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who's this katster person?
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Name, Rank, and Serial Numberjust who the heck is this katster person anyway?
So...you want to know something about me. Eeek.
So, lesse, what is there to tell? My name is Katrina A. "Kat" Templeton. I often go by katster on the net, as that's been my online nickname for nearly eight years now. I was born November 21, 1978 in Redding, California, and grew up in the nearby small hamlet of Anderson. I am the oldest child of Jim and Tresa Templeton. I have one sister.
In high school, I was one of the most involved students in the school as well as being one of the brightest. I was a whirlwind, running from videotaping school rallies to scorekeeping for the girls varsity basketball team to giving a speech in one of the many speechwriting contests I entered. My English teacher gave me the nickname of "Kat the Ubiquitous" because I was everywhere. When I graduated from high school, I was given the citizenship award.
I graduated from Anderson Union High School (home of the Cubs!) in 1996.
While I had the chance to leave high school and go straight to the University of Southern California after my junior year, I chose instead to stay in high school the extra year and see what opportunities I would have. I ended up being offered a Chancellor's Scholarship to attend the University of California at Berkeley, and started my undergraduate career there in August 1996.
The four years at Berkeley were among the most demanding of my life, and it was not helped by many problems in my personal life, the biggest one being the diagnosis of bipolar disorder in the fall semester of my sophomore year. However, I managed to graduate in four and a half years (and was in striking distance of doing it in four if I hadn't had a rough senior year). However, I have a diploma from Berkeley which states that I have a BA in History, and the fact I am most proud of is that I managed to graduate with a 3.2 GPA.
After four demanding years at Berkeley, I decided to go home and attend Shasta Community College in Redding. So, I packed up, moved back in with my parents, and went to it. I picked up the last few units I needed to graduate from Berkeley and also did a few other things that were interesting. It was here that I discovered I have some talent at networking, and regained some confidence that was lost at Berkeley.
This last year, I did my first year of graduate school, this time in the School of Information Management and Systems at Berkeley. I am on course to graduate in the spring of 2004 with my master's degree. Graduate school has been one of the most stressful and yet most rewarding times of my life.
In my personal life, I am currently in a long term relationship with the most wonderful man in the world (but I'm biased). That's a picture of him and me on the right. Yeah, we're one of those couples that met on the Internet, but we were friends for almost five years before we really fell in love with one another. The hardest part of the relationship is the distance, since I'm in Berkeley, California, USA, and he's in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. (For those who are a bit hazy on their geography, that means I'm on the west coast of the US in the San Francisco Bay Area, and he's on the east coast of Canada, out past Maine. Makes the whole long distance thing that much harder since there are three thousand five hundred miles between the two of us.)
In terms of religion and spirituality, I was raised by a lapsed Catholic and a quiet agnostic, and went to a non-denominational Christian church with my paternal grandmother. When I was a kid, this worked well, although my religious beliefs were a bit naive -- "quarters from heaven" being part of my religious belifs. When I was in junior high school, my grandmother switched churches to a Charismatic Christian church. While junior high and high school are probably the moment that most people begin to question their religion, mine was hastened by the church switch.
In a later story, I had a character criticise a service by saying, "It's church, not a Chicago Bulls home game." This was much the case in the church I was attending, and I, who had always favoured quiet expressions of faith, found it rather revolting, and took to reading novels in the middle of service.
Luckily for me, the one thing that kept me from throwing beliving away was the poetry of Thomas Stearnes Eliot. My English teacher believed that Eliot connected with students rather well, and had us read 'The Hollow Men' and 'The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock' for class. These two poems led me to the rest of Eliot's work, and I fell in love with 'Ash Wednesday', a poem Eliot had written on his conversion to the Anglican church in England. It somehow struck a chord in a fifteen year old high school student who was struggling with religion, and although it would take me most of my college years to figure out exactly where I stood on the religion issue.
I now consider myself a Unitarian-Universalist, a proud religious tradition that encourages seekers to find their own path by looking around them and incorporating various religious beliefs from around the world. This idea appeals to me because I was encouraged to find my own path. Being a graduate student means I don't get to attend services as often as I would like, but I am pleased with this path.
Politically, I'm a lefty. There's a button that used to be on my Cal hat which declared my political affiliation. It read "Smart Ass", which is the name of the Cal Democrats' Club magazine, but I figured it was a good way to sum me. I've been a lifelong Democrat (we're ignoring that period in my life where I thought Rush was right, it still scares me that I could have ever thought that way). However, I grew up in a very conservative area in Northern California, and so I've always felt somewhat defensive at being a lefty on the political spectrum.