I spent five years in the Army before law school: I jumped out of planes and helicopters, slept in the mud and the forest, did lots of pushups, lived in Hawaii, and never went to war but have complete respect for those who have. I have heroes.
I graduated college early, including spending my middle year of the three in Paris, taking classes at the Sorbonne while exploring all around. My favorite view in all of Paris is looking at the Eiffel Tower from Trocadero, above the fountains.
I grew up in the suburbs in what I call upstate New York, but what folks in the City call “western NY,” i.e., Rochester. Public schools were good where I went, and I had a good time with my friends and running track, making fun of the cool soccer kids, and generally being irreverent.
Who am I?
The basic stuff, the easy stuff, is easy to find. Who am I, though? I’m a guy, a straightforward, serious, funny, smart, silly, confident, loving, caring, courageous, sensitive, adventurous guy.
I like smart wide-ranging conversations full of wit and quick-thinking; I’d kill for a seriously smart & funny woman who’s confident enough to be herself. I am a word guy, a lawyer and writer and reader, but I can do math longhand better than most. I like facts and principles and turning them to the practical rather than the theoretical (changing the world is hard enough when you actually do stuff to spend any time talking about the talking about it). I write with lots of parentheticals, signs of the tornado of thoughts whirring through my head all the time when I’m “on.”
I like bright smiles and even brighter eyes; I like laughter and tickling and stolen kisses. I like lanky and willowy and athletic and lean and curvy too (I’m a typically conflicted American guy). I give great massages but haven’t gotten one back in a while. (I might be a giver instead of a taker.)
I am physically affectionate and live for hugs and leaning on each other and throwing your legs over mine on the couch and walking down the street arm in arm. I like dancing in my tux, holding your hand to help you out of the car, and resting my hand in the small of your back while we’re standing and talking to others.
I like lots of new activities; there are always standbys like a walk around the city, but that’s really about conversation while finding new stores and buildings and watching new people do new things. I would prefer to do 10 different things on 10 weekends than do the same thing (gallery opening, pottery throwing, archery practice) every single time. The world is big.
I’m a family man at heart. I have two handsome boys, and I would absolutely love more kids (even though that's not likely). I believe that love and kids are pretty much 90+% of the meaning of life.
I’m confident enough to know what’s not the best part of me, to recognize it, work at it, and more importantly, learn how to work around it. I’m confident enough to admit that I’m not perfect; but also enough to admit that I am a hell of a guy.
What am I doing with my life?
Building and rebuilding. I know what I want my life to look like, and so that’s the direction I’m moving in.
I’ve discovered/learned that I’m not as shy as I thought, I’m more organized than I thought, and I’m more forgiving than I thought.
The ending is unwritten, but I imagine it filled with lots of great-grandkids running around a gigantic lawn at a family picnic, with tables full of family and friends, lots of food spread all around. I could grow old looking at that.
I’m a board member and lawyer and I write about the ideas I have for organizations and systems and how to make folks smarter and how to help people make decisions. I practiced in NYC at a big firm, and then in Silicon Valley during the dotcom boom, moving back to the East Coast in 2005. I’ve run a variety of businesses and investments in addition to being a lawyer, including an online lingerie business and importing cement into the Persian Gulf. About half my work is helping people start new companies and half is transactions – people buying, selling, and investing in companies.
What am I really good at?
Taking action, taking charge, filling up empty spaces of indecision and blah with a plan and a bias for action.
I envision processes and systems in one giant piece, like Athena springing forth fully formed from Zeus’s head or Tesla designing circuits in his mind. I can plan anything, even (or especially) things I don’t know how to do.
And analogies. Law made me a permanent analogy guy; I can analogize anything to something else, and if I can work in a literature or science reference that’s just a bonus.
The first things people usually notice about me:
First, my sea-green eyes.
Second, that I get excited when I talk and can go on forever about the topics that excite me: ideas for new businesses, performance management in nonprofits and public services, writing, building systems from end to end, my dreams for my kids.
My favorite books, movies, music, and food
Authors I buy sight unseen:
- Lincoln Child/Douglas Preston
- Tom Robbins
- Neal Stephenson
- William Gibson
- Edward Tufte
Ronin, Black Hawk Down, Best in Show, Election, Tenet, Godfather & its mob-movie kin. I’ll plan to watch any Ed Burns movie, any Scorsese or Robert Altman, any time travel movie (no matter how bad), and anything starring Don Cheadle or Edward Norton.
Sheryl Crow, Dylan, the Dead, the Who, Shakira; some new stuff catching my ear: Nicki Minaj, Katy Perry, Taylor Swift. (Yeah, I know, WTF is with my radio?)
I like to grill and eat fresh food (like salad and barely cooked veggies) when I have time to cook from scratch; Indian, Thai, Italian, North African — it’s all good except for shellfish (eating the guts of filter feeders kinda creeps me out) and stuff that falls into the “when I’m on a desert island and run out of bananas” category. And true to my heritage, I love bread.
The six things I could never do without
My 3 best friends
My 2 boys
Self-reliance (and books)
I spend a lot of time thinking about
- how I want to restructure my work life to support the personal life I want
- how I'm going to find more time for new projects that energize me
- how to express what it is that I do, in life and in work, that is the "point of Rick"
- what the future looks like, and which bricks on the road mark my path
You should contact me if
You are the smartest gal you know...
You really want a solid, committed, stand-up guy...
You can respect me for being a good father...
You need someone who can understand and respect your incredibly difficult, complex, and erudite profession...
You like cuddling, snuggling, and holding hands... and you want us to help each other be better people.