Saturday, November 6, 2010
Oct. 14, 2010: Talking White Elephants with Katie Haegele
Katie Haegele is my new friend. She is also one of my new favorite writers.
We met in the Anchor Archive Regional zine library on Roberts Street in the North end of Halifax in early Sept. 2010. I biked over from my brother's house on Bloomfield St. after my beard knitting friend Rebecca told me about her project of writing about yard sales. I was visiting for a week, and I wanted to interview her for These Things That People Make. Inside the zine library, She was sitting on the little white couch so small, that it would be impossible to sleep on (except that I'm pretty sure I've tried to sleep on it at least twice). There were zines in small piles around her and two people other people in the small room worked on a flyer criticizing the "Sex with Sue" tour. Katie was on an artist residency at the zine library. She was visiting from Philly. I imagined we'd make a time to do the interview, and we'd go out to a diner or something, eat an amazing and cheap breakfast and do a cute, fun and inspiring interview. I imagined that would be it. I'd wish we'd hung out more, but we wouldn't. I'd dream up a plan to go to philly and look her up, walking in parks, having good conversations but not really knowing each other.
All of that would've been fine. Great, probably. But instead something even better happened: we ended up spending a lot of time together. Visiting my second home of Halifax that week became an intro to a really exciting and awesome friendship with Katie. I missed her when I flew in an airplane back to Toronto. I was sad to leave her at the yard sale she had to launch White Elephant #4.
Katie write about yard sales, rummage sales, going to these exciting local events with her mom. She launched this zine by having a yardsale, but she didn't have anything to sell at the sale, because she was just visiting Halifax. So people donated stuff, and we went out and tried to figure out when garbage night was. We were unsuccessful. It was tricky too, because of all the bedbugs that are around lately. We had to be careful. Mostly, we just found a handful of other people's photographs.
Aside from White Elephant, Katie also writes a zine called The La La Theory. you should check it out. In fact, check out her website. Thats a great place to start: http://www.thelalatheory.com/. Check out the Anchor Archive's website too, while you're cruising the internet for amazing stuff: robertstreet.org.
We did this radio interview, post visit, over the phone, once I was back at work in Guelph, and she was back home in suburban Philadelphia.
While I listen back to the interview, I think about how well Katie writes about being attached to old things, or the ideas of them. Memories we can't quite reach. She writes with the private conversational language of a private diary. But its also very well composed and not at all an over share.
It has come up in the last two interviews, this one, and the one with Eileen Myles, this decision to not write authoritatively.
I think I'll drink some more coffee and think about that some more.
music played during this weeks show: The Kills 7 inch, the kettle black 7 inch.