“She gave us a lot to think about on Monday and there’s more where that came from, Let’s jump right back into the conversation with Cat…” -Michaela
March was very dramatic for you, to say the least. You decamped from NYC where you live for Washington, D.C, your hometown. Not long after, you tested positive for COVID-19. I’m thrilled that you are recovered with just a handful of unpleasant physical (and emotional!) reminders of the illness that you’re still sorting out. Do you want to talk a little about any lessons you learned that came as a surprise from the whole ordeal?
Oh gosh. It’s been the definition of a long and winding road. I have written an article on Medium with a play by play on the whole journey, which I’ll send along to you when it’s published but in short it’s been a winding road with no roadmap. Lessons I’ve learned, in no particular order: Moms are the best. Advocate for yourself, you know your body better than anyone. It’s OK to not be OK. Humor is the best medicine.
“Get Pat on a committee, and everybody will come.” That was said time and again about your grandmother, the late, iconic New York City socialite, Patricia Buckley, who was the original force behind a little fundraiser put on each year at the Metropolitan Museum of Art called the Met Ball. I think a lot of people are wondering what New York, a city synonymous with crowds and pulsating energy, will look like on the other side of this pandemic. Will people still come? I’m on the unoffical NYC Will Always Persevere Through Adversity Committee and I am curious about your thoughts on a comeback and how the city can keep people invested in that comeback.
As my grandmother would say, “Agreed, dahling.” Although, I think it will take a few years. After 9/11 people said New York is over but clearly it came back stronger than ever. Covid is different though, and I think the repercussions will be far and long reaching. People’s, including my own I’ll add, values are changing about what’s important. For most people, living in the city requires a sacrifice. Money, space, you name it. It will be interesting to see whether the masses are still willing to make those sacrifices in a post-Covid world.
What traits do you value most in your circle of friends? What traits do you most value in yourself?
A sense of humor is number one! If we can’t laugh at life, then what’s the point? I think people would say I’m a loyal friend. When you’re one of my people, you’re stuck with me for the longhaul.
And as always, we wrap up with some rapid-fire questions. Where do you stand on:
D.C. becoming its own state; yay or nay? YAY!!!! Non-statehood is taxation without representation. What book is on the top of your summer reading list? A tough question, there’s a lot I want to get to. I just finished White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo and Untamed by Glennon Doyle. I also hope to get through The Guest Book (Sarah Blake), How to Be an Antiracist (Ibram X. Kendi), and a stack of Caitlin Moran books. First long-haul place you want to travel to when it’s safe again? I want to go back to Scotland and Prague. Last podcast that really hit a cord with you? An episode on The Daily called, “The Struggle to Teach from Afar.” Guilty pleasure that’s emerged from this lockdown? Forcing my cat to accept my love.