What does the internet and social media do to us and our kids?
The internet became “a thing” when I was a young adult and now connects us in ways I only thought possible on Star Trek. But, kids growing up in this connected world view the world in a completely different way. Social media allows us to advertise our businesses, Skype with people around the world, and reconnect with long-lost high school friends on Facebook. But the dark side of the internet and social media lurks close behind. Gina-Ann Riggs and I talk mom-to-mom about the pros and extreme dangers of online activity on this week’s episode of Southern Life Indian Wife.
My guest Gina-Ann Riggs is a woman of many talents and a mom with a more unique perspective on parenting than my own. She is a former teacher, actress, singer, realtor, and co-owner of a theater outside of Atlanta, and above all, mother of two sons. She knows how useful social media is in connecting with clients, friends, theater audiences, and celebrities. And, she also knows the dangers to children that exist with internet connectivity.
Gina-Ann’s oldest son, Chandler Riggs, grew up a celebrity. He played Carl on the AMC series The Walking Dead for nine years and has an astronomical social media fan base. However, Gina-Ann talks for the first time about their family’s terrifying experience when Chandler connected with a person across the world on an online game. A person who turned out to be a sexual predator.
Tune in to our conversation in Episode 2 of Southern Life Indian Wife to hear us talk mom-to-mom about social media use and protecting our children from evil.
Subscribe to Southern Life Indian Wife where you listen to podcasts, including Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and Google Podcasts. Keep up to date with podcast and book news by following me on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter!
To learn all about the Southern Renaissance woman who is Gina-Ann Riggs, find her here: IMDb, Instagram. Check out her awesome Marietta Theatre Company, and her Realtor services at Gina-Ann Riggs Ansley Atlanta Real Estate
[00:00:02] I’m a lifelong Southerner married to an Indian man who grew up in South Africa during apartheid and I am fiercely proud of both. If you don’t like that Well bless your heart. I’m Sheryl Parbhoo. And this is southern life Indian wife.
[00:00:20] OK y’all you’re going to love today’s guest. Gina Anne Riggs.
[00:00:24] She is a true Southern renaissance woman who I feel like kind of puts me to shame. She’s an actress a singer co-owner of a theater outside of Atlanta realtor a former teacher. But I think she would agree with me above all mom to two amazing sons. I wanted to bring her on because she has a really unique perspective as a mom that I don’t her oldest son is actor Chandler Riggs who played Carl on the AMC series The Walking Dead for eight years. So they really live in the public eye and social media plays a big part in that. We talk Mom to Mom about the pros and cons of social media for ourselves and for our kids. And she opens up for the first time about their family’s terrifying experience with a sexual predator who pursued Chandler on the Internet. I’m really happy to introduce to you Gina Anne Riggs.
[00:01:26] So before we get into the topic that we’re going to talk about I need to introduce you to our listeners. So you are a native Southerner. Are you originally from Georgia.
[00:01:36] Originally from Georgia from Marietta just outside of Atlanta.
[00:01:39] OK. So you didn’t venture far from home at all.
[00:01:40] No I didn’t.
[00:01:41] One good Southern belle right Southern belle. Yes. So you’re a former teacher. You are a partner in a local theater company in Marietta. Yes. You’re also a singer and an actress. Yes. And you are also a world traveler. Yes. And you are the wife of a teacher and a musician. Yes. And you’re the mom of two teenage boys one who is a high school senior. He’s a junior he’s a junior. OK. Finishing his junior year. Gotcha. And another who is a pretty prominent actor. Yes. Yes. So who is your son. Nice oldest son is Chandler Riggs he was on the show The Walking Dead for eight years.
[00:02:26] He played that character Carl. His character was killed off last year. So sad. I know I know it was and he pretty much grew up on the show. It was quite a shock when we found out that I can’t be with it anymore.
[00:02:43] I can’t imagine like a punch in the gut. Probably like we were getting kicked out of a family.
[00:02:47] Yeah it it it literally that is exactly how I thought I did feel like we had been punched in the gut because it was not expected. It was not something that we had ever even thought would happen. We thought his character would go on to the end. Yeah.
