Dr. J.

No, not Julius Erving of pro basketball fame.   This Dr. J. is 5’ 8” and 200 pounds.

I wanted to introduce him to you as he will be a key reference in a couple of upcoming posts.  Dr. J. is one of those friends who you can lose track of for a year and, when you get back together on the phone or in person, it’s as if no time has passed at all.   I met him when he was my newly assigned immediate boss back in the olden days when I was a wet-behind-the-ears junior management guy.   We hit it off as friends right away.

Now, the “Doctor” of the Dr. J. is well earned.   He got a Ph.D. in Chemistry from some well respected university*.  Then, after about 8 years working various places as a chemist, he up and decided that chemistry was boring and he wanted new adventures.  Thus the switch to management.   I was amazed he took such a major step in that transition and continue to be so.  Dr. J. rose through management hierarchy in my business and was the Vice President of one division, as well as running (at separate times) both the management and engineering branches of major divisions.  A smart guy.

As I struggled with my life and what to do about my failing marriage, Dr. J. was there as a mentor and guide (having been through one himself a few years prior to me first talking through my issues).  His sense of humor, coupled with his brute honesty as he pointed out errors – or the occasional accurate insight – in my thinking, was a critical to me maintaining my sanity (forgive the exaggeration) as I worked through all the devious twists and turns .  We still keep in touch, though not as much since he has retired and lives quite a few states away.  His sense of humor is sharp as always and cuts to the heart of issues we talk through.

Here’s hoping all of you have friends such as Dr. J.

More on him in future posts…


*Well, that is if you consider the University of Kentucky “respected”.  [smirk]

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10 Responses to “Dr. J.”

  1. Rob Says:

    Good to have friends and mentors like that.

    Most of the management bigwigs in my company have technical backgrounds. So far they’re proving they can run a company into the ground just as well as any bean-counter.

  2. Dolce Says:

    Is he a Man in Black?

  3. Sassy Miss P Says:

    A good friend, a trusted friend, is a yard stick for the soul. I’m glad you’re able to count him amongst that number – and am equally sure he does the same. Old friends are best friends. They’re just more comfortable to be around [like shoes, in some respects …]

  4. Sassy Miss P Says:

    KFC has its own university???

  5. The Unbearable Banishment Says:

    It seems his management skills extend far beyond the office walls.

  6. Stephanie of Stopbouncing Says:

    Damn, now if I could only recall quotes from that Futurama where the Globetrotters come to play basketball against the earth….

  7. kyknoord Says:

    Does he have a PhD in 11 herbs and spices?

  8. thegnukid Says:

    rob – yep, i feel lucky he could understand the techno-geek stuff, yet still had the management skills. your experience proves that that is not a given. condolences.

    dolce – come to mention it… what IS his last name… does he even have one?

    Miss P – true words and well spoken. i’ll have to tell him next time we talk that he was compared to comfortable shoes…

    Miss P – well, yeah! there’s chemicals in them thar birds.

    t.u.b. – people like him are rare indeed. i feel lucky to be part of his posse.

    stephanie – ooo, let’s go check the interweb! how about “…At this rate, by Tuesday it will be Thursday, by Wednesday it will be August, and by Thursday it will be the end of existence as we know it! …”

    kyknoord – no, PhDs are notoriously specialized… i think he only did 2 herbs and a spice.

  9. daisyfae Says:

    Mmmm…. orange julius erving and KFC…. why does this post make me hungry?

  10. Rule One, Rule Two « The Wilds of Ohio Says:

    […] One, Rule Two By thegnukid I introduced my friend, Dr. Jim, in a prior […]

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