Bruce Wordsworth here with Books ‘R Us on C-SPAN radio. Today, we’re talking with Tookie Woodstream, heroine of George Q. Kaplan’s Tookie series, in a telephone interview.
Q: Good morning, Tookie. I’d—
T: Mary Louise, please.
Q: Good morning, Mary Louise. I’d like to ask you some background questions to set the scene for our listeners. What are you wearing?
T: What do you have on?
Q: A gray suit. Why?
T: Needta know to give ya phone sex.
Q: But. But. Uh—
T: Ya do wanna have phone sex with me dontcha?
Q: Uh, uh. No.
T: Ya sure?
Q: Yes. No. I mean I don’t want to have phone sex with you; I want to interview you.
T: I’m not pretty enough?
Q: That’s not it. You’re very pretty but I have to interview you now.
T: Thanks, I guess. Just wearin’ a sweatshirt and jeans. Didn’t know I should dress up for this.
Q: No. No. You don’t need to dress up. I was just trying to give listeners a visual picture.
T: Should I strip then?
Q: No! Let’s move on to a different subject. I understand that your parents were alcoholics.
T: They don’t think so.
Q: Do you?
T: I guess.
Q: Do you attend A. C. O. A. meetings?
T: What’s that?
Q: Adult Children of Alcoholics. It’s a 12-step group for people who grew up in alcoholic households.
T: Don’t need to.
Q: Don’t you think living with alcoholic parents affected you?
T: Not in the least. I’m happy with myself as I am.
Q: I see that you have a bachelor’s degree in statistics.
T: With high honors.
Q:With high honors and worked in the pharmaceutical industry since high school. Did you always want to be a statistician?
Q: What had you planned on doing?
T: Graduatin’ from high school.
Q: I meant after high school.
Q: Nothing? You surely didn’t plan to not do anything, did you?
T: No. I hadn’t made any specific plans.
Q: That seems odd considering how parents plan out their kids’ lives before they’re born these days.
T: No one in my family had gone to college before and they didn’t have the money to send me, so we never discussed that.
Q: Didn’t you school counselors suggest it?
T: I moved east to New Jersey shortly after the start of senior year. I was way behind. They were way ahead of me. I struggled to catch up and didn’t bother with the counselors.
Q: Was your social life any better?
Q: Can you elaborate?
T: My only date was to the prom with a geeky momma’s boy.
Q: Didn’t you have a boyfriend then?
T: Tim was overseas in the Air Force and didn’t return until late summer after graduation.
Q: Why didn’t that work out?
T: He wanted too much from me.
Q: He wanted sex and you weren’t ready for it?
T: I wanted sex; he wanted to get married.
Q: Are you in a relationship at present?
A: I’ve been in this one two months now. Things are going well. He’s smart and funny.
Q: How long do your relationships last on average?
T: Hard to say. Depends on how you define a relationship.
Q: Let’s just limit them to those that lasted long enough to sleep with.
T: That’s not much help.
Q: How about those you introduced to your family?
T: Too limiting.
Q: At least three dates?
T: Over a weekend?
T: None lasted two years. The mean relationship length doesn’t describe mine in any meaningful way because most were very short and few lasted as long as the mean.
Q: OK. How long do most of them last?
T: A night to less than a month.
Q: Only include the ones you sleep with.
T: I did.
Q: Did you live with them?
T: Not many.
Q: Any particular reason?
A: Didn’t usually want to. I’m getting tired.
Q: We’ll bring this interview to a close then and schedule another sometime in the future.