I had a few early bumps in the road such as ruining my father's optical plates at Palomar and sinking all spare time into a rock band. Life took an upswing in grad school when I became hooked on space astronomy through a close encounter with Jupiter …. and with Ellen. A job at Goddard turned into an adventure in astrophysics that has lasted a career. Many mentors helped through crashes and wrong turns, and finally on to powerful missions to study exploding sources in the universe such as supernovae and gamma-ray bursts.