Gretchen Pirillo – from the Heartland to the Left Coast:
There’s a conversation Inside Gretchen’s head. There are lots of keywords to puzzle or shock old guys like me and straight laced Scots like Turner. Spank bank? Mamm-tastic? Moist panties… talk about a phrase to keep us guys coming back for more. Mike Chandler, a known techno-blogger in the fight against dot.communism keeps a database of Gretchen-isms on his blog .
You can meet Gretchen later in August at Gnomedex, the second annual Lockergnome Conference in Des Moines, Iowa. Chris Pirillo of course will be there too. And Doc Searls. And Leo Laporte from Tech TV and Phil Kaplan founder of F—–Company, and a host of others.
Gretchen is blogrolled a lot of places… Blog Sisters, and Halley’s Comment are two blogs I frequent where her link can be found. Another, is her husband Chris’ site: chris.pirillo.com Gretchen’s participation with Chris in the Lockergnome enterprise makes her famous in her own right. Her blog gets more hits per day than most. The comment strings are conversations in themselves and tell you a lot about the people who show up to get Inside Gretchen’s Head.
I thought it might be fun to spend some time there too, and when I asked her for an interview, this is what she said:
Well, thank you for asking me to do this! I’d read a few of your previous interviews; it’s a cool idea and it really is a great way to get to know bloggers that you might think you “know” already. But anyway… who am I? …there’s not just one simple answer.
I am originally a farm girl from western Iowa. I’m 25 (my birthday is Sept. 16 and I have an Amazon wish list *shameless plug*), and am married to Chris Pirillo, geek extraordinaire (will be four years of “bliss” on Oct. 3).
Is that you in the I Love Canadian Brass shirt?
I assume you mean on the infamous Rack Browser? Yes, that is me in the “I Love Canadian Boys” t-shirt (It’s from Moxy FrÃ¼vous, a Toronto band.)
These old eyes, I must not have been concentrating on the words…. When did you get to San Francisco? Reading your blog, I gather you came from Iowa. Is that where you grew up? Where/when did you meet Chris and when did you marry?
I got to San Francisco last year at the end of September. Chris had accepted his job at TechTV as the host of “Call for Help” in June, and there were only mere days between the time he signed the contract and then needed to be out in SF. So, the wonderful tasks of packing up the household and moving it all to a new city fell to me. We were living in Des Moines, where we’d been settled for about three years. Chris was raised in Altoona, IA, which is a suburb of Des Moines, so it wasn’t much of a jump for him when I got my job in Des Moines after college.
We met at the University of Northern Iowa in the fall of 1994, when were both attending meetings of the UNI Student Moviemakers Club. He had a script idea, and when we were choosing “assignments” I decided to join with his “team” because the idea was pretty wacky. Then things just kind of proceeded from there. He officially “asked me out” Feb. 23, 1995, we broke up a few times, got engaged Nov. 26, 1997, and then married Oct. 3, 1998.
You’re how old?
One quarter of a century!
Is that REALLY you in the Canadian Brass, I mean “Canadian Boys” tee shirt?
Oh, for the love… YES!
What part of town do you live in? I saw the tape of your new apartment. Is this a neighborhood switch for you? If so, what will you miss most about the old neighborhood? …miss least?
Currently we’re in SoMa (South of Market). We’ll be moving to the Castro. Let’s see, what will I miss most about the old neighborhood?
*scratches head* Well, I guess having a reserved parking space, as well as quick access to the interstate. Not to mention being just across the street from a restaurant where we get treated like royalty. Other than that…
What will I miss the least? Well my goodness, where shall I begin? I will NOT miss:
Â· Living two blocks from a homeless shelter.
Â· Dodging broken glass.
Â· Dodging piles of human excrement.
Â· Dodging used hypodermic needles.
Â· Dodging various other types of organic and inorganic garbage.
Â· Lack of shops/restaurants/anything that lends to a neighborhood feel.
Â· Petty public power struggles between our apartment management and certain tenants.
Considering he’s a neutered male, no. (Although that has made him no less randy: see http://www.geocities.com/l0ckergn0me/.) Our landlords would love for us to get a puppy; however, I highly doubt that will happen. If we hadn’t already adopted Sprocket out in Iowa, we most certainly wouldn’t introduce a dog into big city living.
