Joseph Emil BlumI was named Joseph Emil Blum, sharing the same middle name of my father and paternal grandfather. I like my middle name a lot. I've been called Giuseppi, Yussel, Joseph, Blues Master, JoJo, and occasionally Jobo, but have always gone by Joey: it keeps me young and reminds me not to take things seriously. I've never been Mr. Blum. I was born in Ohio and raised in New York and my first paid job was removing ice from a Cadillac at the age of seven. Abandoning that promising career I then went on to the care of exotic animals, life-guarding, home insulating, oyster growing, construction, carpentry, fisheries biology, teacher of the living and the dying, and lavender farming, just to name a few. At the age of eleven I first came to Tumwater Washington and started spending summers there with relatives. I fell in love with the Pacific Northwest that first summer and knew I would live there when I could get away from New York. I did that for good at age 19. I now live in rural Oregon with my wife Nancy and daughter Ruby and I spend winters alternately tormented and pleased by the thundering sounds of amorous chorus frogs, and summers alternately tormented and pleased by slowly pitched softballs. I am very proud to have juggled fish in the Bering Sea while working aboard the world's largest fishing vessel, the Sulak: an act I believe may have facilitated the end of the Cold War, and am equally proud to have sung in a Soviet fisherman's dance band aboard the same vessel: an act that, no doubt, prolonged it.