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Introduce Yourself 
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NitroForum Oldster
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Joined: Thu Apr 10, 2008 7:57 am
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Location: DC Metro
Post Re: Introduce Yourself
Peter, thanks for posting the link. It was nice to be able to hear your voice. Good luck with the new venture.

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"Being right too soon is socially unacceptable." - Heinlein, Expanded Universe


Wed Jan 19, 2011 7:35 pm
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Centennial Attendee
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Joined: Thu Apr 10, 2008 10:46 am
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Location: Aurora, IL, USA, Terra
Post Re: Introduce Yourself
Bill Higgins. Loved science fiction from the moment I knew it existed, perhaps age eight. This was about the same time I realized I would probably become a physicist. I bounced off Heinlein in the third grade, but came back to him around age 13 and found his books excellent.

At Notre Dame, and then Michigan State, I started connecting with people who were part of SF fandom. I started attending cons in the Seventies and have not yet stopped. Kelley and I met at a con; later, I married her.

I liked Chicago, so coming out of grad school I applied at Fermilab. I wanted to be involved with spacecraft someday, but high-energy accelerators were a pretty good second choice. I've worked on neutrino beams, control systems, construction databases, superconducting magnets, radiation shielding, tech writing, and beamline operations. Fermilab has been so nice that I never moved on; instead, I have learned about spacecraft in my spare time.

I also got involved with the L5 Society, later the National Space Society.

I've been giving science talks for about 25 years, at SF cons, astronomy clubs, public libraries, and wherever else I can find people to listen.

Tim Kyger asked me for help on the 2007 Heinlein Centennial. I'm afraid I wasn't much help, but I did wind up giving some talks (Heinlein and space suits; history of the rocket belt) and sitting on some panels. I met a bunch of wonderful people that weekend. The event fired up my interest in historical research, and the opening of semi-online Archives helped a lot. The more I do, the more questions open up for further investigation. It's puzzles all the way down. So far, I've published a magazine article and chapters in two books, but there is much more to write.

Here's another bio of me.

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Bill Higgins
bill.higgins@gt.org
http://beamjockey.livejournal.com


Thu Jan 20, 2011 5:40 pm
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Heinlein Nexus
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Joined: Thu Apr 10, 2008 8:10 am
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Location: Pacific NorthWest
Post Re: Introduce Yourself
The friendships I made during the making of the Centennial are the iron strength kind, being as they were forged in the heat of battle. Jim and Bill especially, since that's where we started... and the number of times I had to talk someone off a ledge all led to the shared-tribulations-and-tributes camaraderie that lasts a lifetime. It was my great honor.


Thu Jan 20, 2011 6:38 pm
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Joined: Sun Oct 25, 2009 11:20 am
Posts: 156
Location: Cloudcroft New Mexico
Post Re: Introduce Yourself
I'm the outsider of the forum. Never been a part of fandom much, even when I was attending Comicon in San Diego.

I'm thirty-four and currently working for the Alamogordo Public Schools. I've been doing long term sub jobs at the middle school where I did my student teaching. I have endorsements in Language Arts and History.

Before I earned my BS I worked in the restaurant industry for fourteen years cooking and running kitchens. I attended New Mexico State University earning a five year degree in three and a half years.

I've been involved with a local theatre group for many years that puts on melodramas to fund scholarships for local students.

I've first encountered Heinlein in 8th grade with Starship Troopers and Stranger In A Strange Land. His writing has been, for me, a voice that prodded me to observe and question in ways that led me down different paths.

Rob


Fri Jan 21, 2011 9:32 pm
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Joined: Tue Dec 02, 2008 8:22 am
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Location: Reno, NV
Post Re: Introduce Yourself
Hey, Rob. I lived in El Paso as a kid and teenager -- we spent a lot of fondly-remembered holiday weekends in Cloudcroft and Ruidoso. Used to go riding up there, and later on 4-wheeling down dirt roads. :-)

