Click on the mailbox if you want to send a question. When you write your question – if you start with “Grandpa -“, or “Dear Grandpa,” he will know the question came from this site. (It goes to Grandpa’s and Grandma’s regular email.)
Or just send your normal way to: firstname.lastname@example.org
In general, when a question is asked, Grandpa will consider that the one who asks is ready for an answer. Look at sample questions below to get an idea of the range of questions and the kinds of answers Grandpa gives. It will always be useful if you give your age, and if the question involves a class, what class you are taking.
You may ask questions on any subject. It could be about advice – or help with homework – or just things you’re curious about. It could be about a physics problem in a class – or a debate you’re having with a friend. Grandpa likes you to work on a problem first – and tell him what you have already figured out – then ask the question.
Woops – bug.
Grandpa has been a Physicist for 31 years. Physics and math are specialties.
Music is a big thing in Grandpa’s life. He played clarinet and contra-bass clarinet for 9 years in concert bands, and as a minor miracle, he played the piano at the Super Bowl in 1988. There were 88 brand new grand pianos on the field – each with 88 keys – in 1988. Grandpa’s piano was number 55. It was a Radio City Music Hall Production. The famous Rockettes were in this also – 44 of them – 88 high-kicking legs. We played; they danced. Grandpa was the oldest and called himself “The Least Pianist,” because so many of the 88 were concert pianists and piano teachers and piano majors. For Grandpa to have gotten through the audition process is quite a story. There is no question, he was the least pianist of them all. More than 1300 pianists auditioned for the 88 pianos. Grandpa’s sons are always Super Bowl fans, even when their team is not playing. They bring friends over to watch the game, and Grandpa enjoys mentioning that he played in the 1988 Super Bowl. “Oh yes, they put me on the field for about 7 minutes and practically had to carry me off. I was Number 55.”
Forty years ago, Grandpa was a Christian missionary. In the 40 years since, the rather “sure” attitudes of youth have softened (comforted) to an amazement concerning all we don’t know. Even as a young scientist, it was not pleasant trying to be or appear to be certain and doubtless about a thousand details without good data. Grandpa now believes that doubt and faith are companion tools, and both are needed for a reasonable process. Grandpa has had to deal with being a responsible scientist requiring scientific scrutiny, while recognizing the value of faith also. They are both good. Both should be honest – Honest Faith and an honest process that includes Doubt.
During his 31 year career as a physicist with the United States Navy Laboratory system, there were many projects, including rocket sled testing, Low Light Level Television and Infrared devices and powerful lasers. Grandpa has spent time on aircraft carriers, fast ships of the Navy (hydrofoils, air-cushion vehicles, planing-craft), helicopters, Navy high-performance aircraft, hot air balloons, and submarines. He even rode one of the rocket sleds – but it was being towed down the rail by a pickup truck. The rockets were not fired, but the ride was still exhilarating.
For about 4 years, Grandpa recruited scientists and engineers for the United States Navy Laboratories from 54 universities in the United States. It’s amazing how many new things these younger scientists have learned. The world of science, especially with the addition of many millions of computers, has changed and advanced almost beyond comprehension. What you young folks are going to see in the next 50 years, Grandpa would dearly love to see with you.
Grandpa has also been involved in many foreign countries training people to do political and market research. One country was the old Soviet Union. Grandpa was part of a wonderful team, training Communist and non-Communist leaders, mostly sociologists, to do this research in their ever increasing move toward freedom of religion, speech, and markets. This work was paid for by one of the political parties in England. You should have seen the line at the new McDonald’s in Moscow ! Sample 12 has pictures.
Grandpa rode motorcycles for many years – and designed and built one very powerful (but light) desert-sled he dubbed a “Bryan.”
