Rachel Sawyer drifted in and out of a series of small-time journalism jobs until one day she decided to go to graduate school. She is now a librarian. She was born in Manhattan and has lived up and down the Eastern seaboard, as far north as Albany, NY, and as far south as Naples, Florida. She currently lives in northern Maryland with her son, Benjamin. Rachel blogs at Tinkerty Tonk.
Why do you blog? > To be a part of the conversation.
What has been your best blogging experience? > I got an Instapundit link my third day of blogging.
What has been your worst blogging experience? > Getting an Instapundit link my third day of blogging. One day you feel like a world-class blogging celebrity, the next your only reader is your mother.
What would be your main blogging advice to a novice blogger? > Be yourself. Visit, link to and comment on other blogs. And enjoy it.
What are your favourite blogs? > It changes depending on mood. These days I more and more need an escape from the news of the day, so I often find myself at 2 Blowhards, Citizen of the Month and The Passing Parade.
Who are your intellectual heroes? > John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton, George Orwell.
What are you reading at the moment? > Rebecca West's The New Meaning of Treason and The Princess and the Pirates by John Maddox Roberts, which is part of a detective series set in the Roman Republic.
Who are your cultural heroes? > Austen, Dostoyevsky, Trollope, Dickens.
What is the best novel you've ever read? > Anna Karenina.
What is your favourite poem? > 'Pied Beauty' by Gerard Manley Hopkins.
What is your favourite movie? > Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House.
Who is your favourite composer? > Beethoven.
Can you name a major moral, political or intellectual issue on which you've ever changed your mind? > Abortion. I no longer think of it as a routine procedure, like having your tonsils out or your bunions removed.
Can you name a work of non-fiction which has had a major and lasting influence on how you think about the world? > The Collected Essays, Letters and Journalism of George Orwell. He is the most honest and courageous writer I know of, and he got the big questions right. But what really inspires me is his refusal to let anyone hide behind euphemism or fuzzy language.
Who are your political heroes? > George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Ronald Reagan, Winston Churchill.
What is your favourite piece of political wisdom? > 'The perfect is the enemy of the good.'
What would you do with the UN? > Send them all packing and turn the building into condos.
What do you consider to be the main threat to the future peace and security of the world? > Radical Islamism and its unwitting accomplice, multiculturalism.
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? > I already have been. Though, come to think of it, that one ended badly.
What do you consider the most important personal quality? > Kindness.
What personal fault do you most dislike? > Meanness in both the stingy sense and the spiteful/malicious sense.
In what circumstances would you be willing to lie? > To protect family or friends from danger.
What is your favourite proverb? > 'Do unto others as you would have others do unto you.'
If you were to relive your life to this point, is there anything you'd do differently? > I'd grow taller.
Where would you most like to live (other than where you do)? > Santa Barbara, CA, with a pied-a-terre in London and one also in New York.
What would your ideal holiday be? > A trip around the world with no time or money constraints.
Who is your favourite comedian or humorist? > P.G. Wodehouse.
Which baseball team do you support? > The Yankees.
How, if at all, would you change your life were you suddenly to win or inherit an enormously large sum of money? > I'd buy homes in the aforementioned locations, take the aforementioned trip around the world, support my parents in their golden years and start a foundation to support the charities and causes I believe in. Why should George Soros and Bill Gates have all the fun?
If you could have any three guests, past or present, to dinner who would they be? > Julius Caesar, Elizabeth I and Oscar Wilde.