...on himself

Formally known as "My 'brief' autobiography" on the ...on Myself page.

Who am I?

I have been married for over five years to Sarah Bolden, a beautiful woman who is also smart enough to work well with chemicals. We have no kids, though we want to eventually, and so we make do with our cat: a six or so year-old siamese mix named Cinderella. I am currently attending the University of Alabama's mixed cohort (online and on campus classes mixed) to get my Masters of Library Science; while working as a reference librarian (or something like it) at UAHuntsville's Salmon Library.

I was born May 30, 1977. Flatrock, Alabama (south Alabama, by the way, as opposed to the one up here closer to Huntsville). I attended public school and did generally well. Graduated class of '95 from Hillcrest Highschool. For a good deal of my life I wanted to be an agricultural scientist of some sort. I have also wanted to spend a large chunks of time in isolation experiments. I have now dropped that, the former at least.

My parents are Charles and Barbara Bolden. I have one older sister, named Donna. I have two older brothers named David and Danny. I have a younger, adopted brother named Shawn. I love them all. I also have a series of nieces and nephews: Jake, Alicia, Justin, Jonathan, Samantha, Brianna, Zack, Hadyn, and "Junior" (Sean, Jr). I don't think I forgot any. Being married, I also have in-laws. I am fairly close to my sister-in-law, Alicia, even though she now lives across the state from me and we don't talk that much anymore.

My chief hobbies are tinkering with this site (3rd place), writing poetry (maybe 4th place), watching horror movies (2nd place), and reading (definitely 1st). I often use the phrase "voracious reader and avid horror hound". I am not sure if people know what that last one means. I just assume that they assume the worst.

My educational background is mostly in philosophy (especially epistemelogy) with some astrophysics (I suppose mostly solar system mechanics is one of my things). My actual work in astrophysics involved x-ray astronomy on an old BSD computer in a small grey room. It, more than anything, is probably why I did not continue deeper into the field. My original intent was to work with designing of research paradigms, something that I am still interested in. What this would mean practically is that I go to a lab, see what was being studied and how the group dynamic work, and then try and work out ways that would make the lab conceptually, as well as actually, better. A consultant of sorts, but more general.

Besides my librarian work, I have worked as a glass-ware cleaner in a lab, a lumberjack (of sorts), and as a "sandwich artist". My work background is currently more into retail than anything else if you go by sheer mass. Every retailer can list his or her "age" by the number of Christmas seasons they have completed. In my case, my retail age is four. All four were at bookstores, though the last one was spent more as a calendar selling ambassador to a bookstore. I absolutely recommend everyone spend one Christmas season working in retail; you will understand far more about humanity than you ever have before. The bookstore I managed was called The Book Gallery (also known as Half-Priced Books), which still is (just without me) a discount bookstore that mostly sells bargain books and "remainder" product. My other bookstore was a Waldenbooks (and its calendar store, the last year). The Waldens is gone, and I was there to help break down parts of it. It was an interesting way to say "May I only work retail again if it is absolutely right for me".

I am a Gemini. I act like one, but I don't exactly believe in horoscopes. I am notoriously "double sided" about everything, even when I am fairly clear what the real answer is. I tell people have a second voice in my head that helps to watch out for me. This is true. It is something of a more serious version of my normal conscience voice. I regulary flip a coin to make a decision. It has traditionally been a 1977 penny. Now, however, I favor nickels and this one Candian quarter that I have had for awhile (at the time of this post, I may have lost it, because I no longer see it).

I say "heh" too much. In chat and such, I often achieve this effect by flailing on the "e" and "h" keys to cause a random string of "heheheehheehhehehe" like characters to spew forth. I try hard to not start with an "e", because something about "ehehehe" sounds more old-man cackle than I am going for.

If you were to ask me what mostly defined me as a child, I would immediatley list four things: (a) books, (b) playing in the swamp, (c) Doctor Who, and (d) the fact that I was told what expensive toys to play with by a television set but my choices were always limited by poverty. Due to these four things, I largely lean to doing my own things. I am neither alt- nor in-crowd and never have been. I understand fashion to a degree, but am just about as likely to go and look at some interesting pond fish as to look at a new car. Who am I kidding? I am more likely to look at the pond fish.

