Friday, December 31, 2010

The End Is Nigh....At least, For This Part of my PaleoQuest

It is the eve of the New Year and multitudes of people from across the planet await with an unfathomable anxiety and excitement for the upcoming year. For many, the new year marks a new beginning, for others it marks another lap in this track called life. This is also a time to reflect and to make commitments, even ones that very likely won't be kept. So, as 2010 comes to a close, and 2011 draws nigh, I await the end of Part I of my PaleoQuest, that is, the graduation from High School and the move into College where my Quest can really begin.

I began my odyssey in the Fall of  2008, my Sophomore year in High School, with a goal in mind: Vertebrate Palaeontologist. I knew this odyssey would not be easy, and I have come to rely on several people to assist me and support me through the plethora of roadblocks that were extremely difficult to maneuver past. There have been times where I just wanted to give up, to question my abilities, my own intelligence, and even whether my heart and my soul are even commited. I owe these people an unfathomable amount and, I would like to give credit where credit is due:

  • Mark Lewis, my Father, who has raised me since birth and brought me up to become the man I am today, and the kind of man I aspire to become.
  • Candace Partridge, my Mother, of Mi Chiamo Candace, has been there for me much like my dad has, even after their devorce when I was 5 years old.
  •  David Partridge, my step-father, has been there for me for spiritual guidance, for excellent music (he plays a mean acoustic) and love and support. I am truly grateful for the love and support of two fathers.
  • My grandfather, now deceased, was, and continues to be a huge influence on my life and without him, I might be lost, or, at least, lacking in inspiration.
  • Robin Lewis, my step-mother, has taught me the skills and tried to give me the courage to be my own person. Strict, and a bit impulsive and sensitive, I love her dearly and she loves me, though I can not lie and say we get along all the time.
  • The author Michael Crichton, has been my hero for the last 4-5 years and continues to be a huge influence on me as a scientist, a thinker and a human being. Honestly, there are times where his influence rivals my father and my grandfather in influence on my life.
  • Robert T. Bakker is a big inspiration to the kind of paleontologist I would want to become.
  • John R. "Jack" Horner, professor at Montana State University in Bozeman, Montana, is an iconoclastic paleontologist and another equally influencing force for me as a paleontologist.
  • James Richardson, one of my best friends and a childhood friend, continues to be a huge help in the social aspects of my life. His humour is wry, but it keeps me going.
  • Austin Wilkerson, childhood friend and David Gilmour nut, is much life Richardson in how he helps me in my life.
  • Kyle Wilkerson, childhood friend and younger brother of Austin Wilkerson, has a childish air about him, but his intelligence is staggering. He is also very philosophical and loves video games as well as art, like his brother.
  • Aimee Evans, childhood friend, loyal and funny. I doubt I could've made it through Middle School without her.
  • Traumador the Tyrannosaur, "friend" and all around fun coelurosaur, is what got me into blogging if you recall. *laughs* If you read The Tyrannosaur Chronicles, you'll be able to follow the zany adventures of this pint-sized Tyrannosaurus rex, and watch how this unlikely hero fares against the dreaded Pack of the Primordial Feather.
  • Jason "Naveed" Westby, zany, intelligent and certainly paranormal himself, is a close friend on the Blogosphere and loyal fan from the start, as I am on his blog. Join him as he blogs about the Paranormal and other cool bizarre topics of interest. 
  • Thomas R. Holtz, jr., American Vertebrate Paleontologist and professor of Geology at the University of Maryland, is now a friend of mine through Facebook and occasional e-mails. I find getting to know him is the best way to get inspired and to keep me going. Plus, I am indebted to him because of his willingness to assist in my teaching.
  • "Dinosaur George" Blasing, creator of Jurassic Fight Club, Public Speaker, and curator of the Witte Museum in San Antonio, Texas, has been friends with me for the last couple of years or so. He is certainly very Witte (sorry, horrible pun *laughs*). I am indebted to him for his willingness and enthusiasm for Paleontology. He has an uncanny background of amateur research and is a gifted teacher. Without him, this blog probably wouldn't be very successful.
As 2011 draws nigh, I will admit that one of my largest regrets is not being nearly addicted to Facebook. *laughs* and not being on here, teaching as much as I'd like. However, most of my time has been spent going through school, moving, and occasionally family drama. I hope I can say I'm back, but I can't guarantee that. *laughs* Although, I will certainly say I will be on here more in the future and less on Facebook.. *laughs*

Now, before I wrap up here, I would like to share that I was accepted to Western Kentucky University, College of Science and Engineering for the Fall 2011 term! ^_^ I am extremely excited!! And, also, for the New Year Celebration and Newport, New Hampshire, USA's 250th Anniversary as a town, I will be ringing the church bells at Midnight!! Well, that's all for now, I suppose. Take Care and HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

4 comments:

Dinorider d'Andoandor said...

Happy new year!

you have many people that care about you and that's really nice!

Raptor Lewis said...

Dinorider- Thank you! Happy New Year to you as well! Yes, it's great to have such support! You are one of them and I'm very appreciative and proud to have you as a friend! :D

Dinorider d'Andoandor said...

thanks

btw your post on Why is Evolution vanished!

Quantum_Flux said...

I got to say, Michael Crichton is my favorite all-time author.