Dr. Travis Stork, Will You Marry Me? Errr… My Interview With The Doctor…

So…I wanted to make a video reenacting the interview with Dr. McDreamy, as performed by Brian…but he said no. Or I didn’t ask him and dreamed it all up in my head. One of those.

Instead, I’ll give you the highlights. And the interview. And pictures. Because that’s what I do.

Also, I suppose I should restart by telling you what the hell I’m talking about.

At BlogHer (oh yes. That again. You thought I was done…silly humans blog friends) I was offered the opportunity to interview delicious respectable celebrity doctor, Dr. Travis Stork of The Doctors. Some of you may know him from The Bachelor in Paris (I’m not going to lie, I don’t actually watch reality TV but I can see why they chose him as The Bachelor. He’s pretty. Smart.)

I began the day by sitting in on the first half of his panel about health and wellness, presented by Simply Saline (the very kind sponsors who offered me the opportunity to interview Dr. Stork). During this time, much like a high school student completing their homework for 6th hour in 1st hour, I wrote up my questions for the interview scheduled for that afternoon. The following is what resulted (None of these are direct quotes…there is some author interpretation/liberties).

I did tell him I was a humor blogger…and that things would be a little more..well me…hopefully he’s cool with my…memory.

Me: In your panel, which I only saw half of before I snuck out to explore the expo floor  you spoke about the importance of prevention. How can someone with a penchant for falling down, sprains, etc prevent injuries?

Dr. Stork: Footwear. What kind of shoes are you wearing?

Me: My shoes rock. They have arch support and everything!

Dr. Stork: Even those can catch and make you trip. You’ve got to watch where you’re walking. Railings are there for a reason.  They joke about people not being able to walk and chew gum at the same time? That’s almost true. You’ve got to focus.

Me: My mom says that to me all the time. She loves you by the way. She wanted me to marry you.

Dr. Stork: Ignoring the last comment Aw well, tell your mom I say hi. Also, clothing. If you wear loose clothing, you can get caught up in it and that can make you fall.

Me: So you’re saying I should wear tighter clothes?

Dr. Stork: laughs Yeah, I guess so.

Me:  When it comes to cuts, burns, and other kitchen injuries, what are some fast responses that can help minimize the injuries?

Dr. Stork: Cool water for both. It will soothe a burn and clean a cut. Most importantly, though, pay attention when you’re cooking.

Me: What are your thoughts on wheelie sneaks?

Dr. Stork: On what?

Me: Wheelie. Sneaks. You know? Sneakers with wheels on the bottom?

Dr. Stork: Oh like the kids shoes?

Me: And grown ups…

Dr. Stork: For you?!? Didn’t you just mention you fall down a lot?

Me: Maybe. giggle (This is where I casually touched his chest. Like it wasn’t planned or anything. Yes, that’s right. I touched his chest. Sorry Brian. )

Dr. Stork: Well I guess focusing is the biggest thing. And practice. And wearing a helmet.

Me: I practice at the grocery store, while holding onto the cart.

Dr. Stork: That doesn’t sound like the best idea for you…

Me: My mom says the same thing.

Dr. Stork: OK, I’ll make a deal with you. You can use the wheelie sneaks if you PROMISE to wear a helmet. You can tell your mom, when you fall down and hurt yourself, but don’t get a head injury, that I said it was okay and I’m the reason that you’re alive.

Me: Hmmm…

Dr. Stork: I’m serious. If I see you in the grocery store, you better be wearing a helmet.

Me: If you see me in the grocery store and say hi, I will ALWAYS wear a helmet.

Dr. Stork: Deal.

Me: Okay. SO I asked my readers for suggestions on what to ask you…and the questions they came up with were so inappropriate I couldn’t even say them out loud to you.

Dr. Stork: laughing I plead the fifth!

Me: Don’t worry, this is the only one I could share (THANKS A LOT YOU GUYS!) What pushed you into being a celebrity doctor?

Dr. Stork: I was at a bar after work, the network sat down with us, bought some drinks. A month later I was in Paris.

Me: Alrighty then.

The lady in charge: Time’s up.

Me: Two more questions!

The lady in charge: FAST.

Me: Trick question: Is there such a thing as too much cheese?

Dr. Stork: No?

