The first historical mention of the name Motherwell comes from about 1291, when John di Motherwell witnessed the signing of a treaty between England and Scotland. Both of my parents were career civil servants. So I guess one could say I come from a long and venerable line of faceless bureaucrats. (There also references in my family's history to rigged gambling, livestock theft, and an attempted mass-poisoning, but that's all an English frame-up to kick 'em outta Scotland, see, the coppers never proved nothin', unnerstand?)
I was born and raised in Northern Virginia during the "revolutionary" 1960s and '70s, and watched, puzzled, as the New Left made asses of themselves and the Old Right took over (and my parents divorced amiably). I read the Communist Manifesto at the tender age of 12, and immediately became a Marxist and atheist (Dad was Roman Catholic, Mom was Uncommitted). I tried to remain a Communist, or at least a Socialist, as I learned more about the miserable failures of "Marxist" governments all over the world, and finally gave up around 1975, when I discovered drugs and capitalism.
I refuse to state what I did from 1975 to 1989, on the grounds that it may incriminate me. Did I just make that part of my life sound mysterious and exciting? It was boring (even the illegal bits), except for the bit where I read Another Roadside Attraction by Tom Robbins and got started on the path toward Earth-centered spirituality.
I quit smoking pot in 1989 (with a little help from Narcotics Anonymous and some very nice cops), and proceeded to get a life. In the summer of 1991, I went back to U.Va (a.k.a. Mister Jefferson's Academickal Village, y'know) and finally got my BA degree in International Relations, with a concentration on the USSR and Eastern Europe. Then I went on vacation. Then the day after I got back, the country I studied so carefully suffered a total existence failure. Then I became a technical writer.
So that's how I got to the position I'm in today: Pagan, technical writer, sometime science-fiction writer, morris dancer, law-and-order liberal, student of a dissolved Evil Empire, follower of slandered Gods, supporter of a (nearly) defunct party... oh wait, now I'm starting to sound like "Gladiator."
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