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Dinner with Julie…

08 May

What can I say – the woman is freakin fabulous.

We had such fun at dinner. Here it is approaching midnight on a workday…

We laughed. We traded stories. We looked at my work and she gave me thoughts and insights. She gave her advice on love and money.

She’s generous and so kind in her compliments to me. I had to laugh with she called me a “quadruple threat.” How so? What’s the first thing?

“You have so much personality. You are very funny. You’re really smart. You should have been a TV reporter. You should have been on camera.”

I think that’s the first anyone has ever told me that. She’s fun and interesting. And she has a very funny cat. How can you go wrong with that?

But she loved my work and that’s good because I really enjoyed it. One insight she said is that she liked my photos over some else’s because she thought the models were more comfortable with me. That could be but I appreciate that, I thought I would come in second place.

Like I said, what’s not to like about this woman. It’s nice to have beautiful, intelligent, interesting friends like hers. We had the first of many good times I am sure.

She told me why things didn’t work out between a certain prince and her and I saw one of my own relationships in that story. We definitely had some common ground in that story.

Definitely a great friendship and working relationship. I knew it from the minute I photographed her that she was as beautiful on the inside as she is on the outside.

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I think my most favorite thing she said was, “You’re really good at this (photography).”

That’s interesting because I was shooting with another photographer that has much better equipment but my philosophy has always been that the shot doesn’t come from the camera, the shot comes from the photographer. I shoot with equipment that is six years old. I purchased it in 2012.

Julie also liked my real estate design work. We have very similar tastes.

Just like in computer science – I don’t have to be the world’s best at being a coder as long as I’m creative and as long as the interface is enticing and engaging. The look is really important. Some of my most interesting moments in code were when I got creative.

It was really helpful in my career when I met HoDo – Howard Dortch, who was the original programmer for Sony’s EverQuest and he told me, “When I did my interview, they all gathered in a room to watch me solve a problem with code. I did my thing and then they said, “What the hell? I’ve never seen anyone go about that way. And then they offered me the job. I didn’t go to school for this. I worked at Area 51.”

Yes, my freakin little alien buddy…And yet he went on to create the first massive multiplayer game that ever hit blockbuster status. HoDo was the engine programmer.

But don’t get me wrong about Howard and I love Howard but when we first met, he insulted the hell out of me and said, “You don’t know what you’re doing..”

“No shit sherlock, I wasn’t a game programmer before I got assigned to do this. The internet didn’t exist when I became a professor. But guess who’s spending their time drilling people like you? Hello Peaches…get your gun out and meet me in the next map.  Guess who’s the professor?Howard would spend the next several years working hard to become a professor and he saw he eventually win the teaching award for all universities in the state. I eventually said, screw this teaching thing, I’m opening up my own businesses. And Howard is still a professor today. Go figure. But I don’t ever want to tell women I was welcomed into game design or the computer science industry because every conversation started on that note. It was never easy. I just learned to say, “Fuck you and the horse you road in on…” But no doubt HoDo is awesome at what he does.

He was so gracious. In a game we were working on, he had a little gun and a big gun. He asked me “Which one do you want?”

I took the big gun and then I slapped him upside the head with it. Because he deserved it that’s why…

When we met “Mo” who had a Ph.D. in computer science from Yale – the first year I swear I didn’t understand a word he said. After knowing and reading his work for 3 years, someone asked me, “What’s he saying.”

“Oh what he means is this…..” And I found that I understood him perfectly. It takes patience, persistence and putting up with all personality types.

I eventually left being a game design professor because I traded it for real experiences like flying real airplanes and yachts and hanging out with real models and building real real estate. I haven’t touched a game in years. The internet is a different story. When Hard Rock branded me the “Kickass Web Mistress” it was a title that fit. Design and the internet are my strong suits.

The last game design I did was for Hard Rock when I made the puzzle game, memory card game, slot machine machine game, etc for the web site. But when we lost control of Hard Rock Park, Hard Rock lost the right to use any of that code. So it’s nothing but a memory. But occasionally, I meet someone who says, “I was a such a fan of your work. I am so sorry about everything…”

But it wasn’t until I started my own companies where people could see the depth of what I could do – she can design, she can code, she can set up servers, she can make software kiosks – build the hardware and the software, she does marketing, she does print work, she does photography, she can do real estate, she can design the whole theme park, She writes great business plans that attract investors, she can do yachts, she went into aviation. But mostly she’s know for being a designer.”

It took creating Carolina Web Development and Florida Web Development and the Laura Kerbyson design services for people to really see all that depth. I’m not sorry I left teaching even though I loved my students.

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