Through the facilities of Facebook, I’ve been put back in touch with people from all the periods of my life, with the inevitable “What have you been doing?” that follows. I decided to post this skeletal outline of the highlights for anyone who wants to catch up — jump in wherever you lost track of me!

I was born in 1971 and grew up in Mannington, West Virginia, the youngest of two brothers and three sisters. There was a lot of disco and bell bottoms, so the quicker we skip by this time, the better.

I went off to high school for two years in [Parkersburg, West Virginia], then two in [Princeton, New Jersey]. I enrolled at [Saint John’s College], Annapolis, Maryland in 1989 and spent two years reading “the great books” before deciding to pursue a music degree. I transferred to UMBC, where my guitar teacher taught, beginning a couple of decades of hanging around Baltimore.

I met my first partner, Dan Callahan, in the fall of 1993, and began practicing with a Zen Buddhist community that winter.

Joining the music program extended my college years as I caught up the required courses and prepared for my recitals, and I graduated with the class of 1996 with a Bachelor’s Degree in classical guitar performance. I gave my senior recital that Spring, and Dan died of a heart attack a few weeks later.

This was the beginning of five dark years for me. I stayed on in our home in West Baltimore. I taught music for a couple of years, but drifted away from it for a number of reasons. In part, I couldn’t muster enthusiasm out of my depression, and couldn’t face an apparent future of teaching unmotivated students and playing wedding receptions. (In this vein, I’d like to recommend Glenn Kurtz’s memoir, “Practicing“. It’s a short and touching read so eerily familiar that I could have ghostwritten it.) I drifted for quite a while.

A bright spot in this time was discovering the Linux operating system and helping to found a Linux Users Group back at my alma mater. Through the LUG, I met Robin Miller as he was looking for people to work with him in his new job as Editor for andover.net. I took a copy editing position and moved to the staff of freshmeat.net soon after it was acquired in 1999. I worked there until 2010, managing a crew which kept the site updated around the clock.

I only started to come out of my grief over Dan in 2001. Like 1996, this was a year when big events lined up together, this time three of them. Within two months, I bought a house in Catonsville and moved out of the city, met my second partner, Glenn Peters, and went to my first Zen retreat, beginning a relationship with my Zen teacher. I [took lay vows] in 2002, making a formal commitment to trying to live as a Buddhist.

In 2003, Glenn suffered a stroke. I moved in to take care of him and lived with him in Glen Burnie until 2011. (I rented the house in Catonsville for a few years before selling it.)

Sometime around 2004, I took up [Tai Chi] and trained in it fairly heavily. It and music are my main hobbies these days. I hope to get back into music on an amateur basis when circumstances permit, and to study the piano and cello.

Glenn’s health declined rapidly in the Fall of 2008, and I eventually had to drop my other engagements and take care of him fulltime. He spent four months in a hospital and a rehabilitation center that Winter. He was able to live at home after his discharge, but developed dementia, and needed 24-hour care.

My parents and one of my brothers suffered a series of crises in the Summer of 2009, and Mom & Dad moved into Assisted Living just after Thanksgiving. Our family spent most of 2010 settling their affairs and closing the house where they’d lived for almost 60 years. That June, one of the rounds of company downsizing caught me, and I was laid off from freshmeat.

Glenn and I returned from nine months in West Virginia in October 2010, and spent a peaceful Winter and Spring at home.

In June of 2011, Glenn became ill again, and this time wasn’t able to fight off his infections.  After a month of ups and increasingly deep and frequent downs, his sister, friends, and I decided he’d been through enough and had little hope of recovery, and let him go quietly to his rest.  Thanks to everyone for all the support and kindness given to both of us, especially all the love and tender friendship which reassured Glenn in his last confused years.

I’d hoped to take my time with settling Glenn’s affairs and settling myself into life on my own again, but my parents continued to have health crises, culminating in two heart attacks my father suffered in October.  I turned our home over to a realtor and moved to Morgantown, West Virginia to lend a hand.  Both of my parents were in and out of the hospital all through the Fall.  My mother’s condition worsened at the start of 2012, and she died in February with all of the family gathered around her.