(Bryan is one of Grandpa’s sons.) The Bryan motorcycle is still in Grandpa’s garage, but has not been ridden for more than 20 years. Today’s racing motorcycles would have no trouble beating the Bryan, but when it was built, it was as fast as one could find anywhere. A friend of Grandpa’s has the only other “Bryan” in existence, though that one has not been given that name. It has never been ridden, never fully assembled. The two motorcycles were designed together, but do not have the same physics, and were intended for two different uses. Grandpa’s desert-sled and his friend’s cafe racer share identical engines (Yamaha XT750 twins with recipro-shafts to almost completely cancel vibrations. 63 horsepower.)
Grandpa has six adult children, plus four more by marriage, and thirteen grandchildren – All but the youngest of them ask questions on almost any subject, giving Grandpa lots of practice. They do not ask just ordinary questions. Particularly with his ten children, it is getting to a point where Grandpa is asking the technical questions, and they are giving the answers.
He uses them sometimes as resources to answer your questions.
1. David Jess: Economist. (Son)
2. Valeria: (Daughter)
3. Jonna: Exec. Secretary and Home Manager. (Daughter)
4. Mark: Owner and President of Universal Pipeline Company. (Son)
5. Bryan: Computer Scientist. (Son)
6. Bill: Electrical Engineer. (Son)
7. Pam: Home manager and Nursing Student. (Daughter)
8. David: Computer Systems Management and Golf Equipment. (Son)
9. Becky: Communications and Advertising Professional. (Daughter)
10. Sara: Elementary School Teacher. (Daughter)
11. Sean: Social Sciences Professional. (Son)
There will, of course, be questions Grandpa cannot answer, either because he knows too little on the subject and can’t find it in a reasonable amount of time from another source, or because he deems it inappropriate to answer. In those cases, Grandpa will answer with, “I don’t know,” or perhaps with a little humor. He also may answer by giving you a lead to another source, like a site address. There is an example of each of these in the samples.
Go ahead and Ask a Question – Click the Mailbox to write Grandpa an email.
Or just send your normal way to: email@example.com
Note: Grandpa will write and try to answer your question – but he will never share your address with anyone.
These are Grandpa’s 13 Grandchildren. The three smallest ones are the new Triplets!
Back Row: Daylan holding little brother Jackson. Braden holding little cousin Landon. Jessica and Thaide.
Front Row: Sara holding little cousin Kelton. Ryland almost holding little brother Sumner and Austin holding little sister Ella and very front is Rhys.
Grandpa Traded in his T-Bucket
For This New HotRod
The truth is, this special vehicle belongs to Grandpa’s first daughter, Jonna, and to her husband, Mark. These new little triplets are perfect as riders. Front to back: Jackson, Landon, and Ella.
Upper left is Jonna Lee (I call her Pixie Lee), holding Austin, with her husband, Mark on the left with their other son, Daylan, in the white shirt. (Mark and Jonna now also have the triplets, Jackson, Ella, and Landon.) The two boys with glasses on the right are Bryan (Bry Guy) and Bill (Billy). (Holding his daughter, Sara. His son, Braden, has Becky’s arm around him on the left. Jessica is his also.) Then came David (We’ll just say Davie, but there are several nicknames.) His wife, Becky in white blouse and red flowered pretty (dress? Grandpa does not know details like this.) And last came Sara, just to Grandpa’s right, with Sean, her husband, with his arms around her waist. (They now also have Thaide and Kaelten.)
Grandpa would be the oldest in this picture now, as both of his parents have passed on. Grandpa is in the back with the tie. Grandma is in front of him holding Jessica.
If I tell you the truth, and you just memorize it, is this
the process of learning you want? Please say “No.” I will share
with you what tools of learning I have, and you may find others
also, and you will decide for yourself all that is to be believed.
As the world of knowledge grows, you will develop beliefs of
things I could not have been privileged to consider. – Grandpa
Grandpa’s Book: That Little Hardback
(50 years of free thought from an old physicist)
Grandpa’s Book: Trip Around the Sun
(Grandpa’s Visits to 52 religions in a year.)