I’m a giant nerd, a fan of mad science, and a steampunk enthusiast. Of course I am going to honor Nikola Tesla on his birthday.
The thing you have to understand about Tesla is, I thought he was a fictional character until I was probably thirteen or so. I had just discovered those little Radio Shack electronics notebooks and circuits were the greatest things ever. My two favorite scientists were Tesla and Frankenstein. I’m not sure exactly how I’d come to the conclusion that Tesla was fictional – he wasn’t as much a pop culture hero as he is now – but learning that he was real and he was even cooler than I thought probably did wonders for my self of the relativity of reality.
I honor Tesla as a scientist but also as one who works hard without recognition. Tesla deserved more during his lifetime than he received. I think of him when I’m overlooked at work, or when I read about someone whose work is vastly undervalued. (I thought about him when Douglas Engelbart died.)
I think of him also when my OCD is on the edge of crippling. He most likely struggled with the same disorder and it contributed to the challenges he faced.
I’m glad Tesla is a little bit closer to being the household name he should be, and today, for his birthday, I raise an electrical arc to him in salute. Hail, Tesla, Lord of Currents!