My Life, My Words: Remembering Jim Blevins
January 24, 2011
Editor's note: Jim Blevins, owner of Blevins Electronics in downtown Craig, member of the Craig Coffee Party, and a one-time member of the Craig Daily Press' Editorial Board, died Saturday at The Memorial Hospital in Craig. An official cause of death has not been determined. Grant Mortuary is handling the arrangements. As of Sunday, a service was pending. Mr. Blevins was featured in the newspaper's Locals special section in 2009. That profile reappears below.
Actually, I'm adopted. In terms of blood family, I have no idea.
They were just phasing from vacuum tubes to transistors when I went to school.
TV breaks in the middle of the summer, you probably don't care a whole lot.
I suppose you could call it a hobby — I like listening to foreign newscasts on my computer. When you came in, I had Al-Jazeera on.
I first moved here when I was about two months old and lived here until I was seven. I visited the place every year or two until 1992, when I moved back.
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I got into computers when they were a pretty much an unheard of thing.
I don't know if you've ever looked at how a lot of the people in China live, but their homes are bunks. They live with a lot of other people and their pay-scale is a lot lower than ours.
We had one of the first Hewlitt-Packard computers at Montana State. The biggest thing was entering, by hand, the program that would allow it to load the other programs.
The whole world has changed.
Electrical engineering was my education, and for how I could earn some money, it seemed like the best option.
Two sisters, one is adopted. The three of us are as different as can be.
When China talks about America, they will be pretty objective and when America talks about China, they're pretty objective.
I can't even do the most primitive things in Spanish. I did take Latin in high school.
About as soon as I could remember, I was fiddling around with electronics.
The first integrated circuit computer was a support module. Really primitive. But, a computer on a set of chips.
They've discontinued it, but I used to like to watch the Australian breakfast program at 4 o'clock in the afternoon.
When I went to school, they spent an equal time on vacuum tubes and transistors.
All the televisions are Asian these days. Our economy and their economy are totally tied together, even if some of our politicians don't like to admit it, our wages and their wages are very much in conflict with each other.
Just sort of eased into it. Technology has changed tremendously since then.
Still recovering, my parents lived into their 90s and just this summer, both of them died.
Other than power supplies, if there's a problem you have to replace a board. With older technology you could get in and replace components.
I was more into radios at the time. It was more of an option back then.
Simultaneously with that has been the conversion to digital.
Craig wasn't a whole lot different, except it had grown. And it's grown a lot since then.
It gives a real good idea of what exactly is going on. I mean, there's always built-in biases in any newscast, and if you listen to a lot of different perspectives you get a much better idea of what's happening.
It just suits me. I'm very much into engineering. My personality and engineering go together.
There's no real separation between here and there. Now, it's just a 30 second broadcast delay.
I felt personally and totally lost.
My sister got very curious, went through a lot of work and tracked hers down. They live up in Wyoming.
It's usually about their own country where each tends to be biased.
It gets into a huge philosophical, religious system where different countries have different perspectives, different primary motivations. Those have now come into conflict.
My uncle Tom, the sheriff, ended up having to take a good friend to prison. That's when he stopped being the sheriff.
I don't know if its genetics or not, it may well be. We all developed our own personalities.
Summer? Tends to be quite a bit slower. People are camping or fishing or boating or biking. They're not watching TV.
It's cold this time of year. You get to the point where going outside is an unpleasant thing. So, you spend a lot of time watching TV or listening to music.
I had someone working for me for a while, her name was Kathryn. I called her Kathy once, and boy, did she get angry about that.
The more you use it, the more it breaks.
I sort of like the idea of thinking I may belong to just about any nationality or ethnic group. (It) makes it much easier not to be prejudiced because I may be one of them."
— Interview by Ben Bulkeley