this is a serious literature interview with kathryn regina: writer of air poems, dragon poems, and member of venom literati: cool and weird group of girls doing quasi-serious literature related stuff.
i want to interview you about the piece of furniture thing now.
so i understand that you recently bought yourself a piece of unfinished furniture.
Kathryn: yes. two pieces. a dresser and a nightstand. the dresser has four drawers and the nightstand has three drawers. three drawers! imagine that.
what was the motivation behind this purchase? solely need based, or otherwise?
Kathryn: my other dresser imploded. like, all of the bottoms of the drawers fell through, so i just stacked the clothes from the bottom up, and if i wanted to open one drawer i had to open them all. i got it at k-mart for 30 dollars. it wasn't good.
since you just mentioned k-mart, do you think that qualifies this interview as a "k-mart realist" interview?
Kathryn: yes. i was hoping for that.
why did you purchase unfinished furniture?
Kathryn: because it was cheaper than finished furniture and the sales lady talked me into it and i got really confused and threw my debit card at her. then i started to sweat.
at what point did it 'hit you' that you were going to have to 'finish' the furniture yourself?
Kathryn: right after i threw my debit card at her and right before i started sweating.
what did you think about on the way home from the store?
Kathryn: i thought about how i always make bad decisions and how i get confused and just do the first thing that pops up in my mind. then i decided to return the furniture. so i got out the receipt and looked at it, and that's when i saw that at the bottom it said "NO REFUNDS OR EXCHANGES." then i thought about how it was going to take me forever to get home because i had to take two different buses. then a seagull appeared like two feet above my head and hovered there for some time. like, at least 15 seconds.
i know how it feels when you have to take multiple buses somewhere and you are dreading it. at the time of this purchase, did you have any experience with staining or otherwise 'finishing' wood?
Kathryn: no. well, one time i helped my boss stain the door frame of our office but that was different because i didn't care about the door frame at all.
your boss has made you do a number of questionable things that are not in your 'job description', correct?
list a few of them so that people reading this interview do not view this question as sex related.
Kathryn: um, i called a luggage company to have his laptop bag fixed once. i can't really think of anything else that is not 'confidential.'
you consulted me regarding the process of staining wood, asking me if i knew about it. did you do this because one of my 'serious online literature' bios mentions that i work for a furniture restorer?
Kathryn: maybe. also because you told me you are a carpenter.
right. did you know at the time that my 'furniture restorer boss' doesn't even pay me money?
Kathryn: i did.
did you know that he buys me lunch and coffee every day, though?
Kathryn: no, that's nice. does he buy you pizza? i read that in your novel. he bought you pizza because you don't eat meat but cheese is ok.
once he bought me pizza. it had cheese on it.
usually i eat some kind of vegetable sandwich.
anyway, so after i explained the process of staining wood to you, you attempted it, correct?
Kathryn: yes. well, you gave me instructions and i wrote them down and then i went to the home depot (k-mart realism). but then at the home depot things took a turn. because i saw that they had a "one step" stain and polyurethane combo, and i thought that would be way easier. but the instructions on the can were completely different than your instructions. so i discarded everything you said and followed the can. but then when i started applying it, it looked terrible and streaky. so then i went back to the home depot and bought stripper and sandpaper and stripped all of that stuff off. and then i bought regular stain and regular polyurethane and started all over again. it sucked.
you re-consulted me in-between these events and that was the last time we talked about it until now.
i understand the work is finished.
what is your satisfaction level?
Kathryn: it's alright i guess. it is not as good as real furniture. like, if you and your boss did it would look better. but it cost less and it holds my clothes and none of the drawers have fallen through. also, it is made out of real wood instead of cardboard. i feel very proud to own something made out of real wood.
you put your clothes inside and are living like a real person again?
Kathryn: yes. i am just like a real person now.
Kathryn: i want to say thank you for helping me because i had brief moments of triumph as a result. like, at one point i couldn't figure out why the stain wasn't going on even and then i remembered that you said to apply it all quickly and i started doing that and it looked way better. and i felt triumph.
you are welcome. do you think i should start a webcam show that is like... DIY unfinished furniture staining advice?
Kathryn: yes! i would like to watch it. also you will probably get more stalkers that way, especially if you are naked while giving unfinished furniture staining advice. they will do freeze frames and things.
let's talk about dragon poems. or should we not talk about dragon poems? should it be a quasi-secret?
Kathryn: no we should talk about it. the whole world knows now because it is on my blog.
Kathryn: we are writing dragon poems.
what is a dragon poem?
Kathryn: a poem featuring a dragon
why do you think it is that dragon poems seem to manifest themselves so effortlessly?
Kathryn: i think it's because if you are to write serious literature, you should not write about dragons. you should write about existentialism using long metaphors. and not about dragons that feel existential sometimes but sometimes also feel hungry or impatient, etc.
and have problems accidentally burning things. like bridges between friendships.
Kathryn: yes. and are uncomfortable from sitting on broken futons. yes, like bridges. metaphor.
and are worried about money.
why is it, do you think, that a lot of serious literature features animals yet dragons are somehow 'snubbed'?
Kathryn: i think most serious literature really only talks about birds and whales.
but isn't a dragon a kind of combination of the two?
so there should be a natural progression into dragon literature. do you see this happening?
Kathryn: yes. we are doing it.
i want to say thank you for taking the time to participate in this serious literature interview.