[00:03:01] But ultimately it has been the best thing for him. So he’s going to John he’s happy. Good. Good. And he’s kind of. He’s definitely grown up in the public eye. Right. Yes he has. And what about your other son Grayson. Grayson is a junior and is not interested in acting he’s a sports kid. He is very social. Complete opposite of Chandler which is great. Yeah. So he’ll be looking at colleges soon. OK so you get the best of both worlds totally different experiences even though you’ve got two boys and isn’t that how that always works out. It is it’s so crazy that they both come from the same gene pool and totally opposite.
[00:03:41] Yeah I tried five times and I didn’t get to that we’re like at all even my twins are completely different how it happens. Yeah yeah.
[00:03:49] So today I wanted to talk about all of the social media stuff because you and I are both you know everything that we do is kind of out there on social media. Your family is out there and you know because of what I do with my writing and the podcast you know I’m out there and we both have these teenage kids that have these varying experiences with social media and you know I just wanted to talk about how it affects us all of us the adults and the kids.
[00:04:17] And I wanted to say so I just saw your latest Facebook post and somebody had tagged you in a whole bunch of pictures from a trip to London. Oh yeah. I was like oh my gosh that looks like so much fun. And you know I mean I watch you on social media all the time and I feel like I know you better than I really do because we’re all out there which is a great thing about social media. But then it’s also a little scary. You know I feel like we’re the first generation you know kids and parents who who are living this social media life and we’re all trying to navigate it. You know none of us really knows what we’re doing we’re all hoping we’re making the best decisions and not putting too much information out there right. Because I feel like it helps us in our businesses and people do want to feel like they know you when they’re doing business with you. Right. And no matter what the business is right zag real estate they have to feel like they can trust you. And if you’re an actor or a singer or any other kind of business owner you want to know what you’re doing right i what experiences you’ve had.
[00:05:19] But yeah it’s a fine line of of sharing too much information. Yeah.
[00:05:25] Which is when it gets scary. Yeah really. It truly does. So we were talking before about how our kids have different ways of connecting with people on social media. So I was thinking about this a couple of days ago my 11 year old place fortnight and I don’t think that he has any social media accounts like Instagram or anything like that but that doesn’t mean he hasn’t snuck it with a weird screen name but he’s connecting with these people that he calls his friends all over the world and he was telling me all about his friend in New Zealand and his friend in England. And I’m like these are not your friends. Yeah. Who are these people what do you know about them.
[00:06:05] And he’s like well I just know that they’re you know 12.
[00:06:09] Well how do you really know they’re twelve. Oh it is scary.
[00:06:13] It’s very scary.
[00:06:15] Yeah. I have a very scary story that is very similar to that. It started like that. CHANDLER Well let me give you a little bit of the backstory. When Chandler was see the first season of Walking Dead I was only six episodes was filmed during the summer. He was still able to have a normal kind of normal life. But the last two weeks of filming that first season was the first two weeks of school and it was crazy. I was teaching school. My husband was teaching school. Chandler was in sixth grade. Wow. And it was difficult for all of us trying to schedule and get friends to be on set with him.
[00:07:00] And he was missing sixth grade which you know doesn’t sound like it should be a problem but it was a problem for his teachers it was a new problem they didn’t know how to handle writing apps in the first two weeks of school. Right. Right.
[00:07:12] We made a decision then that we would homeschool him pull him out of school. We pulled him out of school I think in September. My husband was able to retire early from teaching. Wow. And yet much more see that he had been teaching for twenty five years so it made more sense for him to quit than for me to quit. So at least we could get some money and. So he was home schooled. He was doing a. An adult show with adult situations adult themes. There were no more kids on the show. In that second season. Yeah that’s right. First season there had been a ton of kids was having a great time. Second season all of a sudden he’s removed from everybody and he’s sixth grade in that that age where great they need friends. Lonely he needs friends. He turned to videogames. And we knew he was playing video games. We could hear him playing video games when he was playing the video games. He was communicating with other people from around the world. Like you said yeah. And we could hear him laughing. So for us we felt like oh good. He’s got something he’s got a connection with other people now. Yeah. What we didn’t know is well OK. Let me backtrack also. We had taught him. His school had taught him taught him don’t ever give away your personal information online. Right. Don’t ever give away your address. Don’t ever give away your phone number. He knew this. OK. Don’t they all they know right. I’ve taught them right things. What we didn’t know is that there was a textbook pedophile who was grooming him. Oh my God. What we didn’t know was that he had secretly downloaded a texting app. Chandler had yes. And hold him only indicating with this guy. Did he think that the guy was another kid. Thought the guy was another kid. Head had told him he was. I think the first aid she gave him was 15. He started brainwashing Chandler.
