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Offline Jon

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What are (or were) members occupations?
« on: April 04, 2016, 02:32:07 PM »
One of the things I love about this forum besides our passion for bikes, is the fact that we come from all over the world. There are so many diverse cultures and back grounds represented here and yet we all have so many things in common. As I read posts from all of you from around the world I often think about how nice it would be to get to know you better. So how about telling us a few things about yourself; your occupation, (or what you did before retirement, as is the case for many of us...) maybe a bit of background, or perhaps just something you'd be comfortable sharing about yourself.

I grew up on a farm with my mom & step father with no siblings. We were one of the few families that I know of in our part of the country that didn't have running water or central heat in our old house until 1968 when we built a new home. Part of my daily chores was to carry water in & out of the house and to keep our stockpile of wood & corn cobs supplied for cooking & heating. I also did outside chores taking care of hogs, cattle, chickens, and my pony. We didn't have much money growing up so my stepdad & I did a lot of custom farming work for other farmers in the area. For me, as I look back on it, it was a good life. My life on the farm taught me valuable life lessons and a work ethic which have helped immensely in my 63+ years.

After high school I worked at a feed mill for a couple of years, then for an independent Goodyear dealership for several years as a shop foreman & then as general manager. It was during this time that I married my high school sweetheart & started raising the first of our 3 daughters. I had always wanted to farm & had the chance to do that in the spring of 1979. High interest rates & low prices let my bankers know that by the time 1983 came around, it was time for me to give up farming & do something else. I was fortunate enough to get hired on as an apprentice lineman @ our local power company. ( I worked there for the next 31 years as an apprentice, journeyman, & then crew foreman, until my retirement a little over 2 years ago. I still help a good friend in my spare time with his farming operation of over 2,600 acres. They say you can take a boy off the farm, but you can't take the farm out of the boy. :001: It's been a fabulous life & has given me thousands of great stories and a few not so great, but I wouldn't want to change any of it.

Here are a couple of pics from my when I worked @ the REC. :821:


Offline FL_Explorer

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Re: What are (or were) members occupations?
« Reply #1 on: April 04, 2016, 02:53:18 PM »
Cool idea, Jon!  It is an odd experience for me sometimes to communicate with people I may never meet.  Forums allow people to get to know each other both very well, and not well at all, if that makes sense.  That is why I love the opportunities I get to meet other members in person, especially when those meet ups involve some motorcycle riding!

As for me, I don't find my life story all that interesting.  Maybe that's because I've been there every step of the way?  I'm middle of the pack, age wise, at only 42 years old.  I was born in a small town in upstate NY near the Canadian border.  I lived there for the next 18 years, or until graduation from high school.  My parents owned an auto body repair shop, so I spent a whole lot of time working in my father's garage.  Looking back today, I think I learned a lot of lessons from that type of upbringing, although as it was occurring, I did not like it at all.  I learned a lot about cars, a lot about snow, a lot about how NOT to do small business, but most importantly, I learned that I didn't want to be self employed.  From a young age, I always was enamored with law enforcement.  My favorite TV show growing up was the Andy Griffith Show, and as I aged, I found TV shows like COPS and movies like Lethal Weapon to be what excited me.

So after moving to Florida in 1992, at the young age of 18 (almost 19), I enrolled in the police academy.  Life would show me for probably the first time, that my plans meant nothing.  By the time of my 20th birthday, I was on a completely different life course which had nothing to do with a police academy.  I was back in the auto industry!

I spent the next several years managing an automotive detail shop.  That branched out into me becoming a mobile installer of automotive electronics; aftermarket items like stereos, alarms, power windows, etc.  I did this work until 1999, and mostly hated every minute of those 6 years.  I finally quit the job and decided it was time to chase the law enforcement career.  In 2000, I finally achieved that goal and have been a deputy sheriff for the past 16 years.

Side note:  Law enforcement is NOTHING like Mayberry, COPS, or Lethal Weapon!  But it is everything I thought it would be, just with more down time and paperwork.  (No television show or movie EVER shows you the paperwork part of the job.)

So that's about it.  I'm leaving out HUGE chunks of data, most glaringly my family life.  Suffice it to say, I'm very happily married to a wonderful and beautiful woman who keeps me in line.  That's pretty much a given since she's from the south.  Go figure, a yankee and a southern girl making a go of it!  The Lord does work in mysterious ways...

Ride safe, and ride often!

Offline Speedaddictedberk

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Re: What are (or were) members occupations?
« Reply #2 on: April 04, 2016, 03:26:38 PM »
I'm an offshore inspection engineer in the UK North sea.
For those who don't know what this might entail I usually summarise it as "it rusts, we look". I'm running the team that inspects the platform structure, pipework and vessels.

I started as a trainee NDT (Non destructive tester) when I was 18, worked my way through various qualifications and through different jobs. I've worked in Nuclear power stations examining critical welds, I've inspected sections of machined aluminium for the French space program and at one point I spent a lot of time examining welds on office chairs for BP. Mostly I get to look at corroded pipework and structural steel and say how bad it is before trying to get it changed.

