Following a chain of blog interviews, Allison submitted her questions to me:
1. You do a great radio show on Thursday mornings. It makes the drive to work oh-so-much better. How does it feel to be talking on the radio and know that many folks you know are listening?
It's funny, but I never assume that anyone I know is listening, other than my husband. In fact, I think I kind of go into a pretty focused state (some might say trance-like) and I'm not thinking about anything other than what the next song is going to be. It's embarrassing when friends call me during the show and I can't grasp who they are at first.
But I'm glad you like it! Having just gotten past my second show of the current KDHX pledge drive (and doing quite well, thank you!), I guess there are some people listening!
2. When I first met you, you had longish hair and often wore it in cute, aging punk rocker braids. Now you sport an equally cute pixie cut. Do you plan on eventually growing it back out, and how will you avoid the possible mullet factor?
I'm generally pretty sanguine about my hair -- you know, it'll grow out -- but I kind of regret cutting it all off this time. My hair texture has changed since the last time I had short hair (ah, the ravages of age) and I really, really miss ponytails. So, yeah, I'm growing it out now. Avoiding the mullet factor is going to be difficult and one that I have not successfully defeated in the past. This time I think I'm going to keep trimming the bottom so that the shortest hairs eventually meet up with the longest ones, thus avoiding the bi-level look. This will be extra hard for me because I HATE going to salons, but I don't think I can do it myself.
3. Discuss your job history, from your earliest to your current.
Yikes. It's not terribly interesting. My first job was as a page at the Weber Road branch of the St. Louis County Library when I was a junior in high school. I loved being around all those books, plus two of my good friends worked there. After that I got a job as a medical records clerk in a nursing home adjacent to Deaconess Hospital. What a weird place that was. Most of the administrative staff loved to conspire against the new boss who had just been appointed. The home was affiliated with a big ass church and this guy was the screw-up son of a bigwig in the church organization. I kind of liked him (and now I'm remembering him as looking a lot like Steve Carrell...) but he was a mess. One day we all watched him make out with a patient's daughter in the park across the street. There were rumors that he had sex in his office. The ladies in the office were kind of awful though. They opened his mail. I told him that in my exit interview -- I wasn't leaving any friends behind and I really was appalled they would do such a thing. After that I became a Kelly Girl and worked temp jobs for quite a while. One of those evolved into a real job, after being there for over a year, and I became the assistant of a woman who will forever remain The Best Boss Ever. I worked for her for over 12 years until she left the company. Believe it or not, I still tear up when I think about her abandoning me! I stayed at that place (an EAP/managed mental health care company) for another few years, but I couldn't take reporting to people who lived in Salt Lake City -- I felt really isolated and lonesome. So a former co-worker told me about an opening at the May Company, working as an assistant again (I had evolved into a database administrator in my previous place) in the executive recruiting department. After four years, May Co. was bought be another department store giant and my job was eliminated. I made some good friends there and I miss them, but other than that I don't miss the place. That brings me to now, almost a year after being downsized.
4. What sort of balls does it take to quit a consistently-paying job and try to live by your craft? I am impressed by this.
So see, no balls were required! It wasn't my choice, though I'm not sad that it happened as I was about to go mad in the very, very Corporate world of the May Company. I can't believe that almost a year has passed with me just loafing about making stuff -- it's like a happy dream, but alas, the savings are dwindling and I have to get some kind of job soon. I don't think I can ever go back to being a slave to the Man in an office, so subsistence is my new friend! Actually, today I think I'm finally going to put my application in to go back where I started -- the public library!
Crafts aren't exactly paying the bills, particularly through those winter months, but I have high hopes for this selling season!
5. What nationality of food have you never tried, but have access to?
I have not ventured into any of St. Louis' fine Bosnian establishments. Which is weird because I hear that one is served platters of nothing but meat and that is a bonafide Good Thing.
6. What are your memories of Sassy magazine?
Sigh. I still miss Sassy. I was probably already a little older than their target demographic when it came out, but I loved that magazine like none before or after. Never in my experience has a magazine been so completely and delightfully personality-driven like Sassy (though Entertainment Weekly comes close sometimes). I mean, I remember the name of my favorite writer, Christina Kelly (didn't she go on to edit some other, lesser teen mag?). And does the phrase "Kim France Pants" mean anything to you? I got to know a teenage girl through my boyfriend who was much younger than me (he was not, however, a teenager, although not legal when we got together), and she was the Sassiest girl I knew. She was so cute and you could be sure that a week after the current issue was out, she'd be in some officially sanctioned Sassy accessory or outfit. And Sassy was so cool that it was cool that she did it and we would talk about it. She was a senior in high school and she was found dead in her car on her route to work one day and I never did find out why she died. But at her funeral, her mom dressed her in a gorgeous vintage, Chanel-styled suit made out of tweedy fabric run through with silver threads. Her eyes were made up with these little silvery stars around one of them -- even in death she was still the Sassiest. So I guess my Sassy memories are rather bittersweet. Jane wishes it had the magic of Sassy, but it never will.
If you want me to interview you, put it in the comments and I will post the questions!