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Catherine Jefferson <ctiydspmrz@ergosphere.net>
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Thu Jan 27, 2011 8:56 am
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Joined: Mon Feb 28, 2011 9:53 am
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Post Re: Introduce Yourself
I am in reality Daun Eierdam, mostly lifelong Texan who now lives in Laredo, the city with the distinction of having no bookstore which sells new books (we're promised a new chainstore bookstore sometime this summer.)
I am a copy editor for Laredo Morning Times, and in fact I have worked at mostly small newspapers all over Texas, and one fairly large paper in Northwest Arkansas.
Harry and Al turned me on to Heinlein in my fourth year (of five) in college, loaning me a copy of The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress, for which their names ever will be among the saints as far as I'm concerned. (I'm talking about Saint Janis, Saint Jimi and Saint Jim, here.) (And yes, I know what I posted about Grace Slick in another part of the forum. I never said I was consistent.)
The second RAH work they loaned me was Farnham's Freehold, which I had some initial doubts about the first time I read it, but which has become an annual must-read by now. (Another annual must-read for me is Treasure Island.)
As far as high literatoor is concerned, other favorite authors are Mark Twain, Dashiell Hammett, Wm. T. Shakespeare and Nelly The Cross-Eyed Cow (I just love her nonfiction masterpiece, Some N-Dimensional Aspects of Hypercube Space-Time, co-authored by Andrew Jackson Libby, with illustrations by Dr. Suess.)
I am currently 61 years old and diabetic. I plan to overcome being 61 years old, by having another birthday. Diabetes is another story.
I am eternally grateful to Bill Patterson for undertaking the RAH biography and eagerly await Volume II.


Fri Apr 22, 2011 4:18 pm
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Joined: Sun Jan 25, 2009 7:52 pm
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Post Re: Introduce Yourself
First exposure to Mr. Heinlein's fiction occurred in 1968 soon after I turned 12, in my junior high school library in eastern PA; it offered Have Space Suit - Will Travel and Citizen of the Galaxy, along with some Andre Norton (perhaps Quest Crosstime) and Robert Silverberg's early story collection The Calibrated Alligator. A few years later I bought all of the then-current Signet mass-market Heinlein editions, mostly with the Szafran cover art. By the end of summer 1970 I'd read Stranger (very badly glued new Berkley paperback) and part 1 of I Will Fear No Evil in Galaxy magazine (which didn't make me want to buy further installments). That same year I had joined the Science Fiction Book Club and thereby acquired the Anthony Boucher-edited two-volume Treasury of Great Science Fiction and the Silverberg-edited Science Fiction Hall of Fame. I don't read much recently published SF; not much of it is to my taste.

After 8 May 1988 I wrote a long retrospective on Heinlein's career for my Big Ten campus paper - I was a night editor there as well as a music grad student. I would have liked to be able to go to the Centennial. I've only been to one SF convention of any sort: a Star Trek con at the Americana hotel, NYC, early 1975.

I have not had much luck getting my daughters to read the "boys' books" as they were called at the time of their writing. One of them did read Space Suit and now calls my spouse Mother Thing.

My late father-in-law (whom I never met) was a German immigrant who moved here in the '30s but lost his family to the Nazis; one of our most prized inheritances is a working document from his time at Grumman as a human-factors guy: the 1965 Lunar Excursion Module Familiarization Manual.

At a dance I was made to attend at age 13 or 14, we all got our pick of promotional singles given out by the evening's DJ (I already had a substantial singles collection). I chose "Cool Green Hills of Earth" by Southwind, credited solely to RAH (the same is true for the LP track; label visible at bomber-blog.blogspot.com/2009/12/southwind-ready-to-ride-1970.html). After June I should finally have time to digitize this 45.

I would like to conclude with a positive word about The Virginia Edition: The leather binding is nice and uniform.


Fri Apr 22, 2011 10:12 pm
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Joined: Thu Apr 10, 2008 8:10 am
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Post Re: Introduce Yourself
Welcome, welcome. I find every one of these introductions so heartwarming, discovering a kindred spirit united through our Bob-ness.


Sat Apr 23, 2011 9:09 pm
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Joined: Thu Apr 10, 2008 10:46 am
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Location: Aurora, IL, USA, Terra
Post Re: Introduce Yourself
ChuckA wrote:
I spent 5 years in the Air Force as a pilot and got a job with McDonnell Aircraft writing Pilot’s Handbooks. While at McDonnell, I was loaned to Project Mercury to write the Astronaut’s Handbook for the Mercury capsule so my interest in flying and space travel finally paid off.

(To reply belatedly...)

I'll bet Heinlein, had he known you at the time, would have wished HE had that job.

Googling suggests that the document is SEDR 109, "Project Mercury NASA Capsule Flight Operations Manual," one version of which may be downloaded at:
http://cdnetworks-us-1.dl.sourceforge.net/project/mscorbaddon/Research/Mercury%20MR-3/MR3_FlightOps.pdf

Is this correct?

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Bill Higgins
bill.higgins@gt.org
http://beamjockey.livejournal.com


Mon Apr 25, 2011 4:41 am
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Joined: Thu Apr 10, 2008 8:10 am
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Post Re: Introduce Yourself
You come up with the coolest links, Bill. I desperately wish that document had started with "Congratulations on your purchase of..."

I once had a physical copy of the Apollo flight computer operation manual. Sadly, no longer.


Mon Apr 25, 2011 5:30 am
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