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Introducing: Mark Hatten

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I'll answer your two questions about my picture: "Yes, I'm shaped like a Teletubby and 'no' I'm not an astronaut." However, I, Mark Hatten, did stay at a Holiday Inn Express in May. In the picture, I was actually SCUBA-like diving in Cozumel, Mexico and it was a memorable experience.

 

This was not as memorable though as the PTWW 2003 Houston Convention, where I met my life partner, Brian. Two bridge players suggested I join Dallas/Fort Worth Prime Timers (DFWPT) when I moved into town. That fall, I signed up for the PTWW bridge competition as a stopover on the way to a cruise departing Galveston. A nice Prime Timer, Tim from Cleveland, introduced us at the welcoming party and cosmic forces matched Brian and me. Now Brian maintains the DFWPT chapter website and I manage leadership and our newsletter. We also host one of the semi-monthly Sunday Games days. Great things can happen when meeting new guys at a PT Worldwide Convention!

Brian and I enjoy visiting PT chapters as we drive to family reunions in Colorado, Massachusetts, Missouri, Upstate NY, and South Carolina. It's always nice to attend events to meet new friends and see how different activities succeed in other chapters. For example, four of us DFWPTers visited Prime Timers of Phoenix after Thanksgiving and enjoyed a downtown dine out and a Sun City coffee klatch with John and his "Valley of the Sun" boys.

As a background check, I grew up in Denver and traveled extensively around the US and Canada for a building and roofing materials manufacturer. Working in IT with Electronic Data Systems and Hewlett-Packard, I have enjoyed client project assignments in Italy and India along with global sales support for Asia Pacific and Europe-Middle East-Africa. So long distance and off hours conference calls are a given, making me feel comfortable with my Director-at-Large responsibilities.

In college, I became a member of the Sigma Chi Fraternity and thrived on playing competitive volleyball, eventually serving as a Garden-Empire Region (NJ-NY) Commissioner for the US Volleyball Association. I then "discovered and switched" over to the North American Gay Volleyball Association, eventually ending up as President. At the same time, I served on the Federation of Gay Games board for ten years and helped organize volleyball in the 1986 San Francisco, 1990 Vancouver, and 1994 New York games. While living in Philly, the lesbian and gay community center project asked me to join them as their "sports rep." And I just LOVE the Mummers!

As for my spare time now, I play both party and competitive bridge (Life Master) plus being an ACBL-certified Cruise/Club Director for tournaments. American Theater Organ Society is my musical choice as it features the Wurlitzer theater pipe organs from the movie palaces of the 1920s-30s. I've just attended the 2018 Pasadena ATOS Convention. I love listening to bouncy rhythms, saucy lyrics, and watching the artist play up to 5 keyboards and 45-key pedal board like conducting a one-person orchestra. I find theater organ amazing as I can barely keep ONE keyboard going on the piano. I also follow stock car racing and volunteer for Board Game Geek, a week-long 24/7 strategic games convention at DFW.

I'll be looking forward to meeting some of you soon. Brian and I have a couple of cruises and road trips planned, including the Aquafest Halloween and Ultimate Disco in February sailings. Sadly, we'll be missing the Prime Timers Transatlantic cruise due to a family reunion, but hopefully we'll join a PT cruise or travel buddies in the future. Brian and I enjoy so many DFWPT friends to share our travels, bridge, potlucks, and pool parties each month. I'm thrilled to be involved – thanks to Jim R. and Bill T. for getting me to join Prime Timers.

 

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Last modified on Tuesday, 07 August 2018 13:11

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