STORYTELLERS capture our imaginations in many forms. For example Jim Goodman who used to be referred to as Professor James Goodman in Civil Engineering at Colorado State University. I’d worked with his group writing the outcome of their efforts to—on purpose—break wooden telephone poles. Those who offered the poles for demolition were the Electric Power Research Institute in Palo Alto, California.
But that was then and this is now. Like many of us who used to write for others, we now take great pleasure in writing blogs about many topics. In Jim’s case it is his memories of living in Wild and Wonderful Wyoming; the title of his blog. I like that he casts, as if fishing, for fables and true stories from his memories in the Wyoming of his day. Jim’s writing is more in the style of memoir because he delves into the time and place and intention of each blog he writes. One of my favorites is “A Mother’s Day Tribute.” I recommend that you cast a line and sit back and enjoy Jim’s style of storytelling @ jimbomedia.info/wordpress/.
Storytelling: Unaware, each of us live within our life stories and some of us share our past online in a word named BLOG. Each blogger tells a different story that draws readers to capture the memory moments of their experience on Mother Earth. Jim’s Wyoming, past and present, is an example of fables and rumors and the poignant moments of childhood that never fade away.
I’ve always thought that due to technology we are losing our life stories. Yet here I am utilizing that exact technology to encourage you to visit bloggers and stay a while. Why? Well you just might see yourself in their words. Yet, as technology leapfrogs faster and faster into the future, I question who will tell our stories? I ask this unanswerable question because I believe each voice on Mother Earth has a story to impart that someone needs to hear!
I once took a train trip to Chicago and along the way the train made many stops. At each I observed passengers exit and walk past my window. Some walked slowly: heads down. Others scurried along the station platforms as if life itself was just around the corner. Looking back on that time I see clearly now that my Chicago train trip was a metaphor for my time at Colorado State University (CSU).
For many years I stood on the platform at the CSU Train Station and watched as trains arrived, carrying new colleagues with their prior experiences to now mix with mine. I observed as others boarded different trains when their sojourn at CSU came to a close. I also said good-bye to those who left silently.
When each CSU Train departed the Station I looked about the platform for those who remained—their presence an encouragement to me. And between trains I observed, listened and learned lessons that are forever part of who I am.
Eventually my unexplored borders moved beyond the CSU Train Station as the call went out for “ALL ABOARD.” Soon afterward I pulled away from that well-traveled platform. I waved to each of you and continued to look back at the memories, at the friendships, at the effort and the loss.
After a while I faced forward and looked intently out the window so I would not miss my intended platform as it came into view.
AN ASTRONAUT: It was winter when he landed at Colorado State University—many years ago now—a Civil Engineer alumni. His title: Kent V. Rominger, Captain USN (now retired) & NASA Astronaut (former). In those days, to have a few NOT public moments with an astronaut was rare. I served as Kent’s—he insisted—usher during his campus visit. I asked: “So Kent, which is more thrilling for you: flying a jet off the deck of an aircraft carrier or piloting the NASA Columbia Shuttle?
Astronaut Rominger’s answer—as I mentioned—is NOT public. So, why bring this up at all? Because in many ways we emulate astronauts in that we must also calibrate and investigate our parameters in order to have the best chance of survival: they in outer space and we in Earth’s atmosphere.
A THOUGHT: Yes, there are those among us, like Rominger, who achieve great zeniths in an attempt to understand the unanswerable. And, we who never leave the gravitational pull of Earth also endeavor to understand. And also like the astronauts if we calculate wrongly there are consequences.
[Kent Rominger: Flew as pilot on STS-73 (1995), STS-80 (1996) and STS-85 (1997) and was crew commander on STS-96 (1999) and STS-100 (2001). A veteran of five space flights, Rominger logged over 1,600 hours in space. He also logged over 7,000 flying hours in over 35 types of aircraft and 685 carrier landings.]