Octagonal, and proud of it!

As a sixteen-year-old, I once prayed that my life be unconventional. No, I didn’t pray to be successful, wealthy, or well-known; just unconventional. But, as they say, you should be careful what you wish or pray for because it might be granted. In my case, someone was listening, smiled, and said, ” we can do that!”

So I’ve been a folksinger, surgical technician, sailor, anthropologist, and carver. Between those, I’ve had bits and pieces of waiting on table, washing dishes, loading freight, teaching as an adjunct professor, a writer, editor of a community newspaper, encyclopedia salesman, teacher of media and television production, videographer, creative confabulist ( bullshit artist), and many other things that I can’t recall right now. But not conventional. I’ve done many of these things well enough and often enough that they can start with pro as a prefix.

Detailers and job counselors pulled their hair out by the roots or had it grow prematurely gray as they attempted to clean up my resume. Developing a classic “elevator pitch” was impossible. Who I was, how I did it, and why I thought it was important wasn’t a matter of a single sentence or a three-minute blurb. I’ve even had a few girlfriends give up in frustration because I “just wasn’t serious about doing one thing.” Luckily my wife is tolerant of me, but she came from a family of similar men and women, so maybe I was the norm for her.

After all these years, I have finally grown comfortable with myself. I have lost my tolerance for people for whom I fail to fit into the requisite square or round holes; I am octagonal and proud of it!

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