I like your idea of commenting like being at a social gathering. I'm not originally from the midwest though, rather an all over the U.S. guy. I've been in South Dakota for 5 1/2 years I think, since 2007 and we have about had enough of the frigid winters here.
As for where I learned home remodeling, I'm still learning and it is all from books and the internet. Those books they sell on doing your own plumbing, electric, walls, floors and decks have come a long way from the old sunset do it yourself books. Doing it myself saves me a bunch in labor costs, and should put a great deal more money in our pockets when we sell, but it is really slow getting it done alone.
You mentioned changing professions soon. What direction with work are you heading?
Oh hello! If you are afraid that a future employer might google your name you might consider using another name on the site - change your name to something else. Just got to your profile and edit it there.
I've a native of the area - was born and raised over on the Illinois side, in Granite City, IL, a working-class steel town about 15 minutes from downtown St. Louis. I have a degree in journalism, though, and have also lived southeastern Missouri, both Carolinas and in east-central Illinois (in fact, in the town where I went to school at). I've lived in St. Louis city itself since 2000 (except for the time from 2003-05 when I was in central Illinois); I've been in my current place since 2005, in the south part of the city.
I'm currently active in a humanist religious community called the Ethical Society and do volunteer work for a non-commercial, listener-supported community radio station here in the area. I've been down to Springfield, MO, a couple of times, to cover the Missouri state high school basketball tournament in the late 1980s (when I was living in southeastern Missouri). I'm also a fan of all the St. Louis teams (Cardinals, Rams and Blues) and am a big-time trivia whiz (I've tried out for Jeopardy! a couple of times and want to get on the show someday).
To answer your main question, well, the Olympic torch came through our town and we went and saw the runner who was carrying the torch; otherwise I saw no Olympic events live. Just followed what I could on TV.
I was away quite a lot on summer research at the time, i.e. on archaeological site exploration, lecturing, studies and excavations. My expertise in archaeology is in the megalithic period---the Neolithic and Bronze Age of Europe. That's the Stonehenge period for example. To get an idea, you could look up Stonehenge Answers on Facebook.
Oh hello there Sheri! thanks so much for your wonderful comment. I can send you a message to answer your wonderful questions. I sent you a friend request. Once you accept I can send you a response. : )
Hi Sheri So nice to have you here. Welcome to this internet world of rationality and peace--common sense and freethinking wisdom--that unites non-believers and critical thinkers like you and us. You are invited to join the busy group "ORIGINS: Universe, Astronomy, Life, Earth, Humans, Religion, Gods, Atheism, Evolution, Darwin..." with 750 discussion topics and 3780 members. http://www.atheistnexus.org/group/originsuniverselifehumankindanddarwin Terry