YES – IT’S FINALLY HERE. THE INTERVIEW YOU’VE BEEN WAITING FOR – OUR HEADMISTRESS – OUR RESIDENT DIPLOMAT TO THE UNITED BLOGOSPHERE (some of us occasionally need one)- IS GONNA GET IT TOO.
But let’s not get carried away just yet. Pari, as you all know – is the sassy mother of Sasha Solomon – the quirky gal inhabiting two Agatha nominated mysteries: THE CLOVIS INCIDENT and THE BELEN HITCH – with SOCORRO soon to be in your favorite independent bookstore (and chains, naturally). I love Sasha – she doesn’t suffer fools very well, but when she does – it is with such elan… and has us laughing all the while. Were I to be so accomplished. I could go on and on – tell you that Pari and I first met at Bcon/Las Vegas – she moderated the ‘newbie’ panel (which I was on) and as a newbie herself – did a standup job. We became fast friends then – and still are. So why am I telling all this breaking news? Well, see – it’s like this – I just couldn’t bring myself to grill her too hard. At least not this first time. When SOCORRO comes out – that’ll be a different story. I mean, she’s been snowed in with her girls home from school and I understand she’s been, well…sort of sloshing around the snowdrifts making those so-called snowshakes. Suffice it to say she’s a bit frazzled at just now. And good friend that I am, I’ll take it light this time. I’m not always evil, you know.
So, here she is – PARI NOSKIN TAICHERT http://www.parinoskintaichert.com
Okay, I lied. After seeing this photo – I was too chicken to ruffle her feathers. It’s kinda small (Pari’s fault not mine- so blame her if you have to squint) – but I still got the message. That’s quite a kick she’s managed to master.
EE: So, Pari – I’ve been hearing rumors that Jackie Chan is a fan of yours – and when he found out that you’re into Tae Kwon Do, he went bananas and wants you in his next film which begins shooting in April, but you’ve turned him down to go to Malice. Are you nuts, or what?
PT: That’s partially true because, well, Jackie is slowing down a little and I just wasn’t sure he’d be up to the stunts we discussed. But, I did propose doing some of the filming at Malice – you know – a chase scene during the tea with all of those ladies wearing such wonderful hats. He said he’d get back to me.
Well, guess I should tell you that he called me today. He’s a little nervous about being around all those women who kill for fun and profit. He’s hoping you might reconsider the venue and is asking me to be the go-between. He was thinking about the parking lot-he’ll have a Hummer waiting for him just in case the ladies get too rambunctious. Let me know, okay?
EE: Talk of the Town is that a group of citizens (and fans) are trying to get you to run for mayor of Belen, New Mexico. They claim you’ve done more to put their fair little town on the map than Mayor Torres – and they want you bad. What does Sasha think about all of this?
PT: Ronnie Torres is only a part-time mayor. He’s really a hairdresser (I kid you not.) I wouldn’t dare run against him; I don’t know the first thing about conditioners. As to Sasha’s opinion? She’s firmly against the idea. She’d rather I write her into more travels – maybe in other small towns out of New Mexico – like Antibes or Cap St. Jean Ferrat.
Oh? Going international, huh? Hey, I’m with you! Listen – I know of a gorgeous little villa overlooking Lake Como that maybe I can get you and Sasha into. My friend George has a lovely place there. He’d do anything for me. I saved his…well, nevermind. Want me to call him?
EE: A voice from your past told me that the belly dancing routines you did on that TV show you had some years ago (I’m not saying how many, okay?) was considered quite…er…spicy, and it had to be taken off the air after the local square dance and polka groups put up a fuss. Wanna splain that, kiddo?
PT: Nah, that didn’t happen. But something that did: I hated Econ 101, despised it and wasn’t doing too well in the class. The night before my final, I had a dancing engagement in Beloit College’s "coffee house." (They served really good micro-brewery beers – not coffee.) Anyway, I was dancing away with too much merriment when I did this nifty spin and turned to face…you guessed it…my Econ prof. Somehow, I passed the final.
