Q & A With Mr. Greer

Alex Kaplan A: State your name and purpose. K: Kirk Greer, history teacher, department chair, man about town. A: What is your favorite natural element? K: On the periodic table? A: More in the snow, wind, fire, ice area type-of-thing, is what I was going for. K: Ah. I’d have to say wind. A: You like wind? K: I do. I really like the sound of wind through the trees. A: You like walking down North Avenue and having the wind assault your face, is that what you’re telling me? K: (Laughs) that is one of the downsides of wind, right. But, um, I like listening to the sound of wind outside my window. A: Does your window have a good view? K: It does, it does! I live across the street from a school in Evanston, but there are a number of trees shading the playground, it’s nice. I grew up with a lot of trees. A: In Iowa, no? K: Ohio. A: Damn. K: You were close, though. Four letters, also in the Midwest. A: Aw, thanks. How was growing up in Ohio? K: Well, you never know what your home was like until you leave. A: Fish don’t know there’s such a thing as water. K: (Laughs) right, exactly. It was suburban without the benefit of being near a city. It was a suburb without an urban center. My home was in Finley, Ohio. A: So it was just removed, is what you’re saying? K: It was removed, and surrounded by Applebees. A: (Laughs) so do you like Applebees? K: Um, well I thought I did while I was there. I’m using Applebees as a symbol, you know? There’s more to life than covering everything in Swiss cheese. But if you grew up in Finley, that’s just what you think life is-would you like cheese with that? A: Did you live on a farm? K: We were surrounded by farms, but I did not live on a farm. My dad was an electrical engineer. A: What did you do for fun in Finley? Besides cover everything with cheese, of course. K: I enjoyed soccer, basketball and golf in high school. I hurt my knee pretty bad in middle school, so I became a golfer as a last-resort. I spent summers on the golf course, usually by myself. A: What orchestral instrument do you think you are most similar to? K: Well, I am not musical at all. A: But if you had to equate your personality with an instrument… K: Hmm. I don’t know the name for it, not like the huge bass drum that grabs all the attention; you know, the one with the big fluffy pom-pom on the end of the mallet, but the one that the percussionists would use to keep a steady beat throughout the performance. I don’t know what that drum is because I don’t know anything about music, but the one that keeps time in the back and isn’t seen by the audience, yeah that’s me. That. Because I’m a pretty steady and even person, I think. A: So you’re kind of like a quiet superhero? K: Sure, yeah. I don’t know anything about superheroes. A: How smart is your smart phone, Commander Greer? K: I came late, actually. As an element of silent protest, I did not have a smart phone until a year-and-a-half ago. So very very late in the game. But I liked being disconnected during my commute; it gave me a chance to focus or zone out on the train. A: One less thing to get stolen, perhaps. K: Yup. I’m not big into things. A: (Laughs). K: But yeah, I have a smart phone, I do like it, but I think I’m much less dependent on it compared to the vast majority of people nowadays. A: What animal do you identify with the most? K: My daughter, Libby, loves to write, and she has a fantasy world that she’s constructed called Konma. She has a pretty elaborate animal mythology that she’s in the process of working out, and I am a dragon in her world. As she describes it, she assigned me the role of dragon because I blend strength and determination, and these are the qualities of a dragon in the world of Konma. A: That’s quite a compliment there. K: So yes, I am a dragon. I am both a dragon and the unnamed drum (laughs) according to Libby. Well, I’m not saying I go around thinking of myself as a dragon, because I don’t. My daughter just thinks of me as a dragon. A: Well this has been truly enlightening. Thanks to Kirk Greer, human being extraordinaire!]]>