My father managed to live on his own for a year and a half, a great change after 63 years of marriage. I was able to rent a house a block from him which became the new family home for a while, and we did a lot of things together. His own health took a turn for the worse in the Fall of 2013, and he moved into hospice care in a nursing home. His conditions waxed and waned, allowing him some times when he could be quite active and some long periods of difficulty, until he died peacefully in March of 2015.

After so many years of caregiving, I decided to sell everything and go on the road for a while. I’m looking forward to seeing some more of the world and meeting friends old and new, combining periods of travel with housesitting in interesting locations. If you have some ideas for me I’d love to hear — looking forward to seeing you!

I hope that fills you in from wherever we parted ways. I’m glad to be back in touch. What have you been doing?

: http://www.flickr.com/photos/jeffcovey/collections/72157619165993426/
: http://www.flickr.com/photos/jeffcovey/collections/72157619082482077/
: http://www.flickr.com/photos/jeffcovey/collections/72157618147313219/
: http://www.flickr.com/photos/jeffcovey/collections/72157618234263500/
: http://www.flickr.com/photos/jeffcovey/sets/72157618231846352/
: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sGml5mKU8Dg

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52 thoughts on “Bio

  1. It was Sunday morning, July 4. I was a little hung over from too much wine last night, and stumbled on your site from a link on silverdaddies.com while I tried to forget how rotten I felt. I spent an hour or so, just learning things about you and Baltimore. Nice site. Thanks, It was fun to surf.

    Like

  2. I’m glad I came across your website. I’ve been gettin really sick of all the sites that falsely promise free public domain sheet music. I see that you have Bach’s Air scored for strings. Do you know where I could print a score for piano and recorder? Or maybe piano and violin? Thanks for any help.

    Chris

    Like

  3. Hello,

    Just wanted to compliment you on your thoughtful well-designed site. I
    found it via slash-dot -> freshmeat -> here.

    Very nice poems too; I hope you get around to updating the collection.

    Just a question from a construction point of view: I was wondering what
    kind of software (if any besides vi/emacs) you used to create/template
    the site.

    Best regards,

    ac

    Like

  4. Haha! I had such a laugh when Google randomly put a picture of your
    rabbit in my search. I must’ve laughed for 10 minutes over a silly
    rabbit with stuff on his head!

    Thanks for the humor, anyway.
    Brightened the day a bit.

    Like

  5. After a long search, I finally found your site. My granny used to say, that you must never give up to reach a certain aim.

    So keep on going like I did it recently.

    Like

  6. Hi there,
    I just happened to stumble onto your site. I don’t know why but I couldn’t stop reading and looking at the pictures. I found it entertaining and humourous. I also like your house and yard. I have your site bookmarked now and look forward to reading more updates!

    Sincerely,
    Andy

    Like

    1. Hi Jeff,

      I have visited your site accidently while searching something related to
      my profession. Found your site very interesting and information about
      Baltimore is very useful.

      Regards,
      Mike M.

      IT Consultant

      Like

  7. You may be interested to know that your site beats out most of those sites related to the more “famous” Covey… Stephen Covey, on Google. Impressive! You may (or may not, of course… 🙂 ) be interested in my own Stephen Covey blog, which is found at Stephen Covey Seven Habits Blog . I know, (and, truthfully, I understand why!) that lots of people find Stephen Covey kinda cheesy.. and I think that’s fair. Anyway I thought I’d have a go at wringing out the good from the cheese, on a blog. There is a fair amount of substance in his ideas, it turns out.

    Anyway, none of this has anything to do with your site! I have a question. Have you considered opening a blog proper? You seem to be inclined in that direction anyway, with your comments section. Consider it. It can be a lot of fun.

