I’ve run this blog for 4.5 years. It’s time I updated this section. A few factoids about me – no guarantees that any of these will enlighten anything I have written or will write.
1) I had surgery on my bottom lip to remove a “birthmark” (actually a “capillary hemangioma”) right before kindergarten. My bottom lip had a spot that kept getting bigger and turning purple due to the tumor (benign) of growing blood vessels. I had the worst nickname ever given to me by some kids in the neighborhood, Fat Lip. I do remember some of having the tumor removed – the nurse that read The Three Little Pigs to me before the anesthesia (the last little pig was somehow named “Jason”), and getting all the sugary cereal I wanted to eat the morning before I went home (which was never kept in our house growing up). The surgery was done at the place where I did my residency 24 years later. (I also now teach at the high school where my maternal grandfather graduated from in 1940 – a fact of which I was unaware when I took the job).
2) I went to a Lutheran school for K-8, public school for high school, and a small, liberal arts school for college. (Med school and residency are their “own thing.”) I stand by my assertion that I care less about where you got your education and more about what you do with it. I’ve met smart, kind people and @$$holes alike in each place. The patten? A-holes are gonna be A-holes.
3) A formative experience… our family were the only Democrats in my school growing up – at least as far as I could tell. This was fairly well known at the school (how/why, I’m not sure). It was a source of humor amongst the school administrators and a few teachers. In 7th grade, I had to play a small role in the school play (set in the 1890s) of “chairman of the Republican Party”. It drew TONS of laughter from the gym. I knew I was being made fun of and I don’t recall the experience with any particular fondness.
4) I’ve never met any celebrities. The closest? When I was four, my parents had taken us to watch the St. Louis Blues practice at an ice rink near our house. I needed to use the restroom, so I was walking through the facility. I bumped into the goaltender at the time, Mike Liut (I bounced off his blocker). “‘Scuses me, Mr. Liut!” And I kept walking to the bathroom. My dad said that Mr. Liut seemed amused that a toddler said “excuse me” and basically ignored him. End of interaction.
5) I’ve gotten hurt / been to the emergency room A LOT. If there’s an insurance policy, I’ll test it out. That I can remember – A nosebleed that went on for hours that had to get packed/stopped (I was a toddler), broken left humerus (fell down my great grandmother’s basement stairs), broken right pinky (playing dodgeball of all things), stitches in my face (my sister slammed a gate from our fence – it caught me. Oops…), stitches in my right ring finger (from trying to lay down a bunt in baseball – I failed), IV rehydration in 3rd grade (Ozzie Smith’s kid was in the ER the same night apparently), hip injury (tripping over a backpack), stress fracture (right tibia), IV rehydration (residency, 3.5 L of fluid before I could urinate again – I worked 24 hours before that), IV rehydration (before Sonia had Allison), and then meningitis. I think that’s it.
6) I’m afraid of the dentist and bees. I don’t love heights, but I can deal with it for hiking. I’m afraid of rock climbing and rappelling – I don’t like my back exposed to the ground. That, and that my old friend Sir Isaac Newton could show up at any moment.
7) I met Sonia (my wife) in 1996 – we ran cross-country & track together. We’ve been together since 1997 and married since June 25, 2000. I never want to put anyone on a pedestal, but I’ll say this: a) If you get into a disagreement with her, the problem is probably YOU b) if there’s re-incarnation, you want to come back as her pet c) I tell my students all the time that after they graduate, that they want to stay in touch with ME, in order to get to HER. My students think I’m joking about the last one, but in many cases, I’m not. One funny thing she does – Sonia ALWAYS puts the peanut butter jar back in the pantry with 1/2 a small spoonful left (and doesn’t open a new jar). Before you get on me – she TOLD me to post this.
8) I’ve mentioned our son, Andrew, a few times in my blog. I don’t talk about either of our kids much – they don’t have a means to defend themselves. He’ll be 16 in July 2021. He does well in school, he runs his own business, cuts lawns, and plays soccer. I’ll say this: he has great negotiating instincts, he’s very persuasive, and he’s stubborn (good and bad). I like where his train is heading.
9) Ditto that for our daughter, Allison. She turned 13 in May 2021. She plays the clarinet and is trying to learn the saxophone. She likes to swim (on a team), and is learning ceramics. Someday, she will master all the recipes that Sonia has and I have, and improve them. I said a few years ago that she was “learning a sense of humor.” Mission accomplished. I like where her train is heading, too.
10) I don’t have any musical ability, but I used to be able to hum/play the Wherenberg Theater theme song on my nose. I’m VERY PROUD of this.
11) “Tis better to share a hot dog amongst friends than eat steak by yourself.” -My dad, Skip Kesselring, via his Uncle Pete.
12) Go Keto or low carb all you want. I’m keeping the donuts and sharing them with all of my friends.
13) Baker’s Dozen – I’ve done research on separating penicillin from milk products (college) and on trying to make ovarian cancer cells sensitive to radiation again after they became resistant to radiation (medical school). I’ve also now been teaching as long (3 years) as my pediatric residency took to complete.
That’s all, folks. Happy reading.