When I first started this project, I began thinking of the people I wanted to be part of it. I put a short list down, which included friends, fellow bloggers, talented photographers I had known through Flickr, a couple of fashion bloggers and some of my heroines, women who have shaped my ideas of what being independent, self-confident and smart means. With this short list in mind, I started sending emails, with the hope of possibly getting a “yes” as reply. I still haven’t heard from the fashion bloggers I contacted, but some days ago I found an unexpected message in my inbox which filled my heart with joy. There it was, the reply from one of my heroines, Christina Kelly, who was so kind to answer my Proust-like set of questions.
I’d like to say more about her but enough. Now it’s time for her questionary.
*What is your idea of earthly happiness?
75 degrees, partly sunny, sitting on my porch reading a book and drinking a Fresca.
* Who are your favorite heroines of fiction?
Weetzie Bat, Holly Golightly, any Jane Austen heroine.
* Who are your favorite heroines in real life?
* What is your most vivid memory of the 90s (from music, fashion, politics, culture)?
It is hard to pick one thing from a entire decade. But a personal highlight was playing a who with Bikini Kill and forgetting the lyrics to my own song.
* What does “feminism” mean to you?
The same thing it means to every one: that women and men are equal and should be treated as such. But they are not.
* Have you ever given an active contribution to the feminist cause?
I don’t know.
* Have you ever experienced sexism?
* The quality you most admire in a man?
* The quality you most admire in a woman?
* What is your motto?
I don’t have a motto.
* Who would you have liked to be?
* Could you put your identity into a few key words?
* How do you imagine your identity changing in ten years?
I’ll be older.
* Or twenty?
I’ll probably just be happy to be alive, if I am.
I’d like to explain the reason why Christina is a heroine for me, but I’ll try to keep it simple. As a teenager/twenty-something in the Nineties, I never had the chance to read the iconic magazine she worked as an editor for – Sassy – because it wasn’t sold in Italy. Later, when I finally put my eager hands on some issues, I realized how lucky American girls were to have such an important point of reference in their lives. If you read How Sassy Changed My Life by Kara Jesella and Marisa Meltzer, you’ll fully understand the cultural relevance this magazine had for an entire generation of teenagers, not to mention the capital role Christina played in it. The charm of Sassy, of the infamous interview Christina did with Kurt Cobain and Courtney Love in 1992 and of long-gone times have always lingered in my memory. Some months ago, when I found out that she had a blog and was a mother of two, I felt that connection to her again, well, stronger than before, since I’m a mother, too. She could have ignored my email, like many others have done so far, but taking her time to reply my questions has proven she’s kind and smarter than I expected. For this reason, I’d like to publicly thank her because she’s given a precious contribution to my tiny project, making a dream of mine come true.