No babies for long into the foreseeable future, much to my father-in-law’s dismay. For the moment, I want to focus on myself and my relationship with Chris. And he feels likewise. Selfish? Some might consider it to be. However, I disagree; I think that since we recognize that we have other priorities right now, we’re being quite honest about our desire and ability to give a child the attention it deserves.
According to your blog today you tested out 7% geek. What would you say makes up the remaining 93%?
I suppose my other interests would balance out between my husband and family, developing my “chosen” career, performing well at my day job, and being a couch potato!
Tell me about Gnomedex. It seems like one of the industry’s best kept secrets, but it has all the stuff that pulls my trigger this year: Doc Searls, Ev from blogger.com, Pud from Fuckedcompany… a cast of thousands. Will you be there this year?
Considering it’s my husband’s company’s gig, how could I NOT be there? J And more importantly, will you be there, Frank? (If it’s pulling your trigger, you’d better be there…)
Gnomedex is a great time for geeks of all levels… beginners to hard-core techies. Admittedly, working the registration table and mingling kept me pretty busy last year, so I didn’t get to listen to many of the speakers. However, I didn’t hear a bad report from anyone, and I think you’d be hard-pressed to find someone who didn’t enjoy himself or herself last year. It’s a place to learn and a place to have fun with fellow geeks. If you’ve seen the pictures from last year… you know that geeks have fun!
I read some of your blog postings and gathered you are into temporary work… I have a tee shirt from one or another San Francisco temp agency that says: “Life is a temporary assignment.” Do you agree with that? Do you have career aspirations or are you kind of taking it a day at a time or both? neither? or what?
Life is long-term… no matter how temporary something seems to be, it has an impact for long into the future!
Well, I’m not “into” temporary work, per se… it’s nothing I want to call a career. But when I started the job search last November, applying for temp work seemed to be a necessity since none of the traditional means seemed to be working. The dot-com economy out here had tanked, and fallout from Sept. 11 made everything worse. The type of job that I left in Iowa was exactly the kind of job from which everyone else out here was getting laid off (web development, technical writing, project management, etc.). So, believe me when I say temping was not exactly what I was looking for, but I was very fortunate to get a good position right away. Well, “right away” is relative… it took me a month just to get an interview with the agency who found me my job, and then it was another month and a half before this one came up. But it was the first long-term assignment (I’m completely repressing the hellish $8/hour data entry sweatshop assignment I had before this one) I got and it’s something that is challenging (in many ways) and actually pays fairly well, as far as temp jobs go. I’m still not making as much as I was in Iowa (which is sad considering the differences in costs of living), but I can’t complain–I’m actually employed, and several very qualified people I know have been unemployed for quite a long time now.
One benefit of the temporary work is that it’s somewhat more flexible than a permanent position (although we’re actually working on making that happen right now), which is what I’m interested in to help accommodate what I REALLY want to do. If you ask me what my “career aspirations” are, those aspirations are to be artistically and financially successful as an actress/model/singer. I guess those have always been my aspirations since I was 12 years old, but being a logical, analytical being, I took the “practical career” detours in college. While many might not consider English to be a practical course of study, you’d probably consider it to be a little more fiscally viable than music or theatre. Money is nice, so I kind of changed plans.
In some respects, I regret changing my mind on what I’ve found is still what I really want to do. However, I realized I wasn’t emotionally mature enough at the time to handle the “rigors,” so to speak, of the performing arts in college, so it was probably best that I followed something else. I’ve lost a few very important years, but better late than never.
So, what am I doing about that? I’m working with a great voice teacher who is a musician, actor, and voice actor in town, who provides wonderful instruction in singing as well as insight into the market here. I’m currently waiting for my printed headshots (B&W, for acting) to come in the mail later this week, and then I’ll be visiting the agencies and casting directors in town, and I’m also considering enrolling an acting school/lab. I’ve joined a gym now, and I’m working out in an attempt to get my body to be viable for more types of modeling than perhaps just face/editorial modeling. Of course, those endeavors cost money, so balancing that “doing-what-you-love” with “being-able-to-pay-the-bills” stuff is still heavy on my mind.
Reading your and Chris’ blogs, I have a sense that you each have “a following.” I’m wondering how you relate to the female Chris Pirillo fans? Could I call them Lockergnome Groupies?
I am very happy to have such an attractive, funny, and enjoyable-to-share-my-life-with husband!
