Jeff Norman

Profile Updated: May 10, 2021
Residing In: Milwaukee, WI USA
Spouse/Partner: Rose Hilbert
Occupation: teacher

I went off to U of Michigan (primarily, I'm guessing from the looks of my yearbook photo, to escape the shame of doubleknit polyester jackets); spent my first two years of college there. Financial hardship caused me to transfer to Madison for the final two (plus change) years of college - good thing, as in my second year there, living in a housing co-op, I met Rose, who would eventually become my wife. Ended up with a bachelor's in English - briefly considered law school but decided instead on grad school in English. Took a few years off before going to grad school at UW-Milwaukee: the idea was to save money...instead I think I mostly enriched the coffers of various credit card companies and record stores.

Started grad school in 1988 part-time, full-time thereafter...never quite got my Ph.D., which given the ongoing craposity of the job market has probably made very little difference. Doesn't matter: I enjoy teaching more than I would enjoy departmental politics and the tenure scramble.

Still an avid music fan - I even wrote for several amateur music zines in the late '90s (for "amateur" read "free, and without pay"), mostly doing reviews. I've occasionally offended the gods of recorded sound by doing my own songs.

I'm fairly surprised I ended up back here in the Milwaukee area - if you'd asked me in my senior year if that would have been the case, I'd have emphatically said "hell no!" and would have had a hard time imagining a duller fate. The city's changed quite a bit and mostly for the better.

What else...? No kids, two cats. We live in a 1930 bungalow we bought in the late '90s - there is one small area (not counting the basement) that's NOT been remodeled in some way...

I believe it's considered good form in these things to include at least one howling lie, so I'll just add that my incredible dance tribute on ice to the best airline disasters of the 1930s is almost complete - the main hangup is that it's damned hard to find an orchestra of 1,000 bagpipe players.

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May 29, 2021 at 7:54 PM

Posted on: May 29, 2021 at 6:07 PM

Gosh, I just saw an orchestra of bagpipes somewhere, but I think it was 900. Wish I could tell you where it was I saw them... saw it somewhere! :)

Honestly, though, if you like bagpipes, a few years ago we vacationed (one of our few and rare vacations) in a wonderful little town in Canada called Kincardine, Ontario, right on the eastern shore of Lake Huron. (Straight north from Detroit...) They're known for their bagpipe band which, in the summer, appears in a weekly parade down main street. And every night a lone bagpiper climbs to the top of the lighthouse and plays the pipes at sunset. It's in honor and memory of a bagpiper who saved an entire ship during a storm over 100 years ago when visibility was too poor for the ship to see the light but followed the sound of the pipes. Anyway... really WONDERFUL town. Maybe you could find your band there. (Canada is so great. Like an alternate Fringe reality up there -- the functional reality, compared to the US.)

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