With CHRIS TALLEY
When I was a kid, I wanted to be ... an engineer. One day working on my dad's combine, we had to remove several parts to fix one simple thing, and I said to myself that I knew there should be a better way to design this. That is when I decided to pursue engineering so I could design equipment that was easier to work on.
What would you rather be doing right now? Driving a tractor or operating equipment.
Shhhhhh! Don't tell anyone that ... I have a tendency of hitting odd items on the highway. Two of the most unusual are an overstuffed chair and a deep freeze.
Other than your wedding day and/or the birth of your children, what was your proudest moment? Being chosen as an Eagle Scout mentor.
It really stinks when ... someone forgets to use their common sense.
What word in the dictionary would your face be next to? Accommodating.
I always laugh when ... I hear a corny joke.
Invite any three people, living or dead, to dinner. Who are they? Danny Thomas, Teddy Roosevelt and Benjamin Franklin. I would thank them for their contributions to this country and learn from their success.
At the end of a really long day at work, I like to ... sit with a cold drink talking to friends.
People who knew me in high school thought I was ... a nerd, and they are probably right.
My most unforgettable brush with greatness was ... with Kobe Bryant. My daughter and I were at St. Jude's Hospital in Memphis, and the Lakers were in town to play the Grizzlies. The Grizzlies had sponsored a new hotel on the campus of St. Jude, and he came over to tour the facility. We happened to be in the lobby when he came by, and we got to meet him and take a photo.
I would drop all my plans tonight if I had the chance to ... help a friend in need.
If someone gave me a million dollars, there is STILL no way I would ... not continue to work and volunteer in my community. Actually, it would allow me to do more than I do today.
America should be more concerned about ... national pride.
I'm OK if there's ever a national shortage of ... ball caps. I don't really collect them, but I don't ever get rid of any either.
When I'm on the Internet, I always go to ... Facebook. It allows me to see what people I don't get to see often are doing.
What is the most useful piece of advice you have ever received? I had a college professor say "there are a lot of ways to get to Kansas City, but if you follow my directions, you will get there faster." Whenever I am faced with a challenge, I try to learn from those who have been through the same or a similar situation and apply their experiences to my task.
When I'm cruising down the road, I'm likely listening to ... a podcast. I frequently listen to Mike Rowe's The Way I Heard It, Adam Savage's Tested, 99% Invisible and NPR's How I Built This.
I always get sentimental when ... there is an underdog triumph or a good parent/child moment in a movie or TV show.
The older I get, the more I realize ... it isn't much fun getting older.
If I had one "do-over," I would ... not redo anything significant because it would probably have altered my path to where I am today, and I cannot imagine my life without the experiences I have had and the people that I have met along the way.
My favorite item of clothing is ... my work boots. Nothing special about them other than I live in them. I would just as soon wear my boots as any other shoe.
If I've learned anything at all ... it is that you are better off doing the right thing the first time.
Chris Talley, 46, is the product validation manager at CNH Industrial in Burlington, Iowa, which designs, builds, tests and validates prototype construction equipment. In the evenings, Talley builds custom wood and metal projects in his garage and volunteers with several community organizations. Talley lives in Carthage with his wife Sarah and daughters Elizabeth, 19, (Quincy University) and Anna, 17 (Illini West). Talley grew up on a family farm near Montgomery City, Mo., and moved to Carthage in 1997.