When I thought about doing a page on the people in my life, My first thought, as usual, was “Go for it!” but I got to thinking that maybe those in my life actually want to be anonymous. So now we are back to trying to get around the anonymity thing while still getting into my life.
First off, I was raised in Moscow, IA (population ~200). I know – you never heard of it and you don’t care. It is about 10 miles south of I-80 about halfway between Davenport and Iowa City in the Hawkeye State of Iowa. I am the oldest of 5 boys (yes, I still feel my mother was abused because of this!) and we were all involved in sports and band in school. Speaking of which, I graduated from Wilton High School. I know – you never heard of it and you don’t care. Wilton is the alma mater of Wally Hilgenburg, outside linebacker for the Minnesota Vikings from the days of the Purple People Eaters. ANYWAY… Growing up we were not well off. My dad was a teacher and my mom didn’t work outside the home until I reached 8th grade. We didn’t have a lot of money, but we didn’t lack for anything either. We had another family in the small town of Moscow that we ended up playing baseball, basketball or flag football with and against every day of the summer. This was before X-Box, Nintendo and even Atari. Heck, when I was a junior in high school a friend of mine got the new-fangled game “Pong”! We had a single 17″ black and white TV that got 4 channels (ABC,NBC,CBS,PBS), so TV was very boring. I remember having people over and we had to stomp on the floor to jiggle the inner loose wires or tubes or something just to get the darned thing to work right. When I tell my kids about growing up there, they look at me as though I have just sprouted antlers.
I now live in Muscatine, Iowa. I know – you never heard of it and you don’t care. Well, I guess that adds to the anonymity factor. According to one of the books I have read about the history of Muscatine, it is the only Muscatine in the entire world. I know – you still haven’t heard of it and still don’t care. It is a small town (~23,000) in Iowa along the Mississippi River. We are really big into Mark Twain here. According to that same book, he spent some time here as a youth as well as in his home town of Hannibal, MO. We are also the home of Max Collins – author of the Dick Tracy comic strip – and his son Max Alan Collins – writer of the graphic novel “Road to Perdition” and other graphic novels. If you want to know where Muscatine is, think of the eastern part of Iowa as a face; the part that sticks out to the east is the nose — Muscatine is where the boogers come out. It’s not really as bad as that. I can get to downtown Chicago in a little over three hours. Also, we have the Quad Cities only 30 miles away and Iowa City about 40 miles away. All in all it is nicely located. We get many of the conveniences of larger cities without a lot of the crime and urban blight you see there.
I work for HNI Corporation in computer technical support Information and Technology Acquisitions (I help migrate newly purchased companies into our network) second level technical support. We manufacture office furniture. In fact, we are the largest mid-level office furniture manufacturer in the world. Take a look at your file cabinets, desks, chairs, office cubes, office tables, lockers, waiting room chairs and couches. If any of them are branded HON, Allsteel, Gunlocke, Maxon, Holga, Paoli, Omni, BPI or Bevis, then we made them. We hold the patent on lateral files. Also, we own Hearth and Home Technologies, which in turn owns Heatilator, Heat-n-Glow, Quadra-Fire, and Fireside. Our world-wide headquarters is in Muscatine. Kind of amazing, huh? A world-wide headquarters for anything in a small town like Muscatine. Muscatine is also the FORMER world-wide headquarters for Bandag (which was purchased by Bridgestone Tire). KC works for Grain Processing, as a Quality Assurance lab manager the Director of Quality Assurance and Compliance. Grain Processing is a wet-milling company, similar to Cargill, which is owned by Muscatine Foods. They make a lot of product that goes into other products; chances are that you’ve had some product that they make (maltodextrin, alcohol, starch) as an ingredient in another product. They also own Kent Feeds (a very popular feeds company here in the midwest), Evergreen Mills (another very popular feeds company, mainly in Texas and Oklahoma) and Precision Foods (makers of Wendy’s Frosty!).
Don't drive me crazy -- it's within walking distance.
Born on this day
May 28, 2017
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