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Interview date: 5/24/2010
Thomas’ residence
Arlington, VA

Tom Crawley moved from Charlottesville to Arlington in 1997, where he lived at the Kansas House.

TP: Do you remember when you lived there, and how long you lived there?

ATC: I think I moved there in ’97 or ‘98? That’s really loose, isn’t it?

TP: Do you remember what season it was?

ATC: Well, I left Charlottesville, I’m pretty sure I left Charlottesville in ’97. I think it was the end of ’97. I feel like it’s a test, you actually know…

TP (laughs): I really don’t know. But I bet I could reconstruct it.

ATC: Yeah, I’m sure I would be totally wrong. I could go back and look through all my tax records and find out.

TP: Well, if you feel compelled to do that.

ATC: If you want accuracy above all else, I’d be happy to do that.

TP: Was it warm out? Was it cold?

ATC: Ah, it seems like it was fall, maybe?

TP: Fall, ’97. Let’s go with that. And when did you move out of there?

ATC: Hmmm…. I remember Mary Chen talking about Y2K, being really freaked out about that. So, it was before that happened.

TP: Was Mary still living there?

ATC: Um hmm. (yes).

TP: Okay, so it was before she moved out, then.

ATC: I think I left before her.

TP: And which room was yours?
(4:31)

ATC: You go up the stairs, turn left, yeah, that’s it. I was across the hall from Mary Chen. I think Bob Massey was between us.

TP: So you were in the front bedroom.

ATC: I never looked out the window, but yes.

TP: You never looked out the window?

ATC: I probably did, but I never starred wistfully out the window, or acknowledged what was outside my window. I didn’t hang out in my room.

TP: No? Where did you hang out?

ATC: Downstairs.

TP: In the living room?
ATC: I think so.

TP: Can you talk about what the living room area looked like?

ATC: (laughs): I remember a big couch, that’s of no use at all is it, a big couch?

TP: I don’t know, where was the couch?

ATC: The couch, as you walked in the door, the couch was facing the doorway. As you walked in the door, you could see the people on the couch, it’s kinda funny. Which I’m pretty sure is the first place I saw you.

TP: I was gonna say, I know that’s the first place that I saw you. Cause I remember,  I don’t know, I don’t know if you remember what you did.

ATC: I think there were three of you on the couch at that time.

TP: One of them was Bob Massey…

ATC: That sounds right.

TP: And you walked in, and you took off your cap, and threw it, and it flipped in the air… do you remember this? And it landed on the hook. It was one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen happen.

ATC: Yeah. I’d like to say I always walked in the house and did that.

TP: I just believed that you did that every day.

ATC: I did.

TP: I think you practiced.

ATC: I didn’t practice I just did it.

TP: So, you hung out mostly in the living room. What else do you remember about the living room?

ATC: I feel like I didn’t hang out in the house that much, but I can’t think of any friends that I had that I would have hung out with. We’ll just go with: I hung out in the living room.

TP: Was there anything else that was sort of special about the living room?

ATC: Hmmm… I think there was a fireplace, but I don’t think it worked. And there was a phone to the left of the fireplace.

TP: Like a plug-in phone?

ATC: Like a wall phone. I remember watching some infomercial with Mary Chen, for some sort of NSYNC memorabilia, and I thought it would be funny to call and prank the folks selling the memorabilia and I remember that Mary Chen didn’t laugh at all.

TP: Really?

ATC: I thought it was very funny.

TP: You thought it was funny?

ATC: I did!

TP: You don’t think she thought It was funny?

ATC: She didn’t. She probably had something else on her mind.

TP: So, talk about, if you will, how you sort of managed the kitchen.

ATC: It’s not like I was in charge of kitchen management or anything. I don’t think anyone was a real neat freak, but we weren’t total slobs, either. But, all I can remember about managing the kitchen is going downstairs in the morning and washing the dishes, and Jonathan, Jonathan Kreinik, his room was… It’s weird, I think you had to walk through the kitchen to get to his room.

