 years of track, lots of school dances, and senior year, my first varsity
sport: Volleyball. It was the first year my school
had ever had a Varsity Boys' Volleyball team. I was its' first setter and
captain. Ben Schomp was the other captain. Sanjeeth was the one who got
me to try out. and Vicki Tefft got me to go to the World Scholar-Athlete
Games in 1993, the single most rewarding experience of my life so far.
WSAG was held in Kingston, on URI's campus in the summer of '93.
That's because the idea was cooked up by people at URI's Institute for
International Sport. Did I mention widening horizons before? Well
geographically, this widened them to Australia, the Seychelles, Poland
and, well, the whole world! It turned a switch in me - from quiet, smart
kid to exuberant, joyful young man! The WSAG had an incredible impact on
me. To demonstrate that fact, I met a girl at engineering camp the next
week, and really hit it off with her! There is no way this could have
happened to the pre-WSAG Dylan. No way. Only problem with this suaree
was that I thought the people there were more athlete than scholar. The
discussions we had weren't always very interesting. But had the people
there all been like me, it never would have changed me so much!
My senior year was great - I got over the girl from Engineering Camp
by listening to the Police, especially "Can't Stand Losing You." He kills
himself in the end! I was sad, but not sad enough to kill myself. Poof! I
was cured. Volleyball was great, too. I had coaches for soccer teams,
but I almost always found fault in them. They were too mean or too dumb.
Dilip K. Datta was the exception there - he was my first soccer coach. He
was very nice. Oh the track coaches who I was with all through High
School were always too *something*. And the Basketball coach that never
put me on the team was just dumb, right? my sophomore year, he put 7
frosh on the team instead of me. By my senior year, only one wasn't
incarcerated, moved, or dropped out of school. That was Andy Smith. I
liked him a lot. So to counteract all this was Vicki. She loved
volleyball and was a highly competent coach. Thanks to her coaching, I
started my development into what I think is a pretty ok volleyball player.
I made All-Division, too! Third team, I was the 17th best player in the
Southern Division. Sanjeeth was 18th, though he was better than me,
according to me.
Academics ended up really well. I edged out Bill for the #1 in
Physics award, did well on the SAT's, finished my fourth year of Spanish
(I love that language!), and got accepted to attend Tufts, Rochester and
Swarthmore. Dartmouth waitlisted me. I think partly due to my class
rank. I was 6th, and the #2 girl from my class applied there, too. She
got it, though she ended up going to Brown. The worst thing was that Mike
Altreuter, who was like #12, got rejected. Stupid Dartmouth. My
interview with them was bad, too. I made the mistake of saying
"renaissance man" and one of the *three* interviewers lectured me on what
a REAL Renaissance Man was like. But I didn't care! My long college
search ended with Swarthmore. I graduated #6 out of 190 or something, and
Bill gave a speech at graduation, as President of the Senior Class. Wanna
know something weird? Bill was born on the same day as another president
named Bill; Clinton, August 19th.
Off to Swarthmore. Freshman year was great. Magical. I started on
my Engineering Degree, and started learning about Eastern Philosophy.
That was another big thing for me, as far as turning points go. I really
liked what I read in the Tao-te-Ching. I wrote a Taoism
Page when I learned about HTML. I roomed with Fred Bush, who shared
little in common with me, other than tee-totalling. I made him sing O
Fortuna at Screw Your Roommate, though. We often disagreed on what music
to listen to; me choosing Gordon Lightfoot, and he choosing TMBG, Simon
and Garfunkel, and others. I met so many cool people! I've heard that
the folks you meet right away are the friends you have forever, and what
do you know, but I've seen everyone this summer: Beth Wiles, Joan
Hoffmann, Lynn Chosiad, Mandy Hourihan, Ashley Flynn, Kristin Vitalich. I
made some animated gifs in honor of a few of
them. I'm sad, since I haven't seen Seth Murray, Kate Schneider, Morgan
Kelly, Ronan McCoy and a lot of others, but I'll see them back at school!
