punkwalrus (punkwalrus) wrote,

A Few Cool People I Know

I know a lot of cool people, some with very unusual talents. I can't list them all here, but I will list two professionals who not only do some cool stuff on a basic level (that is, people have heard of what they do), but also really like what they do.

Thomas R. Holtz, Jr., whom I have known for years as "Tom" in the pair, "Tom and Sue." Tom and Sue I have known for a while, ever since I joined Katsucon, and only two years ago, did I realize he was a Paleontologist. Not like someone who studies some obscure stuff no one has heard about (like gymnosperm parasites), but he specializes in Tyrannosauridae, whose most notable member is the big bad Tyrannosaurus Rex. He's been on the Discovery Channel from time to time. Of course, I know him best as one of the people who run the Katsucon Cosplay, but it's nice to know if I have a question about dinosaurs, I can just e-mail him and go, "So what's up with that dino-barf?" Even better, Tom is an interesting paleontologist, which is better than some scientists I have met who are boring and arrogant. Some can tell a great story, and some can't, and Tom certainly can. Which is also why he also teaches at the University of Maryland.

Dr. Jason Aufdenberg, on the other hand, is as dull as dishwater. Just kidding! He's actually one of the most well-rounded people I have ever known. I met him when we were taking astronomy together, both when we wanted to be astrophysicists. He went on to actually become one! But not only that, but when I first met him, he was an amateur stage magician, juggler, flute player, and cyclist. Now he's added cake decorating, cook, hiker, nature photographer, and banjo player to his list. Oh, and he's a postdoctorate fellow at Harvard. How cool is that? Every New Year's, he comes to our house, and we all watch Dick Clark count down the ball, and spend the whole evening discussing science, music, and whatever else he's picked up the rest of the year. He's also as funny as hell, with great wit and afterthoughts.

This entry was originally posted at http://www.punkwalrus.com/blog/archives/00000221.html
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