Maggie Ryan Sandford is a sassy lady with looks and brains to spare. She's a writer, science journalist, performer, and producer whose work has appeared in Slate, Mental_Floss, McSweeney's Book of Politics and Musicals, at ComedyCentral.com, the Walker Art Center, the Seattle Art Museum, the Guthrie Theatre, the People's Improv Theater, the Upright Citizen's Brigade Theatre NYC, and on Minnesota Public Radio and Twin Cities Public Television. Originally from Seattle, she now resides in St. Paul, and is fiercely proud of it.
Wouldn't you like to know what an adventurous evening would be like with her? Wouldn't you like to get to know her first, before committing to a date night like that?
Paper Darts: Which Spice Girl did you most identify with when growing up?
MS: I admit I wasn't a huge fan of their music and was wary of their boobtacular approach to feminism, but when Kaileen and I stood on her bed and zig-a-zig-uhhed in our underwear, I was channelling Scary, only and always.
PD: If your five-year-old self met you, do you think she’d like you?
MS: Considering that I basically still am my five-year-old self, I am 100 percent sure we'd high-ten, wear ourselves out improvising a victory dance that touched upon every facet of the emotional spectrum, then watch bugs. While eating cream cheese with celery. She'd give me a talking-to about not drawing enough lately, though.
PD: If you could eradicate one food from the collective memory, what would it be and why?
MS: I'd like to just take everything that the American food industry has bastardized to the point of unrecognition back to the butcher board. Other than that, I don't know—I'm kind of one of those people who'll eat anything. Your body doesn't know what to do with Velveeta, but guess what it does know what to do with? Grasshoppers.
PD: Where did you go on your first date?
MS: Okay I'm going to count my first real date as the one where I had my first real kiss: back row at a movie multiplex, Seattle. We went to see The Avengers—not the Marvel guys, the remake of the 1960s TV show (starring Ralph Fiennes as John Steed and Uma Thurman as Emma Peel), because I was way into that show and The Prisoner at the time. The movie was terrible. My date told me beautiful lies. I beat him at Mortal Kombat in the arcade.
PD: If you had the chance to sit down with Honey Boo Boo, what would you want to talk about?
PD: If you could be an extra in any movie or TV show, which would you choose?
MS: Only one? Okay. I can do this. Seriously, you can't just casually ask this question to a film-obsessed daughter of actors who herself used to act, man, this is bringing up all kinds of feelings for me—okay. Considering…I'd obviously want to star in my favorite movies (and if you want to talk about what those are, I'm so down it's crazy). Let's saaayyy Dead Alive. Lots of sweet-ass costume, make up, and brain-gouging direction required.
PD: What is the recipe for a perfect adventure?
MS: There is no recipe for a perfect adventure. That's what makes it an adventure.
PD: What's your favorite flavor of jelly bean?
MS: Classic: Orange. Fancy: "Juicy Pear."
PD: How often do you think you check your Twitter feed in a day?
MS: Depends on if I'm at home or in the field for some reason. I'd like to say I only check it for science updates, but I also check it when I should be writing fiction and it's easy to justify staring into it than into my own personal abyss. So, 0–25, to varying degrees of shame.
So now you know all about the inner workings of Maggie's brain. See how she uses her brain to make a glorious adventure for your choosing. Follow Maggie Ryan Sandford on Twitter @Mandford and on her website, too. And make sure to join us on January 17 at the Minneapolis Institute of Art to experience Maggie’s original tale throughout the halls of the museum.