And, I don’t really consider Lockergnome to have “groupies.” On the other hand, you could say Chris has a lot of “TechTV fans.” The majority of these seem to be 13-16 year old males. I don’t mean to dis on teens or young geeks (because it’s great to be so passionate and talented about something at a young age!), but these are the ones who sometimes get annoying and soak up my time with their need for attention. I can’t tell you how many claim to be Chris “#1 biggest fan” or “want to be just like Chris when I grow up.” Or who e-mail me or read my blog just so that they can strike up a faux meaningful conversation with me when their goal is very obvious. Here’s an example:
“Hi Gretchen, I read your blog every day and you are really cool. Take a look at my blog it’s really cool! LOL How is Sprocket?
“Oh by the way can you say hi to Chris for me? I’m his #1 biggest fan. LOL He’s so great on TechTV. I loved it the other day when he did (insert antic here) It would be really cool if you wrote back to me. It would be even cooler if Chris could say hi to me on his show LOL. Bye and don’t forget to tell Chris hi from me!”
Most of these contacts also include constant requests for me to add their link to my blog roll, which when I look, appears to only be about how incredibly geeky they are (something I’m not interested in reading at all). There are a few in this demographic who are all right, but I find myself having to disregard a great many for the sake of sanity.
This is spooky for me, I’m feeling stalker-ish. As I cruise the web sites backgrounding myself for this interview, I’m faced with a truly beautiful woman wherever an image of Gretchen turns up. Has this natural beauty thing ever been a problem for you in your relationships with other women?
Oh, start. (Trust me, you’re not a stalker until you’re e-mailing me 400 times a day. No, that is NOT an open invitation!)
Thank you. I am sincerely flattered that you see me as such. I don’t think I’ve had problems with relationships with other women in regards to outward appearances. Last week at work, a woman in one of the real estate services centers I work with was talking with me and we were discussing my acting/modeling plans and she said “Oh you should definitely do that! So-and-so and I always say ‘Gretchen is just so beautiful!’ But you don’t seem to have a big head or hung up about it.”
I guess that in those formative years of elementary through high school, I was always kind of the nerd, the bookworm, not that popular, etc. My peers never saw me as “beautiful” or “a glamour queen” or “that girl.” I’ve always been comfortable with who I was. I still am, and I’m more interested in dealing with people who contribute intellectually to my life than worrying about “Omigod is she prettier than me?!”
You said my Sandhill Trek blog roll contains what you “consider the hard-core blog-philosophy bloggers….” What other groups do bloggers fall into? Who are some examples in these groups?
I suppose there are the computer-world obsessed ones… um, don’t know any examples offhand because I’m not interested in reading those. I see wacky ones, like Hoopty and Mikey. There are the current-events moguls/politicos, whose blogs are reactions to news (don’t know too many of those; will have to check). Then, there are the ones who are of most interest to me–those people who blog about a wide variety of things. Real life/day-to-day events, family, news/current events, philosophy, etc. People like Robyn, Stacy, Tracy and Darren would fall into these (and there are so many of them!).
What do you wish you could do with your blog that you can’t?
Write how I really feel about some online issues and some of my groups of readers. I don’t like being viewed as a bitch, so I don’t mention a lot of things that I really feel should be discussed. Ya know, kind of “if you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all…”
Yeah. Thumper’s mother said that, about the little skunk called Flower if I’m not mistaken. My life has pretty much been informed by Disney. What do you read? What do you write? Do you eat breakfast? What’s your favorite San Francisco “outing?”
I attempt to read the newspaper, but I have about a week’s backlog of that. I usually get sucked into reading blogs over my lunch hour. I write what I think about! I usually eat breakfast at work; currently I’m into Clif bars.
My favorite SF outing? Well, out to eat, I guess, with SF being the city with the largest number of restaurants per capita. The mere hassle of doing things in this city kind of keeps us at home. If you’re asking for destinations… I guess I like to go to Ocean Beach, particularly when the Musee Mecanique was located at Cliff House. Coming from the Midwest and not being around a large body of water, I’m always fascinated by the ocean.
Help me out. Where did “spank bank” come up and what’s it about?
I give all the credit for my good lines (including moist panties) to my insanely funny friend Laura Wilson, who was a college friend, and then came back to Des Moines after graduation, where we did theater together. “Spank bank” was one of hers… I can’t think of the particular reference, but it was just a term to describe where lascivious men (young or old) could “file away” their visions of pretty girls (or boys, as the case might be) for later retrieval during a moment of manual self-passion.