TP: His room, if I recall you had to walk past it.

ATC: That sounds right. But I remember waking him up a couple of times. We both had, I didn’t have to go to work until I think 4 or something like that, so we both slept kinda late, but, I think he slept a little later than I did. So, my washing the dishes around noon, um, usually woke him up, and he didn’t care for that.

TP: So, was anyone else, since you were vegan, was anyone else in the house vegan at the time that you were?

ATC: No. I don’t think so.

TP: So how did that… did that, or maybe it didn’t?

ATC: Hmph. Well, I think my being a vegan wasn’t so much a problem, it’s that I cooked the same thing all the time, and I didn’t cook very well maybe? And I didn’t have a rice cooker. I always use a rice cooker now. So, whenever I made rice, which was almost every day, I’d burn it. And it made the whole house smell. This is what Mary Chen told me later. I don’t even remember this. Yeah… But I made lentils and rice a lot, and the house kind of smelled like burnt lentils and rice. And that was my fault. But I think a lot of folks there equated that with vegan cooking when it was really just bad cooking.

TP: (laughs) But, it wasn’t an issue with like, equipment…

ATC: I don’t think so

TP: Except that you burnt all the things that you would make rice in and it probably pissed off people…

ATC: I don’t think, I don’t know if it really it pissed anyone off, but I think it maybe annoyed some folks. Maybe they were pissed off? They were nice about it if they were.

TP: Okay, so you’ve already talked about two of the people. Who all lived there when you were there.

ATC: Bob Massey, Mary Chen, Jonathan Kreinik. Am I saying his last name right?

TP: I think so.

ATC: I think that’s it. Yeah. Ann Jaeger moved in after I left I think?

TP: I think she took your room, if that makes sense.

ATC: Yeah, that sounds right.

TP: So, it sounds like living with them was a pretty mellow experience.

ATC: Yeah. But, it was kinda weird because I didn’t know any of them when I moved in. I um, was living in Charlottesville at the time. Well, I was living in Charlottesville in ’97, fall of ’97, I guess, it was… And I don’t remember why I decided to move here, but, I had a couple friends here, and someone told me there was an opening at the Kansas Street House, which I didn’t know what that was. But, we actually had an interview.

TP: You were interviewed?

ATC: I was interviewed.

TP: Who were you interviewed by?

ATC: Bob Massey, Jonathan and Mary Chen.

TP: And what was that like?

ATC: It was, I don’t know… I remember feeling like it was really formal even though everyone was kind of laid back. I really felt like I needed to impress these folks. But, it was like a casual job interview. They didn’t make it that way, that’s just how I felt about it. I remember talking about my job a lot.

TP: And at the time that was what?

ATC: When I lived in Charlotesville, I worked as a graphic designer at a software company.

TP: What made you talk about your job a lot? Just to impress them?

ATC (laughs): I think so. I think I wanted them to know that I had a job, and that I’d be able to pay the rent.

TP: Do you remember what any of the questions were?

ATC: Ummm…

TP: That’s pushin’ it, huh?

ATC: Yeah, I think it was stuff like: what kind of stuff are you into? Do you mind parties? I don’t know. Stuff like that.

TP: So, you were a graphic designer in Charlottesville, then when you moved here, what did you do?

ATC: I had a few jobs after I moved to Arlington. I worked at the Whole Foods down the street for a few months. I kinda decided I didn’t want to be a graphic designer anymore. I think I’ve done that three times in the last ten years…

TP: And what are you now?

ATC: Now I am a horticulturalist.

TP: So that’s different!

ATC: It’s totally different.

TP; Okay, wait, so let’s go back… and talk about, you were a graphic designer in Charlottesville, then you came here. What made you get a job at the Whole Foods?

ATC: It was close by the house. Um, I had always wanted to be a farmer, but I had no farming experience, and the closest thing I could get to farming was working produce at Whole Foods. So… (laughs) so I was kinda working my way towards that.

