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Showing posts from October, 2012

Tall Ships

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Saturday afternoon, the nation watched as the east coast prepared for hurricane Sandy's impending arrival by stocking up on bottled water, flashlight batteries and gas for their generators. Saturday afternoon, the captain of HMS Bounty and his crew were already battling 40 knot winds and 18 foot seas in an attempt to sail her offshore and out of harm's way.

William G. T. Shedd is often quoted as saying "A ship is safe in harbor, but that's not what ships are for." While inspirational, it's not entirely true. In good weather, harbors are relative safe zones for ships. When facing a storm, the best bet is to either have her hauled out and put in dry dock inland of the storm until the threat of danger has passed (not very practical or cost effective), or take her out to sea.

August 7, 2002, my friend Kirk Scott and I were ferrying a Beneteau 38' sailboat across the Gulf of Mexico when the weather turned. Kirk is a professional sea captain; I'd signed on…

Calling all Artisans

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About four years ago, I asked my brother Don to take the Ancestry.com Y-DNA (Y-33) genetic matching test. At the time, I thought the mysteries of the universe would unfold and I'd meet a distant cousin who could introduce me to Ellen. The fact is that I found Ellen by sifting through census records, but that has a weak story line and I really want you all to continue reading my blog, so let's just say that rather than mysteries unfolding, mysteries were confirmed.

The Y-33 DNA test matched genetic markers with other Ancestry.com members who'd been tested. I didn't consider at the time that, as an early adopter, I would end up with a relatively small pool of cousin data. The test did tell me that our fraternal line (Dad's) was part of Haplogroup R1B, a group called "The Artisans" who first arrived in Europe from west Asia about 35,000 - 40,100 years ago at the dawn of the Aurignacian culture. Considering that I'm only tracing ancestors back to the 16th …

INFJ

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Last night, as we were sharing our "so what did you do today" round robin over dinner, Walt mentioned that they'd been discussing personality profiles at the office and how understanding someone's profile helped to understand the person.

I like data, so I dug through my old work files and found my results from the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) and the Dimensions of Behavior Personal Profile System (DiSC) assessments as a comparison.

Before I continue, let me say that between 1994 and 2004 I was profiled not once, but at least five times: the MBTI three times, the DiSC twice, the Keirsey Temperment Sorter II once and two other tools that profiled me in a rainbow of colors and flavors. Seriously. As a matter of fact, the rainbow assessment was required by my manager at JPMorgan Chase for everyone in the team. Upon completion of the assessment, we were to post the results outside of our cube so that upon entering, visitors would be reminded of our communication and…

Cousin Charlemagne

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I'll never forget the thrill of discovering my great-grandparents' names. Three generations of the Hanson family: names, birth dates, marriage dates, children and when they died. But discovering a new ancestor is much like only eating half of the Hershey bar. Simply not possible to stop after the first bite, and so began a (now) twelve-year-long habit.

Three years ago, shortly after we moved from Cincinnati to NW Arkansas, I stopped by the local Family History Center and fell in love with the volumes of books and the quiet hum of the microfilm readers and before too long was asked if I'd like to volunteer. I will say that the only thing I like better than researching my own ancestors is helping someone discover theirs. 
Not everyone that visits a Family History Center is Mormon. In fact, most visitors are not. Having said that, church members are strongly encouraged to research their ancestors and so oddly enough, I assumed that I'd bumped into a whole community of data…