[00:09:27] We didn’t find out until probably five months later when we found out it had gotten so bad.
[00:09:40] We we found all of the transcripts between both of them and I won’t go into many details but it was true pedophile was sexual in nature.
[00:09:52] And this cult religion that he was trying to convince Chama to buy into. He even had convinced Chandler that he and Chandler and some other person had lived thousands of years ago and had been the only survivors of something. I can’t remember what it was but.
[00:10:17] But that they had been reconnected now and that this was their destiny to be together again and that once Chandler was 18 he was very wealthy and he was going to fly Chandler to Australia where he lived and that they could all live together. Oh my goodness. I mean it was insane. That sounds like something from a crazy reality show or something real.
[00:10:38] When we found out it was during the off season of Walking Dead. Chandler had booked another thing in L.A. so he was living in L.A. with my husband. A husband found this out. We didn’t know what to do. Right. An uncharted territory for just regular suburban paralyzed to do and the guy is in another country. So long story short. Come to find out. He was 32. You still live in Australia. Through Walking Dead. We were able to get in touch with a security person because normal like police we’d ask the police and there was nothing we can do right. Because that is teach him Eric. You know. Yeah Internet. You know safety. We have.
[00:11:20] To have. I don’t know what to do. Yeah yeah. I had to go to the local police because I had some death threats too and they told me that you have to go to the FBI. They don’t even handle anything like that. So. Yeah it’s so scary. It really is the unknown.
[00:11:36] And then we’re like We don’t know. We don’t know if he knows our address. We don’t know if he has someone else he’s working within the United States right. I mean we had no idea all of his questions would come up. Yeah. Did he target him because he was an actor or did he just think he was a random kid. I don’t know. I mean I guess it wouldn’t matter for somebody like that is just a target. He probably knew who he was. It was right after the first season had aired so the show wasn’t huge.
[00:12:09] I don’t I don’t know. But we did find out that the guy was targeting three other boys. Oh my. So they sent Chama the Australian equivalent of their FBI came over to the United States and interviewed Chandler got all of his statements and come to find out. That same weekend that they that they came over to the United States. The guy in Australia was supposed to have flown a New Zealand kid to meet with them and they happened to have found out about it in time to save the other kid.
[00:12:46] So it was because you guys were able to contact them and and Chandler was willing to share with law Share and share everything and turn over all. And if you guys had not been in the position with the walking dead we’re here to help you out.
[00:13:02] There was there was. We were hitting dead end of a dead end and it got to the point where we said he’s quitting the show. This is not worth losing our child. Right. And once we said that to production and they got AMC involved huh. AMC was able to help us. That is a connection that would work with us. Yeah.
[00:13:22] That’s a horror story. That’s every parent’s nightmare. Yeah. I mean if we had taught him we taught him we had taught him and everyone had told him Do not give out information. But right. You know there are evil people out there and they know how to get what they want. They’re very seductive and manipulative. Yeah yeah. Wow. Have you ever seen. I think it’s like a 20 20 show where one of the reporters goes out and sets up kids because you know these kids have been told don’t talk to strangers on the street and then they have a hidden camera and they will send a stranger while the parents are watching and all of them are watching. And the kids go with the stranger or they talk to the stranger.
[00:14:00] Yeah it’s it’s the scariest thing have I have seen that. It’s it’s terrifying. And I don’t know what we could have done differently I guess we’re not the parents that grab our kids phones every night and check everything that they’ve done because part of me thinks that kids need to have some independence. I agree there and mistakes. But then when there’s that kind of thing that happens you’re like Wow. Right. Yeah.
[00:14:30] Should I be the helicopter parent. How could I have done this differently.
[00:14:34] Yeah that certainly makes you question it Wow. So how did you do things differently with Grayson as what’s their age difference. Thirty three years. OK.
