I live in Toronto, if you don’t know where that is, Google “The 4th largest city in North America”. I have lived here for all but a few years and am mostly happy to call it home. I’ve been married to an amazing woman and mom since 2003. Our son was born in 2005. I refer to him on the internet as Jaxxxon. That’s not his real name, he values his privacy. My daughter, Huntress (also not her given name) was born in 2009. I wanted to be a dad since I was in my early 20s. It’s a damn good thing I never became a dad while I was in my early 20s.
I have a lot of irons in the fire, work-wise. My day job is in graphic design and production. My night jobs include the music editor and contributor at Addicted Magazine, freelance design and production work, headshot and portrait photography, and doing this blog. I write about music and concerts (and photograph them) for Addicted, as well as corral a lovely group of contributors who do the same. Photography is my passion and I shoot photos pretty much every day. You can see my street photography here. And my headshots and portraits here.
I hate the term ‘side hustle’, but I’ll use it until I think of another. I have a few and am open to more.
I’ve been playing music since I was 14. I’m 189 years old now, so that’s a long time. I play guitar and bass, but I’ve been teaching myself piano and keyboards for a few years. Happily, after a 10 year hiatus, my band, The Flints (no, not the Swedish punk band) are back rehearsing to record a new album. Expect it sometime in 2020. Or 3020. When I’m not playing music, which doesn’t happen quite as much as I’d like, I’m listening to music. Don’t ask me what my favourite band is or what my favourite genre is. Well, apart from Dad Rock. I love a lot of music but am not a fan of modern pop country (okay, I actually hate it) and black metal isn’t my thing either. I’m happy to listen to anything else. I may have once been a sneering music snob but I’m not that severe any more. I’m happy to just listen to something new and the songs that evoke memories.
Before I became a paid creative, I was a cook. I worked in a few kitchens and thought that I’d become a chef one day. But after working in big kitchens and saw the lifestyle and the work, I decided it wasn’t for me. I’ve never stopped cooking at home though. I’ve always been adventurous and will try anything. I stopped eating meat back in 2014, but prior to that, I had no problem grinding my own meat or picking through gristle to get the good bits. At around the same time I stopped eating meat, I also became sober. Both those decisions were some of the best I’ve ever made and will likely (or are already) the topics of one or several blog posts. Don’t worry, I know that my choices are my own and I have no judgement for people who have theirs.
Jumping back to music quickly, when I first heard London Calling back in the 80s, I realized that music could contain a message. That was the beginning of political and social awareness for me. It wasn’t long before I was looking to shout down the wrongs I saw in the world. It wasn’t long before I started calling myself a feminist. Now, these sides of myself are more important than ever. Not just because of the political climate, but also because I have children to raise to be members of humanity.
Finally, my life as a dad. Nothing has been more rewarding than having a family. My wife is an amazing woman and mother and I probably learn more from her than anyone else in my life. And yet, my children do an amazing job of that themselves without realizing it. There is no greater mirror into how you act then to see it reflected by your kids. I make no claims of perfection. I yell at times, I say the wrong thing to my kids, I overreact at times. But I’m also as thoughtful, calm and humorous as I can be with them. I consider that what I say and how I act is going to at least a little bit inform who they become. While it doesn’t pay my mortgage, it’s the most important job I can imagine.