Getting to Know Your Local Redneck

07/30/2008 By Shawn Burns

So, as reported previously I am participating in Neil’s Great Interview Experiment. I have been tasked with interviewing Tanis, The Redneck Mommy. Even though she’s an Oilers fan and totally cut in line (Neil completely caved when she batted her eyelashes at him and insisted she needed be the one to interview Mr. Lady), I agreed.

Well Hi there, Tanis. Thanks for squeezing this little interview into your busy press schedule. I understand that you have recently been featured on CNN and in the Edmonton Journal and Calgary Herald. How do you deal with the attention from media outlets? Do you laugh about it? Get nervous about your image?

It’s an aberration. Generally speaking, the only attention I get in real life is from my dog begging for a treat. My children like to pretend I don’t exist unless of course they need something like, food or clean clothes. Then it’s all “Mommy, we love you. Please get off the computer and take care of us.” That’s when I like to toss Cheerios at them and tell them to check their socks. If the socks can’t stand up by themselves, they are good for at least another day. Heh.

All of which makes the recent media attention I have received flattering and a bit disconcerting. I don’t mind doing print or radio interviews, but television throws me for a loop. I’m very self-conscious about my appearance and it’s hard to pretend I’m invisible when I see myself on the screen. I don’t enjoy it.

You’ve been blogging for a while now, and it seems to be a pretty big part of your life. Do you have close friends that you’ve made through blogging, or do you keep your blog life separate from your offline life?

Dude. What life offline? Folding laundry and parading around naked in my yard? Just kidding. Well, not about the naked part. But I rarely fold laundry. I prefer the wrinkled look. I call it crinkle-chic.

To answer you, blogging slowly, through time, has become a huge part of my life. I have been fortunate that my blogging life has bled into my offline life and the boundaries have blurred. Some of my favorite bloggers that I stalked regularly have turned into my real life best friends and I consider myself amazingly blessed to have them as part of my life…on line and off.

Do you really consider yourself a redneck?

Depends on how you define a redneck. Have I ever ate roadkill or dated a blood relative? No. Do I like to play in the mud with big trucks and shoot off guns at darn near every opportunity? Hell yes.

The difference between me and a stereotypical redneck is that I still have all my teeth. For now. Heh.

You have a reputation for being extremely candid on your blog. Are you that candid in your offline interactions with people? Do people react differently to candor in person than online?

I suffer from a condition called foot-in-mouth disease. There is currently no treatment available and it seems to be compounded by my complete lack of common sense.

That said, I believe in telling it like it is, even if the truth hurts. I have learned to be candid, even shockingly so and not mince words whether on line or in real life, because I don’t like it when people say something and mean another. I also seem to have no personal boundaries, which further encourages my candor. Much to my family’s discomfort. Heh.

I haven’t found a real difference to the reactions to my candor on line or IRL. People either appreciate it or they don’t.

You seem to spend a lot of time naked. Why do you hate clothes so much?

I think I must have been a nudist in a past life. That or I find clothing constricts my creativity and for the sake of my craft I must be naked.

Either way, it works for my husband.

Who is the hottest daddy blogger and why?

Well, I don’t have a thermometer handy to take temperatures….oh, you mean…HAWT.

Hands down it has to be Bill, from Gunfighter: A Modern Warrior’s Life. The dude plays with guns and blows things up for me. Plus he wears a kilt. Call me crazy, but a man who fights crime and wears a kilt just equals HAWTNESS..

If you could cast yourself in any movie you’ve ever seen what would it be?

It’s a toss up. I’d love to be in a movie, any movie, with Elvis, because he’s the KING. But not Fat Elvis. My heart belongs to the young, thin hip-shaking Elvis. Swoon. (I know, I’m pathetic.) If Elvis wasn’t available I would absolutely cast myself as Ellen Ripley from Aliens. She’s probably one of the toughest female character ever written, and I would love to be able to run around playing with guns in outer space while shooting aliens.

Apparently, I’ve got some anger management issues I’ve yet to deal with.

What is your strongest scent-memory?

I cannot smell the scent of hospital antiseptic without immediately being taken back to my son’s last moments of life. It is very difficult for me to be able to walk into a hospital or even a doctor’s office because when I catch a whiff of that familiar smell, my heart breaks all over again and I find myself fighting waves of grief and love.

If you had to choose between being funny in person or funny online, which would you choose and why?

You mean I can’t be both??? Damn. So much for my comedic delusions. If you asked any of my friends or family, they would be quick to tell you that I’m decidedly not funny in person. Just sarcastic and annoying.

I just take that as a personal challenge to try harder. Wink.

What is the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow?

I could ask if you meant African or European. I could tell you that it’s just a simple question of weight ratios and with some kinematic data, Strouhal numbers and some simplified flight wave forms the answer is 8.8 meters per second, or 20 miles per hour.

Instead, I’ll just tell you that I don’t want to talk to you no more, you empty headed animal food trough wiper. I fart in your general direction.

Many thanks to Tanis for agreeing to do this, and again to Neil for setting the whole thing up in the first place.