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Host Garrison Keillor answers your questions about life, love, writing, authors, and of course, A Prairie Home Companion.

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June 1, 2007 | 2 Comments

Greetings Mr. Keillor,
My Son Andrew is doing a report on you for his 6th grade Minnesota History Class. Do you have any comments or interesting facts that he could include?

Kim L.
Elk River, Minnesota

I shudder to think of what the verdict a 6th grader might hand down on my checkered career, Kim, but I shudder even more to think of what a 12th grader might say — so let me offer up a few observations. First of all, I am a very lucky man who made the most of a few small skills, and nobody knows this better than I. Neediness has worked well for me: a sort of boyish haplessness won the sympathy of various people over the years who became my colleagues and enablers and supporters, and this made up for an almost complete lack of social skills. I am a bumbler, surrounded by a small army of the competent. But I am persistent, for some unknown reason. The simple fact of my long career is that today, May 31, 2007, as soon as I am done writing this to you, I will turn to writing the show for Saturday, June 2, with even more enthusiasm and delight than I remember feeling in July, 1974, when all of this started. This strikes me as magical. There's no burn-out factor in this job. I was an old man at 32 and now I'm 64 and feel rather buoyant and jazzy. Pure luck. Of course there is also the voice to consider: I am probably the greatest living crooner on live radio today, the heir to Crosby and Sinatra. Me, an English major from Anoka! To have a staggering talent like that is an inspiration to a man. I sang "Til There Was You" to my wife in the shower this morning and when she got out, she had tears in her eyes. I rest my case.


Hi Garrison,
I think its wonderful that a 6th grader asked something about you re: Minnesota History. I remember that class years ago. I'm 53 now and we too had to write a paper. Instead I did a scrap book and went to the state capitol for a tour.
Maybe you might want to offer a tour of the theater were you produce the show. It's not far from the capitol building and you never know, you might be a big hit with the kids, just like Lincoln is down here in Springfield, Illinois where I currently reside.

Your response to Kim and her son is exactly the reason I have listened to you for over twenty years. Your voice is soothing, yes, but it is the personality behind that voice that makes you a STAR.

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