[00:14:44] Or did you do things differently. Grayson knew. Enough about what happened we don’t share all details with Grayson but he knew enough to be scared. And Grayson has never been quite as involved with video games and talking to people he doesn’t know has jammer has. So I don’t. We haven’t had the same. Issues. Yeah. Grayson. That’s good. Different kids different different interests different challenge or a Snapchat. Yeah Instagram person. Okay okay.
[00:15:20] Every now and then just for friend with friends. Well that’s good. Yes that seems pretty harmless. Thank goodness no. Yeah. Does he do the. Is it a Snapchat style.
[00:15:32] Gosh I can’t remember what it’s called.
[00:15:33] My kids tell me all these things where they do a snap with one person every day for a year. Oh yes. I can’t remember. Do you remember he was on a trip where we were on.
[00:15:43] I think he was on a cruise what time and Grayson said I have to keep the have to keep goin. I have to get to however many days I keep my eyes and I know they had to do it. I don’t know what to tell you on the boat. You may not have a chance to do that. Am I right. Yeah.
[00:16:00] But I that’s so harmless and innocuous compared to the kinds of problems that you have. Wow. Huh. Yeah I I worry about that so much with my kids and I feel like I am such a worrywart about everything. Yeah. And then you raised the the concept of you know these helicopter parents that monitor every single little thing on their kid’s phone and what they do and I’ve never been like that either. I feel like it’s an invasion of their privacy but there’s gotta be some sort of happy medium because then you run into issues like that and so I don’t know what the right answer is for that. I don’t either.
[00:16:35] I mean after that you know said Okay Chandler you have no no Internet connection right now you need to detox absolutely your brain and get back to normal.
[00:16:48] And. So yeah. Wow that was he was 12 when all hell went on. What an education for him and for you. Yeah wow. Yeah.
[00:17:01] It’s just hard to know. It’s just so hard to know and then I don’t know if you’ve had experiences negative experiences on social media. But I have and so I’m also paranoid that people are going to track me down and then they’re gonna track my kids down because of it. When I had my blog that’s probably about six years ago that I started my first blog Southern life Indian wife. The whole topic about it was just my multicultural family and just stories you know sort of inspirational things and I had pictures of my kids and pictures of the Indian clothes and I had so many people that loved it and gave me good feedback. And then one day I got screenshots in email of pictures of my kids from the blog and they had used their Photoshop or whatever to superimpose devil faces over me and my kids and murder and die and these terrible things. No reason why. Yeah scary. So I had gone to the local county sheriff because I didn’t know what the heck to do. And they said that’s an FBI thing they don’t handle that.
[00:18:07] And I was gonna go to the FBI and then all of a sudden they stopped. Wow. So I don’t know where they came from or why but that was a huge rude awakening to them. And no I didn’t. Yeah. I didn’t want to get asked. Yeah. Because I think that they’re trying to elicit a reaction. Yeah but that really scared me to death. My gosh of course it did. Yeah. And so now I wonder you know I’ve got four kids that are over 18 and one that’s well under 18. And with what I do I’m always out on social media.
[00:18:38] Do I talk about my adult kids because they’ve got their own accounts and they’re out there and you know kids that age their entire life is out there. Or do I not. And then do I mention my younger kid or not. You know such a fine line.
[00:18:52] So do you ever run into that. Well OK. So Facebook. I. I keep it for people that I really know. And then Instagram is all public so. OK. And you know I have 94000 followers but most of them are like 12 from Brazil because they’re right. So I’m very careful with what I put on Instagram. I’m more free with what I put on Facebook. I don’t know. That’s a good thing or not.
[00:19:30] I get scolded by my husband sometimes. Yeah. Don’t let anybody know where you are. Don’t let people know when we’re out of town and don’t. You know it’s that’s a big thing. It is.
[00:19:39] And I don’t think sometimes and I’ll just post and. Yeah. Yeah. Like I’ve been advised by people you know if you go on a trip. Put the pictures up after you get back. Yeah but boy we knew when you were in Germany.
[00:19:52] I know you did. Yes I did. That was like my journal. Yeah I did every day so and forget what I had done. And that’s such a great thing to be able to do that.
[00:20:01] It really is. Social media is so great is.
[00:20:04] But then we have to worry. Yes. And I don’t know if I just don’t worry enough. I guess nothing. Bad has happened so I just think oh it’s fine right. So that’s where I struggle is how much is okay to put out there about personal stuff in weird locations and write.
