Who I am:

By day I am a mild mannered IT guy from Sydney, Australia.  By night I am Bastard Sheep: #nopants advocate, agnostic atheist, skeptic, sporadic cyclist, hobbyist photographer, consumer of fine wines and coffee.

Unlike the vast majority of my friends, I’m also a fan of various sports including but not limited to Rugby Union (Wallabies in International, Waratahs in Super Rugby), Hockey (LA Kings in NHL, Sydney Bears in AIHL, Sydney Sirens in AWIHL), Football (SydneyFC in A-League and W-League), and occasionally watch MotoGP with no preferred rider.

What to find here:

As with most people I occasionally find a little something burning up inside me, something that I need to get out, and hence this blog was born.  It’s my little land of venting.  You’ll find much more activity on social media (links below).

I cannot promise what is posted here will be well thought out and concise.  In fact, it’s probably more true to say the opposite.  Regardless, all opinions and words are purely that of my own and in no way shape or form represent anybody else or any other entity whether they be my employer or other groups I associate with.

Why “Bastard Sheep”:

In the mid 90’s prior to getting internet access I used to dial up to Bulletin Board Systems, or BBS’s.  These offered much the same functionality, including online forums.  The main one I used didn’t include signatures in posts automatically, so it was common place for users to set up keyboard shortcuts that would automatically enter this for you (with colours, animations etc).

One day I was on my brother’s computer, and due to still learning to touch type would look at the keyboard rather than the screen when typing.  After posting a few posts in the forums, hitting the shortcut, going to the next post, rinse, repeat, I looked up at the screen a tad earlier than usual and though “Isn’t my signature meant to be in colour”?  Then, a panicked realisation set in.  This was my brother’s computer, not mine.  He wouldn’t have my macros set up.  So what had I just signed off as?  bastard sheep.

Before I could compose myself and start fixing it, a few pages (direct messages/IM’s) came through on my screen.  It was too late, others on the BBS had already seen my posts and noticed how I signed off.

From that day on I have been affectionately known as Bastard Sheep.

Fortunately most of the people online at the time I considered friends, and the plush sheep you see in my avatar was a birthday present from them a few months later.  The name has followed me whether I expressed it as my nickname or not, so I’ve decided to embrace it as my primary nym.

I never did get a decent explanation from my brother as to why he had that macro set up with “bastard sheep”.

Real name:

Most people generally call me “Sheepie” or “Bastard” even in person / real life.  I also allow myself to go by Byorgen Druffeldroff, if you must.

It’s no secret that I’m not a fan using my wallet name online (ie, the name that appears on the pieces of plastic in my wallet).  When I started going online it was drilled in to me to always use a pseudonym – always protect your real identity as you never know if the person on the other end is who they say they are, or in the slightest bit trustworthy.

These days due to the prevalence of businesses, recruiters, and professional groups to search for peoples names in google and social networking sites I have kept the persistent pseudonym going.  It allows me the freedom to speak openly, and express my genuine thoughts on topics which can be quite touchy subjects and do get people extremely passionate.  Such topics include but are not limited to theism/atheism, healthcare, wellbeing and politics.

I have a friend who used their wallet name for social media, only to find those they were currently engaged in a mere debate with taking things a bit too personal. The person they were simply debating with would suddenly name a child of that friend.  The friend had never even mentioned on this social network  they even had a child, let alone in the debate.  The person they were debating with then went on to mention the kid’s school and the time the school got out.

This was a terrifying intrusion which felt very threatening to the friend, their family and their wellbeing. And very rightly so.  It is yet another reason I keep a pseudonym going.  I do not wish to put my own personal safety nor that of my family or friends at risk due to some overzealous person I’m simply engaged in a debate with, taking things too far.

With a “real”/wallet name, all they need is a rough idea of location and a phonebook.  Then, all personal space and personal safety of ones self and ones family is at risk.

This is why I use a pseudonym.  It is my nym.  It is my name. It is legally accountable (I can be taken to court under it). It is used in real life. It is persistent. It is not anonymous. It is no more anonymous, fake, or alternate than someone who has “Michael” on their birth certificate choosing to go by “Mike”.

This is my blog, my twitter stream, my social media etc, and they are my personal life, not my professional. While I will discuss things in my general industry, I will not discuss anything related to my job or employer directly. I keep a distinct separation between my personal and professional lives. My personal life is irrelevant to my professional, and vice versa. You will not find any crossover here.


2 thoughts on “About

  1. Hi there!

    I came across your site by accident, and I’m very pleased I did – I think we must be cousins or something 😉

    I’m also glad to see we have a lot in common…..

    “Agnostic Atheist, Skeptic, consumer of fine wines and coffees.”

    …except I’m more of an Atheist and I’d add chocolate to that list.

    I’ll be a regular visitor from now on.

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