Below is my interview of Kelly from MochaMomma:
The questions are in bold print and her answers in regular typeface. To find out more about this experiment go to Citizen of the Month.
I love that you wanted to write for ClubMom way back in the day, and then wrote about being rejected (hilarious – “like you had time for that shit anyways!”). I find it funny how some of these “popularity contest” sites pick some of the content that they do, because frankly the content sucks. If you could design your own multi blogger site, what would the platform be and who would be the top 5 bloggers you would choose to write on it and why?
You’ve just reminded me how naive I was when I first started blogging. Part of what I wanted was to be a part of some community, but I failed to realize I was already in the process of facilitating one myself on my own blog.
A dream platform would simply be: SMART WOMEN. I’d have the following writers to work with:
Shark-Fu from Angry Black Bitch.
Her point of view is captivating and she’s not afraid to say anything. She knows what’s going on in the world. Plus, she’s angry. And a bitch. Us colored girls have to stick together if we’re that pissed off. I love her and would dare not get into a tequila shots contest with her.
Jay from Kill The Goat. (http://saintvodkaofthemartini.blogspot.com/)
She’s whip smart and downright captivating in her writing. You read her and always leave wanting more because her writing shouldn’t end. Ever. (Sorry Jay. I’ll give you a 20 minute nap break now and then, but then BACK TO WORK)
Jen from Run Jen Run.
The beauty with this little gem is that she takes those innocuous situations and plays with them in a way that my brain not only comprehends but also makes me want to follow her around with a camera. Not in that creepy way, either.
Belinda from NinjaPoodles.
Sweet tiny Jeebus. Have you read her? Throw anything her way and she can pull it apart by analyzing and synthesizing it and give it back in such a way that I wish to suck her brain out and put it in my own head.
Heather from No Pasa Nada.
Young, Black, Gifted. Generally speaking, she’s got that certain fabulousness necessary for running any great website, but I have yet to convince her to come live with me. She’s got these amazing quotes that go with everything she writes and she’s annoyingly well read. That certain fabulousness is just necessary for being my friend, because I really need to surround myself with people smarter than I.
Being that you work with young people, what are common issues that you see coming between children today and their parents? How would you recommend they overcome these issues or obstacles?
The students who don’t get enough positive attention at home are the ones who make my heart gush forth blood and fall directly out of my chest cavity. They are tender and want something, they just don’t know what. If parents would talk with their kids and show greater vulnerability, humanity could be saved. These kids have parents who, in my humble view, expect them to know better, but didn’t give them enough practice before trusting them so much. Mostly, they want someone to believe in them and give them praise. It is why I feel depleted at the end of the day. It’s a lot of work. The other things all revolve around their friends. They want you to trust them, but guide them. They want you to shoot them straight and not sugar coat. They want you to come see their concert, ballgame, recital, poetry reading.
Any advice for a new-ish Mom who wants to raise tbest little boy on earth?
(Oops – I deleted part of your question!)
I guess you could just SEE ABOVE, but there’s more I would say. Teach him to have compassion. Because, wow, does that avoid a metric ton of other problems. If he cares for the little boy he’s playing with and wants to share, that’s sweet. If he cares enough later on to keep his friend from doing addictive drugs, that’s awesome. But, if as a young man, he cares enough about his community to live his life as an example, then BINGO. That’s downright inspiring.
What exactly made you want to become a Principal/Dean of a school?
Leadership just finds me, but my current position was solidified by my own high school dean taking me off the College Bound track once I got pregnant and told me to go to cosmetology school. She tried to change my own expectations of what I could do and accomplish and I am driven by her low expectations of me. Also, I went to college just to piss her off. But at my 10 year reunion, it wasn’t about that. I did it for me and my young daughter. It felt good to come full circle like that.
I love that you call your Mac a Crapple when it disappoints you. I am going to have to tell my boyfriend that one.
The old laptop was named Jayne (after Mansfield) and when “Crapple” wasn’t harsh enough I would yell, “That bitch Jayne is acting up again!” Now, however, my current boss (principal) is named Jane. I’ve deleted that mantra from my vocabulary. Also, my new one is still nameless. (Help!)
