The civil rights movement in the 60s. I was in high school and college from ‘62 to ‘70. And that is a very impressionable age to have that much going on around you. And, I took it into myself, not as a cause to help somebody else get their rights, but I wanted to build a world for me to live in where nobody would be hated unless that individual had earned it. And, all the rest of the civil rights stuff just fell in line. Very deep passion.
I wasn’t well—I ended up having a brain tumor removed. I really wasn’t well, I did very little. But the passion went very deep. And, for 30 years, I had a career in manufacturing. I was quality control manager and tester. And that was a career that was, is still, 90 percent white male. I was stuck out like a sore thumb. I concentrated on proving I could do the job, I was competent, I didn’t bring a lot of my passions into the workplace.
And I, the fact that they’re in me is proven by, I had bosses who would walk on eggshells to avoid offending me because they had picked that up. People who trash talk other people would only do it once or twice in my presence and then it would disappear from my vicinity.
So, I was nobody’s idea of militant. But it obviously was felt around me.
You know, I felt like—I just tried to leave the world a little bit better than I found it, in my own little private corner. I’m not a world-shaker. But that was my first passion. And it’s never gone away.