Who are you?

Karen Abbott, author of Sin in the Second City. I’m from Philadelphia originally. I was born in Philadelphia and grew up in a town called . . . right outside Philadelphia called Norristown which is a sort of blue collar . . . blue collar edging towards rough town. Probably the most famous person who’s from there is Tommy Lasorda. And if it gives you any implication about my high school . . . I went to Catholic school for 16 years, which of course, you know, I’m sure the nuns will be very proud. I’m here writing about prostitutes and my next book is about strippers. (Chuckles) So I’m sure that they would find something to say about that. But Tommy Lasorda is from my town, and he used to come back frequently about once a year because he had . . . he had nieces and nephews in the school, and would give us pep talks about how we, too, could escape this town; and we’re not stuck there. And he would try to sort of bring this message of entrepreneurship and you know lift yourself up by your boot straps kind of thing. It was . . . It was an odd town because if there were any wealthy pockets it was blue collar wealthy. A couple of my friends who had money, their families owned construction companies and carpet laying companies. And most of their fathers were high school dropouts who began these companies. A lot of random Mafioso ties. It was . . . It was kind of a colorful place to grow up, so . .

Recorded On: 1/22/08

A Catholic school graduate writing about strippers and prostitutes. The nuns, Abbott says, would be proud.

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