Interview w/ K. Thor Jensen • Artist

SM: When was the last time you climbed a really high ladder?

KT: I climb a 10-footer every couple of weeks or so – I work in a loft-style office and when the time comes to change one of our 40+ rapidly-burning light bulbs, I have to drag that monstrosity out, teeter up it and change bulb, screwing the new one into a live socket and trying not to singe my sensitive little fingers.

SM: What’s your first reaction to a thrift store coat?

KT: Am I going to wear it or look at it? Some of my favorite winter coats in my leaner years were thrifted – now that I’m a jet-setting style counciller, I rock my fur-lined Ted Baker parka that could keep me toasty in the Arctic, but when all is said and done, my 1st reac. to a T-S-C is and will always be: respect.

SM: What was the last thing you slept on that wasn’t a bed? Explain.

KT: On Saturday night I slept folded in half in a hotel room closet using a bath towel as a blanket and a hoodie as a pillow. I was in Maryland and didn’t feel like paying for a hotel room so I was forced to improvise.

SM: Have you ever been or come close to being forcibly ejected from a public venue?

KT: There’s this bar I really like by the Port Authority called Bellevue – it’s a completely sleazy hole with a great jukebox and since it’s right near the bus station it gets some weird walk-in traffic along with the stupid regulars like me. Every time I’m there with friends I get completely blasted, and most of the time I’m trying to get them to throw me out because I know they never will. The last time I was there I made a bet with myself that I could kick this Jersey trash girl in the butt 100 times with no consequences, but she left when I got to around 80. That same night, Ryan Owens punched me in the forehead a few times so I could do hilarious floor-crumples and somebody (no idea who) bought us tons of tequila. Oh, I’ve been thrown out of other bars, ect, but whatever.

SM: Do you have an arch-nemesis?

KT: I suppose if you really wanted to you could define Lord Rexington Fear as my arch-nemesis because he stands for everything I despise – obesity, lechery, selfishness, sluggardliness, braggartry, uglitude. But that gives him too much credit, I think. I like to believe that my arch-nemesis will show himself on my deathbed and take credit and/or blame.

SM: T.S Eliot, C.S. Lewis and William Blake are teaming up for one last big casino heist. What goes wrong?

KT: Blake gets distracted by the clouds painted on the ceiling of the Bellagio, Eliot stays hard and tries to keep going with the plan, Lewis trailing along, but as they load their boots with dollar coins they’re tasered into incognizance.

SM: Regale us, please, with an anecdote.

KT: I don’t have any anecdotes – just stories. And I can’t think of any! Go to the website, there’s like fifty million of them there.

SM: Name one thing you love unequivocally.

KT: Love is like potato chips – you can’t have just one. Climbing trees, seeing the red moon hang over Philadelphia driving home, drawing, making music, falling asleep warmed by a girl, vegetable samosas, squirrels on the fire escape, morning doves, rooftops, beer. The unconditional affection of a dog, the smell of old comic books, the smell of bread, the sound of a Fender Stratocaster, maple bars.

SM: If there was a law entitled Kthor’s Law, what would it require?

KT: Well, given the Megan’s Law precedent where a horrible crime is inflicted and then the victim gets the law, I would say that Kthor’s Law would allow any student in any educational institution to be able to, at any time, take a standardized test (or several) that sums up the course of study and, should they perform to a set level, they should be granted the equivalent of a diploma in the full field of study.

SM: Compose a haiku on a subject of your choosing.

Ten attempts to know
A person like anyone
Five syllables, yes?