Q. I have a fabulously amazing, brand new, never seen before kitchen gadget that I would like you to review. Can I send it to you?
A. Yes, but realize that just because you send me free stuff doesn’t mean I’m going to like it. I may, in fact, ridicule your invention mercilessly. Then, you will have to live with my haranguing of your gadget. I’m not a bully, but I don’t like stupid. So, if I deem you unworthy, can you take the public shaming? If so, contact me with a description of your gadgetry and I’ll send you a mailing address.
Q. I have a wonderful cookbook that I’d like you to review. Can I send it to you?
A. Please see the answer above, but also keep in mind that my background is in writing and editing. So, I have even less tolerance for stupid people when it comes to written words.
Q. Wait. You used to be a writer and editor? I need someone like you for a part-time assignment. Do you freelance?
A. Yes, I am available for freelance work as long as it doesn’t interfere with my regular, health insurance-providing daytime gig. Contact me with an outline of your project and I will provide you with a quote for my services.
Q. You went to culinary school. Do you do any other sorts of freelance work?
A. If you mean: “Do you illegally provide cooking services without the proper licensing?” No, I do not. If you mean: “Hey, I’m pregnant and could really use some help cooking a bunch of food at my house to store in my freezer for when I’m completely nutty from lack of sleep.” I could be persuaded.
Q. I want to hang out with you and be your friend. Is this possible?
A. Depends. Are you creepy? I guess a better question would be: Have others told you you are creepy? I used to like my friends kinda weird and creepy, but now I have a child to consider. I wouldn’t want to get stalked and then stabbed and have my bambino grow up without my nurturing influence. So, I guess I can be your friend if we take it really slowly and you understand that I’m happily married and own an incredibly vicious dog named Lima Bean.
Q. I have a new restaurant that I just opened up in Chicago. Will you come review it (I’ll pay for your dinner.)?
A. No. I only go to restaurants that have been open for at least a month (gives everyone time to work out the kinks in service). Plus, I find that getting complimentary food and drink makes me less likely to point out negative truths. But, please let me know if you are opening a new restaurant. I’ll put it on my list of places I may visit.
Q. How do I contact you directly?
A. Fill out my handy-dandy contact form. I try to respond to everyone who takes the time to get in touch.