Moist panties I understand, I’d love to call our interview “Gretchen Pirillo: Moist panties and all.”
I love it!
But I probably won’t dare. I’ve already taken heat from Turner on this issue. Let’s talk about Muni. Ever ride the 30 Stockton?
Yes, on our trips up to North Beach or Fisherman’s Wharf or points north. The ride through Chinatown is always an interesting one, esp. on Saturday or Sunday!
Whaddaya wanna know about MUNI? I could give you a few stories of my life on the bus…
San Francisco is so – well… URBAN. How do you and Chris deal with owning a car and living in the city?
Right now, in our current apartment (which will be current until Aug. 31), it’s a modern complex and we pay for a garage space. Parking around that area is usually not bad unless there is a baseball game (Pac Bell park is about 5-6 blocks away), or it’s during the day (when all the dot-commers are at work and the Flower Market is busy). If you work during the day, no big deal. However, having the parking space is trÃ©s convenient. Unfortunately, our new place, which is located in the heart of the Castro’s commercial district, does not have another parking space. It’s a two-story Victorian, and naturally the landlords get the garage space. So we are left to fend for ourselves on the street. The times we’ve been over there, it hasn’t been TERRIBLE to find spaces, and the turnover is fairly high because of the shoppers, but it’s a hassle that we didn’t want to have to deal with. Ah well, for twice the space at the same price, plus a “real” neighborhood, I’m not going to complain too much.
The best way to deal with it is to not be a-feared of public transportation, which I am used to using. Until my last month before moving out of Des Moines, when I found myself driving to work so that I could run home at lunch and let the dog out, or run myriad errands after work, I always took the bus there (YES, they do have public transportation in Des Moines). Likewise, I ride the bus to work here, or whenever I go downtown or somewhere where I’m not sure if there would be parking or if the traffic might be hellish. Chris walks to work right now (two blocks away!) but he will be farther away once we move. I have a feeling he is not sold on taking MUNI. Considering the bus routes he would have to ride to get there, I guess I don’t blame him. An acquaintance of mine used to live along one of the lines that he could take (the 22 Fillmore) and unaffectionately dubbed it “the bus of human misery.”
Depending on the occasion or the location, we might also take a taxi, which is something a little different than what we’re used to. I took taxis in Des Moines a few times, when going to the bars with friends, but those are really expensive. Here, they’re not outrageous. And admittedly, they are faster than the bus. Lame, I know, but it was quite a thrill for me when I hailed my first taxi here!
How was the Gilroy garlic festival this year? Did you get stinky? Have any garlic ice cream while you were there?
It was fun! Traffic around San Jose was miserable, though, and that was a drag. I wasn’t really sure what to expect. I’m finding that a lot of the smaller towns outside of the urban/suburban areas seem to be a lot like what I’m used to in the Midwest. So, it was kind of like a little county fair. It was good training for when we go back for the Iowa State Fair in a few weeks. (Mark and Gary Chops, here I come!) Yeah, we got a little stinky after we returned home last night. But you just have to consider how healthy garlic is for you, in so many ways! No garlic ice cream–I’ll wait until we hit the Stinking Rose for that. (They actually had pesto ice cream there yesterday, which intrigued me!) (My menu for the afternoon will be on my blog)
Do you have siblings? I’m thinking about those 16 year old geek boys who strike up online conversations and in some ways they remind me of everyone’s worst case little brother….
Yes, I have a brother, Brice, who just turned 21 in April. He’ll be starting his fourth year at Iowa State University (in Ames) next month. I say “fourth year” and not senior because although I THINK he’ll graduate in the spring, he’s mentioned pursuing graduate degrees or maybe adding yet another major or minor, so I don’t know if that will still be the case.
My brother and I are 4.5 years apart, so we’re at pretty different stages in our lives. When we were growing up on the farm, we didn’t have too many other playmates around so we did spend a lot of time together! However, once I hit high school then I was busy with other activities, and we didn’t spend as much time together. Then when I went to college, I missed out on a lot of what was going on with him in junior high and high school… and then I was out of college before he even graduated high school. So it’s kind of neat finding out what he’s doing now, in college, and what he’s planning for afterwards. (And that’s a rare treat, because he’s not a good correspondent at all.) But he was never a “worst case” kind of little brother. I think our parents did a great job of raising us; neither of us were delinquents or “problem children.”
