Host Garrison Keillor answers your questions about life, love, writing, authors, and of course, A Prairie Home Companion.
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Dear Garrison, I feel we
February 8, 2006 |
I feel we should be on a first name basis. In my youth, while I attended The St. Paul School of Associated Arts, I kept myself in paint supplies by working as a custodian at the Minnesota Public Radio building. I had the privilege of cleaning the floor where your office was located. We even met once while I was cleaning the men's restroom. Although I had set the 'cleaning' sign outside the door, you walked right in. Your exact words were, "Fancy meeting you here." I'll be out in just a moment, I replied, to which you said you had only come in to wash your hands. Hmmm.... I wonder. It seemed odd that you would be so fastidious about washing your hands when the state of your office was, well, disorganized.
I moved to Colorado Springs about 21 years ago and each week when I listen to your show I become nostalgic. Thank you for the weekly touch of the place that will always be home.
Thank you, Ann. I sort of remember that incident in the men's room. And of course I didn't go in there to wash my hands, you're right. I was probably too distracted to notice the sign by the door. I'm trying to remember what you looked like and I think I remember a very slight girl with long hair and glasses. We had an interesting collection of part-time custodians back then who worked at night, college kids by the looks of them, but I didn't ask. I remember that third floor well, the long hallway, the little suite of offices where Prairie Home was produced. At first I had a fairly large office but it had too good a view of 7th Street and that was too tempting so around 1984 I moved into a tiny windowless office, which was better to write in. I still keep in touch with most of the people who worked there. Helen Edinger who sat in the receptionist's cubicle is now a grade-school teacher in Mahtomedi ---- she was Teacher of the Year last year ---- and her daughter is coming to work for the show as a part-time music librarian in a few weeks. When you cleaned the office, the daughter was only a fond contemplation, and now she is a college kid, just like you. Time flies.