Me: Good answer (You hear that?! A doctor said cheese is good for me!) Favorite unhealthy snack. Go.

Dr. Stork: Cheese. I mean brownies.

Then he hugged me.

Dr. Travis Stork Humor Interview

Aren’t we the cutest couple ever?

So there you have it kids. He told me to pay attention and focus…apparently that’s how it’s done.

How’d I do in my first serious journalist interview with someone moderately famous? At least this time I didn’t make a complete ass of myself (unlike that one time with Jenny Lawson). Right? Right.

I was not compensated to write this post. I was given a goodie bag of products and granted the time to interview Dr. Stork.

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Musical Chairs Featuring Chris Infusino

Today, I’ve rustled up something REALLY special for you guys. I am surrounded by beautiful musical people. I grew up around them and with them. Music has always been something important to me, even if I can’t tell you the name of the song or the band who played it. You bet your ass I’m still singing along to it.

In high school, I met an incredibly talented drummer. The drum line was way more fun than the football players…and usually more interesting.  Really, though…I met several incredibly talented musicians. So, hopefully (if you enjoy this), I’ll be able to continue this spot once a month for several months.

Chris Infusino The Vim Dicta

My Music Theory AP class senior year of HS. So much raw talent. So many amazing musicians. And then there was me.

Somewhere in the crowd of teenagers, you’ll find my friend, Chris. Who I invited to Turnabout my senior year. With my mom’s rules about me needing a date for any school dance paired with the previous Homecoming date FLOP, I knew I needed to go with someone who would be ridiculous amounts of fun. A friend that would rock out on the dance floor and not need babysitting. That friend was Chris. I was nervous about asking him (I remember internally panicking and then just…doing it) but he was all like, yep! Which, looking back makes me wonder if someone had already pre-asked him on my behalf in typical high school fashion…

By far the best date I ever had to a school dance, Chris was (still is) awesome. We were both social butterflies, so tearing up the dance floor with all of our different people wasn’t a problem. I recall (and this could be a foggy-it-was-more-than-10-years-ago memory/nostalgia) that we had a pretty fabulous time.

Chris Infusino

We were both smiley and adorbs for 17-year-olds. right?

I recently re-connected with Chris to discover that yet another of my amazing classmates was living their musical dream. And I needed to share that will you.

I do hope that you’ll welcome him into our little tribe here. Without further ado, I give you Chris Infusino (as answering questions that I asked of him).

I’m Chris Infusino, and I live life exactly how I wish to live it. I’m a professional drummer, currently in the band The Vim Dicta, living in Los Angeles, CA. Also worked as a session drummer in Chicago, Nashville, and most recently, New York City. I’m also a classic car nut, machinist, carpenter, engine builder, and professional ice cream tester.

Chris InfusinoI play pretty much anything one can hit…so versatile percussionist? I mostly play big ass rock & roll drums though, and is how I make my living. I do sing…and not just in the shower. I’ve been playing for 18 years. I’ve literally played all over the states, and also did a USO tour in the Middle East back in ’09.

So many stories to tell… I’d say playing Carnegie Hall was pretty sweet, doing a record with my current band, The Vim Dicta at Capitol Records Studios was off the hook!! Recording on Dr. John’s record in New York City. Playing festivals in front of 50,000 people….it’s all pretty amazing. I love my job! I JUST started writing with my band, The Vim Dicta.

The Vim Dicta 3Top 5 Musical Moments: Hmmmm……….

  1. Recording at Capitol Records Studios in Hollywood, CA w/ The Vim Dicta
  2. Carnegie Hall in New York City, w/ World Civic Orch. playing drums with a 175 piece orchestra.
  3. Recording w/ Dr. John on his latest record, with a good chunk of Bob Dylan’s and Saturday Night Live’s bands also on the record.
  4. Playing with Buddy Guy in Chicago back when I first went “full time”.
  5. Playing in my parents basement for years and to about 1000 records. Very thankful for this one…

Routines or rituals: I don’t “practice” drums too much anymore…I’m always playing with my band, The Vim Dicta or with friends!

Chris InfusinoI practice chocolate consumption, beer testing, drummer faces that don’t make me look like a dumb ass (if that’s possible) and letting life carry me where it will without any expectation of the future….OH, and I practice never EVER, EVER, EVER having to wear a suit…unless it’s a funky sexy one for the Grammy’s or something…

The Vim Dicta 2Musical Influences: My parents (Mom is a singer, Dad a drummer) Fave musicians, anyone, man or woman, that can move me and make me smile and dance.