TP (laughs): So that was your first step. And how long did you work there for?

ATC: I think it was maybe six months.

TP: So what happened after that?

ATC: You mean job-wise?

TP: Yeah.

ATC: Oh! I decided I was going to full-on try to publish and sell comics and live off of that.

TP: And…

ATC: That lasted about a month, month and a half?

TP: So, talk about the comics that you did.

ATC: Ah, I don’t know. Lost a bunch of money.

TP: Yeah…

ATC: My pen and ink skills got a lot better.

TP: What were your comics about? What did you tend to draw?

ATC: Ah, I don’t know. Kind of like journal entries. Some stories were journal entries. Others were, I don’t know. Just silly stories. Just stuff based on puns I thought of while I was working.

TP: Do you remember any of the puns?

ATC: No.

TP: Really?

ATC: Well…  I had a whole series when I lived in Charlotesville. I don’t remember if I continued doing it here, but. A whole series based on different recording media. All the characters in the comic, were like, there was a CD, there was a seven inch record, there was a tape. Um… a cassette tape.

TP: You gave me one that was called the Definitivity Book. Do you remember that one?

ATC: Yeah. I forgot about that.

TP: What one was that?

ATC: That was a bunch of crossword puzzles, find a word puzzles, coloring pages, connect the dots, based on things that interested me and my friend, Nathan, back then.

TP: From Charlottesville?

ATC: From Richmond, actually.

TP: But you did some more when you were in DC, right?

ATC: Did I? Activity Books?

TP: Not activity books. Comics.

ATC: Comics. Yeah. Uh huh.

TP: Do you remember if there was a name?

ATC: There was a name. I do remember.

TP: What was it?

ATC: It was, what’s it called, I can never remember. An anthology. It kind of turned into an anthology, where I asked a bunch of other people to contribute stuff. And it was called the Karma Coated Chocolate Fist.

TP: And who else contributed to it?

ATC: Ah, Jason Hutto. A fellow I worked with by the name of Chris Diamond. A good friend, Al Leget, and the famous Ryan Nelson.

TP: Or infamous Ryan Nelson.

ATC: I was thinking infamous but I decided to go ahead and say famous.

TP: So they contributed to it, in what way? they just drew stuff?

ATC: They drew, I would tell them I needed two pages or I needed three pages and they would do three pages, four pages, two pages of whatever they wanted.

TP: How did you know most of the people who contributed?

ATC: That’s very interesting that you should ask me that. I met Ryan and Jason Hutto within the first few weeks of living at the Kansas House.

TP: Do you remember how you met them?

ATC: Um… I recall vaguely I’m not even certain about this, maybe I reconstructed it in my head, but I remember Ryan Nelson and I talking about comics or cartoons, I can’t remember. And I think afterwards he invited me to the Galaxy Hut. Something like that. Or it might have been Jason Hutto. I can’t remember. Or it might have been both of them. But I remember thinking that I was happy I found someone I could talk to.

TP: And they just happened to be at Kansas?

ATC: Yeah, they were just hanging out. I didn’t know anything about either of them. Which is funny cause later on, Ryan invited me to check out his band, Most Secret Method. And I remember vividly being very nervous about going to the show because a lot of my friends were in bands and I didn’t care for many of their bands, and I just assumed that I wasn’t gonna like his band, and I did.

TP: So, what were some of the other jobs you had while you lived there.

ATC: Well, I was running out of money while I was trying to self-publish comics, so I took a job as a day laborer. Down the street. I don’t know if you know about that.

TP: I did not know about that! Tell some stories about that!

ATC: It wasn’t as loose as you know, the guys who stand out in front of Home Depot. There was actually an office. I think it was somewhere on, um, was it Glebe? What road was Kansas off of?

TP: Wilson.

