Kyle Null

My career portfolio and thought journals

Things I Value in a Story

  1. Deep character development
  2. Very few characters with only the amount of characters necessary to maintain the storyline
  3. Extensive 1st person narrative

My eWaste Book

Georg C. Lichtenberg (1742-1799) was a German scientist most famous for his posthumously published notebooks in which he recorded his thoughts, observations, reminders, and the occasional aphorism. He referred to these notebooks as “waste books” after the books that businesses used to record transactions until they were formally recorded in account books. I have decided to keep an “electronic waste book” (e-waste book) for concepts and thoughts that I have not fully developed and for asides that are not standalone posts.

My Famous Family Tree

So, it turns out that I may have a few “famous” relatives. A few Christmases ago, I was back home in Meridian, MS around my family and the topic of the family tree came up as it often does around Christmas for some reason. I suppose it is a natural time for the family to talk about the family when we are all together and sharing in the holiday spirit and all of that. When my grandparents started discussing their parents, grandparents, war stories and such, I grabbed a pen and paper and started furiously writing down what I could retain without asking them to slow down or repeat themselves. Something I have learned over the last few years: when an older generation starts talking, you should listen. Once you get through some of the uncomfortable memes of yesteryear, there is usually some good advice buried somewhere in the word soup. As they were talking about our family, I scribbled out a rudimentary tree that captured the names and branches I heard them say. If I could not fit someone nicely in the tree, they became a bush on their own until I knew where to connect them to the big tree. keep reading…

Empathy

An idea for an elective pharmacy course struck me a few weekends ago when I was working in a retail pharmacy. After hearing one of the pharmacy technicians become unnecessarily rude with a patient, I walked over to the drop off window to help diffuse the situation. It really wasn’t much to speak of, but I could tell the patient was hurt by the way the technician had spoken to her. While I don’t remember exactly what the patient needed, but I do remember that the request made by the patient was simple – an easy fix – but the technician had effectively said, “No, we aren’t allowed to do that.” When I got involved, I discovered that not only we WERE allowed to do “that,” but in other pharmacies that I had worked at in the past, “that” was considered good customer service. This was certainly not the first time I had run across this type of situation, but they are starting to really wear on my soul – particularly since my wife and I had gone through some tough medical circumstances and spent a tremendous amount of money out of pocket on medical care. keep reading…

All We Need to Do is Make Sure We Keep Talking

Stephen Hawking Keep Talking

Stephen Hawking

For millions of years, mankind lived just like the animals. Then something happened which unleashed the power of our imagination. We learned to talk and we learned to listen. Speech has allowed the communication of ideas, enabling human beings to work together to build the impossible. Mankind’s greatest achievements have come about by talking and its greatest failures by not talking. It doesn’t have to be like this. Our greatest hopes could become reality in the future. With the technology at our disposal, the possibilities are unbounded. All we need to do is make sure we keep talking.
-Stephen Hawking

This is one of my favorite quotes. It was said by Stephen Hawking, the famous theoretical physicist and cosmologist confined to a wheelchair due to his ongoing battle with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS and also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease). ALS is a condition of the nerve cells which control voluntary movement. Eventually, speech is affected. Stephen Hawking speaks using a computer synthesized voice. In the quote, which was first recorded for a British Telecommunications (BT) commercial, he was discussing the impact and importance of communication on advances in society and what the lack of communication can do to a society. keep talking…