In which we ask the same questions Teen magazine asked then-soon-to-be-pregnant teen idol Jamie Lynn Spears; see original interview here.
photo by Dan Wilcox
I, Daniel Nester, work with Barbara Louise Ungar at The College of Saint Rose. We go to meetings and talk about teaching and all that working-at-the-same-college stuff. I've always thought she was so serene--still waters run deep and all that. So when I go over to her website to get some good biography-type stuff did I find some amazing details.
I knew that she had written Haiku in English as part of her graduate school work. I knew she has a cool son named Izaak, with whom I trade Hot Wheels cars. I did not know, however, that Barbara spent a summer on Lake Como and six months in Rome. That she lived another summer on the Greek island of Symi. And, finally, that she spent a year in a cabin in Woodstock, NY, where she performed under the name of “Psyche.”
Barbara Louise Ungar's newest book, The Origin of the Milky Way, published last year, won the Gival Press Prize for Poetry. It's a terrific collection and she's reading at a lot of places across this great nation of ours. We caught Barbara on the road to a reading in Syracuse to ask these important questions. And we're so glad we did!
BAPB: You’re in Jr. High, right??
BLU: Have I died and gone to hell?
What are you most looking forward to?
My next meal, orgasm, or poem, whichever comes first.
What kind of car do you want?
One I don’t have to drive.
What's your favorite subject?
Do you play any sports?
Badminton and ping pong.
Are kids in school treating you differently because of Nickelodeon exposure??
Differently from what?
You have a new puppy named Ali, right?
No, actually, her name is Lola.
How is she?
She just ran away, so I’ll find out tomorrow when I get home.
How old is she now?
Five. She’s a late bloomer.
She's a mix, right?
Yes, half-cocker-spaniel, half-mini-Doberman-pinscher.
What are your feelings about Ali?
She’s a nuisance. And her name’s Lola, L-O-L-A, Lola, remember?
Where did you find her?
In my boyfriend’s ex-wife’s back yard.
Do you dress her up?
Are you kidding?
Do you try to coordinate it with what you're wearing?
Don’t need to. Her fur’s on everything I own.
What is your fashion style?
Strictly SAL’s. (Salvation Army.)
Oh, yeah, they’ve got it all.
What do you like to do for fun?
Was it really scary?
Only some of the open mics.
TV anything you watch?
No. Not since Gilligan’s Island ended.
Are you watching Joey?
The only Joey I know is my hairdresser. He’s pretty cute.
So, you have to get TiVo?
Oh, NO, what’s TiVo?
Do you have an acting coach working with you?
If I do, I’m unaware of it.
Is Zoe like you?
Well, the only Zoe I know is my dead cat.
How are you not alike?
I’m still alive.
Will that change as you get older?
Have you gotten advice from mom or sister about business?
Don’t date musicians.
Do you have a celebrity crush?
What was your most embarrassing moment?
Mispronouncing Penelope as “peen-alope” in third grade; everyone laughed, and it was so embarrassing!
So you raised your hand to answer a question and it was wrong?
No, it was right, I just mispronounced it.
You probably haven't raised your hand since?
Sure, I just consult a dictionary first.
I got fucked by Satan, too.
Film star you look up to/like to have a career like?
Do you like Hilary's music?
I didn’t know she had any.
If you could work with any other actor/actress, who?
Would you think you'd died and gone to heaven if you got a part in an Ashton Kutcher/Lindsay Lohan movie?
Only that I’d died. And that maybe Dante was right.
Something you can't live without?
Play video games?
Is this some kind of a trick question?
Who's someone you look up to?
My big brother, Bill.