Interview with GP

I’ve known GP since back in the day. We met working for the phone repair center for the department of housing at University of Colorado in lovely Boulder. Back then, university housing provided telephones in each room. The phones had cords that connected the talking bit with the dailing bit. It was crazy. But, to this day I can wire a phone jack. Yeah, that’s a skill that’s often needed.

Anyway, my recollection was that we were fast friends. GP knew EVERYONE. And then he moved to California. And now he’s a hippie. Actually he was always a hippie.

And we’ll leave that at that.

Make the rambling stop please … okay! on to Pink Asparagus’ Pen Pals. If you have no idea what I’m talking about you can read the series here.

Who are you in real life?

Many humans are in denial of their true heritage but I am proud to know that I am a monkey.  Probably something of a blend between a gorilla and a chimpanzee. I have long arms, fuzzy legs and enjoy eating fruit (preferably out of trees).  However, I am a trained monkey.  My employment with a major action sports apparel company keeps me busy and I really enjoy my work.  I’ll put in a unapologetic plug for our main e-Commerce websites: Roxy, Quiksilver and DC Shoes.  I’ve put together a pretty sweet team that allows me to focus on important things… like trying all the local sushi joints in Huntington Beach, CA.  Because I live behind the “orange curtain” which is more recently known as “The OC” I have to keep myself real.  My girlfriend helps with this by laughing at me if I get too serious.  Cat said I was a hippie.  I disagree, I think I’m just another white guy with a “Director” title who enjoys Polyethnic Cajun Slamgrass.  I’m also a yogi, toastmaster, swimmer, geek, book club participant, Olympics-watching junkie, cat lover and gardener.

What do you blog about?

My blog is called A Sketch of Life.  That’s exactly what it is.  It’s tidbits from my life, findings on the web (I spend quite a bit of time there so I may as well share anything interesting), poetry inspired by the beauty of this vast universe, introspective essays and analyses of other monkeys struggling to get one more banana in the coffer.

When did you begin blogging?

I suppose I was supposed to give this some deep thought but to answer this question I simply referenced my blog and looked at the date.  August 21, 2004.  Almost 4 years ago to the day.  I was still married at the time.  My how times change.  Blogging was an experiment in creative writing that wasn’t trapped on my computer.  During college I wrote so many poems I compiled a collection, bound them and passed them out to friends.  But I don’t think my friends were most likely interested.  Why would they be?  It was random thoughts, deep seeded alliteration and bizarre metaphors.  Too bad they didn’t have blogs when the first browser came out — I probably would have made a fortune in cheap banner ads.

What does blogging do for you?

Eases tension, provides creative outlet, allows me to share humor, enables communication with family and friends, gives me insight into my own mind, provides an excuse to link to vacation photos.  In the past it’s helped with dating too.  I think you can glance over a variety of the posts I have and understand that I’m a pretty well-rounded person.  That comes out in the blog.  I’m a writer, computer guy, yoga instructor, yogi practitioner, former triathlete, chef, baker, eater, wine lover, cat worshipper, banana consumer, yuppie capitalist pig eco-friendly semi-libertarian raving lunatic.  But as my friend Kelly always says, “It’s all good.”

Your posting frequency is increasing. What’s spurring that?

Depends on what happens in life for me to sketch out.  In college I wrote all the time — at that age one is always learning something new.  I still do but it’s not always necessary to log it.  So 14 years later I’m actually getting my groove back for the poetry and the creative writing.  Truthfully, you’re project here is very inspirational.  It makes me realize that I’m not writing for anyone “out there” but rather it’s an experiment with myself.  A 4-year old, successful experiment.

Recently I find myself in love.  My girlfriend is moving in with me next month and that inspires my brain, my body and my dreams.  I’ve also been blogging a bit for Roxy and am supposed to start a series on the Roxy blog about yoga.  I’m looking forward to that.  So Sketch is becoming good practice for a bigger audience.  It’s nice that my occupation affords me a fun and creative outlet.

Do your day-to-day in-person friends read you? If not, why not? If so, do they say much to you about it?

I have had very little feedback on my blog actually.  About a year ago I added it to my e-mail signature.  I find that I get more response from random people who I meet and are possibly curious.  A friend in my yoga class found my blog and read some stuff the other day.  I’ve hooked up with some old high school friends on Facebook and I think they are probably looking over it.

As to why my friends don’t read my blog, I don’t know.  Maybe they do and just don’t respond.  I have quite a few friends who aren’t really blog-savvy.  My family reads my blog pretty regularly.  I think it became habit during my divorce 3 years ago and they never stopped.  I think it also gives them insight into what’s happening with me without me having to tell them.  We live very scattered up and down the west coast of the USA, so with the blog we save time as they already have an idea of what’s happening.

My girlfriend does not read my blog and I think that’s maybe a good thing.  There’s nothing on there that I wouldn’t want her to read but it also gives me liberty to write freely and not think I might mention an event or an emotion that I don’t discuss with her first.  As I mentioned, when I was dating a lot a few years back I used to encourage people to read my blog and then I could put subtle hints in there.  I did online dating so it probably wasn’t far off the mark in terms of a valid communication device.  But it didn’t work.

Your family reads your blog, does that influence what you write?

Again with a question I already answered.  See above.  Sometimes I probably cater 1% to them but generally I write whatever the hell I want.

Have you ever taken down a post? If yes, without divulging your inner-most secret, can you say why?