ATC:  Wilson, Yeah, I think it was off Wilson. I think it was a mile or so down Wilson. Like a little tiny office. It looked like one of those checks cashed place. There was a desk with a bunch of empty area in the front and you went to the desk. You gave ‘em your name and your social security number. And they said “do you have a helmet, do you have gloves, do you have goggles?” And if you’re like me you say no and they give you all that stuff. Or, you think they give you all that stuff and then you go out and work for the day, whatever, diggin’ holes, and then you come back to get your check. They pay you that day, which is cool, but they subtract the cost of the hard hat, and the goggles and the gloves, so I think after working 8 hours that day, in the sun, I think I got like 30 or 40 dollars. It wasn’t that cool.

TP: No, that’s not cool.

ATC: But I think it paid the electric bill that month.

TP: So you did that for how long, a month?

ATC: No a day.

ATC: It’s a day laborer, not a month laborer!

TP: So, that lasted a day. What’d you do after that?

ATC: I think right after that I got a job. I think I might have worked at a temp agency for a while, doing graphic design work. And then I started working at a sign shop in Tenleytown.

TP; Sign-a-Rama!

ATC: Sign-a-Rama! How’d you know?

TP: ‘Cause you used to answer the phone: “Sign-a-Rama, this is Thomas.”

ATC: Right. Yes. So yeah. That was great. That’s where I met Al and Chris Diamond. The other guys.

TP: Who contributed?

ATC: Yeah.

TP: So you worked at Sign-A Rama when you were living at Kansas. How did you get from one place to the other?

ATC: I had a car at the time, but I refused to drive it because it was unpredictable, so I rode my bike, every morning, to Tenleytown.

TP: So you were saying now you’re a horticulturist.

ATC: Yeah.

TP: So talk about that.

ATC: Really?

TP: Yeah.

ATC: Well, before I or was it after? After I left DC I took an interest in hiking and plants and just started reading a bunch of botany books, and I didn’t want to do graphic design anymore so I was trying to brainstorm to figure out what I could do to sustain myself and enjoy what I was doing, and um, if that makes sense. So I started taking horticulture classes at the community college in Richmond. This was after I left DC the second time, the first time? No, the second time. And let’s see. After I took those classes, I got an internship at a park called Maymont in Richmond, and I was on my way to, not really being the farmer I wanted to be years before, but more close than when I working produce at a grocery store.

TP: Excellent. So… let’s go back to talking about what it was like to live at Kansas House.

ATC: Just like that?

TP: Yeah, what was it like to live there?

ATC: Ah, well, I remember thinking everyone there. Well, I had this idea. Since I lived in Richmond before I moved to Charlottesville, I had this idea of what a “scene” was, so I don’t know. I think I had some probably skewed perspectives. I don’t think I’ve ever talked about this, so it might be a little…

TP: What were the skewed perspectives?

ATC: Well, I had this idea that Richmond was really, it tended to be kinda violent there, I dunno, I just thought of it as being very gritty and real.

TP: In Richmond?

ATC: yes.

TP: so that skewed your perspective of DC how…

ATC: I dunno, I thought of, people in Richmond, I mean people in DC as being very, um, cultured and sophisticated, even the punk rockers.

TP: Yeah?

ATC: Yeah.

TP: and, well, was that true

ATC: Somewhat. Um, the people, I hung out with, well not necessarily, the people I hung out with in DC, uh, oh this is gonna sound terrible. The people I hung out with in DC were a little bit smarter than the people I hung out with in Richmond. I don’t think that represents all of Richmond.

TP: It may not represent all of DC…

ATC: Not all of DC.

TP: how do you describe “smarter?”

ATC: Gosh… that’s horrible.

TP: Do you want to change out a word?

ATC: Yeah, I don’t know. It’s kind of what I meant so maybe I should stick with it. More informed?

TP: More informed about what?

ATC: More aware, about politics and um, even music, actually.

TP: In what way?

ATC: In Richmond, ah, the people I hung out with in Richmond, it was all about the Hard Core. Like, um, wanted nothing to do with punk rock, contemporary or old. It was all about hard core. And that was what was important.

TP: Right. Like, Hardcore like what?

