Hi my name is David T Rosenthal (middle name Tobias for those interested, and that’s how I looked when I got back in town. Welcome Back Rosenthal, the name of the blog, comes from the fact that I’m back in my hometown of Chicago after being away for about 20 years. Maybe I can compress my life to just the highlights to give you an idea of who I am.
I was born August 28, 1967. I went to high school here in Chicago. For the first 2 years at Kenwood Academy on the South Side in an area called Hyde Park. Where I met a girl I’ll be referring to later. I transferred the next 2 years of h.s. to Lane Tech on the North Side, around Addison and Western. My first year of college was at University of Hartford in Connecticut, my second year was at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, and my last 2 years at Columbia University in New York City. Graduated with a degree in Anthropology, with sort of a minor in Japanese language.
Why so many school changes? I’m not really sure except maybe it had to do with my aspirations; I tended to switch schools based on being closer to the stuff I was interested in. As a kid I was into Punk Rock and skateboarding so I needed to get to the North Side, and that spilled over to college. I was also getting more into Metal and strangely enough acting, so NY became a big deal. Although let me backtrack for a second, my FIRST career goal was CIA, where over a course of years I applied many times. Nearly made it but ultimately it didn’t turn out very well.
But that action/adventure thing was in my bones. While in NY I had heard there was a real version of the thing we called “Ninja.” So I found a real school called the “NY Taijustsu Dojo,” which actually taught honest to goodness Ninjutsu, I think this was around ’89. About 2 or 3 years later I moved to Tokyo Japan to study with the Grandmaster Masaaki Hatsumi-but I tended to take most of classes with his students, because the Grandmaster is VERY advanced. Imagine being at your first day of med school and asked to assist with a brain surgery.
I think all this stuff was brought on by my other childhood hobbies of comic book and science fiction related stories. I think I wanted to be a superhero. Or maybe some kind of adventurer. So for a while there I was traveling to Korea or South America for “unique” training so that I could one day fulfill my “destiny.”
Somewhere along the line I had stumbled on acting and improvisational comedy. I didn’t have any background, being a Black kid from Chicago, but I had a real knack for it. So at around 20 years of age, or so, I started taking classes and going on auditions. I think all total I messed around with that world for about 15 years or so. I even moved to Los Angeles and stayed there for nearly 10 years. It didn’t turn out very well.
Sept. 11 caught me off guard. So in a surprise move I joined the military. Probably not much of a surprise but, it didn’t turn out very well.
By this time I had been away from “home” for 20 years. My family in Chicago had developed all manor of problems. And by family I’m including that girl I mentioned way back at the beginning of this thing. So I came back. Spent 2 years working on family troubles, and during that time I was involved with that girl doing the supportive man thing. One WEEK after getting her and her kids into a house she started cheating on me with some guy. I would have to say it didn’t turn out very well.
Ok, that’s my little version of the Odyssey. These days I’m “flipping” a house I bought; meaning I got a crappy house, and am in the process of fixing it-with the intention of selling for a profit.