I did actually yes.  It was 6 months after I posted it, probably 2 years ago.  A little background: I’m not into the ‘typical’ American dream girl.  Never have been.  I love beautiful actresses and such but they would never make me happy in a long term relationship.  I like curvy.  I like real.  I even like round — I’m not ashamed of it.  That being said, I wrote a soapbox piece (that I somewhat do and somewhat do not regret writing) about the “trend” in women’s clothing where these people from mid-teens to 40-somethings were wearing low-rise jeans even though they didn’t have the bodies for it.  My point at the time was that I don’t care if you’re fat but wear clothing that makes you attractive, not a ghetto-style doughboy.  I noted that I would probably be more likely to find you attractive if you are!  But irregardless the piece was tasteless. I was in an online chat and told someone about my blog.  She read it, got offended.  Then my girlfriend at the time got offended by the post.  At that point it seemed like enough was enough.  I took it down.  I don’t regret removing it so I suppose it was the right decision.

If you could make one rule for the Internet what would it be?

Spam and pop-up ads banned eternally.

What do you think your blog will be like in 5 years?

Very similar.  Maybe more family-oriented as I grow in age and experience.  As I enter my mid-30′s my body is changing a little and my outlook changing a lot.  But generally in the last 3 years I have found my life philosophy that I don’t think will change.  It revolves around 100% intention to accomplish anything, love begetting love, happiness being important, smiles being key, optimism being critical and often hard to come by in our society.  Maybe my posts about finances will be less stressed as the economy turns and the President changes and I continue to grow.

Do you check your stats? If so, what are you looking for?

I’ve never found a good stat check that’s 100% free.  Keep in mind I’m a professional geek – I met Cat in a phone repair center where we tore apart telephones and replaced parts.  That’s pretty geek.  I currently use StatCounter to track stuff but the only “trend” I look for is if traffic is growing.  Since 2007 it’s about the same.  Maybe this super-popular post will help!  I’m open to suggestions as I really do take pride in my posts and would like to see traffic grow.  I believe I have submitted to FeedBurner but it doesn’t seem to do much like it does with Roxy.

What do you wish I asked? Ask and answer: What’s an ideal day look like?

Wake up and go to yoga for a 105 minute session.  Eat a big breakfast with eggs, bacon and pancakes or something starchy.  Have a few cups of really good coffee (something South American, well ground, filtered water, made strong, with cream and sugar).  Read the paper outside on the patio.  Watch the kitties play.  Brush both kitties. Take a nap with Catherine (my girlfriend).  Steamroll Catherine and make her laugh.  Hang out and read or watch a movie.  Cook and eat a delicious but simple and light lunch (a chef salad is a regular stand-by for us).  Check e-mail and Google Reader.  Figure out the evening plans which probably require going to the gourmet grocery, prepping the fresh produce from my CSA and a DVD.  Pet my kitties thoroughly and pass out in a spoon position.


GP – thanks for your time and the pictures of kitties. I still love Tang and wish I had shoved him in my bag when I had the chance.

Okay Internets, there you have it … the totally mellow GP. Go read him. Be inspired. Maybe do some yoga while you’re there (he has poses in his posts!).

Come back next week, you’ll never know who you’ll meet!

7 smart people left their mark:

  1. Abbey, 21. August 2008, 22:30

    I wish I could get into Yoga! GP share with me why oh why you love yoga and how long it took you to actually get into it enough to love it like you do!

    PS I was hoping you’d be a NorCal Guy so that we could hang out and talk about how awesome Cat is! :P

    Abbeys last blog post..Brewed Chocolate?

  2. Grandy, 21. August 2008, 23:15

    Good questions, Cat.

    Great job with the answers, GP.

    Fixing phones…hmmmm…doesn’t sound all that fun but look at how far you’ve both come since. :) I have a question. How did you both happen to find eachother again? Did you remain friends after you left the phones? Or did you rediscover each other through blogging?

    Grandys last blog post..Thursday 13 – ish

  3. Catherine, 21. August 2008, 23:17

    Uhm, so yeah … I’m like the clap. There’s no getting rid of me. You’ve been warned.

  4. Halimah, 23. August 2008, 15:00

    Ok. I should not write this. But I’m going to. So, forgive me Catherine.

    He could fix my phone anytime.

    Probably just a randomly hormonal pre-age 40 surge.

    So I guess I’ll go back and actually read the entry instead of clicking through to find pictures of your friends.

    Halimahs last blog post..Mr. Fluffums

  5. Rachel Hanson, 24. August 2008, 18:04

    hmm, who is GP, really. I worked in that office, not for the phone guys, but I worked for CU, and for the life of me, I don’t remember GP. Did I know him? Tell me, it’s driving me crazy.

    I guess I am on a big kick to fine the people from my past, maybe GP is one of those people. By the way, I think I found AMH and JH on Facebook.

    Rachel Hansons last blog post..Friday Freebie

  6. BigMama, 26. August 2008, 16:13

    I’m so glad that I was invited to visit Pink Asparagus’ site and read about GP!! Especially about the type of women he prefers. I have a 13 yrs old daughter and have literally “fought” to keep her real. This includes keeping myself real. To love and take care of myself for me and appreciate the outcome. It truly encourages me that someone like GP works for Roxy which is a big ticket item with the young girls (mine love it!). I wish more and more companies dealing with young girls choose different body types for their ads…

    Anyways, thank you GP – it was refreshing to read such well thought out comments, esp. from a guy, even if you are a hippie!!

    BigMamas last blog post..Meme, A Meme

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