My journey with the guitar began many years ago with a cheap instrument rented from a small local music store. I can still picture it now: a banged-up acoustic, spray painted Candy-apple Red, with strings so high my fingertips ached whenever I played it. The sound — as if trying to outdo the bad color — was horrible. And yet there was something about the guitar that captivated me and so I stuck with it.
Several guitars later and midway through high school I finally bought a good instrument — a Martin D-28 acoustic. It was at this point that my life began to revolve around practicing and jamming with friends. Occasionally we even got up the courage to perform in public. After high school I took my most-prized possession with me when I attended Ohio University.
The music scene in Athens in the mid 1970s was “happening.” There were lots of musicians to hang out with and an equally large number of places to perform. I was so captivated by what was going on that the following year I dropped out and began performing in local bars and restaurants. Making a living as a musician in a small college town, however, wasn’t quite as easy — or as glamorous — as I imagined and after a couple of years of just scraping by I decided to look for a job with a better income.
Upon completing a training program in Vermont for wallpapering, I returned to Ohio and established my own home decorating business. Several years later I moved to northern California where I again started my own business and played guitar in local restaurants and other venues. Suffering from California Burn-Out, I moved back to NW Ohio in the late 80s and enrolled at BGSU, eventually earning a degree in Liberal Studies in 1992.
Throughout the 90s I worked in a number of teaching-related jobs and soon discovered how much I enjoyed helping people grow. I’ve worked as an instructor in adult education at both BGSU and the Whitmer Technical Training Center in Toledo. At BGSU I taught adult learners how to build their own computers and how to use them; at Whitmer I taught an adult math class for auto workers entering the apprenticeship program. I’ve also worked as a math tutor in an after-school program called Champions for Children in Port Clinton and have tutored junior high and high school students in math. I have an avid interest in Tai Chi and have taught classes in Bowling Green, Perrysburg, and Port Clinton.
Of all the miles traveled and places visited my greatest joy is the blessing I’ve received of being able to combine my first love (guitar) with my strongest talent (teaching).