I was born in Tomsk, Russia and moved to Nashville, TN in 1992 with my family. My dad is an atheist gentile and my mom is from a secular Jewish family. Jewish identity has always been cultural for me, but as I've grown older I've acquired some of the spiritualism associated with Reconstructionism. I'm a Ph.D. student at UO in molecular neuroscience. Basically I study the genetics of how the brain is wired during embryonic development, using fruit flies as a model system.
Aside from science, I am passionate about politics, history, and political philosophy. I'm left-leaning (like most young people these days), but I sharply disagree with most of my peers about the situation in Israel. The Jewish state is just too important to not defend, and my family's experience in Eastern Europe confirms this.
I'm also really into beer, biking, and DIY kind of stuff. In short, I thrive in Eugene. I am a homebrewer and approach brewing with the scientific rigor that has been instilled in me during my studies. Brewing is basically yeast culture, except you get to drink the medium (wow, I just realized I made beer sound unappetizing). I like working with my hands, and another hobby of mine is to build and repair bikes. I'm no arts buff, but appreciate film, visual art, music, and literature. I guess that means I'm human. I love people that balance out my scientific side and expose me to new things. I'm pretty flippant, and generally think life is too short to take oneself too seriously.