Hiker Intro: Stephen (No Cool Trail Name Yet)
Let Me Introduce Myself
I was going to make my second post about route planning, but I’m calling an audible (Omaha, Omaha!) and switching it up.
My name is Stephen (Pronounced “Stev-en”; I get called “Steph-en” on the daily though) and I’m attempting the AT thru hike (NOBO) starting 16 February. This is my first thru hike so I don’t have a cool trail name yet. I wanted to make this intro a little more personable and fun since you can find generalized info about someone through LinkedIn, Google, etc. So here we go!
- Born 31 December 1978 (Capricorn)
- States I’ve lived in: Rhode Island, Ohio, North Carolina, Alabama, Texas, Missouri, Northern Virginia (Arlington), and Colorado. Currently residing in Colorado Springs. Abroad I lived in Germany for 3 years.
- Hobbies are reading (anything from news articles to books to peer reviewed journals), cycling, cooking, antiquing, watching documentaries or movies, playing guitar, and motorcycle riding.
- Retired US Army after 23 years. Deployments: Iraq (03-04), Afghanistan (08-09), Iraq (10-11), Kuwait (15-16), Germany (16-17), Kuwait/Iraq/Syria (18-19)
- I have a huge scar on my right retina resulting from accidentally poking my eye with a screw driver when I was about five years old. Long story.
- I almost lost mobility in my left foot from another accident when I was a teenager (apparently I was a walking calamity when I was younger). Again, another long story.
- I have never voted as I always viewed it as a conflict of interest being in the military. Who gets to pick their own boss? On the flip side I have never complained about an administration because I didn’t vote. Annnd you kind of give up that complaining about the President freedom of speech right in the military.
- I had LASIK in 2009 and it’s still holding up.
- I’ve met Tiger Woods and he was one of the most down to earth celebrities out there.
- I used to have both my ears pierced before I joined the military.
- I graduated from a military high school (Marion Military Institute) in 1997. I was a wayward teenager.
- Concerts I’ve seen: Pearl Jam, Tool, Slipknot, Widespread Panic, Soundgarden, GNR, and Seven Mary Three.
These are a Few of My Favorite Things
- Favorite music genre: Mostly rock or old school rock, but I can listen to just about anything.
- Top 5 Movies: The Empire Strikes Back; There will Be Blood (Daniel Day Lewis is phenomenal in that movie); Inception (Nolan’s ability to show time dilation is amazing); The Wrestler (Mickey Rourke’s comeback role and he played it perfectly), and The Shawshank Redemption (this movie did HORRIBLE in theatrical release and became the classic it is once it went to video). Honorable mention: Step Brothers.
- Top 5 Books: Whiskey, Cigars, and Winning; Guns, Germs, and Steel (Pulitzer Prize Winner); Ghosts of the Highlands: True Story of LRRPs in Vietnam; Midnight in Chernobyl; and Duty: Memoirs of a Secretary of Defense (Robert Gates’ book; very well written). Honorable mention: General Sherman’s Memoirs.
- Favorite Foods: Hibachi and Sushi!! Italian, seafood, Greek, German, Chinese, Mexican, eh…just all food in general. I’m not Vegan nor Paleo nor Gluten Free, but have much respect for those who do. At the end of the day, nothing beats a good rare steak with a baked potato and red wine.
- Favorite TV Show: The Office hands down.
- Favorite Sports Teams: All BOSTON!! Celtics, Bruins, Redsox and Patriots.
Other than deployments and walking around with body armor, weapons, ammunition, water, and sometimes a small pack with supplies; not much. I would say I’m definitely more of a hiker than a runner though. I’m getting in as many hikes as I can before my start date. If anyone has good ideas on shakedown hikes, please let me know!
That pretty much sums it up. I’m excited to meet others out on the trail! The next post will be about the route planning I’ve done thus far (no audible on the next one). Thanks for following along!
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