I grew up in a small town in Florida among Baptists. There were Methodists, Presbyterians, and Seventh Day Adventists living there, too, but they were mysterious and foreign. The summer before college I read “Essay on Morals,” by Philip Wylie, and my whole life passed before my eyes. In college I met Catholics, Jews, and Atheists, and came to realize I was among the latter. In graduate school in Sociology, I met my first foreigners, Indians, saw “La Dolce Vita,” and the the world began to open up. I was a missile launch officer in Montana for four years, avoiding Vietnam and luckily, not incinerating the planet. After the Air Force I moved to Eugene, Oregon, took English and auto mechanics courses to collect G.I. Bill, and fell into a job working for the railroad that lasted over 31 years as a switchman, brakeman, conductor, and finally engineer; in Sparks, Nevada; Oakland, California; Tucson, Arizona; and finally back in Oakland since 1989, retiring in January of 2004. I’ve dabbled in drawing, painting, sculpture, photography, video, 3d animation, and audio editing. I got my first real computer in 1993 or so and a few months later put up a web site that I’ve been adding to sporadicly ever since. I started smoking pot in 1972 and within 2 or 3 years learned how to stay stoned constantly and still handle full-time employment. I got clean and sober in a treatment program and AA, and stayed with that 9 years till I discovered Jean Klein, and spent the next few years exploring Eastern Religions and brain science. It’s been a long, strange trip, very interesting. I became a Susan Blackmore fan after reading “The Meme Machine,” and discovered the Center for Inquiry through a podcast with her. Looks like my kind of place, so far.