ATC: Like anywhere from Black Flag up to the mid-90s. Virginia hardcore, like uh, I don’t know. Like stuff on Revelation Records, and Victory Records. And even though everyone kinda liked Dischord stuff, and the other labels’ stuff, I don’t know, it just, I don’t know, it’s just what I thought of DC. I don’t know if I could even really explain it. Yeah, I don’t know. I felt weird about talking to people here. I felt like I was a bit of a hick, so I think I was a little, maybe, reserved when I first got here, I didn’t really want to be challenged by all the DC sophisticates I was surrounded by.

TP: So how did it affect you as you, became more comfortable?

ATC: I don’t know if I ever did…

TP: Well, did it make you think about music differently, did it make you think about politics differently?

ATC: Well yeah, it’s funny cause when I was in Richmond there was a lot of stuff I was into but I wouldn’t talk about it, because I don’t know, it was sillier. It was like, a lot of people I met here were okay with listening to pop music as well as like, indie rock and just underground stuff. So, I didn’t have to be ashamed of my Matthew Sweet records anymore. Well, I didn’t actually have any Matthew Sweet records, but I didn’t have to be ashamed of liking Matthew Sweet. Stuff like that.

TP: And did you guys talk about this kind of stuff at Kansas?

ATC: Honestly, I don’t really know if I hung out that much with my roommates…

TP: Yeah?

ATC: I don’t know if any parties occurred while I was there. I don’t think so. I’m pretty sure… I don’t know. So I might have been stifling the vibe there.

TP: Did any shows happen while you were there?

ATC: I don’t think so…

TP: But, people tended to hang out there.

ATC: Oh yeah, all the time. A lot of recording went on there.

TP: Do you remember, like what?

ATC: Yeah (laughs)… I remember the folks from the Make*Up bein’ there, and I remember Trans Am coming through.

TP: And who was doing the recording?

ATC: Jonathan.

TP: And where did they record?

ATC: In the basement, somewhere… Was there even a basement? There was a basement.

TP:  Yeah, I think I was only in it like twice.

ATC: Yeah, I don’t think I spent much time there…

TP: In the basement?

ATC: Yeah, did we have a laundry machine? Do you remember? Did we have a washer?

TP: I’m pretty sure you did…

ATC: A dryer? Did I just never wash my clothes?

TP: Maybe you just never washed your clothes?

ATC: I think that is a distinct possibility.

TP: Because when we did Fort Reno shirts we washed ‘em there… I think?

ATC: Maybe. I probably didn’t do laundry very often.

But yeah. I remember a lot of people coming through. Oh so that’s something I remember. I don’t think this is specific to the Kansas Street House, but it’s probably just happens in group houses everywhere. I remember people walking in the house or walking through the house, and I don’t know. It was like, it was a public area. I never really got used to that. I never really got used to people walking in the house and not greeting me (laughs). But you know, they were recording or they were doing whatever they were doing. But yeah, I never got used to that.

TP: That’s weird.

ATC: Yeah, a little weird. But they didn’t know me, so it kinda made sense. They probably didn’t even know I lived there, so…

TP: So, people were doing recording there, did anybody practice there?

ATC: I’m sure someone did, but I don’t know who. I don’t know the difference between folks who were recording and folks who were practicing. It seemed like Trans Am was there a lot, so maybe they practiced there, too.

TP: And Trans Am recorded there because Jonathan was their sound person and stuff. Do you remember anything else like that happening?

ATC: You mean like people recording, or people coming in and out?

TP: either one…

ATC: I do remember, I used to read a lot of zines and I listened to a lot of stuff that was recorded in DC, so I’d always see people I recognized, but people I couldn’t put a name to, walking through the door. So that was always funny.

TP: So, talk about, even though you said you didn’t ever looked out the window, talk about what else was in the neighborhood.

ATC: Well, I did ride my bike around a lot. There was, I think there was some sort of ice cream shop, off of Wilson. To the left, it was either ice cream or El Polo Rico. I don’t know why I’m getting those two mixed up. Maybe there was both.

