(January 2020) – I always like to ask people, “What did you want to be when you were a kid?” It’s fascinating how our childhood interests seem to show up eventually in our careers and lives, whether we wanted to be pilots, athletes, veterinarians, teachers or something else.
That was the case with the people we interviewed for articles in this month’s magazine for our theme of Aeronautics and Aviation. Several of them are fulfilling their childhood dreams in the work they do and the lives they live. Cyrus Callum at Orlando Executive Airport (Cover story, Page 16) and Shaun Germolus at Kissimmee Gateway Airport (Up Close, Page 42) both wanted to be pilots, and now they’re immersed in aviation. Kevin Jackson of Flexitech Aerospace (Page 28) always loved building electronics and was in awe of Neil Armstrong, and now he crafts communications satellites for space missions. Phil Brown from the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority (Cover story, Page 16) wanted to be a cowboy and…well, maybe overseeing the hordes of people who come through Orlando International Airport is close?
In my generation, we were all inspired by the space race and the nationwide effort for the U.S. to get to the moon. At one point during my childhood, I thought it would be cool to be an astronaut. I’d race home from school to watch “Lost in Space” on TV. I loved math and science, but I remember the exact moment in seventh grade when I realized I didn’t actually love the periodic table of the elements as much as I loved learning about the planets. That was so enlightening to me that I can remember exactly where I was sitting when I had that revelation.
In high school, I could practically teach my classes in algebra, geometry and trigonometry because I loved those subjects. But I definitely did not love dissecting worms in biology. I didn’t like mixing chemicals in beakers. This is how you develop a specialty, I suppose.
Through it all, I recalled the moment in third grade when my teacher looked at my right middle finger and said, “Oh, you have a writer’s bump! That means you’re going to be a writer.” I remember thinking, “Well, yeah,” as if — duh — that was obvious. After all, I always kept a diary. I was constantly getting scolded by my mom for staying up too late reading books under my covers with a flashlight so I wouldn’t get caught after she had told me, “Lights out!” When we went camping, she had to encourage me to get my nose out of the books and go make friends.
I worked as a volunteer in my elementary school library helping other kids find books to read. I visited my neighborhood library every week looking for new books for my age group because I had already read all the good ones. By the time I finished eighth grade, I had already read Gone with the Wind, The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings trilogy by J.R.R. Tolkien, anything I could find by Edgar Allan Poe and several novels about time travel.
At some point, I realized journalists get to write about all the subjects I found fascinating, including sports, music, food, home décor, fashion and, of course, business. So there you are. Instead of planning my trip to the International Space Station, I’m thinking about what we’ll cover in the February, March and April issues of i4 Business. It’s probably just as well, since I get carsick driving over the brick streets in Thornton Park.
I hope you enjoy this month’s articles as much as we enjoyed putting them together for you.
Have a great month!