this is me
Although since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, my hair has grown longer and I’ve picked up about 10 pounds (ugh…hello again keto plan), I remain pretty much the same.
I’m a technical writer by day and a Practical Buddhist at all times. I write all the articles and materials here on BarryMorris.net and I’ve been a meditator for about 20 years. I know firsthand how life-changing meditation and mindfulness can be.
“In case you’re wondering, Baz is a nickname I picked up from my mate Duncan the UK when I lived there in 1976. It’s a common nickname for anyone named Barry.”
Rather than the usual ‘about me’ page that most readers find boring and most writers over imbue with self-congratulatory prose, I thought I’d present a photo essay that describes the facets I bring to these pages.
Each photo represents a facet of how I see my self – with a lower case “S” (I guess I’m not immune to self-congratulatory prose after all).
Anyway, here we go…
I’m a communicator. I write ebooks, essays, and during the day I write about technical topics for my employer. I’ve filled other occupational roles including as a physician, a college lecturer, and Dean of Instruction, a freelance proposal manager, and a window washer (although not in that order). I’ve known since the fourth grade that my most meaningful work was writing and for most of my life I resisted calling myself a writer. About 20 years ago, I made the transition for medicine and higher education to a life of full-time writing. It’s probably the truest decision I ever made.
I’m a minimalist. Like this iconic photo of Apple co-founder and minimalist Steve Jobs, I have a propensity for and an appreciation of minimalism. Minimalist design and simplicity in all things is what I strive to curate in life as well as in the manner in which I live. I have less than 30 items of clothing and live alongside my girlfriend Karen who has significantly more. Still, we make it work.
I’m a Practical Buddhist. I abandoned and systematically rejected Big Religion in favor of a more solitary and meaning-oriented practice of Practical Buddhism. I’ve written a brief ebook about it that you can read about here. I’ve also written about five daily practices for living a meaningful life here.
I’m an introvert. I’m an INFJ on the Myers-Briggs Personality Indicator, or as I like to characterize it, an introvert’s introvert. I experience a fair amount of social anxiety when among large crowds and often feel as if the walls are closing in when forced to attend large corporate events. It’s why I don’t attend conferences unless it’s absolutely essential.
I’m also an empath who soaks up negative energy from those around me. From a physiological perspective, empaths typically have over-reactive mirror cells (even non-empaths have them) that tend to mimic the unseen energy of others in ways that can physically exhaust us. When Karen and I attend a party or gathering (pre-COVID), we usually take two vehicles because, as an empath, I can only take social gatherings for so long before I feel as if my brain and body are full and I need to retreat to decompress. Sometimes I drive my car and other times I take my trust steed (see below).
I’m a motorcyclist. Pictured here is my 2007 BMW R1250 RT-P (police edition) that I bought in 2019. It’s my fourth BMW and my fifth motorcycle. I learned to ride at the age of 14 and at 15 I rode the thin black line down the Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah during Speed Week. My parents, who allowed me to attend with some neighbors who were AMA Referees, didn’t know I rode 130+ mph until many years later. I knew enough to keep my mouth shut. Hey, my momma didn’t raise a fool!
In 2012 I took my first 14-day solo-ride around the American Southwest and in 2016 I crisscrossed the US (CA to SC and back) with my son Benjamin on two BMWs. I’ve taken the Motorcycle Safety Foundation’s safe riders course and wear all-the-gear-all-the-time.
I’m a journal-er. I’ve found the best way to gain insight into how my mind works is a combination of meditation and writing in my journal. Using a pen and paper has always been a more meaningful exercise than typing on a keyboard. The key for me has been to write as honestly as possible and to not let anyone read it.
It’s not that I have anything to hide, but my journal is the one place I can be as honest with myself as possible. When I feel hopeless (yes, it happens), proud, sad, or just blah…it goes into my journal. It’s taken me years to get to this point because I always felt I was writing to impress some imaginary. That’s ridiculous and even now, thinking about it makes me chuckle.
Yeah, so that’s me. 😎