TP: Maybe there was both.

ATC: Do you remember? Was it both?

TP: I remember El Polo Rico, but I never went in there, and it’s not there anymore, they tore it down.

ATC: And I remember a motel almost directly, maybe not quite directly, across the street. But I think, I remember when Mary Chen’s family came to visit they stayed there. And, um, There was, oh… what is it called, the halal meat shop was right, I think it was right behind the house. I don’t think there was a street separating. I think maybe there was an alley or a driveway. Oh, and was it an auto repair slash gas station directly in front  of us?

TP: I thinks so yeah.

ATC: Something like that, and what else. The Arlington, I don’t know what it’s called, the arts building, or something over there, the one with the weird neon. That’s still there. That wasn’t too far away.

TP: Did you ever go in there?

ATC: Yeah, I went in there… um, I think once.

TP: Talk about, so it sounds like there were a lot of businesses, did it seem like it was residential?

ATC: I think there were just a few other houses left on that block. All the business were kind of encroaching on that area. I didn’t have any direct contact with the owners of that house. I don’t know what went on. But it kinda seemed like they were holding out, seemed like the last hold out of houses on that street. So, but I remember at least one other house on that street, but I can’t really think of, I don’t remember any neighbors, like next-door neighbors, maybe there were.

TP: So, you didn’t have any contact with the owners, how did you pay all of the stuff you had to pay.

ATC: I think the rent checks went to Bob Massey, or Mary. I can’t remember. I don’t know if I made it out to him or if I just gave it to him. I’m pretty sure it was Bob. I think he was there the longest. But yeah. I can’t remember.

TP: And then, how did you deal with the other bills…

ATC: It seems like, I think we rotated, I think one person from the house would collect. It would be like one persons job to collect all the checks for the utilities each month. I think. I don’t… Yeah, I think that’s how it worked.

TP: But it worked…

ATC: It worked. Yeah. I think I was the only one not… I remember Bob being really organized and I remember Mary Chen being very organized. I guess Jonathan was too, but I know out of the four I was probably the least organized. I would say stuff like: “didn’t I give you the check for the electric bill?” And, um, that didn’t go over very well when I did that.

TP: If there were any conflicts… It sounds like there really weren’t any conflicts, or they were sort of like, peaceful

ATC: Yeah, yeah. I think so. Yeah. I yeah. I maybe, Maybe I remember one exchange between each roommate that didn’t really last long. There was weirdness when Mary Chen adopted her cat. There was me washing dishes at the break of dawn at 12 noon with Jonathan. There was me thinking I’d already given folks the checks for utilities. Yeah, that’s all I remember.

TP: so it was pretty peaceful.

ATC: I don’t think Jonathan ever did anything to piss anyone off and I don’t think Bob did, either. It was mostly me. Me and Mary’s cat.

TP: So talk about, so did it feel weird that there was sort of no oversight from the landlord or anything?

ATC: Hmmm… I’d lived in a group house in Richmond, but we all knew each other for a long time, and the landlord was really laid back, just a few years older than the rest of us. So, it was a little different, but I don’t know, it wasn’t that weird.

TP: talk more about, so you rode your bike around the neighborhood a lot. Did it feel like you were part of the greater community?

ATC: I didn’t feel like that, yeah, I don’t know, there really wasn’t a sense of community, especially in that area. There were more connected neighborhoods a few blocks away from us, and there was Rosslyn, closer to the city. But, yeah, I don’t know, I never felt like a sense of neighborhood or community. There was a Giant where we used to shop. I think you cut through, what is that, George Mason’s campus?

TP: I think so, yeah.

ATC: Cut through there, and it would be right there, but even then I don’t remember seeing any regulars at the store, I don’t remember talking to the same clerks in the line. There was, it wasn’t Dheli Dhaba, what was that little Indian place?

TP: Oh…

ATC: Actually it wasn’t that close. It was probably closer to Clarendon.

