||Robin John Lee is an
unusually boring person who resides in Mountain
View, California, a sedate, mildly unfashionable town entirely bereft of anything that normal
people would consider a "mountain" (or, frankly, even a
"view"). Situated at the northern end of the legendary Valley
of the Geeks, Mountain View is very conveniently located between the industrious
technology mills of the Silicon Valley proper, and the technology
venture investment centers clustered around Stanford's campus sprawl. Which, of course, is
a chamber-of-commerce way of saying that one of the main benefits of living in Mountain View,
California, is that it's only a very short drive in any direction to go
someplace other than Mountain View, California.
Mr. Lee has spent most of his life in the San Francisco Bay Area, a colorful place blessed with gorgeous weather and plenty of fun and interesting things to do, if you happen to be into things that are fun or interesting. He grew up in San Jose, that vibrant city celebrated in song as the perennial destination of the cartographically-challenged; then went to college just across the bay in Berkeley, a silly town that derives its unique charm from the routine acts of insanity that characteristically take place on its streets. After that, Mr. Lee left the west coast for a brief interlude in New Haven, Connecticut, a venerable port city that was by turns a Puritan settlement, a major weapons production center, and a struggling college town. There he spent three years receiving a legal education in the gargoyled halls of the Yale Law School, an institution regarded as very prestigious by, well, students at the Yale Law School. While in the J.D. program, Mr. Lee was exposed not only to cutting-edge legal scholarship and the stimulating company of classmates much smarter than himself, but also to an unexpectedly large quantity of sawdust, thanks to the Sterling Law Building Tercentennial Memorial Fixer-Upper Program (which happened to coincide exactly with Mr. Lee's term of enrollment). After graduation, Mr. Lee bade farewell to southern Connecticut and returned to California. He currently is in private practice with a large law firm in the Bay Area, where he specializes in intellectual property licensing and commercial technology transactions.
The primary source of Mr. Lee's superlative dullness is the peculiar enthusiasm he displays for subjects that most well-adjusted people do not care about. The majority of these subjects relate to contemporary military affairs and national security, and since 1995, he has published a website on these topics. He has been an attentive observer of the modern Russian military establishment, as it has undertaken its troubled journey from out of the ruins of the Soviet Union. He also has held a long interest in carrier aviation, whose effectiveness as an instrument of power projection continues to be demonstrated despite persistent warnings of the aircraft carrier's obsolescence. Finally, he is deeply interested in the effect of modern information technologies upon national security, not only from the battlefield-driven perspective of the DoD's "transformation" initiatives, but also with respect to intelligence production and analysis, defense acquisition, force structure, and the assortment of defensive issues that collectively have been dubbed "homeland security." If this jumble of ideas sounds confused, lacking in analytical rigor, and full of somewhat muddy new-age thinking, well, it is. At least for now. But see if that stops Mr. Lee from boring the rest of us to death about it.
A professional worrier by temperament and by training, Mr. Lee harbors a rather unimaginative view of life that is unusual for someone of his age, and his lack of personal charisma is not improved by an awful personality and a complete absence of any fashion sense. His hobbies include frowning, making lists of things to be distressed about, and deleting spam. Oh yes, and also taking moonlit strolls along the beach by candlelight at sunset in front of a roaring fireplace.