Show # 44 - marta - Opening and "The Basics"
Hello and welcome to talk_show! Here's your host, penpusher.
penpusher: Come up with an adjective - excited, thrilled, relieved, chuffed, that we're back with a new episode in this series of conversations, and especially so with this particular guest. This time, I'm very pleased to welcome someone I've wanted to speak with here since I first heard of her. It's LiveJournal's very own marta!
Marta: hey there! I'm all set!
penpusher: So are we going to play The Basics?
penpusher: This first one I can answer for you. What's your name?
Marta: Marta Gossage
penpusher: And your birthday is...?
Marta: October 21st
penpusher: Woo Hoo! Get set for a bunch of presents from all over LJ Land!
penpusher: Where did you spend your formative years?
Marta: I grew up in the suburbs of Chicago - west suburbs, that is
penpusher: And you're still steeped in the Second City?
Marta: yep - I live on the north side of the city now, within a few miles of the Friendly Confines. the city is a lot of fun, and I wouldn't want to live anywhere else!
penpusher: Sorry to Wrigleyville.
Marta: next year!
penpusher: I guess they have no sense of anniversary over there!
Marta: just good old-fashioned midwestern optimism!
penpusher: What's your favorite film?
Marta: tough question. I'm a huge Tarantino fan, and would have to say probably Four Rooms but the soundtrack to Reservoir Dogs almost edges it out.
penpusher: Wow. I don't know that I would have pegged you as a Tarantino fan.
Marta: yeah, I like dialog and a kind of sick, twisted humor
penpusher: Actually, I know that I wouldn't have guessed Tarantino!
Marta: In Bruge is my favorite this year so far, though
penpusher: In Bruge? I think I missed that.
Marta: Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson - it's witty and quick, but a more relaxed tempo than Tarantino
penpusher: Cool. I like Tarantino's style too, so I'll check that one out. Any writers/authors catch your fancy?
Marta: my tastes in books switches around quite a bit.I was an old Tom Clancy fan until Sum of All fears. I liked Robert Asprin until he started having co-writers and ghost writers and my tastes run from sci-fi to non-fiction to character studies
penpusher: In other words, pretty much everything.
Marta: yes! I've always been a voracious reader, and will dig into pretty much anything that catches my interest - I like to enjoy something then go out and find a dozen more books like it
penpusher: I'm sure the talk show guests who are authors will be delighted to hear that!
Marta: I'm always open to getting new reading material - so I'd read anything suggested to me, a bonus if they're LJ users.
Marta: I also enjoy Keith R.A Decandido, who I found because he was an LJ friend-of-a-friend. He's got a great original story called Dragon Precinct
penpusher: Oh? What's his username?
penpusher: Cool. Any television programs you are addicted to currently?
Marta: a bunch! Burn Notice, CSI, Battlestar Galactica, The Daily Show, The Colbert Report I also am an avid watcher of Ice Road Truckers on the History Channel
Marta: Thank goodness for TiVo.
penpusher: Haha! indeed.
Marta: I also record Boston Legal, Doctor Who, and other things that I tend to watch in marathons some weekends
penpusher: In case there's any time leftover, what sort of music do you like?
Marta: I have horrible taste in music. I love bad 50's, 60's, 70's, and stuff like that people groan when I put on my music, but I love it
penpusher: what's bad 50s? Like Doo-Wop? Or Everly Brothers? I don't know.
Marta: I guess I should clarify "bad" - corny stuff like Petula Clark that everyone says they're not into but has to sing along with anyway
penpusher: And what about the 70s? Disco?
Marta: yeah, some of that too.
penpusher: You're a dancing queen!
Marta: but also 70s folk-type stuff
penpusher: Ah the early 70s. The "Tapestry" era.
Marta: I was brought up on classical and folk, so that's ingrained in me too
penpusher: Just so we know you do have some culture!
Marta: yes! I like opera and choral and symphonic stuff.
penpusher: Ever do any singing yourself?
Marta: I was in a professional children's chorus as a kid, and directed church choirs as a young adult, part-time
penpusher: Really? That must have been exciting!
Marta: yeah, it was really wonderful. I started piano when I was 4, and had music lessons of all kinds growing up, so doing stuff like that has always been both a passion and a comfortable creative outlet
penpusher: Do you still keep up with piano and music now or is that a part of your past at this point?
Marta: I keep up in spurts. I have a piano but don't play very often now. I went back and took some lessons a couple of years ago just because I didn't want to forget how!
penpusher: That's great. You are quite busy, it seems!
Marta: Life can get busy, but I like relaxing and doing nothing too
penpusher: When you were growing up, did you ever keep a diary or paper journal of any sort?
Marta: not really, I'd write a bit here and there but never kept it up
penpusher: What kinds of things would you write about when you wrote?
Marta: what comes to mind is bad poetry and pages of angst after breakups
Marta: but I'm sure I wrote other things too just nothing too memorable
penpusher: How did you first arrive at LiveJournal?
Marta: I had a group of friends at the time who were all on LiveJournal. Every time we'd get together they were always checking LJ, and so peer pressure kind of sparked it
penpusher: Who was the one person who got you signed up? Who was the most responsible? Let's get a shoutout!
Marta: I can't really remember! I know that I signed up at the same time as a group of about 15-20 who all were on then!
penpusher: Are any of them still around?
Marta: sure! although some not with the same usernames - a lot of people have made new journals or renamed.
penpusher: Of course.
Marta: we were all young adults, in our 20s then, and it's kind of crazy how everyone has grown up - using LJ is a completely different thing over a period of time. people get married, have kids, and change what they're writing about
Marta: it used to be a place to plan and recap parties which isn't so much the aim anymore for those from the group I knew. now people tend to write about news, feelings, relationships, or that kind of thing
penpusher: There is a remarkable flexibility and durability to LJ, which I think is why people can come here and then stay for years.
Marta: exactly. It's kind of amazing all of the different phases I've gone through in the past 6 years, and what I write about or the circle of LJ-friends I have has morphed along with that.
penpusher: So, I don't get to ask my "most important question" of you, but let's try this. If you could rename your LJ to something other than your name, what would you pick?
Marta: wow, I have NO idea!
Marta: I'm so glad I don't have to pick - I'd probably do something tired and cliched using my dogs' names or something
penpusher: Do your dogs have LJs?
Marta: no, they don't. Until they learn to type, the world may never know the details of their breakfast or their innermost thoughts, I guess.
penpusher: Ok. Just checking.
penpusher: Time for our first break, but we'll go in depth with Marta, next.
Continue to Segment Two