One kind of strange occurence (not really strange, but something that surprised me) happened when Chris and I visited my brother when he was a freshman. Chris and I went up to Ames on a Sunday during his first semester at ISU, took him out for lunch, went back and saw his dorm, etc. Then, Brice just kinda said, “Well, you guys can go now, I need to study for a test that I have this week.” That just kind of floored me! I guess not having been around him for all through his high school years, I wasn’t used to his study habits… I was amazed that he was so devoted to his schoolwork! (He still is, too.) It’s just kind of a surprise, sometimes, how much you don’t know about a person even though they’re closely related to you, just because you’re not around them that often.
What kind of social life do you enjoy? Have you found that in San Francisco?
My ideal social life is a few really close friends, who also integrate into a larger framework of good acquaintances. I really had that in Des Moines, where I had a mix of friends from school (college and even high school, too) and area theater, and not to mention family, too. I found that theater is the type of hobby/profession where people can end up being very close… maybe it’s just the emotional nature of the craft.
No, I haven’t really found that in San Francisco yet. Getting involved in the arts in the area will probably be the key to that… of course, I just have to DO that first!
Let’s return to the moist panties for a minute… what moistens them for you? Do you have any favorite images in your spank bank (that you can share with all six of our blog readers)?
Whoa, we’re getting personal here! To me, “moist panties” is simply a saying and didn’t represent more, but of course I guess it can be seen as such. And I’ve always considered “spank bank” to be an exclusively male thang… but okay. I take it this is kind of a “turn-ons” question?
Women! Never a direct answer.8^) I thought it was a pretty direct question.
It was… I just had no idea you would go there! Looking at some of your other interviews I see that you have, kinda. Just caught me off guard is all. Now keep in mind I have 13 year olds reading my blog (AND my husband’s) so I really don’t want to provide too much fodder for chat rooms or anything that might land in the National Enquirer years down the road when I’m a movie star and all famous and stuff. *wink*
Let’s see, favorite images? David Duchovny. (I must admit I’ve read a few pieces of X-Files fan fiction in my day.) Hard bodies… six-packs welcome! Dark, handsome men: Italian or Middle Eastern. But what really does the trick is combining the physical with the kindness and coyness. Flirtatiousness is fun… for me, it’s not just visualizations, but interactions.
But really, how interesting or useful is this??… I’m an old married woman who’s got all the Gnome she needs.
Maybe for the pinup shots that I’ve done or the outfits I’ve worn at Gnomedex, you were expecting something naughtier? Sorry, I can’t give away ALL my secrets. (I’ll probably get more e-mail than I want just from discussing this much!)
When I was a young man in San Francisco, we furnished our place at Cost Plus and the “head shop” down the street. In those days a few Indian print bedspreads, some huge throw pillows and a few brass incense burners and a hookah were all that was needed to augment the bricks and boards and foam futon. What’s the dominant interior decorating theme at Chez Pirillo? You ever shop at the big IKEA in Emeryville?
We don’t really have a theme… Midwest semi-modern, I guess? We still have all our big furniture from our house in Iowa. It was a big step for us; we actually had enough room AND money to get matching “sets!” Maple bedroom set, pine-ish living room wood plus off-white couches… which we now realize were not good ideas for pets, children, or parties. I’d love to get some new stuff for our new place, since it will be a slightly different type of place. (Modern to Victorian could be considered a “slight” change, right?) However, we’ll probably just keep what we’ve got, cuz there’s nothing wrong with it.
A trip to IKEA is definitely in order (I love that place!), as we’ll actually have space where we can put more furniture. Initially, it will probably be more storage units… we’ll just have to play with the space to find out what it is we can’t live without. We’ll be getting rid of this crappy futon thing (that Chris bought to use until I moved out here with the furniture) soon, which means we’ll still need a “guest bed.” So I think we’ll be hide-a-bed shopping soon, too!
Let’s talk about Gretchen on the bus… what was the longest bus or streetcar ride you ever had… the one you just wished would end?
