Let me be clear: I am a 52 year old happily conflicted “teenager” with the maturity level of a 12 year old. I love software and technology and at the same time love sports, the outdoors, nature and everything that goes with it. And I wrap this conflict in an intense need for humor.
If I ever do write another book it’s going to be “The Women of Microsoft”, totally based on humor; real, hilarious and unbelievable stories about my interactions with females in my 20 years of working with/for Microsoft. Or it’s going to be an autobiography called “Where Balloons Land”. Because, when I run, mountain bike, fly fish or wander out into the wilderness I always seem to run into the places where balloons actually do land. I see them all the time.
Conflicts run through my life. I have a “black and white” / honest to a fault personality that typically freaks people out. I am a practicing Catholic with deep faith and all my friends and colleagues in Technology just can’t figure that out. Some of them actually shake their heads in disbelief.
Serving under the guidance of two English teachers as parental units shaped the man I am today. I’m the eldest of 4 and am intensely proud of my brothers and sister. Like most San Diegans I grew up in Los Angeles. Going from oldest to youngest my brother Tom is 13 month’s younger than me, twice as smart and a much better golfer. I am the dumbest of the Huckabys but that actually isn’t that deprecating. Being the dumbest Huckaby is like the 6th man on the Lakers: still a professional athlete on the world champion team….well, maybe that Lakers analogy is a bit dated, but you get the idea. My brother Tom scored the highest in the nation on the SAT…and that is only one of his accolades. For God’s sakes, he’s also a 2 handicap.
My brother Kevin is 3 years younger than me and severely handicapped. It is my brother Kev that truly shaped who I am: the fierce independence; the moral and ethical structure I have wrapped around my life. My parents are the epitome of sacrifice. My brother Kev changed their lives in a huge way and our family’s in a positive way. It is because of my brother Kev that I am a fiercely independent. The simple matter of fact is that my parents were forced to focus the balance of their lives on my brother Kev and not on me, my brother or my sister. We grew up quickly and witnessed up close and personal real sacrifice, tragedy, fear, and heartbreak.
My sister Kerry is 8 years younger than me and goes by many names (that I have “monikered” her with): Sweetie is how is she is most commonly called by the Huckabys, but, Cribe is my favorite. It is short for CryBaby. My brother Tom and I tortured her growing up and as you read earlier my parents weren’t really around enough to protect her properly. Like my own wife, Kerry gave up a successful business career to be a professional Mom. Then after my 3 nieces and nephews getting old enough she went back to school, got her teaching credential, and now teaches 2nd grade.
I have never attended anything but Catholic Schools…from kindergarten through college. And it is that path lead me to the University of San Diego where I met my wife of over 25 years, Kelly. After 8 years of Catholic Dating and 25+ years of marriage later I still call her my college sweetheart. Those who know me consistently remind me how lucky I am and how high I “married-up”. Which is, of course, true. She looks half her age and is in the shape of a 25 year old. Me, not so much.
My eldest Camille, 21 at the time of this writing, is handicapped in a different way. When I show her picture to my professional friends as I often do when I travel I always get the same response, “Oh my God, you are so screwed.” More times than not they use the F-word in place of “screwed”. It is because Camille is a “looker”. Clearly she got her mother’s good looks. My saving grace is that she is extremely smart and her work ethic is beyond impressive. She is studying medicine at the University of Colorado. I always told the kids if they got an A for effort we’d be pleased with them, and Camille works on her school-load like it’s a job. And her grades show it.
My youngest is Mark, 18. He’s on his way to Montana State and I could not be proud. It goes without saying I could not be more pleased with the Bozeman, MT choice. I foresee Mark begging me to stop visiting him in the future. Mark is an award winning broadcaster and filmmaker with numerous accolades, awards and achievements in the film industry before he turned 18. His work on the Documentary “Invisible Threat” took him to the big time with a number of national premiers including one in the US Capital Building in DC where he made the opening and closing remarks before and after the film’s premier with congressmen, dignitaries, and celebrities Mark and I are pretty close and have done some amazing things together over the last many years. Mark is an expert level snowboarder and I sincerely doubt he runs into snowboarders his age that are better than him. And he’s fearless. Unlike me he is quite comfortable flying 40 feet through the air. His wipeouts are spectacular. He’s quite a fly fisherman too, having out-fished me a number of times. He has that innate sense for the river of where and how to fish… which usually takes years. He seems to “own” the upper section of the Owens River in the Eastern Sierras. Mark was an inline hockey player in high school. I liken him to Joe Thorton of the Sharks because he seems to have lead the league in assists. He sees the ice better than most and always seems to make that pass that turns into a goal.