Bill Wallo grew up in and around Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Life on the Great Plains did not involve stagecoaches, wagon trains or attacks by 'wild Indians', except in the Western theatre on TV every Saturday afternoon. After discovering that a BA in English rendered him virtually unemployable, he graduated with highest honours from the University of Oklahoma College of Law. He has worked as a groundskeeper, stagehand, web designer, pizza delivery driver (no relation to the main character in Neal Stephenson's Snow Crash) and lawyer, and he currently serves as a law clerk to a federal bankruptcy judge. He has published a number of legal articles, as well as a series of online business-related newsletters and some short fiction. He presently lives in the north woods of Wisconsin with his wife and four children. Bill blogs at Walloworld.
Why do you blog? > I blog because it's fun. I enjoy the immediacy of it and the possibility of feedback.
What has been your best blogging experience? > Having someone email me and say that he'd stumbled across my blog and found it encouraging to his faith.
What would be your main blogging advice to a novice blogger? > Take it seriously - but not too seriously. Any form of writing is hard work, and you can't expect people to care if you don't take it seriously. On the other hand, you have to make sure that you enjoy what you're doing.
Who are your intellectual heroes? > As a lawyer, I have some preference for jurists - I admire Hugo Black, John Marshall, Learned Hand, John Marshall Harlan (predominantly for one dissent, in Plessey v. Ferguson, the 'separate but equal' case) and Oliver Wendell Holmes. I admire Thomas Jefferson, John Adams and James Madison.
What are you reading at the moment? > Near a Thousand Tables, by Felipe Fernandez-Armesto, and America's Best Mystery Stories 2003.
Who are your cultural heroes? > C.S. Lewis, Martin Luther King Jr and Mother Teresa - people who put their faith into action.
What is the best novel you've ever read? > Can I say I hate 'best' questions? One of the best novels I've read recently was Jasper Fforde's The Eyre Affair.
What is your favourite poem? > Again, no real favourite; I'm partial to e.e. cummings. I also like 'The Charge of the Light Brigade' by Tennyson.
What is your favourite movie? > Favourite comedy: Young Frankenstein. Favourite romance: Moonstruck. Favourite drama: The Long Hot Summer. Favourite action movie: The Terminator or Iron Monkey.
What is your favourite song? > DC Talk's 'Jesus Freak'. Or Ceili Rain's 'Long Black Cadillac'. Of course, that's right now; it could change. One of my all-time favourites is Bruce Springsteen's 'The River'.
Who is your favourite composer? > Probably Mozart.
Can you name a major moral, political or intellectual issue on which you've ever changed your mind? > The existence of God.
What philosophical thesis do you think it most important to disseminate? > Democracy and the principle of self-rule.
What philosophical thesis do you think it most important to combat? > The postmodern notion that there is no universal truth, which often translates into such things as the belief that there can be a morality associated with terrorism.
Who are your political heroes? > John Adams. Abraham Lincoln. Franklin D. Roosevelt. Winston Churchill.
What would you do with the UN? > Require member nations to demonstrate a greater commitment to democratic principles and human rights.
What do you consider to be the main threat to the future peace and security of the world? > People. Philosophies and doctrines change; human nature doesn't.
What would be your most important piece of advice about life? > Something a kindergarten friend of one of my daughters said: 'You get what you get. So don't throw a fit'. That, or 'Suffering is inevitable. Misery is optional'.
Do you think you could ever be married to, or in a long-term relationship with, someone with radically different political views from your own? > Probably not. One of us would likely die. Or leave.
What do you consider the most important personal quality? > A willingness to listen to others.
What personal fault do you most dislike? > Intolerance of the opinions of others.
Do you have any prejudices you're willing to acknowledge? > Probably a prejudice against stupidity.
What, if anything, do you worry about? > If I'll ever achieve all my goals.
What would your ideal holiday be? > My ideal vacation would be a couple of weeks some place beautiful and relatively unspoiled where I can relax, read and just hang out.
What do you like doing in your spare time? > I play a bit of basketball, bike, read, watch movies and write. And of course spend time with the family.
If you had to change your first name, what would you change it to? > Henry.
What talent would you most like to have? > The power to cloud men's minds. Or the ability to fly. Oh, you meant real talents? I'd like to be able to play a musical instrument.
Who is your favourite comedian or humorist? > Robin Williams or Steve Martin (both in their younger days). Mel Brooks - at least with The Producers or Young Frankenstein.
Who are your sporting heroes? > Michael Jordan. Andre Agassi. John Stockton. Randy Johnson.
What football team do you support? > Oklahoma Sooners (US college football); Dallas Cowboys (American professional football).
If you could have any three guests, past or present, to dinner who would they be? > C.S. Lewis, Abraham Lincoln, and John Marshall Harlan. I think Lewis and Lincoln would make fascinating dinner guests; Harlan I'd love to talk to about how a former know-nothing party member and Confederate sympathizer ended up writing the dissent in Plessey and voicing the view that our Constitution should be 'colourblind'.
[Previous profiles: Ophelia Benson (Nov 7); Chris Bertram (Sep 26); Alan Brain (Oct 10); Chris Brooke (Jan 2); Francois Brutsch (Dec 5); Michele Catalano (Feb 13); Anne Cunningham (Jan 23); Jackie D (Oct 17); Brad DeLong (Jan 16); Harry Hatchet (Oct 24); Saddam Hussein (Nov 14); Jeff Jarvis (Dec 26); Oliver Kamm (Nov 21); Ken MacLeod (Jan 30); Sheila O'Malley (Dec 19); Stephen Pollard (Feb 6); Glenn Reynolds (Jan 9); Natalie Solent (Nov 28); Roger L. Simon (Oct 31); Michael J. Totten (Oct 3); Brian Weatherson (Dec 12). The normblog profile is a weekly Friday morning feature.]