In which we ask the same questions Teen magazine asked then-soon-to-be-pregnant teen idol Jamie Lynn Spears; see original interview here.
Take a good look at this picture. What do you see? Look into those eyes. Give yourself a second. What do you see? A scowling and confused booty rapper? Musical theatre enthusiast? Gaffer or best boy? Off-duty narcotics cop?
The answer is None of the Above. It's Michael Schiavo, poet and co-editor of Tight literary journal, who has just dropped his first book, The Mad Song, a "prose meditation, bluesy elegy, sensual lament, comic colloquy, poetic memoir" that can only be written by Schiavo. Wildly associative and crafty, Schiavo's work is an admixture of Berryman and Niedecker, Pound and Baudelaire.
Yep, he's that good.
Which is why it's deadly important we ask Michael Schiavo, non-booty rapper, non-musical theatre enthusiast, non-gaffer/best boy and non-off-duty narcotics cop, these Really Important Questions. And we glad we did.
BAPB: You’re in Jr. High, right?
MS: Most definitely.
What are you most looking forward to?
Painting the White House black.
What kind of car do you want?
Is fudge considered a car?
What's your favorite subject?
Do you play any sports?
Cricket in season, jai alai now that the wintertime enshrouds.
Are kids in school treating you differently because of Nickelodeon exposure?
You have a new puppy named Ali, right? How is she?
Short for Ali Baba. I love that Maxfield Parrish painting. She has yet to master the psycho-laser technology we've implanted, but there's always a learning curve on stuff like that!
How old is she now?
She's a mix, right?
What are your feelings about Ali?
I fucking hate her.
Where did you find her?
Conjured. Did you every see Practical Magic? Like that.
Do you dress her up?
Always. Mondays are, of course, for pirates. Tuesdays we blast into the stratosphere as Chinese cosmonauts. Wednesdays through Fridays are catch-all, but Ali Baba usually picks a sports theme—she loves the NBA—go Chris Paul!—but she also likes gladiators or Indian chiefs. The whole weekend is “Casual Friday,” i.e. lingerie!
Do you try to coordinate it with what you're wearing?
What is your fashion style?
What do you like to do for fun?
Pleasuredome with my dominatrix.
Was it really scary?
Sometimes yes, sometimes no. At times she doesn't obey my safe word, and while I can't really complain, the chafing does get a bit much. She lotions me after.
TV anything you watch?
God, I love that Tim & Eric Awesome Show Great Job! It's like entering the bathroom of my mind and cowering near the toilet.
Are you watching Joey?
They made a movie out of that? Dylan never ceases to inspire. Desire is one of my favorites.
So, you have to get TiVo?
Do you have an acting coach working with you?
Seth Rogen. He makes me call him “Zoe.” She's great. And she smells like a mixture of wet cinnamon and Manchego cheese. Desirable.
Is Zoe like you?
Only in that she too likes white cotton panties.
How are you not alike?
Genitalia. But the gap is shrinking.
Will that change as you get older?
Have you gotten advice from mom or sister about business?
Do you have a celebrity crush?
I've had celebrities crush me, if that's what you're asking, Natalie Portman.
What was your most embarrassing moment?
When I was 12, I went to see Midnight Run with my father at the Waterbury Mall. The theater wasn't overly crowded, but I had eaten a lot of sushi before the movie started. Sure enough, it hit me during the famous helicopter chase scene. Diarrhea streamed down under the seats (I always sit in the back row) but the movie was so good, I didn't get up to clean myself until after the credits were over and I had thrown up too and when I asked the usher to replay the movie he said I'd have to pay more money and it was so embarrassing!
So you raised your hand to answer a question and it was wrong?
It's always wrong.
You probably haven't raised your hand since?
Only in the Black Power salute.
Zorro, the Gay Blade.
Ron Leibman. C'mon.
Film star you look up to/like to have a career like?
Daniel Day-Lewis. Or Seth Rogen.
Do you like Hilary's music?
I love her mouth, the shape, the wetness.
If you could work with any other actor/actress who?
I'd like to do a remake of War of the Worlds with that girl from Man On Fire.
Would you think you'd died and gone to heaven if you got a part in an Ashton Kutcher/Lindsay Lohan movie?
Only if it was a “pornographic movie.” At least that's what they call them in the Czech Republic.
Something you can't live without:
Play video games?
I beat Contra every day before I go to school. Up, Up, Down, Down, Left, Right, Left, Right, B, A, B, A, Start
Who's someone you look up to?
Stockton to Malone.