My Substitute Reality -You're just jealous cause the little voices only talk to me-

Saturday December 28, 2019

Update to my About Me page

Filed under: Family,Life — don @ 3:39 pm

This is an update to my About Me section. I figured if I put it here more folks might see it.

I’m now 66 years old.  I’m still married to Betty and we still live in the San Fernando Valley.

I retired from Boeing at the end of 2008 and planned to only take a few months off before finding a consulting job.  Unfortunately, that was right about when the economy tanked.  I finally found another job at ThinKom Solutions Inc., an antenna company, where I’ve worked since September 2009.  I was hired as a Sr. Test Engineer but when they needed some kind of system to keep track of inventory I started developing one.  In a couple of years, that system had become a full-fledged ERP system that the whole company relied on.  I spent around 50% of my time developing software and the other working on microwave and RF antennas. Now I’m waiting for them to sell the company so my stock options are worth something I can retire on.

Around 2014 we were approached by GoGo Air, a company that provided internet on airplanes.  Their system was maddeningly slow (9 MB for the entire plane) and could only handle texting and email.  Business people used it but cussed it for its slowness.

We designed an antenna system that was capable of providing 500 MB/s to the plane but has so far been limited to around 80-100 MB due to modem technology.  To date, they have installed close to 2000 systems on multiple airlines.  Everyone who uses it raves about it.

Heather and Jocelyn are both married to the same guys who we love.  Heather and Mark live in the same house in Gilbert, AZ and Camden is in 11th grade and a geek who loves video games and robotics. Carsten is in 8th grade and a bit less of a geek but also enjoys video games.

Joce and Eric live in a small house in Kenosha, WI with their 3 kids who they are homeschooling. Liam is 11, Emeric is 7, and Eloise (Elle) is 4. Eric got a job at the school he graduated from (Gateway College) as an IT person. The small house is on a fairly large lot, almost an acre, and makes for fun times when it snows and berry picking in the spring/summer.

Ann moved out quite a few years ago and has been living on her own. She moved to Van Nuys which is quite a bit further away but still only about an hour by city bus or 20 minutes by Uber. She visits her mom every month or so.

Jen got married to a guy she had met at her job at Target in Simi Valley.  She and Patrick lived with us for several years before finding an apartment and moving in there, a few miles away in Woodland Hills. Jen still works for Disney in a store in Northridge. She always dreamed of working for Disney so she’s living the dream. She’s not a fan of retail but at least she works in the back so minimal exposure to the public. Patrick went to DeVry and got a BS in something like Web Development. He has been a geek (like me) since I met him. I helped him get a job at ThinKom several years ago but he soon showed them how valuable he is and was given an extremely good review earlier this month.

Michelle has exceeded all of our expectations. When she graduated she worked at 24 Hour Fitness for a while before getting a job at the super fancy-dancy Penninsula Hotel in Beverly Hills. She worked as a PBX operator and met quite a few celebrities but I think her favorite was delivering a fax to George Lucas. Next to that was probably riding on the elevator with Wolverine (Hugh Jackman). She offered to get out as good Penninsula employees are expected to do but he said no, stay on. I think she still swoons when she thinks about it. In 2018 she got married to Josh Bergman who she met through a friend she had for many years. Josh is a sports nut and loves the Dodgers like me so we get along pretty well. (Mark also loves sports but he’s a Diamondbacks fan so….) Michelle also went to DeVry for a Bachelor of Science in justice administration with a minor in corrections.

Shortly before Michelle and Josh got married they decided to move to Arizona because the cost of living was so much lower. They ended up in Phoenix where most of my siblings and Heather’s family lives. She got a job at The Phoenecian as a PBX operator but around a month later saw an ad for a position in the Department of Child Services. She got hired and became a caseworker and quickly rose as the best one in her office. Over the next year and a few months, she placed many kids into families and as of this week, she found she had more than anyone else in the state. She decided she wanted to raise in the ranks so she is back at school going for her Master of Science in psychology, concentration on forensic psychology. A big change from the girl who didn’t know what to do with her life 15 years ago.

Betty has spent a lot of 2019 going in and out of the hospital. In 2011 she had her thyroid removed and that evening the stitches broke which caused her to lose oxygen to her brain for a while. It’s finally caught up to her as she has a lot of trouble with short term memory and has been feeling sick off and on all year.

As I write this we are in Los Algodones, Mexico getting new teeth for me. In 2015 I got an All-on-4 on my upper and this year I decided it was time to do the lower. In 2014 my brother Richard had told us about Los Algodones and how much cheaper dentistry is here and it’s still the way to go if you need anything more than a cleaning. I am getting Zirconia plates on the upper and lower. They would cost about 3-4 times what I’m paying. Don’t want to cite prices but suffice it to say I’m saving 10’s of thousands of dollars.

Most of you know we lost my mom in 2017 and Jocelyn lost her mom in 2014. We think of both of them often.

My politics are similar to what they were in my About Me page but I do have to say I’m not a fan of our current President’s demeanor.  I do like how the country has prospered under his administration but I also feel he has given the US a lot of negatives.  He isn’t really respected by other countries and that’s a bad thing.  I do have to smile at how so many warned the stock market would collapse and the economy would tank and all the “good” things Obama had done would be undone.  I think the opposite of most of that has happened.  The stock market has boomed, the economy is doing very well, unemployment is at its lowest since the 70s and although we aren’t respected we also aren’t looked at as a pushover.  I think he’ll probably be re-elected but once again I don’t plan to vote for him.  I wish the Democrats could see just what a terrible field they are backing.  I think I would probably vote for Tulsi Gabbard if she got the nomination but there is next to no chance of that.

Happy New Year to all and may the 2020s be good to all.


  1. Thanks for the nice update!

    Comment by Dianna — Saturday December 28, 2019 @ 3:50 pm

  2. Kind of like an annual review or newsletter, but several years worth. Nice!

    Comment by Donna — Saturday December 28, 2019 @ 3:55 pm

  3. IRI

    Comment by Dale — Saturday December 28, 2019 @ 4:10 pm

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