[00:20:28] Especially for you guys because I mean how many followers does your oldest son have on social media. Millions yes millions out of those millions who know that there are some crazy person that’s already Googled your address and oh yeah. So you have to wonder if anything that you put out there really matters because they’re still going to track you down regardless and there’s no way to remove that.
[00:20:49] Yeah. We’ve had we have had people show up at our door.
[00:20:52] That’s why we have cameras now. Oh my goodness. You had a security system but now there’s cameras with the security system so I can look at who’s out there before I answer them.
[00:21:02] I’ve thought about doing that too even though I haven’t had any issue with that I think now regular person the nest cameras so easy. So it’s easy to have.
[00:21:10] Cameras that you don’t have to have hard wiring anymore. Yeah. Easy to have good security now. But you know this was before that was then it was widely known.
[00:21:21] I didn’t know about it. Well you should put it out on social media. Oh just installed my new cameras and you know security and. The my personal bodyguards are on it at the moment.
[00:21:33] Is just crazy to know what to do. It is you know something else that I’ve always noticed is that people kind of develop this false sense of familiarity with people that are on social media. And I’m sure you guys have experienced that. But I see it in the kids too. They will follow these people and they think that they know those people and they know everything about them.
[00:21:55] And yeah I think it affects how they’re they learn friendships and relationships and I I agree and I see I see it. Chandler does these conventions where he’ll go and sign autographs and do selfies with people and people come and stand in line and to meet him. And most of them follow Chandler and some of them will follow me and they’ll come up and. I saw your picture of whatever a ha and.
[00:22:26] Oh do you follow me. And I can sense that they feel like they know me right and that they’re surprised that I have no idea who they are. Like you commented on my post like I did OK.
[00:22:40] And that made their day. I’m sure that was such a special thing to see.
[00:22:44] Yeah it’s it’s just a weird thing and I’m sure it happens to to everybody you know who has people following them that they don’t know it’s just weird you know to this person this one about me because I put it out there.
[00:22:57] It’s my own doing. Yeah yeah.
[00:22:59] I’ll have people come up to me and Publix and I’m I have like two thousand friends on Facebook.
[00:23:04] I don’t know two thousand people in my life but I’ll have people come up me and Publix and say oh you know I liked your last blog post or oh I saw that you guys went to New York. How was your trip. And I’m looking at him going.
[00:23:15] I don’t know you and I don’t have any makeup on right now.
[00:23:20] Why did you come up and just always say when it happens. Always always.
[00:23:25] Yeah. The whole makeup thing. Oh it kills me I need to like be on guard at all times. I know I was doing I was trying to do a podcast with somebody just a few days ago and I was sitting here in my little studio and it was seven o’clock at night. So my makeup had smeared off and I was hot so I took my shirt off and just had a little tank top on. My hair was plastered because of the sweat. And then we had to face time because we needed to try to figure out technology. So I’m sitting here and I haven’t seen this guy in 29 years.
[00:23:56] I WILL LET YOU DOWN. YOU KNOW MY BIG FAT LITTLE LEGS. That was awesome. Oh it’s now you’ve got your eyelashes. That’s true. I’ve got my way my eyes. That’s right.
[00:24:06] So I mean do you see any other issues that you’ve run into with your kids on social media or do you worry about how it changes how they’re going to relate to the world or do you think it’s a good thing for them and how they relate because they’re maybe becoming more global.
[00:24:23] I mean I think it’s both. I think you know now with business opportunities a lot of it is based on how many followers you have.
[00:24:33] And and you get more business if you have more followers you get more business if you’re putting out your business doings out there.
[00:24:41] And even with acting you know there’s people who have gotten parts based on how many followers they have. Wow. Well it’s like that with the publishing world too right. Yeah. It’s all very important that you know like I said if there is a very fine line with how much we should be putting out there what’s safe and what’s not safe and.
[00:25:04] I think we’re just all learning. Yeah it’s a learning curve. We’re all gonna make our mistakes as we go. That is for sure.
[00:25:13] So speaking of acting my son is at NYU and he’s wanting to be an actor he hasn’t decided if he wants to do musical theater or you know try to be on TV or movies. But he did ask me the other day if I move to L.A. you can help support me.
[00:25:31] I said no probably not.
