If you were young at the advent of email, I bet you have a story behind your very personal, potentially embarrassing first address. I’ll tell you mine if you tell me yours. When Twitter came to stay, I picked my handle with similar flippancy, though perhaps it’s a bit more humble. I’m Tara Shepersky; my adopted home is Portland, Oregon, airport call sign PDX.
Now you know two of the most important hands that shape me. Shepersky is my birth name, shorthand for the far-flung clan that’s held my place as long as I remember. I haven’t met anything yet that can induce me to give up the name. The wider Portland metro is the home of my hands and feet and work, a second omnipresence to celebrate and push against, to strive in the shadow of.
If you’ve read this blog, you’ll have gathered I like to walk. I live in scent of two rivers, and though I can’t see them from my house, I can trace the course of one by its drifting fog, and one by the break in the ridge. Thoreau — why is it always Thoreau? — Thoreau wrote that we must “re-ally ourselves with Nature every day…even every winter day,” and I remember that because when I read it, I already knew it was true. Even if I don’t write Nature with a capital.
Otherwise, I ally myself with the Human conversation. I read, never enough. (Kay, Kingsolver, Austen. Rains Wallace, Wall Kimmerer, LeGuin. Spagna, MacFarlane, I’ll stop now.) I review new books sometimes, a strange and lovely privilege. (This one is really good.) I dance in public, probably not very well but I’m still at it. I sing alto. I travel when I can, I journal by hand, I will abandon my day to talk theology any time you bring the wine or coffee. I sharpen my brain on the puzzle that is taxonomy 40 hours a week, with the added bonus that I get paid for that. When I am very fortunate, I write, and I photograph. And when I am very graced, which is always, I rest in the home my husband and I have made of our shared and separate hearts.
I still like Twitter in spite of its many faults, and you can talk to me there @pdxpersky. I tweet about the things I love: everything above (probably including Thoreau, sorry), plus anthropology, justice and activism, tasty beverages, history, birdwatching, cats. A lot about cats.