Readers ask; I answer. It's that simple to clean out the "Inbox, Interrupted." So, here it goes:

Would you be willing to reduce your life expectancy by 10 years to become extremely attractive or famous?

No. However, right now I'd consider making the trade for a four-hour nap. There's just not enough coffee, people. Not enough coffee.

What is one household convenience you couldn't live without?

Hands down, the Crock-Pot. You thought I would say coffee maker, but I can buy coffee anywhere. I can't buy the convenience of having dinner cooked right when I get home from work.

Are you superstitious?

Yes. I knock on wood and have lucky eyeglasses that make me smarter, and my morning coffee MUST be in the coffee cup my son, Sam (gratuitous plug for "Super Sam Comix" inserted here), made for me.

Why do you promote your son's Facebook page that features his cartoons?

He promised me a cut. That, and I sort of owe him after last month's column.

List three books that have changed your life.

"The Women's Room," by Marilyn French. None of it makes sense any more to anyone younger than me, and thank goodness for that. It describes a world that simply doesn't exist any longer. But if you read it, you'll understand why I don't like being called a "girl" at age 51. I wasn't born surly; it was those books, giving me ideas.

"The Mind Traders," by J. Hunter Holly. It's about a planet where the inhabitants use their mind powers to get each other to do chores for them. My brother gave me this book to read when I was 10 (I'm pretty sure that he wanted to dominate me into doing his chores), and I have not been able to shake the sci-fi monkey off my back. "Asimov," "Clarke," "Heinlein," "Plan 9 From Outer Space," you name it. It translated into a love of "Star Trek," which is how I met my husband, and how I got my kids. Technically, I owe my life to Gene Roddenberry.

The entire "Harry Potter" series by J.K. Rowling. It's not just that it's fun and fantasy, I wish I'd gone to Hogwarts instead of spending 12 years in the Catholic school Gulag and I so would have been in Ravenclaw. It's that my oldest daughter and I settled into a habit of reading the books together and making dates to see the movies together. When the last book came out we read our respective copies at the same time in a marathon night-long session, texting across town to each other with our gasps and, yes, even a few tears when Fred dies. Thank you, Ms. Rowling, for all that wonderful time together.

If you could travel back in time, what would you tell your 10-year-old self?

1. Floss.

2. Calm down about the multiplication tables. Someday you'll make your living with math, even though you failed it in third grade.

3. I'd warn you off some huge mistakes, but some of the best things in your whole life will result from those mistakes. Sorry. You're on your own.

4. You think you want a Porsche, but trust me on this: The Crock-Pot is way more useful.

Ahwatukee Foothills resident Elizabeth Evans can be reached at elizabethann40@hotmail.com. Her column appears monthly.

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