A Vanity Page For Robert Brodrecht

About Robert Brodrecht

Who are you?

Like I told someone once, I hate when people ask, who are you? When people ask that, they usually want to know your name. I'm not my name. I am not a unique identifier for your internal database. I'm more than that. So, what do you want to know, what is your name, or, who are you?

What is your name?

My name is Robert Brodrecht.

Ok, fine. Who are you? For real.

My essential nature: I am a problem solver. But I guess I'm more than that. I'm also an artist, a writer, a philosopher, a cynic (e.g. faultfinder), a rationalist, a theologian (in the -ology sense), an elitist, and I'm a bit of a perfectionist. I'm into computers, cars (especially electric cars and rotary powered cars), aggressive inline skating, building things, DIY, good design, good music, good books, good movies, and good conversation.

Apparently, I am a typical capricorn, which, apparently, inclines me to believe that astrology is bullshit. I can't deny the latter part of that statement.

I am a web designer by profession. I currently deal with HTML 5.0, CSS 3, JavaScript (especially Ajax at the moment), and PHP with MySQL. I am a standardista. However, I'm interested in learning a trade in the event that there is a shift in the World Wide Web that forces web designers into obsolescence.

What do you look like?

I try to keep my gravatar up-to-date. For a few self portraits, check my Flickr photos tagged with "robertdot." You could also look on my Twitter profile or my FaceBook profile.

Got some quick facts?

Sure. Here are a few:

So, what's your story?

I was born in Birmingham, Alabama at Saint Vincent's Hospital and raised happily in Trussville, Alabama by both of my parents (with my younger sister, Anna). I attended school in the Hewitt-Trussville zone of the Jefferson County Board of Education, where I generally considered myself outside of the typical social order (though I may have ended up in the art / theatre / computer geek classification by the end of my senior year). Notable achievements at Hewitt-Trussville include (in 1999): artist laureate of the school magazine, cover designer / artist of the year book, lead in the school production of Dracula, a letter in Cross Country, and placing somewhere in the top 50 or less (GPA wise) of my class.

Aside: I guess it's important to note that sometime around 10th or 11th grade, Jeremy Logan introduced me to web design, which allowed me to take art to an entirely new medium. I spent countless all-nighters (often on school nights) redesigning my website. This is where my love affair with the web started.

My college career was spread across several colleges. I technically started college the summer before my senior year in high school at Birmingham Southern College in their Summer Scholar program. After I graduated high school, at my mom's request, I shipped off to UAH, where I spent a miserable year. UAH introduced me to many communications concepts in their web cognate, but I ultimately transferred to the University of Alabama to attempt to have a social life. A member of the Mallet Assembly, I graduated with a double major in Philosophy and Art Studio (with a concentration in Graphic Design), after completing my final course requirements for UA at UAB in the winter of 2003.

My work history is sparse. After high school, I started a short summer tenure at Trussville Utilities, returning the next year as a contract employee. The next summer, I fell into landscaping, working on a maintenance crew (cutting grass and pulling weeds). After that, I picked up odd web design jobs. Eventually, I ended up part-time bar tending at Birmingham Country Club and worked part-time as a web developer at ACCi. After completing college, I moved into a full-time position at ACCi.

It seemed like fate that I got laid off at ACCi after eight months, right around the time I decided that it was imperative that I move to California. I'm still not sure I buy into fate, but I ended up in Hollywood, California two weeks after I was laid off. After an unsuccessful three month stint as a freelance web designer in California, I landed a job at ESN Media Group filling their need for a full time web designer, though I ended up delving into web development projects frequently, and moved north into the San Fernando Valley.

Nothing major happened. I made a living and lived. At first I rented a house, then got an apartment when I decided the house was too expensive. I made a couple of friends that enriched me, and met quite a few people who were interesting to know.

After three years in California, I packed up my things in mid June of 2007 and headed back to Alabama to be closer to friends and family. California was great, but I felt like I was missing out on a lot back home. I secured a telecommuting position as a PHP developer at 9th Street Creative, based in Tuscaloosa, Alabama while I lived with my parents until I got my feet under me.

I spent seven months coding PHP, HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. I had a lot of fun and learned a lot about business. I also put 10,000+ miles on my car while taking the daily commute to Tuscaloosa from Birmingham.

In January of 2008, I came to the conclusion that working in Tuscaloosa and living close to Birmingham wouldn't be feasible in the long term. I landed a job off Highway 280 near Mountain Brooke as the lead web designer at DataPerk, A Birmingham, Alabama Web Design and IT Consulting Firm. I finished up at 9th Street at the end of January and started DataPerk the 1st of February with the intent of settling down somewhere in the Homewood, Alabama area.

In early March, I launched Vodka Buzz, a Vodka Ratings and Vodka Reviews Site. This is the first on-my-own project that has actually launched and show potential of being something good on the Internet. So, keep an eye on it.

As things go, Homewood turned out not to be the best place to buy a family-perspective house. With the help of my then-girlfriend / fiance Erin Poe, I found a great place in Odenville, Alabama after 6 months of looking. We moved into the house in August (or was it September?) of 2008. Before I closed on the house, I realized my long standing dream of getting a Scottish Terrier named AJAX.

After 10 years in the making, I married Erin Poe on October 31st, 2008, fortunately making her my "good woman" (to quote Connor Oberst in "One Foot In Front Of The Other" or "Landlocked Blues" depending on which you know) for the rest of my life. Our Halloween wedding was the perfect ceremony for us. We have a shared website at RobertAndErin.com. I'll hopefully be developing the site over the years to something suitable for our marriage and family.

In January 2012, Erin and I found out she was pregnant! In late April of 2012, we found out we were having a girl! We had already picked out the name Mia Kathryn, and I think we'll be sticking with that.

Otherwise, I've continued to do what I enjoy best: hang out and enjoy life.

Who are your favorite bands?

I've found out this list is very hard to keep up with. Take it as a half-hearted attempt at keeping a list of something that is clearly in flux.

  1. Third Eye Blind
  2. HIM
  3. Nine Inch Nails
  4. Apoptygma Berzerk
  5. Placebo
  6. A Perfect Circle
  7. Tool
  8. Sex Pistols
  9. Marilyn Manson
  10. VNV Nation

Favorite Movies?

I like a lot of movies. The two movies that always stand out when I think of favorites are Fight Club and Trainspotting.

Favorite TV Shows?

We cut the cord in mid-to-late 2011. So, I don't watch much real TV. We watch a lot of shows on Netflix, but it's hard to pick a favorite show since we watch the entire series at once. I enjoy House, Simpsons, South Park, Battle Star Gallactica, Lost, Star Trek: The Next Generation, How I Met Your Mother, Sherlock, and plenty more.

Favorite Books?

The Dark Tower series by Stephen King is my all-time favorite set of books. A long time ago, I read Anne Rice's The Vampire Chronicals up to Memnoch the Devil and thoroughly enjoyed those books, as well.