History’s Ed Salo is a renaissance man who manages to tie together a passion for pro wrestling with his devotion to the study of the Greatest Generation with yet another unique “Get to Know” coffeehouse foursome.
Place of birth?
Fort Benning, GA
Jennifer (wife), Cameron (son), Veronica (dog), and Sadie (cat)
What makes a good professor?
A love of the subject, and a desire to make other people love it also.
My hobby is...
comic book collecting (and yes, I did teach a course on the cultural history of comics).
My passion is...
watching professional wrestling with my son (or by myself). We have been to two WrestleManias and countless live shows.
What is your favorite podcast?
Probably Smart Wrestling Fan (I have been a fan of professional wrestling since I was a kid).
Four people I’d take to coffee:
Jimmy Buffett, Ric Flair, FDR and my Pappy.
Your philosophy on education in seven words:
Opening a door to a larger world.
If you could teach another field, which one and why?
Political Science because I have always been a political animal.
What is the one thing you wish you could teach everyone about your field?
Historic places matter and represent our shared past. So let’s save them.
What are you working on right now?
Revising a manuscript, and getting ready to teach a course on the global history of World War II in the fall.
Before you retire...
I want to travel to all of the continents.
In college, I was known for...
being the guy whose TV stayed on for days at a stretch (my roommate liked to sleep with the TV on, and the on/off switch broke, so we just left it on).
Who was your favorite teacher (and why)?
Dr. Thad Smith. He was one of my professors at MTSU, and he helped me to realize that I was good enough to be a historian, and showed me how to mentor students.
Why did you choose A-State?
I enjoyed working in the private sector, but I had always wanted to be a professor. The job opening at A-State was exactly what I was looking for, so I was so excited to get it. So it was the right place, right time.
What makes for a good student?
A desire to learn, a desire to open doors, and a desire to better themselves.
What music is playing in your car?
If it was up to me it would be a playlist with some Jimmy Buffett, Kris Kristofferson, Jerry Jeff Walker, Robert Earl Keen, and Warren Zevon.
When I want to crush karaoke, my song is...
My favorite motion picture is...
The television series I must TiVo is...
The last book I read for fun was...
Secret War (a graphic novel) by Brian Michael Bendis.
My favorite trip was...
my trip to Normandy, France, in 1992. I had the opportunity to study World War II at the University of Tennessee, and we spent part of the summer in Normandy.
If I could travel anywhere it would be...
Belize, Timbuktu, or Bhutan.
The best advice I ever received was...
from my Dad. He received a Regular Army commission, even though he did not have a college degree, which was a requirement. He told me, you never know, so always give it a try.
What is the one thing I’ve learned I’d tell my college self?
My pro sports team is...
the Green Bay Packers.
My pet peeve is...
My favorite meal is...
Wiener Schnitzel, Spätzle, and red cabbage
A perfect day is...
a day along the coast. Waking up to the sound of the surf, spending the day at the beach, and walking at night on the beach.
My spirit cartoon character...
is Wakko Warner from “Animaniacs.”
What I like about Jonesboro is...
the breathtaking sunrises that I can see from my house. The sun rises over the train tracks and a rice field. It is so pretty with the pinks and blues mixing. I walk my dog and watch the sunrise every morning.
Cats or dogs?
Dogs – I love my girl, Veronica.
Beach or mountains?
Grew up in the Mountains of East Tennessee, but I am happiest at the beach.
I wish I could...
walk on the beach each day before work.
Only my friends know...
I want a motorcycle (Harley, Indian or Vincent-HRD motorcycle).
My favorite saying is...
"Once you have traveled, the voyage never ends, but is played out over and over again in the quietest chambers, that the mind can never break off from the journey." (Pat Conroy)