    Sorry if I have inundated you with my presence (having also emailed you!). I apologise about that. You have a good site, and you clearly have a handle on Google’s mysterious workings, which is all the more impressive…!
    Yours,
    David

    Like

  8. Hello, Ne-how(this is Chinese) :)My name is Patty. I live in Taiwan.
    I came across your site, and I wanna say it is really touchy.
    I’ve been to Baltimore once to visit my best frined, who is also gay,
    and seeing your pictures let me remember this city again and those few days when I was there.
    I’ve read through what you wrote for dan, and I think he would say you did a good job too.
    Good luck.

    Like

  9. Hi Jeff,

    Got to your website through SilverDaddies.com (silversanta here). I
    like the fact that this is done with Linux, I have a Linux box but
    currently only use it for games.

    You have a very nicely done, informative and thoughtful site. I have it
    bookmarked and will check it out from time to time.

    David

    Like

  10. Hi , I was looking for Bach’s Invention No1 in C major , and it’s lucky
    that I found it on your website , so thank you a lot …..I hope you
    continue develope your web ….and thanks again

    Like

  11. Thank you so much for the detailed musings on following YMOYL! I am
    trying to do it myself and I haven’t found much on the web in terms of
    other people detailing their path to FI. Thanks again!

    Melanie

    Like

  12. Thank you so much for your pictures. My dad, who just died last month,
    was the one who built that swimming pool memorial to segregation’s end
    and the “fancy” tennis court. It means SO much that someone admired his
    work and posted photos on the web. I did not have these pictures until
    now; I am so thrilled to have stumbled across this site. In fact,
    tomorrow, at another one of my dad’s sites in Druid Hill there will be a
    dedication in his honor/it’s O’Malley’s 100 park during his term. My
    dad built 38 parks under O’Malley’s watch and even more under Schmoke’s
    term.

    My dad passed away on his way home from work, building another group of
    playgrounds throughout the city, on August 10, 2005.

    Like

  13. Omg! your never going to believe this! So, this one day i was talking
    about how much i love my last name with this kid named stewart who sits
    next to me in our advanced computer apps class, when i decided to look
    up the name “covey”on the ‘net. That’s when i stumbled across your log.
    I think you may be my long lost uncle from baltimore!! I lived near
    baltimore when i was in third grade but was relocated due to leprosy. If
    you think there is a connection here, contact my father Eugene G Covey.

    With love,
    Your niece
    Katherine Ann Covey

    Like

  14. Hello nice to meet you.

    I have created a derived work from one of the elements of your site.
    Here the address (wikipedia project):

    It would be of help if you can comment it/add a license.
    I have noticed the CREATIVE COMMONS at your site, but do not know if it applies to the midi image.

    Like

  15. Did you ever determine if you are, in fact, the long lost Uncle?
    You certainly have done a remarkable job on your house in Baltimore. I especially like the new roof.

    Like

  16. Excellent work. Great information. I am going to give you a good space inside my website on world musical instruments (themusicalworld.com) under the creative commons licence ofcource! with all due acknowledgement for your work.

    Like

  17. Thanks, Jeff, for a wonderful tour of selected DHP sites.

    It seems that you haven’t made any entries for a while, how about more
    photos of the park? Statues? trees? more pavilions?

    It feels good to have someone else ask the same questions, such as…why
    don’t we see the upscale masses living there in droves?

    Although, that would be a mixed blessing. The park is beautiful the way it is.

    Like

  18. This might seem silly… but do you recall a video you used to have that was called “Ja Da” or something? It was here: https://jeffcovey.net/tmp/trazan/ (yes, somehow through years of new computers and formatting, that link survived). I’m interested if you still have a copy of this silly video. Your blog seems to be as far removed from that video as possible, so I hope that is actually yours. It linked to b3ta.com (at the bottom, “These are my friends at b3ta.”), and I wanted to post about that video for someone because that link on that video took me to the website where I met my husband. I could have sworn it was made by someone named Stephen, however. Thank you for your time!

    Like

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