TP: Wasn’t it A Taste of…

ATC: Morocco? No, that’s not it…

TP: Or Madhu Ban?

ATC: Madhu Ban, that’s the place we did go. That was one place, I would see that guy whenever I walked in, and I don’t know, maybe there was but I wasn’t part of the greater community. Whether it was the underground indie punk community or the neighborhood community. Not so much.

TP: Um, does that give you a perspective of the place?

ATC: How do you mean?

TP: Well, talk about, what you’re saying, you weren’t a member of the community, but you weren’t a member of the indie punk community either or you were?

ATC: No, not really.

TP: So, did that make it, cause that might offer a way of seeing it, that…

ATC: Oh that the insiders might not have?

TP: Maybe…

ATC: It seemed like everyone had known each other for a long time, and they were, they collaborated on different levels. Like a lot of them had been in different bands together previously, or they had toured together, or they just had I dunno, played shows together. But, I don’t know, it just seemed like it was kind of like a group of old friends.

TP: So, you felt like, do you feel like it was an inclusive…

ATC: No, oh, everyone was really cool. It’s just I don’t know, when someone says “ oh, remember that time that Bobby ate that chipmunk…” its like, no, I don’t, so what are you gonna do?

TP: So I have a question, which we sort of talked about: What were some events that took place while you lived there? But maybe not necessarily events that took place in the house, but maybe, like you were talking about Mary Chen and Y2K, what were some events that took place while you lived at Kansas?

ATC: I remember being gathered around, we didn’t watch tv together very often, maybe never. But when Bill Clinton admitted to having sexual relations with Monica Lewinsky, we um, we were all sitting around the tv sitting around watching that in awe.

TP: So what happened?

ATC: (laughs)

TP: I mean, I know what happened with Bill Clinton…

ATC: What was the reaction?

TP: Yeah.

ATC: Mary Chen just kept repeating how, um, what’s the word, how, what an historic event, an historic happening this was. That’s all I remember.

TP: So, Bill Clinton and Monica Lewinsky. Um… what, and this is probably going to be the last question… what was your most valuable experience at Kansas?

ATC: you mean aside from just meeting some people that I still keep in contact with and like to this day?

TP: Yeah, that can be your most valuable.

ATC: Yeah, I think that’s it. Yeah. That, all the people most of the people I um, still talk to in this area, and that I consider friends, I met at that house. Do you want me to list them?

TP: If you want, it might help me to know who to talk to. Well, Ryan Nelson…

ATC: Well, I don’t actually talk to Ryan Nelson…

TP: But that’s not your fault!
ATC: But I think fondly of him still, and think of him often. Well yeah, Ryan Nelson, Jason Hutto, I don’t really keep in touch with them, but Jonathan, Mary Chen and Bob Massey, whenever I see them, brings joy to my heart. Oh, there’s you, and someone else I almost never talk to Ann Jaeger. She’s a great person. And then there’s like the second-degree people, like, ah, I was friends with but I hardly ever see her now, it was a roommate of Amy Domingues’, Lisa?

TP: Linda!

ATC: Linda! That was, there was a month of great fun and interesting conversations, but I haven’t talked to her in years now. And I think it was because Amy was friends with people at the Kansas Street house.

TP: Are you glad that you lived there?

ATC: Yeah. Yeah.  Definitely.

TP: even though you maybe weren’t part of what you call the community, it was definitely sort of congealing.

ATC: I’m probably… Maybe I’m exaggerating, or underplaying when I say I wasn’t part of the community. Maybe I was just on the fringes. I was still there, it was just like, not in the heart of it, the fringes, Cause I felt close those folks, and I think they liked me alright too, we just didn’t have history so much.

TP: Maybe you made your own history.

ATC: Yeah, maybe so. Yeah, I um, yeah, I’m glad I lived there. I don’t know if I would have felt the draw to come back the second time if I hadn’t lived at Kansas Street and met all the folks that I did.

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