When PSCS Past Volunteer and Past Teaching Staff member, Michael Coffey, first heard about PSCS, he was starting a game publishing company with some friends. They bought a fantasy storytelling game from Wizards of the Coast and developed it further, as well as producing their own titles.
Since then, he’s worked proofreading an encyclopedia, been a life coach, a business consultant, and a tea expert, especially helping tea- and restaurant-industry people understand how both biology and chemistry is involved in the smell and taste of tea. In fact, his entire tea career grew out of teaching what was originally meant to be a 5-session class at PSCS in 2003.
Michael has spent most of his life in the Puget Sound region, but has traveled to England, Taiwan, and China, as well as the legendary and exotic land of Canada. “When I was there, I found that they practice a semi-religious ritual known has hoc-key, but beyond this sociological curiosity, I know very few details of the practice, which I think is also sometimes referred to as ‘sports’ in the local language.”
He loved his time going to college in Bellingham. “There were so many used bookstores in town that my friends and I were sure that every book in existence passed through at some point in its lifetime. It was glorious.” He would tell people that his major was “English-but-I-don’t-want-to-teach,” until he learned about how PSCS worked.
“I love information. In fact, that’s one of the other things that brought me to teaching—there’s nothing like the ongoing process of taking in lots of complex information, manipulating and synthesizing it, and then helping others do the same. When it comes to data, I’m like a dog trying to drink out of a fire hydrant. Tea has been that for me in the past; in fact, that’s why I started learning Mandarin. There wasn’t much tea information left in English that I hadn’t seen already, but there was more available in Chinese. I’m excited to be able to do the same thing with areas of science I haven’t tackled yet…assuming student interest in those areas, of course!”
B.A. English, Western Washington University