[00:25:34] But he’s he’s also trying to get that social media following you know going to and I’m like it’s great because he’s out there he’s got these little film clips that he’s done and you know just get me excited in my view is right. What an amazing experience for him. Yeah. That was it was a terrifying experience and I remember when he got the acceptance I texted you and said OK. You’ve been in this business is it worth it for us to send him there or just like haven’t go to some school here in Georgia. Absolutely it’s worth it. Oh my gosh.
[00:26:06] I want to live through hell. That was my dream. Well I was hoping that you would say no we should just keep him here in Georgia so we could get the HOPE scholarship. Thank you Gina and and. You have cost us eighty thousand dollars a year.
[00:26:19] Oh my gosh. It’s a lot of money but it’s worth it.
[00:26:25] And my Indian husband who says education is everything. He’s like we will do whatever we gotta do. Do to ever have to put him out there so. But he has his work in that social media thing and it’s working for him.
[00:26:38] And the great thing about it was he didn’t know anybody in New York of course. You know this little Georgia boy. Yeah. And when he found out who he who his roommates were they all connected on Instagram and got to know each other that way. I thing about the idea that was great and when we got up there to the campus we were walking down the sidewalk toward the dorm. And this group of boys that I didn’t know started running towards us and yelling Adam.
[00:27:02] Adam. They knew who he was even though they had never met. That is a neat story. I like that. So yeah there’s definitely positive. Yeah definitely. Yeah.
[00:27:12] Do you have any advice to younger parents that are raising kids that are just becoming teenagers. Gosh. Like my kids. We. My older kids they didn’t get a phone till they were about 13 and then it kind of got younger right because it just is more common and we’re more accepting of it. You know Chase got his first one when he was 9 or 10 and a lot of parents would tell me that that’s stupid. But it depends on the family and the situation right now. Chandler got for his first woman he was 12 we made him wait till he was 12.
[00:27:43] And now I’m wishing it was 13.
[00:27:47] It was the year that everything went down.
[00:27:50] But then with Grayson he was we had gotten rid of our Home landline and I was working. His dad was working. He was gonna be home by himself when he got out of school. So I didn’t want him to be home with no way to get in touch with us. So when he was 10 he got his first phone and that makes total sense. Yeah I got it in. Yeah. Because how can you have your child out of touch with the world. Yeah yeah yeah but I think you know things are different. How old is Chandler. Nine Chandler’s 19 he’ll be 20 June. OK. So things are really different than they were 10 nine or 10 years ago. Yes. What they can get into. So I know you know just smartphones were like just coming out. Yeah. Yeah I think so because I remember chase when he was about a year old I still had a razor flip phone and then I got an iPhone right after that.
[00:28:44] So that’s right around that time when we texted and had to push one button several times to get the right letter as in capital letters.
[00:28:53] I don’t even know how to tie it up. We just have to abbreviate everything. Yeah.
[00:28:59] So yeah kids definitely don’t have that. But now there’s so many apps that you know young kids can communicate with. So would you tell parents to monitor it more than you did or. Well yes. Because I don’t know what the right answer is. I mean I’m sure there’s all kinds of new parent controls that didn’t exist when he was going through all of this. You know where he can’t just download an app without having permission to download the app. Yeah. Because I had we had no idea that he had downloaded this texting app right. Yeah because you wouldn’t even suspect it. There’s no reason to suspect that. So why would you check for it. Yeah yeah. So yeah I would think parental controls over the apps that they are allowed to to download.
[00:29:46] Mm hmm.
[00:29:48] You know I just I don’t I don’t know I still don’t feel like I should be reading every text. My kids. Right. Right. And I know a lot of parents disagree with that but I do feel like kids need a little bit of independence. I agree and need to work through things on their own.
[00:30:08] Yeah I’ve I’ve seen some parents who you know everybody chooses to parent differently it all ends up probably they’re all fine. Yes. You know I know a lot of parents have disagreed with ways that I’ve handled things because I’m a pretty laid back parent.
[00:30:21] I’m not that parent that yeah that hovers and hovering is not always a bad thing.
[00:30:26] But I’ve seen kids that are kind of smothered in high school and then they go to college and is like loosen. Yeah. But on the flip side my kids did that too so I don’t know if it makes any difference or not. Hopefully that you just pray that they all end up okay no matter how we choose to bear it. Yes.