I met Julie Humphreys, who shared my mailbox with me, and most of my last
name. I embarked on quite the relationship with her; it was very good for
most of freshman year, quite
bad for sophomore year, kinda not there for junior year, and I am hoping
good for the upcoming year. She says that the chorus from the Freshman
song applies to us pretty well. I had thought that Gordon Lightfoot's Never
Too Close had, too. Volleyball was good, and I jumped right in
and started setting for the Club Team! By the end of the year, Ben Chong
Araul had gotten sick of either me or the whole team, and they quit.
Araul had been our coach. I love Volleyball. Paul does, too. That
would be Paul Hsu, who I roomed with Sophomore Year.
Sophomore year witnessed the beginning of my relationship with Lynn
Chosiad. September 24th, 1995 so you can count along at home. We had
been friends all of freshman year, but now we were better friends. What
was weird was that Lynn roomed with Julie! Go figure. I think it was
around here that I started to heed Greg
Arakelian's advice and stop thinking so much. I lived on Hallowell 3rd that year, along with Paul, Wonju and Jimmy.
George was downstairs, too. What a great year. Never mind the C's I got
in Math. Oh, I put up a page of all the Courses that I've taken, for those that are curious.
It was sophomore year that I gave up hopes of being a Physics/Engine
double major. I liked Physics a lot, but Joan and John Boccio just
couldn't outweigh how much I liked the field of Engineering.
Sophomore year was a lot of fun. Rednex' album, Sex and Violins,
has songs which get the general emotion of that year accross, I think.
Oh, that year is also the year I ended 19 years of teetotaling.
mmmmm....vodka. I'm not even Russian! or Latino, but I like tequila,
too. My grandmother likes tequila, though, so I guess I get it from her.
I stopped listening to Gordon Lightfoot as much as I should have, but as
of 1997 I'm back to where I like to be. I was still breaking it on down as
often as possible - I danced in High School, and I try to do the same at
Swat. I'm not as Crazy as Peter Murray and Isaac Reed; I give much props
to those two boys. Oh! Sophomore year also
introduced the largest wrinkle of my life to date: Multiple
Sclerosis. I've put all the salient information up on that page, so I
won't here. I started working at APC
around then, too. That was pretty cool, working with HTML, and meeting
Aaron. Aaron =
Da Bomb. We both had Ladies in the Boston Area, and we bonded over that.
We had a monster trek up to MacWorld in '96, too. how cool?!
OK, are we at Junior year yet? Yup! Finally started taking REAL
Engine classes (see My Classes for details)
like E41, where we actually studied how an engine works! and Heat
Transfer! I loved that class! Fluid Mechanics was cool, too! All my
friends were either girls or volleyball players or Byron! Oh right, I was
living with Byron, as I stated on an older
homepage. Lynn and I were still an item, and Julie was still her
roommate! No small thanks to me, which is part of the reason why Julie
and I weren't getting along very well. At one point, I analyzed her name
Numerologically and realized that she'd be much
better off going by Julia than Julie. Junior Year featured the end of
my life as a Red Sox fan. pretty sad. I
still like fenway, and baseball, and I'll go toe to toe with anyone in
baseball trivia, but I can't be fanatical about the Sox anymore. Oh, I
finally got to take Intro Education, and it was another wonderful class.
Swarthmore's full of
wonderful classes! I'd recommend it to anyone who has $120K to spare.
Senior year. It was basically the first time I'd ever drank a
whole can of WHUP-ASS. bang boom pow - I'm done now, though. got my BS
engineering from swarthmore, thank you, see you later. maybe.
They sure help you enjoy senior week at Swarthmore; Dixieland band,
great food, good parties, good friends...ahh. almost made up for the
rest of senior year. <g> Oh - and at graduation then had all us
engineers sit in back, so we doffed our mortarboards and replaced them
with train engineer's caps, and then put great big letters on our backs,
which spelled out "MORE BS THAN THE REST" flaunting the fact that we are
the only ones on campus that are awarded Bachelor of Science degrees.
Which letter did I wear? aha! I didn't wear one! I was the space in
between THAN and THE. A void between the most common. A Taoist's paradise, I guess...
Now it's the real world. Rob set me up with a piece of employment out in
San Mateo; hopefully I will be able to get my life restarted out there.
West coast, baby. So now I suppose my biography should end. I'll start
it up later, once I find a new place to hock my web wares. :)
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