After 18 years doing inspection using mainly Ultrasonics and occasional rope access (occasional because I'm scared of heights) I got the job in charge that I currently have. I've got as far as I can go in my work offshore at 39. To get a promotion would mean going into an office job onshore for less money and working a lot more!

Currently on a 3 week on and 3 week off rotation so I have enough time to play with motorbikes.
« Last Edit: April 04, 2016, 03:38:12 PM by Speedaddictedberk »

Offline Icy

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Re: What are (or were) members occupations?
« Reply #3 on: April 04, 2016, 03:32:44 PM »
Born in Turkey (Turquie - that's where it comes from). Majored in architecture in college; became lead programmer in the multimedia lab on the second year - never got a chance to work as an architect afterwards. I was there when the Internet began, summer of 1995, watching the broadcasts (no online video back then) of Frame (something most won't even remember now) technology on three different monitors. Became one of the first "webmasters" in Turkey (another term nobody will remember) Produced the first eCommerce web site, first realtime online credit card transaction, first fully SET compliant e-commerce application, first online museum of Turkey - fourth in Europe (Istanbul Museum of Painting and Sculpture) and moved on to producing virtual branches for online trading firms. Kept working in finance industry untill 2003; came to the US for vacation, got a job offer, stayed here ever since.

Worked in a small business, designed & wrote their entire back-end and front-end (sorry for technical terms here) and left them after 3 years as the #1 rated ethnic shopping site as per Alexa (something else nobody will remember now) and moved on to working for one of the leading (if not the best) architectural visualization firms (producing renderings and real-life looking images & videos of projects that don't exist in real life yet) in the United States. Because I was a designer, programmer and an architect it was a very interesting position. Had tons of fun there and then moved on to Wall Street and worked as the Director of Information Technology for a Hedge Fund for 7 years.

After a messy divorce, a brother's suicide and some other crap decided to take a sabbatical to recalibrate and recenter myself so I quit my job 2015 May and am living with my second wife in Rhode Island ever since.  :821: I still am in my extended sabbatical  :082:

I teach martial arts on Friday afternoons and am working on a motorcycle safari tour project

That's the gist of it without naming anyone


"It's easy to learn how to speak, it takes a lot more to learn how to actually say something." ~Icy

Offline NiK

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Re: What are (or were) members occupations?
« Reply #4 on: April 04, 2016, 04:53:15 PM »
I work in Information Security, so I don't disclose any private data.

Damn! I just did!


Offline owl

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Re: What are (or were) members occupations?
« Reply #5 on: April 04, 2016, 06:30:06 PM »
Retired detective, now working as an investigator for a firm of solicitors (attorneys)

Offline Lopez

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Re: What are (or were) members occupations?
« Reply #6 on: April 04, 2016, 09:24:37 PM »
I was born in Madrid, but I've been moving all over the world for many years. I decided to study two degrees at the same time, so I did: Business Adiministration and Computers science.

My first Job was as an Internet programmer, analyst and P.M.

I move from Madrid to Barcelona, then to London, Milan (Italy), Paris, Lausanne (Switzerland) and back to Madrid.

Now I'm the Head of Platform (Chief of Technological Office) in a startup company.

Offline AndrewNZ

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Re: What are (or were) members occupations?
« Reply #7 on: April 04, 2016, 09:59:34 PM »
I worked for over thirty years in bulk pharmaceuticals in the UK and decided to relocate to New Zealand five years ago where I worked as a casual stevedore driving heavy plant on the container wharf but after a minor heart attack in December I'm now retired, a couple of years early, so can ride the best riding roads in the world when I want.  :046:

Offline Dick63

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Re: What are (or were) members occupations?
« Reply #8 on: April 04, 2016, 10:56:14 PM »
I'm an aerospace engineer.  My technical specialty is advanced structures, although now I mostly manage R&D engineering work done by others.  Retirement is on "the horizon", but nothing definite now. 

Offline 1984Rider

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Re: What are (or were) members occupations?
« Reply #9 on: April 05, 2016, 03:11:24 AM »
I guess I'm a typical American guy. Grew up in a small town, first generation to move away from that town. Got into riding at 10 years, bought my own first motorcycle at 14 (worked 6 days a week, 10+ hours a day) which I restored and rode daily. Dad rode as a kid and we taught my mom to ride, worst mistake ever, she hardly drove a car after that. We rode on some tours together and was great living in a motorcycle family, especially having 3 motorcycles to choose from most times. Graduated college with an aircraft maintenance license. Married once to a walking disaster who parted me and my fun Sprint ST, a considerable chunk of money and my reputation. After just north of 20 years as an aircraft mechanic and inspector working on everything from fabric antique aircraft to large corporate business jets I am now an aircraft Quality Assurance Inspector.

Wife number 2 (current and last) was the best trade I've ever made and was the one who ultimately nudged me to get the TEx as we were also looking at a Trophy.
"My mind is a raging torrent, flooded with rivulets of thought cascading into a waterfall of creative alternatives" - Hedley Lamarr


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