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Adam Joshua Smargon

"There is perhaps no more effective expression of self than the personal home page. Everything can reveal volumes about an individual."
-- Jon Phillips

Ain't that the truth. You are probably a carbon-based terrestrial life form with Internet access... and you seem to have stumbled across my digital presence. Hi! I'm Adam. I'll be your tour guide for (as well as the subject of) this web site. Just an earth-bound misfit, I am a blue-eyed, brown-haired, six-foot tall, non-thin white male, 35 years of age.

I live in the historic New Hampshire town of Epping. (No, I've never heard of it either. I'm not from New England.) For my fellow geography geeks, I live at 431'55.7" north latitude and 714'25.0" west longitude. It's a small town, but it's a short drive to two more cities in the Granite State that are a bit more recognizable: Manchester and Portsmouth. Also, I'm not too far from Concord (the state capital) and Nashua, and it's about a one-hour drive south to Boston, Massachusetts.

I moved to New England specifically to go back to graduate school; I just finished a master's degree in Resource Administration and Management at the University of New Hampshire in Durham, New Hampshire. Also, I was part of the Climate Education Initiative Working Group of UNH's University Office of Sustainability.

In 1999, I earned a Master of Science in Environmental Management and Policy from the Lally School of Management and Technology at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York (which is part of the Albany metropolitan area). I'm a member of the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Alumni Association, as well as the Boston chapter of that group.

I spent much of the 1990s in Gainesville, Florida, earning a bachelor's degree from the University of Florida in natural resources and environmental economics, from the Department of Food and Resource Economics. (That's another way of saying "Agricultural Economics." And no, it's not about why cows have no money. At the time, and due to some other weird factors, it was the closest thing to an environmental studies degree.) Also, I hold a double minor: Theatre, and Agriculture and Natural Resource Ethics and Policy. I'm also a proud member of the University of Florida Alumni Association, and my local chapter: the New England Gator Club.

I am a member of a number of organizations. I am a member of Mensa International, American Mensa, and New Hampshire/Maine Mensa. I joined in 2004. Now I am a certified Mensa proctor, so I can give that very same test that I took myself. I view Mensa primarily as a social group, and most of the events are dinners and game nights. The major get-togethers are called Gatherings; they usually last over a weekend on the local level, and national and international gatherings last the better part of a week. I have attended (and helped to run) Regional Gatherings (RGs) in Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Massachusetts, and New Hampshire. I have also attended four Annual Gatherings (AGs) in a row (2006-2009). And finally, I'm on the committee for the 2010 Annual Gathering (as the game tournament director, natch) to be held in my birth city of Detroit, Michigan.

I am a card-carrying member of the American Civil Liberties Union; I joined in 2003.

I am a lifelong Democrat; for more, check out the government section of my website.

I recently joined American Atheists; this was only two years after I realized I was an atheist. It all began in the fall of 1997, when I started to see some conflicts I had with the religion I was born into. For more information, check out the religion section of my website.

I joined the Freedom from Religion Foundation in January 2006.

In December 2003, I received a diagnosis of mild Type II (Adult Onset) Diabetes. I have since joined the American Diabetes Association.

In 2004, I became a part of Americans United for Separation of Church and State (AU), which has been leading the way in defending the cornerstone of religious liberty in America since 1947. AU is a non-sectarian, non-partisan organization; members include people who practice religion, people with no religious affiliation, and people from every political and economic group. AU defends separation of church and state in the courts, educates legislators, and works with the media to inform Americans about religious freedom issues.

Many people worldwide own books. I like receiving new and old ones, reading them, and then releasing them into the wild. How do I do this, you ask? It's called bookcrossing, which is defined as the practice of leaving a book in a public place to be picked up and read by others, who then do likewise. . (This definition was added to the Concise Oxford English Dictionary in August 2004.)

BookCrossing.com is an original community site that gives back to the world at large. After the moderate success of web-based tracking sites, like PhotoTag.org (which tracks disposable cameras loosed into the wild), WheresGeorge.com (which tracks U.S. currency by serial number), and GeoCaching.com (where you can stash and search for items with GPS technology), thoughts began to fill various heads: What other physical object might people enjoy tracking? A glance at a full bookshelf gave the answer to the eventual site founder: tracking books! Imagine people in every community and every city and every state and province in every nation, trading and exchanging books just for the sheer pleasure and joy of circulating the knowledge and wisdom in these tomes. And you can track every book, and see where it has traveled!

Speaking of books, I'm a big fan of libraries; I always have been. In all the places I've lived, I make it a point to get access to as many libraries as possible. Currently, I have access to five municipal libraries in New Hampshire (Dover, Durham, Epping, Hampstead, and Manchester), one in Massachusetts (Haverhill), and one in Florida (Broward County). Also, being a graduate student at UNH, I have access to the University of New Hampshire Library; the reference department there has been a tremendous help to me. Also, the UNH Library is a member of the Boston Library Consortium; many New England schools and research institutions (most of which are in Massachusetts) have teamed up to make access to information (and inter-library loans) much easier. I got my BLC card not soon after I became a graduate student here... this now means I can barge my way into the libraries at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and do as I please there. (Within reason.)

As a thirty-something American male, I have a love of games. It all started with card games -- my father taught me Gin, and my mother taught me Pounce. Since then I have learned -- and loved -- hearts (and double-deck cancellation hearts), blackjack, and poker. Poker is the one card game of the aforementioned five where I have the least amount of skill, but I have seemed to want to learn more. Besides the actual rules of the game and hand rankings, I find interest in the procedures (including the deal and the betting rules), the element of chance (I enjoy teaching probability), and strategy and psychology. I have attempted to lean more about the game, but most of those efforts were more expensive than I would have liked. Nonetheless, the desire to learn more -- and to win! -- is still there, and so it remains a work in progress. I imagine much of my experience could be enhanced by way of poker websites, but I have yet to actually play at an online poker website. Gambling can be fun, but I don't do it often -- playing the lottery every now and again is about it. I rarely walk into a casino, and if I do, my sole game is blackjack. Some people like the slots, others like craps or keno... if you can afford this kind of entertainment, and you don't become addicted to it, I say have fun.

Want to know more? Who I really am? What I really think? Beware where you tread! Choose from the menu on the left, or continue to discover the personality inside Adam's body and mind...

"Such predicaments... I must forge ahead!"
-- Tom "T-Bone" Stankus

Copyright © 1994-2010 Adam Joshua Smargon (adam@smargon.net)
Home Page v.6.88 - updated 31 March 2014