Adam John Martin

About Adam John Martin

Adam John Martin is a former Lead Analyst, Supervisor in the Financial Services research division of Market Strategies.

The Meander of Measurement

Editor’s note: This post originally appeared here.

What kind of man chews fruit-flavored gum? Is it a clear-cut sign of homicidal tendencies? Maybe it points to a medical ailment like hypoglycemia or some sort of inner-ear problem? I don’t know; I’m not a doctor. If I had to bet, I’d put my money on these fruity gum chewers being left-handed. They’re the creative types right? They’re also probably married, college educated, dog owners who walk to work.

Too specific?

I am consumed by a desire to know everything. I want to form hypotheses about people, places, things, and interactions, and then I want to test them to see if I’m right. I don’t mean to trivialize it, but this desire can feel like a gambling addiction—only I make bets with myself, and I design experiments to figure out the answer. It can be time consuming and overwhelming. It can cause strangers and loved ones to question my sanity. It can steal my attention and cause my mind to wander….

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The City of Unsolicited Advice

Editor’s note: This post originally appeared here.

Like most American cities, Portland, Oregon has its fair share of nicknames: PDX, Beervana or Brewvana, Rose City, Bridgetown, Rip City, etc. So you’ll have to forgive me for suggesting one more: the “City of Unsolicited Advice.” It’s not quite as good as Bellingham’s “City of Subdued Excitement,” but it’s catchy, right? Okay, maybe not, but at least it’s accurate. Portlanders are not shy about sharing their opinions. And it’s more than just politics and poppycock; it’s anything from bike maintenance to outerwear to organic chicken feed.

“Hey, man, you should really think about feeding your chickens something that’s corn free and soy free with a lot of high-quality fish protein.” (Did I mention there are a relatively large number of backyard chicken farmers here?)

Anyway… I don’t mean this as a rant or a dig at my city. Nor do I believe Portlanders would take much offense. I’m sure when George H.W. Bush staffers referred to Portland as “Little Beirut” they didn’t expect the city to embrace the title with pride. But, we did. And, we do.

So why bring this up if not to take a swipe at Stumptown?

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No Sleep till Seaside

It’s 3:42 AM.

You sit bolt upright. You’re wide awake.

Already the questions are flying through your head: Did the rest of the team finish their part? Are they going to be on time? Am I holding us up? What if I’m late? What if they’re waiting on me? Are we going to be able to finish at a respectable hour today? Why am I snuggling this shoe?

Wait…what?

No, this is not the final crunch before a big presentation: This is Hood to Coast—“The Mother of All Relays”—and a huge fundraising event for the American Cancer Society. It’s a 200-mile, 12-person overnight relay race that starts at the famous Timberline Lodge on Mount Hood, Oregon and ends on the beach at Seaside, Oregon. And you’re sleeping in a field along Highway 202. You’re a little dewy, sore and, off in the distance, someone keeps calling out “seven-eight-two!” Panic strikes and you frantically look down at your own running bib to make sure that they’re not calling out your team’s number, alerting you to the fact that your teammate is waiting in the transition area. Relief pours through your stiff joints as your Petzl headlamp illuminates the upside down numbers 7-8-6. Oh, thank goodness, I’m not late…yet.

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