The "wink" that changed it all


Technology is amazing! I know that's a pretty general statement, but technology continues to change my life (for the better, of course). Technology, specifically the Internet, has really made a significant impact on my life over the last 5 years. I think it all began with the popularity of social networks, starting with Myspace. Myspace allowed me to more easily communicate with my friends, some new, some old. Now, Facebook, Foursquare, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and others are part of my social networking repertoire. Other than social networking, phones have to be most significant technology innovation that impacts our lives. I rely on my phone for directions, weather forecasts, games and entertainment, taking pictures, sending Emails, instant messaging, texting, and, oh yeah, making phone calls.

Technology has also affected my career path. I was a forester for over 15 years before deciding to change directions. In January 2012, I attended a meeting hosted by the Atlanta Social Media Club (SMCATL). The speaker, Dorothea Bozicolona-Volpe, spoke about branding yourself and sharing your passions with others through social media and public speaking. Well, my passions have been forestry and technology for a long time. It wasn't long after that meeting that I launched this blog and decided to go back to graduate school to pursue a Masters Degree in Computer Science. In the last year, I have presented at forestry conferences in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, Mobile, Alabama, Portland, Oregon, and Coeur d'Alene, Idaho. I also had the opportunity to write an article that was published in the Forest Landowner Magazine about forestry related apps for smartphones and tablets. I have received overwhelmingly positive responses to my presentations and continue to receive phone calls about what I think is the new direction of forestry technology.
So what does a wink have to do with all of this? Well, it wasn't a real wink but a virtual wink that changed my life. A few years ago I decided to give online dating a shot. It worked for a couple of friends who met their spouses on sites like Match and E-harmony. So, I decided it was worth trying. It was definitely an interesting ride. I met my share of "crazies" that I can laugh about today, met a few great women that I can call friends today, and was lucky enough to wink at someone on the right day at the right time that changed it all. That wink happened four years ago today, and luckily, she winked back. I finally asked her out after about 3 months of Emails and phone calls. After a few dates, I knew she was one I was going to marry. So, today I am married to a smart, beautiful woman that I met all because of technology. Who knows if our paths would have ever crossed if it weren't for the Internet. I'm living in Atlanta, going back to school, and where I am right now all because of that wink. I'm a lucky man. Happy Winkaversary Kristin!
Photo: Wink (simonella_virusCC BY 2.0

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