Mrs. Odboddy – Home Town Patriot –
Can you tell us a little about yourself, Mrs. Odboddy?
"Mrs. Odboddy sounds so old. I’m only 70. My friends call me Agnes. I live with my Siamese cat, Ling-Ling, and my granddaughter, Katherine. She lost her fiancé on the Arizona, at Pearl Harbor last year and she’s still a little bit lost. She works in a Beauty Salon here in Newbury. My volunteer work keeps me busy, and, as I’m sure you’re aware, every citizen must to be a home front warrior. There are Nazi spies and conspiracies everywhere."
Besides looking for Nazi spies, what kind of volunteer work do you do??
"I volunteer at the Boyles Springs Military Base USO several times a month, just up the Northern California coast. I also roll bandages at the hospital and work on the paper drive. Our ladies’ group at the church knits socks for the military. Probably my most enjoyable service to the war effort is on the coast watch every other Wednesday. As for Nazi spies, I’m sure that Sofia Rashmuller, the new gal in our knitting circle at the First Church of the Evening Star and Everlasting Light is a Nazi spy. Her dyed red hair is a dead giveaway."
But, Agnes…Your hair is dyed red.
"I beg your pardon! I do NOT dye my hair. I may freshen it from time to time with a henna rinse but I would never dye my hair. Fast women and European spies do that. I should know. I saw enough of them during WWI when I worked as an undercover agent for the USA. Of course, I was much younger then, but we saw some action, and I lived to tell about it."
Can you tell us about your WWI adventures?
"Of course not. If I told you the details, I’d have to kill you."
Did you ever kill anyway?
"Don’t be ridiculous… Well, there was that one time… Never mind. Next question?"
Okay. I can see that’s a sensitive subject. Let’s talk about these conspiracies you mentioned. What kind of conspiracies?
"Did I mention that I also volunteer at the Ration Book Center, addressing and sending out the ration coupon books to the neighborhood? Rationing is really terrible. Imagine. Only one pound of coffee per adult every six weeks! And the price of eggs! Actually, I’ve solved that problem."
Agnes? You were telling us about conspiracies?
"Oh, yes. This week, while addressing ration books, I came across a Black Market conspiracy. Someone is stealing ration books from the mailboxes at empty houses. I’ve convinced my friend, Jackson Jackson, to drive my Model A and I’ll bring my Brownie camera. We’ll catch the thief in the act."
I can see how that might go wrong. Are you sure….
"Really, young man! Where is your adventurous spirit? Where were we? Oh yes. Chickens. I’m getting six free chickens this afternoon. I’m not quite sure what we’ll do with them until Saturday, when Jackson is building us a coop. Guess we’ll just have to stick them in the bathroom."
In the bathroom? Really, Agnes. Are you sure that’s such a good idea?
"Why not? I’ll call them Mrs. Whistlemeyer, Sophia, Mildred, Clara, Abigail, and Myrtle, after my friends and associates. They’re just chickens, after all. What could possibly go wrong?"
What, indeed? Thanks, Agnes. We’ll continue this conversation another day.
"Delighted. Would you care for some tea? We’re completely out of coffee until next week."
Elaine, this one certainly see to live up to its name - just reading the interview. What a cleaver way to introduce your storyline, characters and the premise of your story.
Great job! (as always).
Thanks for your comment. Yes, we are pretty excited to share Mrs. Odboddy with the world. Thought I'd wait till Spring but perhaps, with enough encouragement, will do it this fall. I'll do a few more character interviews with folks in the book and see what kind of results I get. We could choose Agnes's best friend Mildred Haggenbottom, the chief of police, Bernard Whistlemeyer or the manager of the Ration Office, Albert Finklebaum, to name a few. Each would have a few choice words to say about their friend and neighbor, Agnes Agatha Odboddy!
When will we get to meet her in the (paper) flesh?
Was planning to wait till spring, but could be convinced to publish this fall, if enough interest is generated by my series of interviews with novel characters. Chief Waddlemucker is scheduled next, perhaps next week.
The charm, spunk, and humor of Agnes is a fun read. She is so much like one of my grandmas! (I have a fondness for the people of that era.)
I hope she is discovered by countless readers.
You know her so well already! Glad you came to visit the site. You might want to read some of the earlier posts over the past year, on various subjects. Something you're not so familiar with.
Oh, my, I think I may be related to her! She sounds very much like...no, I'd better not say. I'd hate to be responsible for blowing someone's cover.
Thanks for your interest. I'm sure you will enjoy this lady when she is in print and available for the whole world to meet. Hopefully by the end of January!!