Friday, December 9, 2011

20 Questions: Tim Romano

Tim Romano
Tim Romano is a gifted photographer, and if I said nothing more about him, that would be plenty. His innate curiosity behind the lens is unmatched, in my opinion, and it shows in the finished product.

But he's so much more than that. He's an entrepreneur (he and renowned outdoor writer Kirk Deeter co-publish Angling Trade, the fly fishing industry's leading trade publication). He's a blogger (he and Deeter team up to do the Fly Talk blog at Field & Stream magazine's website). He's a conservationist (he's deeply involved in Colorado Trout Unlimited's unique Greenbacks group, a collection of younger fly fishers who are putting their passion for fly fishing to work protecting Colorado's rivers).

I would submit to you that Tim is what a lot of us wanted to be when we grew up--he's smart, talented and, largely, doing exactly what he wants to do to make a living. Every time I meet him, I come away thoroughly impressed that a guy so young can be so "together."

But I have a suspicion that that's all about to change. Tim's wife, Ellie, is eight months pregnant with the couple's first child--a daughter. When that little girl shows her face, the balance in Tim's life will tip drastically, and knowing Tim, he'll devote his existence to the girls in his life, as he should.

I think you'll be as impressed by Tim as I am. On with the questions:

Tim's real answer to the "perfect happiness" question.
And you wonder how the dude suffered a spider bite?
(Don't blame me, Romano--Erica Stock, I owe you a beer)
 What is your idea of perfect happiness?
The day I open my e-mail to find not one new email in my inbox. Seriously…

What is your greatest fear?
It's so cliched, but man I hate spiders. If you put me in a room full of them I'd pass out and probably never wake up. Death by spiders - yup that'd be horrible. I've actually been bitten by a brown recluse…

Which historical figure do you most identify with?
J. Robert Oppenheimer. Not sure I identify with him, but I find his story fascinating.

Which living person do you most admire?
Tough one… Off the top of my head I'd say my friend Joe Mauer. We call him Doc Joe. He's 97, was a baby doctor here in town. He's probably birthed more people than I've met. He's sharp as a tack, tells it like it is and has an amazing zest for life.

What is the trait you most deplore in yourself? 
Procrastination. I've got it bad. I mean it took me two months to write this thing up for you.

What is the trait you most deplore in others?
Ego and people who don't listen.

What is your favorite journey?
My favorite journey is one that is spontaneous and possibly longer than I would have thought. If you're talking about something concrete here, then my 3 months I spent living in a van with my buddy in New Zealand. We fished 70 out of 90 days.

Tim hates these dudes... wonder why?
Which living person do you most despise?
Despise? That's strong. I'd have to say all those spandex wearing, self righteous road bikers here in my lovely hometown of Boulder, Colo. They're a bunch of idiots.

What is your greatest regret?
My greatest regret at this point in my life is that I haven't put all of my energy and time in to being a photographer 100 percent of the time. I'm a giant weenie in that regard. I think I could do it, but I've never had the cajones to find out.

What or who is the greatest love of your life?
Gotta go with my wife, Ellie. She's amazing.

Which talent would you most like to have?
I would LOVE to be able to write. It takes me forever and usually comes out horribly.

If you were to die and come back as a person or thing, what do you think it would be?
Most certainly I would be some type of bird. Preferably a bad-ass bird that didn't get eaten by other more bad ass birds than me.

What is your most treasured possession? There's this one photo of my wife I took years and years ago with her lying on the couch with her head basically in her grandmothers lap. It is my favorite photo I have ever taken. I have the medium format negative squirreled away and just recently had a $100 scan made of it.

Where would you like to live?
I would love to live in Austin, Texas, but the climate would be like San Diego, and there would be forests like the Northwest and flats out my back door like the Bahamas, and rivers like there are in New Zealand. Oh and the food and people like New Orleans…

How would you like to die? 
I should say in my sleep, and that'd be nice, but honestly I wouldn't mind to go out doing something I love. Rafting, skiing, flying with my brother (sorry Patch),etc…I think that's kinda cool in a sick and twisted way.

What’s on your iPod?
Recent new additions include, Bon Iver, Best of Dire Straits, The War on Drugs, Haley Bonar, Gillian Welch, The National, Raphael Saadiq, The Clean.

What’s the title of your autobiography?
"The Man Who Rode Winged Unicorns While Drinking from a Diamond Goblet Filled with Children's Laughter."

Significant? You bet.
 What was the most significant moment in your life?
So far I'd have to say my wedding, which while fairly mundane is true. Although I'm having a daughter (my first) in about a month, so well see..

What’s your favorite film?
There's quite a few, but for some reason I really like Road to Perdition - I think because of the score and cinematography. Monochromatic and eerily beautiful.

Where would you want your loved ones to spread your ashes?
Boulder Creek, North Boulder Creek, Gore Canyon, multiple lakes in Rocky Mountain National Park, a pinch in the marsh outside New Orleans and just a touch in my garden.

Tim Romano's dream machine.
 BONUS QUESTION: What’s your favorite car of all the cars you’ve owned?
I owned a, ‘88 subaru station wagon with my younger brother back in the day. I always thought it'd be cool to get that car again, jack it up like 8 inches, put off-road tires on it, some serious suspension, a much larger engine and a winch. A strange off-road beast for sure…


  1. I don't even know Tim and I really enjoyed the interview. I guess I'm hanging around the wrong side of Boulder.

  2. Howard... you should definitely find time to meet Tim. He's one of my favorites...