[00:30:45] Yeah. I think one of our mottos when our oldest went away to college and we were joking but we just said hopefully he will stay out of jail and won’t get anybody pregnant and just get that degree. Yes. The rest is icing on the cake. All of our prayers. Yeah for sure.
[00:31:00] OK. So let me go to you a little bit. So you are this like Renaissance woman. Oh my gosh no. Yeah. I mean you’re so into so many different things you. You were a teacher. So what grade did you for 17 years of hot Elementary.
[00:31:14] So I taught all subjects I taught first grade for many years and I taught third grade for many years. OK so you’re a saint. It’s very rewarding but they wear you out. Oh yeah. I can’t even imagine it’s just the whole teaching profession is very stressful. Now it’s much more stressful than it was and so yeah I only taught for one year. That’s it. I’m a wimp I took a very special person to hang in there. Yeah. The end. Yeah I can do it right. I wasn’t that person but I remember hearing wonderful things about Miss Riggs from Bascomb.
[00:31:54] So you were good when you did it. Thank you thank you.
[00:31:57] But how did you manage everything.
[00:32:00] You’ve got two kids. You’ve got one kid that’s super busy and the other kid. I’m sure Grayson was super busy. He kept you just busy in different ways. And then you know now you’ve got your real estate business and you are a co-owner of a theater company. Well theater is my passion. Yeah theater is what I would have chosen if theater makes any kind of money right. That’s how I feel about writing. Yes.
[00:32:23] So I have to have that in my life somehow all the time.
[00:32:29] I’ve always been involved with theater and a few years ago a group of us decided hey we’ve done all these shows together. I want to be fun to produce our own show and to do that when we form my own company and then so we did we did a couple of shows just us and then we ended up getting the opportunity to have our own sub leased space. OK. I’m a square in Marietta and fantasies about space opportunity.
[00:33:00] It opened up the doors for a whole season of shows. So we are now in our second season. We do five musicals a year. We’re about to open our final show of our second season. OK. And we’ll start our third season in August. That’s very exciting it’s fun. It’s a whole new learning curve being on the production side.
[00:33:25] I’ve always only performed so learning the business side of theater is challenging. Luckily we have a great group of people with us. OK. Yeah. Marionette Theater area to attract ar e they attract theater.
[00:33:41] Yes definitely with add up. Yeah. Yeah. So you know you mentioned that you would have done theater if that had made any money. Do you think that if you had been born in this era and you were growing up with the social media do you think it would have been easier for you to make money at it to market yourself. I don’t know. I mean theater. There are so many amazingly talented people out there.
[00:34:05] And now having a theater company I see it even more people that are coming into audition Who have you know just gotten off of a tour on a cruise ship and are coming to audition for us where they’re barely going to make their gas money. Haha you know I mean there’s I don’t know. I mean I think it’s just the industry is. Yeah. It’s just one that there’s not enough making money opportunities as there are people who are crazy talented. Mm hmm. And then you have people that can become famous for not having any talent. Know reality shows or ask you Do you work.
[00:34:44] This go. I know.
[00:34:47] Now I know of someone locally who has just started a new youtube series whatever.
[00:34:54] Just like every day.
[00:34:56] And I can remember what it’s about us like comic books or something like that and he’s making bank just talking about comic books craze. And then there’s people like you that you know super talented and have so much to offer in theater and entertainment. And you know people like me I write books. I want people to buy my books. But yet you know other people are just talking to channel.
[00:35:18] I know. Let’s do it together. What can I talk about.
[00:35:23] We’ll talk about two moms talking about comic books that could be quite a gimmick. Yeah. Let’s talk about our kids.
[00:35:30] Yeah well I mean that there’s that too. There’s a lot going on I guess in this whole social media thing and connecting with people.
[00:35:38] And it’s good to get different perspectives from different people so I appreciate you being here to talk with me about this here.
[00:35:47] This was fun. Yeah. All right. Thank you for being here. If you like this podcast so far please continue following along by tapping the subscribe button wherever you listen to podcasts. If you really liked it go on the awesome and leave a rating and a review. Find me on all social media too by searching Sheryl with an S.. Parr boo. That’s p a r b h. Oh. Thanks for listening to Southern life Indian wife.