Other influences: The world around me.

Success in the musical world or in general: Finding true friends, and getting to spend time or make music with them. I happy dance EVERYWHERE!! It spreads good juju to the masses!!

The moment: I was 16. Started getting asked to play in bands, also I was practicing like 8 hours a day, and saying “F*ck You” to homework…pretty much knew then I had to do this.

On a side note, thank you to my parents, guidance counselor, and the few teachers who believed in me enough to get my ass in gear so I could move on, and live my life.

What do I hope to communicate through music? Good juju and the want for women to do sexy interpretive dances…

Ultimate Plan: To never have a plan. I’m exactly where I need to be.

Want to connect with Chris and hear more music from The Vim Dicta?

The Vim DictaPretty cool cat, am I right?

 

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

A Letter to Recruiting Agencies

Dear recruiter,

It has come to my attention that you don’t all seem to quite understand how the job market works. I have discovered the following issues with you and your respective companies, and I would like to help you out.

1. Do just a little bit of research

I’m not asking you to discover my life story. I’m not asking you to read all of my writing samples. I’m definitely not asking you to seek out this blog (as it is obviously not intended to use for full time employment). I’m merely asking you to do a tiny speck of research.

Just because I live in Illinois, does not mean that any job in Illinois is within close proximity to me. In fact, just because I live in a Chicago suburb, does not mean that I live within close proximity to the job you are trying to bid at $15/hour. I would spend more in time and gas getting there every day. So, look at my resume, copy the town I live in, and Google map it for crying out loud. 3 seconds will save you a lot more time than it takes to call me.

2. Speak English. Well.

It’s very hard for me to understand you when you don’t even know how to pronounce Christine. It’s very easy. Say it with me, now, “K-ris-tee-n.” If I can’t understand your pronunciation of my name, how will I know the job details? How are we going to negotiate my rate of pay? How will I know what YOUR name is?

3. Double and Triple Check Appointments

If you set up an interview for me, please for the love of God, double check on both ends that it is a go. I’ve missed out on some great opportunities because of a recruiter’s mistake. When a high profile job goes live, I get 3-5 phone calls from various recruiters around the country. I’ll remember that the next time you call.

This is a short letter, but an honest one. I appreciate that you are there to “help” me, but I also understand that the “sale” is your bottom line. If you work with me, I’ll certainly work with you. I am GOOD at what I do. All you have to do is get me the interview.

Sincerely,

Me.

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

My rookie mistakes: Interview bloopers

So, I’ve been meeting with recruiters and HR people and managers galore in the wonderful world of job hunting lately. One of the things that I have found frustrating is the number of rules that one is supposed to follow, and the number of rules that recruiters and HR people and managers change on a regular basis. So I’ve decided to offer you some of my job hunting highlights.

One of my first interviews was with a small firm in The Loop on Good Friday. Located inside the building connected to Ogilvie Train Station by an overpass, I planned to take the train down early, have some lunch, and wait patiently for my interview time. The morning started with a wardrobe malfunction due to my brand new suit skirt slit ripping up the back. Luckily, I had planned to stop over at Toyota to visit my mom and get her opinion of my ensemble. She quickly sewed the skirt for me, and I proceeded downtown in a different skirt so that I didn’t wrinkle the suit.

I opted to take the earlier train, as the next one would give me approximately 15 minutes to get to my interview. I figured early is better. So I got downtown in one piece and made my way over to The Corner Bakery for lunch. I had some tasty treats and then went to the bathroom to change into my suit. Of course, problem number one was going to the bathroom. Wearing scary stomach holding in bodysuit dealie over pantyhose meant that I had to basically strip down to my skivvies, and readjust everything, which I did. THEN, I got myself in one piece.

So the recruiter who set up the interview had informed me of some pointers when I made my way down for the interview. “Don’t wear your sunglasses on your head. Make sure that you send thank you notes. Arrive early. Allow extra time to get through security.”

I had brought a very small purse, my portfolio, a book, and my sunglasses. I also had that backup skirt in tow. So when I was ready to head toward to location of the interview, I had the pressing question, “What do I do with the book, the sunglasses, and the skirt?”

