I thought that it was an amazing thing that I could make an all wood drum. I ran with it. I stumbled upon some different ideas that weren’t out there like changing the drums a little bit that made them dynamic in another way.

Tokyo is my favorite city in the world. I have been twice. In middle America, being able to celebrate eastern culture in this way is amazing. Having a little bit of Japan to come to me in this way is exciting.

What is unique about the book is it has an interesting blend of history, personal narrative, fiction, documents (excerpts from newspapers and sociological discussions of the time period) and why people would be doing what they did.

When looking at traditional lynchings, people of color represent anywhere from 50 to 75% of those lynched. Way out of proportion to their numbers. When talking about tar and featherings, people of color represent like 10%, which is much closer to their actual number.

I wasn’t done with Angie’s story. Fat Angie was a book that touched a lot of young people. As it relates to death, after the time when people stop bringing you the casseroles, and coming to your door saying, “I’m Sorry,” seven months later if you don’t have someone to talk to, how do you cope with some of that.

I wanted to help out the community and help girls become a better version of themselves. I want to help them avoid making the same mistakes I made and to let them know that we can get along as women. If I am uplifting another woman that doesn’t mean that I am downing myself.

They asked for volunteers to try out for Airborne. Everyone’s first reaction was, “we don’t want to jump out of no planes”. We were told that it was an extra $55 per month in pay. When I heard that I said, “What the heck I’ll try. It is something different”. About 480 of us went to jump school; but only 125 passed.