My chief hobby, as mentioned at least twice above, is reading. I read a lot of SF (but not really fantasy), as well as underground fiction. Philip K Dick, P.G. Wodehouse, Charles Dickens, and Neil Gaiman are probably my top four right now. I also dig the heck out of Chuck Palahniuk, Brian Keene, Greg Gifune, Edward Lee, Edgar Allen Poe, Ray Bradbury, Howard Philips Lovecraft, Fyodor Dostoevsky, Neal Stephenson, Christopher Moore, JRR Tolkien, Cory Doctorow, Richard Laymon, and E.L. Doctorow just to get the list started. My chief reading interest is the novel (or, well, actually the "romance" though this term has went haywire lately). I tend to be a book addict. Not just in the reading sense, but in the whole owning and collecting and just searching for sense. This has cost me and the wife too much money, and for that I apologize. But you should see my library. At last count, it stands near 3000 books.

My goals have been for awhile to either own my own bookstore or to work in a library. After the four years of retail, I have opted more for the latter. I still might try and own a bookstore one day, but not likely in the South. In the South, reading is mostly about a passion of escapism, I would say. I want there to be also a passion for the written word itself. The Gutenberg Press people. I still feel a catch in my throat just thinking about it.

Besides UAH (where I did my undergrad, and yes, that is the same school as UAHuntsville) and UA, I also attended a junior college called Jefferson Davis Community College. It is located in Brewton, AL, right at the bottom of the state. Its campus is, or at least was beautiful, and the classes were small and personal. Campus wise, it was probably smaller than some larger high schools, but that is ok. The second best part about that was the friends I made. I hang out with nearly none of them now, except online, but still. The best thing was that one of those friends suggested UAH. This led me to Sarah. Good stuff.

I write poetry (my number 4, above), though kind of rarely at the moment. I play videogames about once a month and it has been half a year since I have gotten one enough to finish it. I am generally nonchalant about pornography one way or another. Some of it is neat. The current general trends towards violence justifies too many 1960s-70s stereotypes and makes me sad. I suppose it is something like anti-irony when things grow to become exactly what you expect despite not actually being what you expect at the beginning.

I am trying to play [pen and paper] RPGs more often, and currently have a Shadowrun, fourth edition game going that is good. Oh, and I play a now eight or nine year old play by e-mail RPG based on second edition Dungeons & Dragons. I have tried, and arguably succeeded, in writing a few RPGs myself. Strangley, my most popular one (The Heroes of Oblend) is a short module for a short RPG (Risus). I talk about Ghostlight a lot, though I am unsure if I will ever finish it. I also talk about something called Runworld and Resistence a lot. Maybe time will explain why.

I smoke a pipe, though not overly often. I drink, mostly dark beer and gin, but not really on a daily basis or anything.

I have one tattoo right now, a spiral on my right arm. I want to get a couple more spirals and then have them build into a labyrinth, partially in tribute to House of Leaves. This takes money. That hurts more than pain. I am allergic to sunlight, though not as bad as some. Enough to wreck a week after a sunburn, though. I am allergic to some pollen, so I get sniffles kind of regularly in early Spring and early Fall. I have a fear of storms. Sort of. It comes and goes, but used to be worse. I have af fear of stinging insects linked to when I was stung a lot as a kid (I knocked a nest of hornets down when I wrecked into a tree with my bike). It also comes and goes, but has largely faded. I am annoyed by enclosed spaces and crowds, but not afraid of them. I have this weird fear meets fascination thing with mazes and masks, but that does not quite count. I'm moderately phobia-less.

I don't shop at Wal-Mart, Target or Starbucks except rarely (less than once per season, really) anymore, and haven't for three or so years. I detest the "Fast Food" mentality of "treat your workers like crap". I am editing out fast food establishments as well; eating it only once or twice a month. And Microsoft treats their workers pretty good, so that's cool, I just can't stand their products.

I am a Linux geek. I love (k)Ubuntu and recommend it to everyone. While there are some acts of awesome to be had on a Windows PC, the sheer metric ton of bullcrap tends to balance this far, far in the favor of Linux. At least try out Mac if you think Linux is too hard (and if you think Linux is too hard for the average user, try out an Ubuntu Live DVD and stop listening to the 1999 era Microsoft advertisements, I think you will be surprised).

With the exception of Sarah, I have had only a couple of loves in my life and they ended poorly, and that's enough of that.

Written by W Doug Bolden

For those wishing to get in touch, you can contact me in a number of ways

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The longer, fuller version of this text can be found on my FAQ: "Can I Use Something I Found on the Site?".

"The hidden is greater than the seen."