Johnelka Stafford/Brian Teaman "Family" Interview

Q1. Hi Johnelka.
A1. Good morning, hi.
Q2. Can you tell us where youfre from?
A2. Ifm from the state of Maryland, which is in the United States. In a city called Annapolis.
Q3. And what is it like there?
A3. Annapolis is... now it`s pretty much a tourist city. It`s pretty historic, Historic Annapolis is what it's called.
Q4. And what brings you to Japan?
A4. Japan, well at the University of Maryland, which is where I go, one of my majors is Japanese, and I figured the best way to really get the language was to come here, so I`m here for a year to work on my fluency.
Q5. And what did your parents think about you coming to Japan?
A5. My mom was excited. My mom was very happy; any type of traveling opportunities shefs thrilled, but my father, he wasn`t so thrilled about me being so far away. So... yeah... He wasn`t so happy about it. He`s OK now but hefd probably much rather me be at home right now. So...
Q6. So your mother was pretty proud of you?
A6. Oh, yes. She was extremely excited; very, very excited.
Q7. Do you have any brothers and sisters?
A7. Yep, I have an older sister, Kelly. I have a brother, Brandon. And then I have my younger sister, Joy.
Q8. Ok. Tell me a little bit about Kelly.
A8. Kelly is a... she's a social worker. She is thirty-one. Right now, she`s in graduated school to get her masters in social work. She... before she became a social worker, she was a nurse for ten years. So yes... and she has a son; my nephew Trae, who's nine years old. And they also live in Annapolis, she has a home in Annapolis and... that's my big sister.
Q9. And how about Brandon?
A9. Brandon`s, my younger brother, we're really close in age. We're only a year apart, like almost exactly a year apart, so very very close. He is twenty-two, and he`s a musician actually. He can play just about any instrument. He's brilliant. I so admire him because I can`t play single instrument. And he's a genius on a piano and on the drums and just everything. He has a daughter who is three. Her name is Lael, so. And he also resides in Annapolis.
Q10. But you sing.
A10. I sing, yeah. So we... we do good together, yeah. And he can do just fine without me but, yeah so...
Q11. What kind music does he play?
A11. He... he plays... he can play anything but his usual... he`s a musician for my church and for another church.
Q12. So tell me more about your mother and father.
A12. My mother and father? My mother is Kay. And she was born and raised in Annapolis. She has five sisters and six brothers. My father is John, and he was born and raised in Washington D.C.. So... my mom and dad have been married for twenty-four years. They... actually it`ll be twenty-five years in April. They have wedding anniversary coming up so I got to remember that, yeah.
Q13. OK... if you could think of one word to describe your mother, what would you... what would it be?
A13. My mother... definitely loving. My mother... we have an incredible relationship; she`s like my best friend. When I... when things happen, or like when I wanna do stuff... I have girlfriends at home, but the first person that ever comes to mind is my mother; like if I were to go on vacation, I would rather to go with my mother. If... just when wonderful things happen, she`s the first person that I tell. We have a really really close relationship. Soc Shefs just the most loving person and understanding person. I think that`s why we have a good relationship, because I feel like I can tell her anything. And I know she won`t judge me. She's just... my mom is awesome. My mother is really cool. So...
Q14. So there is anything you wouldn`t talk about with her?
A14. Nothing at all. Nothing at all. She knows everything.
Q15. How about you father? Can you think of one word to describe your father?
A15. My father... I wouldn't say funny, but every time I think of him I want to laugh because he's just so... he is funny. He`s so funny. He`s a typical dad. He... He`s a... He`s a... He`s a great dad but when its comes to things like me being here or anything to have to do with growing up, you know, like branching out; he gets so nervous about it. He would rather us live with him and my mom forever, and never have to get married, and never have to go anywhere. He`s just... he`s definitely a dad. He wants his girls, and you know, especially, he's not so much that way with my brother but with the girls he would definetly rather have us there. So... my dad's character. He's... He's pretty hilarious.
Q16. So I guess your mother is coming to visit you in Japan.
A16. Yes.
Q17. But your father, isn`t?
A17. No
Q18. Why is that?
A18. My dad... well for one I doubt he would take off work. My dad is workaholic. He works, works, works, works. So... If I were to ask him to come, he`d probably say, "No. I, I can`t get off work," or something like that. My dad has just never really been interested in things such as culture. He has hobbies and things like that, but traveling, getting on an airplane, is just definitely not one of them. He's totally not interested in flying... this far. I mean he's flown before but, no, the thought didn`t even cross my mind to ask him to come and visit because... no, not at all.
Q19. So what hobbies does he have?
A19. My dad. Oh... he does so many things. He...let`s think some of his hobbies. He does... He makes porcelain dolls in a kiln. He like, uses clay and things like that. He does woodwork. He makes wine out of fruit and grapes and things like that. He`s a total movie buff. My basement looks like a miniature Blockbuster; he loves television and movies, and... we had a garden once. My dad just does everything. He gets interested in something, and, yeah. So... Yeah, my dad has a lot of hobbies.
Q20. It's been nice talking to you today. Thank you.
A20. Thank you, my pleasure.