Six years ago, 2001, I was in my second semester at CSULB, living in the "quiet building" of the dorms. I had realized by this point that I had no career in music, and had started the transition to my English degree. Because of disagreements with my Horn instructor (that he wouldn't be getting any more money from me due to my degree change), I was kicked out of the University Orchestra, and wasn't told for two weeks. By the end of the year, I was a full English major, under the tutelage of Dr. Mimi Hotchkiss, who is still a good friend.
Six years before that, 1995, I met my best friend Jennifer. I had started my career as a drum major, having been chosen early that year to lead the Thompson Jr. High School Marching Band for my eighth grade year. I completed my Eagle Scout requirements that December, and received the honor the following February.
Six years prior, 1989, saw a rough transition from first to second grades, the pleasantness and understanding of Mrs. Urzanqui being replaced by the harsh bigotry of Mrs. Druey, a wicked old witch fundamentalist Christian who couldn't understand why I had such a problem singing Christmas carols. This was my first real introduction to Christianity, and it wasn't a very good one. Late in the year I was diagnosed with epilepsy, which Mrs. Druey dismissed, insisting I was just "daydreaming." Add to it that she preferred to teach girls over boys, and I had a "perfect storm" of reasons for her to dislike me, and I her.
Six years before, 1983, was the year I was formally adopted by my parents, Chuck and Sharon Rhodes. I'd lived with them since I was two months old (my arrival completely ruining their second attempt at a honeymoon in Hawaii), and the paperwork was certified by the court six months later. Circumstances easily could have been worse, and I doubt very much that they could have been better (with the exception of my parents not adopting my sister two years later).