Let me see. I suppose any bus where this one dude in particular gets on (although I haven’t seen him lately). It was about my second week of going to work here at the government, and one morning this very clean-shaven bald guy was on the bus when I got on (I’m the 3rd stop). But he wouldn’t stop looking at me. Of course, just MY luck, there was no one else on the bus for him on whom to fixate. I started to get a little worried, and with his narrowed eyes, he looked like someone who could very easily be depicted in a police sketch. He looked very clean, so I didn’t think he was homeless. However, that doesn’t mean he wasn’t CRAZY. He kept standing up and walking from his seat in the front to my near my seat, which was back by the back door. I didn’t even have a newspaper to hide behind. By the next stop he tried to talk to me, it seemed like the ride was lasting forever… I guess that was just the panic stretching out the time. I couldn’t understand what he was saying to me… was he asking for $5? That’s what it sounded like. Being the polite girl that I am (not just ending the conversation there or ignoring him like I should have), I kept saying “What? I don’t know what you’re saying. I can’t hear you. What?” I never did figure it out, and he kind of got this disgusted look and walked back up to the front. And then back and forth, back and forth–still sufficiently freaking me out. More people got on, but he kept looking at me. I was really afraid he would get up and follow me at my stop. (I don’t think he did, though.)
Since then I’ve seen him several times, and there’s really no rhyme or reason to his schedule in the morning… some days I’ll get him at 6:45, other days he’ll be on if I get on later, at 7:30 or something. I think he’s more crazy and harmless than he first appeared to be, but he’s still a bother for the drivers and the other passengers. One morning I think he thought he had a brother/sister thing going on with the bus driver, because she was black, too, and he felt he didn’t need to listen to her when she said to sit down, quit littering on her bus, etc. She finally made him get off, which pleased the other passengers who were watching to no end. Another morning, he was talking and talking and talking… presumably to the bus driver, who didn’t appear to be paying attention, or didn’t realize the guy was talking to him. However, there was a group of other passengers who ended up sitting fairly close to him, and they all had a pretty lively discussion about him once he got off.
Other rides I wish would end? Sometimes the 49 Mission/Van Ness, when I ride it to my voice lesson. Sometimes it’s so crowded, I don’t know why the driver stops to pick up new people, because there is no more room (and no one is getting off). It’s the kind of ride when you need to get up and start the shuffle to the door four stops early.
What’s your favorite Muni ride? Least favorite?
My favorite? I suppose the 10 Townsend, since it drops me pretty much at my doorstep, and is generally freak-free. It’s the quickest way to and from North Beach! Or the N (light rail). Least favorite? The 49 (see above) or the 14 Mission.
Have you done any “summer stock” acting? What about the Mountain Play? Do they still do that on Mount Tam? If so, have you checked into it? What other opportunities are there for an aspiring actress in the Bay Area?
No, not yet. Haven’t heard of the one you mention. There seem to be lots and lots of opportunities! I just last week picked up Callboard magazine (published by Theatre Bay Area), and with my voice teacher went through it to find the audition listings (that he recommended), and discuss the schools/teachers who advertised in it. Again, there are lots of opportunities with theatre, casting directors, independent films, etc. It’s just a matter of me getting out there and exploring them. Right now, my confidence factor is the issue.
When you are 30, what do you hope to have accomplished, and what goals do you expect to be aiming at?
I hope to have a better idea of the viability of my career goals, and be able to be financially successful doing something I love. If that is acting/performing, etc., GREAT. If not, again, I just want to have an idea of what I want to do and if it will work for me long-term. At 30, I’d also like to think I’ll be closer to the concept starting a family (if it hasn’t happened already).
Apple versus Wintel… what religion do you profess?
For me, Wintel. Wouldn’t really call it “religion” though… it’s not THAT important! Whatever makes you happy, and whatever does what you need it to do. I’m just used to Windows, and I don’t see a reason to switch.
Did I ask you about beauty secrets? Tell me about vaseline, eye liner, perfume, and other girly things.
I don’t have any secrets, really! Just stay out of the sun, I suppose. Geeks don’t usually have that problem, though… Being naturally pale, I always get the “Oh my God are you all right? You look sick!” if I don’t wear makeup, and specifically if I go without eyeliner. So yeah, eyeliner good. Perfume? I forget to put it on. Plus I’m married anyway, and Chris isn’t that impressed with it anymore.
How many pairs of shoes do you own, and which are your favorites? Why?
Aahhhhhhh, I had never counted until you asked… 28!!?! WTF? How did I get so many shoes!?? My husband always said I have too many, but I’ve never believed him because I think my collection pales in comparison to other women’s (the majority of whom are much more fashionable than I).