Having a child at the age of 15 is hard for sure, but there had to be some benefit to being a young mom in the long run. What are the great things about being a Mom at a young age, and how did it improve your life? What is the one thing you experienced as such a young Mother you wish you never had to go through or would change?
Probably the best thing was not having any preconceived notions about parenting. I did what made sense to me and adjusted a lot. So I guess that flexibility has come easily in how I parent my children and transferred into other life lessons.
I wish I never had to experience the hurtful and deliberately pained looks I got for carrying a kid on my hip when I should have been doing teenage stuff. A teacher/coach of mine couldn’t get pregnant and was highly jealous of my fertility and she was cruel. Now, of course, I know how hard that must have been for her to be infertile, but I still hear women denounce other women for giving birth (“She already has two kids!” or “She can’t even afford the ones she’s got! My taxes will raise that little bastard!”. I wish we didn’t have to beat each other up for things beyond our own control.
Does Mallory have any relationship at all with her biological father? And if not, how would you (and just as importantly Ken) feel about such a possibility?
Richard Cranium finally lived up to his name with Mallory – he told her he couldn’t afford to pay for college (he helped out MAYBE one semester of one year). He blew it. She doesn’t have anything to do with him anymore. Her determination made her contact him at 16 and by age 20 he had screwed everything up. She’s got a father in Ken and we’ve never even questioned that.
Your archives had me cracking up, especially the “Pain and Panties” entry, only because OMG I hide my skivvies at the OB-GYN too. What do you feel is the funniest entry you wrote and the most poignant entry you wrote, and why?
You know, I really do love “Pain and Panties” because I mentioned something that my girlfriends and I talk about but that I hadn’t ever seen mentioned in writing. Hopefully, I captured the smug attitude I have when I’m alone with my panties and that paper gown awaiting violation because every woman has experienced it. I liked giving voice to something that women said, “Oh my God! I do that and didn’t even notice!”
Most poignant: “Baby Brain Cells”
It’s about how self doubt creeps in constantly making us feel inadequate. It sort of hurt to write that one and I was pleasantly surprised by the encouraging responses because a few readers connected with seeing ourselves as failures and recognizing it as a fight. It encourages me to want to win and not give in.
Your blog hiatus in 2007 didn’t last very long, what made you come back to blogland so quickly?
It really chaps my ass when I let others determine what I should do so when I realized that part of quitting was cowardice (the other part, some personal and professional fatigue) it shamed me and I realized I didn’t want to give it up. I was mad at myself and knew I had more in me. Also, that asinine Imus statement made news and I couldn’t possibly shut up.
On February 26th you wrote on Flawed But Authentic that “My readers and commenters are slowing down at my own place. And for good reason: they’ve seen the passion drain out of my writing.”. Why or how do you feel that your writing has changed (for the record I think you are still going strong, just blogland in general has slowed down, unless you are Dooce) and as a result where do you see your blog going from this point on?
I don’t cuss as much as I would like. Sometimes a couple of hard consonants in words like FUCKITY FUCK can make me feel good. But there’s also the challenge of writing well and not resorting to that which makes it fun. Obviously, I’ve felt like cussing A LOT lately. Also, there are things which I feel passionate about that I can’t write about because my children are getting older and reading things in a form where I’m expressing myself. What if they read something and question me about not talking to them about ittoo? What if they learn things going on in my life by reading it and not connecting with me? The balance is precarious right now and my own personal struggles aren’t ready to be shared in this format so I’m censoring myself. I’ve also detested those bloggers who write about their great lives (Look! I’m redecorating and spending a gazillion dollars at Pottery Barn!) and the find some mediocrity in their writing and then have this cyclical bout of depression (Everything sucks. I’m lonely. Why me, God?) to bring their readership back.
On another note, my next blog entry is entitled “Look! I’m Decorating With Stuff From The Dollar Store And May Need To Check In With Employee Assistance For A 20 Minute HOWYADOING? DON’TSLITYOURWRISTS, MMKAY? Session”
Wow, that was totally intimidating – but fun! Thanks for the opportunity and from now on I will not be so much of a lurker on your site.
Danita a.k.a SleepyNita
Drowning in Laundry