October 15, 2019

Boredwalk Community: Time to Read The Haunting of Hill House

Oxford Comma Shirt


Welcome to our weekly Boredwalk Community series, where we ask Boredwalk fans fun questions! This week we're talking to Rachel B. of Anniston AL, showing off an Oxford Comma Shirt.

1. What's your actual day job and what's your dream day job?

I taught high school English for years, but now I'm actually working my dream job! I'm a high school librarian (or Media Specialist if you want to be fancy) and LOVING every minute of it. Going back to college after a decade of being done with taking tests and doing homework while simultaneously working as a full-time teacher was scary and stressful, but it was worth it for the chance to live my life in my favorite place — the library! Now I get to help students find their favorite new book series and, every once in a while, I get to hear the best words in the world: "I didn't think I liked reading, but this book is great!"

2. What keeps you up at night?

I'm a HUGE Doctor Who nerd. Like, huge. The BBC, in all its wisdom, decided in the early 1970s-ish that they didn't need to keep old episodes of the show, and either wiped them to use the tapes again or just straight up burned them. So now there are huge swaths of the show that are gone forever. There are legendary episodes that I would give my right arm to see and never will. It literally bothers me in the night that I can't watch them. (Ed. note: that is a massive bummer!)

3. If you could have any super power, what would it be?

Oh, time travel for sure. I'm a history buff, and even if I couldn't go back and change things, I would just take some popcorn with me and nerd out watching major historical events unfold. And original-run 1960s Doctor Who episodes, of course.

4. You can curse your nemesis with a minor annoyance for eternity; what do you choose?

I would curse them with the nagging worry that they've forgotten to pay a bill. They don't know what it's for, but they're pretty sure it's important and it's overdue.

5. What's a book you think the Boredwalk community should read?

Oh, goodness. I don't even know where to start on this one. I could make lists in every genre, but since it's fall, I guess I'll go with something spooky. I re-read Shirley Jackson's The Haunting of Hill House every year because I love the way it builds an under-stated tension that slowly works up to full horror. I also love that it can be read on several levels — as a straight-up horror story, or as a metaphor for 1950s-style female suppression. Reading it always gets me in the mood for the Halloween season. Plus, the new Netflix adaptation is a textbook example of how to take quality source material and create something new and wonderful that pays homage to the original, but also tells its own unique story.

6. Clear up a misconception (about your job, where you are from, some other topic you know a lot about.)

AFFECT is the ACTION, EFFECT is the RESULT. (It drives me crazy when people get this wrong, too!)

7. Where can the rest of the Boredwalk community find you?

On Instagram @dandydalek where I mostly post pictures of my cat, Olive. She's a jerk.