Well, hell – one look at that outfit you’re wearing must have made him realize…well, how about ‘one picture is worth a thousand words’? I think we can fill in the blanks here.
EE: Just between us gals, tell me about that year in Hong Kong when you were supposed to be studying at the Chinese University. I mean, okay – so you really do speak Chinese and Russian – but – well, do I have to spell it out? You weren’t really a student, right? If you want to say it was research for a novel, go ahead – but…
PT: Of course I was studying. I spent a whole damn year painting one character in calligraphy. That’s the only class I truly remember. But, in Hong Kong proper, there was this great bar called Waltzing Matilda’s where the Aussie and British ex-pats used to hang out. Oh, and the tea at the Peninsula was to die for. And, I used to save up all my money to go to Gaylord’s, a fab Indian restaurant in Kowloon…
Hells bells! If it takes a damn year to paint one character – I’d be hanging out at a few bars myself.
EE: Okay, enough of the light stuff. Which writer would you love to have all to yourself in a cozy corner of the bar next month at Left Coast Crime?
PT: Cozy!!? Did you say "cozy?" I’m so tired of people putting me in …oh, excuse me…um… You know what? I’d love to hang out with all of the Murderati crowd. Hell, I’d love to hang out with absolutely anyone who’ll buy me an Oban or two. Frankly, at conventions, I find just about everyone fascinating.
Crapola! I didn’t think! Yes – that damned word! Funny – I didn’t realize it until now. You can bet I’ll be changing the wording from now on. I HATE IT TOO! I mean – we write about murder, right? What the hell is COZY about that? Note to readers: Did you notice she really didn’t give us a specific name? See what I mean? Diplomacy r us to the max. Damn, I hate that in a woman.
EE: Since you’re gonna side-step all my questions, how about telling me about your Walter Mitty dream?
PT: You know, I really can’t think of much. Well, there’s that chateau in Cap St. Jean Ferrat…and the jet-setting around the world to meet adoring readers…and being paid to do it. There’s the win at American Idol. There’s that great review in NYT. There’s dancing the tango in Argentina. Actually, dancing professionally would be pretty cool. There’s that seventh don in Tae Kwon Do, and being able to do flying kicks and actually get hang time. To look like Alex, Twist, Harley or Laura. There’s brokering world peace, Solving the global warming problem. Eradicating child abuse… I know that list is pretty mundane, but, really, my life is good. Family, friends, love, health, a career that will pay someday. What could be better?
Not a hell of a lot, Pari. Not at all. Unless… well, nevermind. I guess I was thinking about you and Jackie Chan. I mean, there’s this small role he promised me…and I just thought…well, being we’re friends and all… but, don’t give it another thought, okay?
EE: Here’s an easy one: You just bought a month’s advertising on a billboard. What’s it gonna say?
PT: Hey, I just wrote a Murderati post about creative space and I’m answering these questions with the kids still around. So, I’ll take a first shot and reserve the right to change it when I’ve had a couple of gallons of coffee.
Let’s see…Billboards need short text and a lot of white space. I’d have great graphics of my books, maybe me smiling…maybe not.
And, I like the idea of a campaign that would change weekly (I might even want to change it more frequently) to interest the commuters on the freeway going to and from work.
1st week – "Buy my books. You know you want them."
2nd week – "You must have my books." Imagine Vincent Price saying that!
3rd week – "I mean it."
4th week – "I know where you live."
Okay, well, that might be a bit scary. Let me get another tankard of coffee. ‘Kay?’
Uh, yes – please do. Take your time. I’ll just step out while you gather your thoughts. No hurry. Honest. Oh, by the way – I moved. I’ll, uh, get my new address to you soon. Ciao.
I heard from Pari today. She’s doing fine now. The coffee did wonders for her mood. The trembling is gone, the girls are back in school – she’s back to squirting whipped cream in her mouth…and I hope to hell the snow has melted. Those forays out to the slush stuff were sort of doing her in…
Thanks for stopping by today – and don’t forget about ITW’s grand giveaway!
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p.s. I stole this from Louise’s post today. I have to be a little evil, don’t I?