As wedding venues around the world gear up for what could be one of their busiest days of the year, we asked some AWS employees about the important pairs in their lives, significant symmetries, and why the number two means something special to them. Here’s their take on our “Twosday quiz”—including their favorite two-minute snack, their most-admired duo, and two of the best things about their job.
Darpan Parikh, industrial specialist, Frankfurt, Germany
Parikh joined AWS on 1 February 2022, making today his 22nd day at AWS. He enjoys exploring new places, cycling, reading, and exercising his taste buds, particularly with double-scoop gelato.
- The number two is significant for me in a few ways. My birthday is in February, and I have two sisters and two daughters. Two-and-a-half years ago, my family and I left our home country of India to come and live in Germany. While we miss our friends and extended family—and the food—it’s been a fabulous experience meeting new people, understanding the culture, learning a new language, and discovering different attitudes. According to the Germans I know, “There’s no such thing as bad weather, only inappropriate clothing.”
- Some good things in tech that come in pairs? For me—at least for the past 22 days—it’s been my partnership with my onboarding buddy. I’m only just settling in and getting to know the organization, so it’s fantastic to have someone I can turn to when I have questions, and who can help me understand how I can be successful going forward.
- My favorite two-minute snack isn’t actually my favorite, it’s my family’s. In India, there’s a really popular brand of instant noodles called Maggi 2-minute noodles. I don’t eat them very often, but my wife and children love them.
- I have a favorite duo, but they’re not exactly famous. It’s my mom and my dad. So much of who I am today and my philosophy towards life is thanks to the way they brought me up.
- I’ve not been at AWS that long, but two things that make me proud to be part of the team are the customer-centricity and the opportunities—whether that’s the opportunity to innovate, to chart my own career course, or to balance my professional and personal life. From what I’ve seen so far, there’s a lot of flexibility. We’re really encouraged to explore all the opportunities available to us.
Maya Flores, partner solutions architect, Washington, United States
Flores has been at AWS for two months. She has two brothers and two sisters. She likes cooking, hiking, and rock climbing, and she has recently fallen in love with skiing.
- I’m a computer engineering major, and for me, the number two is significant because of the binary system. Everything in traditional—as opposed to quantum—computing is based on information as a combination of zeros and ones. When you think about it, it’s like these two digits underwrite almost everything we do.
- A two-minute snack I loved as a kid is celery and peanut butter with whole raisins on top. It tastes amazing. I still make it now as a treat.
- My favorite celebrity duo is Tom Holland and Zendaya. I think they’re really cute.
- How would I spend a 22-minute work break right now? I’ve got an 9-month-old chocolate Labrador puppy called Cato, so it has to be taking him for a walk.
- Two of the best things about working at AWS are the sense of community and the constant innovation. If I see something I think can be improved, I know I can bring it up with my manager and we’ll work on a plan. You can put ideas forward, and people will be there to support you.
- Two of the coolest things about my job? First, as a partner solutions architect, I get to work with a bunch of small tech companies, to help them become partners and get their workloads validated. I can see what’s going on across the tech industry. Second, my onboarding buddy, Mansi. I’m constantly pinging her with questions and asking for advice. She’s helped me out so much. I really appreciate it.
Antoine Poinvil, data center engineering operations, Virginia, United States
Poinvil has been at AWS for two years. He loves to travel, read books, and work on cars.
- The number two is special to me because I was born on June 22. Plus 22 is my lucky number. It’s a master number, according to numerology.
- If I have to grab a snack in two minutes, trail mix is my go-to.
- My favorite pairing? Definitely a vanilla ice cream sandwich with chocolate chip cookies.
- Two of the best things about my job are the flexibility and the fact that I’m continuously learning from everyone I work with.
- My favorite famous duo has to be Beyoncé and Jay-Z. They’re one of the most powerful couples in the world with a lot of hit collaborations. Drunk in Love is one of my favorites.
- Two reasons I’m proud to work for AWS: 1) Constant growth—in opportunities and the company itself. 2) The feeling that we’re making history.
Kurt Kufeld, VP, AWS Platform, Washington, United States
Kufeld is celebrating not one but two 22-year anniversaries in 2022. He joined Amazon and got married in the year 2000.
- The number two is pretty significant in computing and in my job. You could say it’s the basis of everything I do every day. Computers operate using the binary system, which has only two digits—one and zero. I know all of the powers of two, right up to two to the power of 32, because I work with them all the time.
- Some great things that come in twos? In tech, it’s got to be monitors. In my life, it’s cats. I have three pairs.
- If I could take a 22-minute work break right now, I’d put on my headphones and listen to an audio book. Or spend time with my cats.
- My favorite two-minute snack is Special K. I eat it for breakfast every day. It takes me less than two minutes to make it (and the same amount of time to eat it, my wife would probably say).
- My favorite duo? Probably, the Obamas. They’re deeply impressive.
- Two of the best things about my job: 1) People. I’m honored to work with great people every day. 2) The customers I get to work with. They are truly amazing. It’s really invigorating and fulfilling to help solve their problems.
Kevin Gasper, Finance Director, Washington, United States
Gasper is a native Washingtonian who joined Amazon 22 years ago. He enjoys hiking, biking, skiing, spending time on Whidbey Island, drinking lattes, and relaxing with his wife and three children.
- If I had two minutes to make a snack, I’d go for nachos or warming up a chocolate chip cookie (but that only takes 20 seconds).
- Some of my favorite pairings? Wine and cheese. Peanut butter and chocolate. Espresso and milk. My head and a pillow.
- If I could take a 22-minute break right now, I’d get on my Peloton and do one of their great 20-minute workouts or two 10-minute ones.
- If I had to name a favorite duo, I’d say Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen, probably because I’m watching the Last Dance at the moment. Also, Jim Zorn and Steve Largent, the legendary NFL players. I’m a big Seahawks fan.
- Two of the best aspects of my job are my team and my business partners. They’re the reason I get so excited about work. They keep me on my toes and make sure I’m always learning new things
Quincy Howard, Manager, IA Forensics and Fraud, Virginia, United States
Howard has been at AWS for just over four years—but his connection with the number two isn't at work.
- Why is the number two significant for me? Well, I’m an identical twin, and our birthday is February 22. I’m married and my wife is also a twin.
- If I could take a 22-minute work break right now, I'd probably go down to Starbucks and grab a venti White Chocolate Mocha steamed hot.
- Two things that make me most proud to be part of the AWS team are our culture, because we truly are customer obsessed and always looking for ways to do things better on behalf of our customers, and our people. I get to work with some of the smartest people, trying to do things that have never been done before.
- How do I feel about the opportunity to witness such a cool palindrome date in my lifetime? Truthfully, I’d not really thought about it, but it sounds like an excellent day—it is my birthday, after all.