Team Bio Series – Tom DeSimone (Mr. Don’t-Sweat-the-Big-Stuff)
The team bio series continues with our second Managing Editor, Tom DeSimone! College overachiever and cat lover, Tom spends his off time running and hiking. He always brings personality and the fun to our workplace conversations and doesn’t miss a beat. We couldn’t do what we do without him and we know you’ll love to meet him!
Name: Tom DeSimone
Title: Managing Editor
Hometown: Shoreham, New York
Current city: I’m right on a town line. Postal code of Wallkill, town of Gardiner (New York).
Education and background: B.A. in English and creative writing from SUNY New Paltz. The creative writing major seemed too easy, so I did all of the literature coursework too. Totally worth it. Where would I be without Derrida and Chaucer? I don’t even want to guess. I’m being kind of sarcastic. Is that coming through?
Merchant Mav department/specialty: Mostly merchant accounts and mobile payments, but I’m involved in content related to payment gateways and other payment processing services. If it helps move money around, I want to know about it!
How did you discover Merchant Mav?: If you had told me ten years ago that today I’d know more than anyone wants to know about payment processing, I’d have called you crazy. Most of my work before Merchant Maverick was in medical-related publishing projects (a niche I fell into) and fiction. But I’d always had various side businesses, including buying large lots of coins, evaluating them, and then selling them piecemeal online – which is more fun than it sounds. I think this business experience helped to pique my interest when Amad contacted me about working on reviews for Merchant Maverick.
Proudest professional moment: Oh, jeez, I don’t know. Probably the first time I paid my rent with only money made from freelance writing.
Favorite Merchant Maverick post/moment/opportunity: I loved it when we switched to Slack for team communication. (This post not sponsored by Slack.) But seriously, it felt like we all came into the same room for the first time. I’m also super proud of how our Beginner’s Guide to Payment Processing turned out. While I can’t take too much credit for our Visual Guide to Credit Card Processing Fees and Rates infographic (mostly Amad’s hard work), that’s another highlight that I loved working on.
What do you do when you’re not working for Merchant Mav?: I volunteer at a cat sanctuary a couple/few days per week and couldn’t imagine life without that. I don’t have any pets of my own so need to get my fix somewhere. I’m only a mile or so from a big state park (Minnewaska State Park Preserve, gotta check it out!) and spend a lot of time running and hiking over there. Recently, I hiked all 35 of the highest peaks in the Catskill Mountains here in New York.
Favorite early 2000s song: I think New Slang by The Shins is the most early-2000s song there is.
Favorite ‘90s movie: Easy! The animation/live action hybrid masterpiece known as Space Jam. Remember when Michael Jordan retired from basketball to played baseball? I forgot about that until just now.
Favorite ice cream flavor?: Ben and Jerry’s almond milk Chunky Monkey.
If you could have dinner with anyone, alive or dead, who would it be and why?: AH! That’s so tough. Well, okay, I think that I’d like them to speak intelligible modern English, so that limits my options. None of my idols seem that much fun to have dinner with. I’d probably go with my grandfather who died about ten years ago. We’d have plenty to talk about. If not him, then let’s go all in and invite the Buddha. I’m sure the meal would be quiet but nonetheless… enlightening. (Teehee.)
If you had to pick your theme song, what would it be?: I’ve waffled on this, but I think that Float On by Modest Mouse is it. I’m not totally carefree, but I never sweat the big stuff. I’m way more likely to get bent out of shape about trivial things! Plus, come on, this song is irresistible.
Mac or Windows?: Mac desktop, Chromebook laptop. I can’t deal with Windows anymore.
Hidden talent?: On two occasions I ran/hiked for about 24 hours without stopping to sleep. Is that a talent? I can also make an obnoxiously loud clicking sound with my tongue.
Clearly, Tom’s the one we’d turn to when we’re totally freaking out about something and need to chill out. So long as we don’t refer to him as “Tommy” (saved for his Grandma) or “Thomas” (reserved for his lawyer), we’re in the clear!
For more from Tom, follow him on Twitter or connect with him on LinkedIn! If you haven’t gotten the chance to meet our Founder and CEO or our other Managing Editor, be sure to check out their team bio series posts as well.