Perhaps I can save myself the shame of having so many by saying that several of them are well on their way out, and I’ve just been waiting to have some spare cash so that I can replace them… and some won’t be replaced at all, like the Doc Martens (way too big and heavy for my narrow feet), the old navy flats and the taupe flats and the casual blue flats, at least one of the pairs of tennis shoes.
(Do I get a break for having at least 3 pairs of dance shoes (jazz shoes, tap shoes, and character shoes)? Those have a specific purpose… listen to me try to rationalize!! *sigh*
…and what’s your shoe size? Little feet or not? This is turning into a foot fetishist’s fantasy land. Twenty-eight pairs of keds?
Wow! Can I call you Imelda?
No, don’t!! I swear, my total is probably a lot smaller than other women. Shoe size is 7.5 (not necessarily little, but they’re damn cute, which is sometimes hard to find in feet). Nah, no Keds. Do you want a breakdown?
1 pair of Doc Martens
2 pair of athletic shoes
2 pair of sneakers (like, the non-athletic kind)
1 pair black dress boots
1 pair of brown dressy sandals
1 pair of Birkenstock type sandals
1 pair of Isotoner slippers (that I wore for our wedding)
1 pair of casual leather slip-on shoes
1 pair of black dressy sandals
1 pair of “cool, hip” silver pumps
1 pair of brown flats
1 pair of blue flats
1 pair of black flats
1 pair of navy pumps
1 pair of taupe pumps
1 pair of black pumps
2 pair of black heeled shoes (for wearing with business suits)
1 pair of brown really high heeled shoes (also for business suits)
1 pair of high moccasins that I wore for “Hair”
1 pair tap shoes
1 pair character shoes
1 pair black jazz shoes
1 pair really high velvet strappy formal shoes
1 pair bone-colored low heels
1 pair slip-on casual mules
And you’re a tap dancer too? How about music? Any instruments besides your beautiful voice?
Tap? God no, I just took one class. I’m not a very good dancer. Yes, quite musical. Aside from singing, I play piano, clarinet, bass guitar, and have played (although don’t consider myself experienced at) recorder, bassoon, tenor sax, alto sax, and French horn.
Best instrument? I guess it would have to be singing.
Well, I’m going to try to make it down to Gnomedex in a few weeks. Maybe you’ll sing us a tune in Des Moines? Piece of My Heart(land?)…
…Oh, come on, come on, come on, come on!
Didnâ€™t I make you feel like you were the only man -yeah!
Didnâ€™t I give you nearly everything that a woman possibly can ?
Honey, you know I did!
And each time I tell myself that I, well I think Iâ€™ve had enough,
But Iâ€™m gonna show you, baby, that a woman can be tough.
I want you to come on, come on, come on, come on and take it,
Take another little piece of my heart now, baby!
Oh, oh, break it!
Break another little bit of my heart now, darling, yeah, yeah, yeah.
Oh, oh, have a!
Have another little piece of my heart now, baby,
You know you got it if it makes you feel good,
Oh, yes indeed.
Youâ€™re out on the streets looking good,
And baby deep down in your heart I guess you know that it ainâ€™t right,
Never, never, never, never, never, never hear me when I cry at night,
Babe, I cry all the time!
And each time I tell myself that I, well I canâ€™t stand the pain,
But when you hold me in your arms, Iâ€™ll sing it once again.
Iâ€™ll say come on, come on, come on, come on and take it!
Take another little piece of my heart now, baby.
Oh, oh, break it!
Break another little bit of my heart now, darling, yeah,
Oh, oh, have a!
Have another little piece of my heart now, baby,
You know you got it, child, if it makes you feel good.
I need you to come on, come on, come on, come on and take it,
Take another little piece of my heart now, baby!
oh, oh, break it!
Break another little bit of my heart, now darling, yeah, câ€™mon now.
oh, oh, have a
Have another little piece of my heart now, baby.
You know you got it -whoahhhhh!!
Take it! Take another little piece of my heart now, baby,
Oh, oh, break it!
Break another little bit of my heart, now darling, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah,
Oh, oh, have a
Have another little piece of my heart now, baby, hey,
You know you got it, child, if it makes you feel good.
Hey, it’s your ol’ bud from Dallas! Gretchen, it’s been SO long since I’ve seen anything posted online from you. I see that insidegretchenshead.com is no longer active, and I’m sad about that. Yours is always a fresh and welcome perspective on just about any subject, and I miss it. I can only hope you are well and happy. Take care of you. (((HUGS)))