I thought about my options, and where I was. I decided to go with the most trustworthy person that I could think of: The bartender. Knowing that the Newsroom was conveniently located inside of Ogilvie, I figured that the man running the bar would be my best bet. When I asked him to hold onto my stuff, he laughed but agreed. I thanked him profusely and made my way to the interview. When I got through security and officially arrived, it had only taken about 3 minutes. I was 35 minutes early.

Crap.

And I had left my book with the bartender. So I waited. And waited. It was Good Friday, and people were rushing to get out of the office. I thought maybe they’d get me in a few minutes early and I could jump on a train home. Nope. 10 minutes after my scheduled interview time, the interviewer finally arrived. We briefly chatted in a stiffened conversation, that at the time, I should have known meant it was like a bad first date that was never going anywhere. But I remained hopeful. Upon leaving, the bartender had kept my goodies safe and I left him a tip as I jetted to the train.

I didn’t get that job…

A few weeks later, I met with the owner of a very small firm. She was fun. She said “fuck” like 15 times in the interview. And called one of her big-name clients assholes. Twice. But she lectured me for being 20 minutes early. I wasn’t very good at this interviewing game…I always thought that you were supposed to arrive early. And that they counted on you being early. Apparently, it has to be 5-10 minutes only.

I didn’t get that job either…

Then at another interview, I arrived with 10 minutes to spare, STILL had to wait for 25 minutes, and managed to stash my sunglasses on top of a toilet paper holder in the handicap bathroom stall. I thought that one stood a chance…but alas, no dice for me.

But just like when several first dates don’t go so well, I remain optimistic that it’s all going to work out the way it’s supposed to. Besides, I got to go back to working with the kiddos for another summer.

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Interview and Questions 101

In honor of my upcoming interview this Tuesday, I’ve composed my own version of the dreaded interview. Seriously, if I owned a company, this is the type of interview I would hold. When I was a catering manager, I did often interview potential employees, and while I was still pretty green and used some of the same old questions, I came up with a few of my own. Really the interview is about matching personalities with the company and the other employees.

Pre-Interview Test (AKA: The Idiot Test)

This one’s important. It basically questions the integrity of the person who is applying for a job with your company. Before you bring them in, make them take this short 10-20 multiple guess question “test” asking about hypothetical situations and how they would handle them.

Interview Questions

I think that many interview questions are absolutely trite and pointless. What is your biggest strength? What is your biggest weakness? How do you overcome it? Come on! Think outside the box. Make the interview a little more interesting. Make your potential employees answer questions on the spot that they HAVEN’T prepared for. Dig deep and get creative. Also, positivity is way better than negativity. Even it’s an attempt to see the “humble” side of your future worker bee.

1. What makes you awesome?

2. What was the best thing about your last job?

3. Tell me about a time that you did something that you were incredibly proud of.

4. Tell me about your best friend, and why they are your number one.

5.What do you do better than anyone else?

6. What are three excusable reasons for not coming into work?

7. Follow up to number 6–have you ever used them?

Interview Writing Test

In order to 1) gauge their ability to communicate to the world and 2) assess the amount of creativity/spontaneity that they possess, I would then sit the interviewee down in front of a computer without access to the internet and ask them to type the answer to two of the following questions in Word.

1. Name and describe one character from Punky Brewster other than the title character.
2. Tell me something fabulous about Bridget Jones.
3. Where in the world is Carmen Sandiego?
4. What are the three rules in caring for mogwai (aka Gremlins)?
5. Who Framed Roger Rabbit? Why?
6. If a tree falls in the woods and nobody is there to hear it, why did the chicken cross the road?
7. What is the worst state in the union? Why?
8. Best thing about USA’s Up All Night? Why?
9. What is your opinion of flip flops?
10. Santa or the Easter Bunny? and a good reason why?

And Finally…

A Day in the Life

Or even just an hour…I would ask the employee to demonstrate their ability by completing a short one hour sample of their potential job duties. Whether it’s teaching, writing, editing, designing, computer programming, serving, managing, bartending, accounting, customer service, or any job under the sun…this one’s important. Can. They. Do. The. Job?

A vigorous interview process like this would probably send some people running. Good. I wouldn’t want lazy unimaginative people working for me, anyways.

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!