I produce the podcast “Make Me Smart with Kai and Molly.” Each week we connect the dots on all things tech, economics and culture.
What was your first job?
My first paid job was working as a cashier and bar back at Taco Milagro in Houston, Texas. I love that the name of the restaurant means miracle taco in Spanish — because tacos ARE miracles. RIP, Taco Milagro.
Fill in the blank: Money can’t buy you happiness, but it can buy you ______.
Some peace of mind.
What is something that everyone should own, no matter how much it costs?
So many: an external battery charger, a pen and a hair tie. Also … a fun fact about yourself. You never know when an ice breaker's gonna happen.
What’s something that you thought you knew but later found out you were wrong about?
Growing up I had these frameworks in my head of who I was — for example, in college I used to say that I didn't cook. I said it because it was something my parents would say and it was easy to define myself in those terms. I was also probably uncomfortable moving around a kitchen. As I got older, however, I began asking myself why I said that when I really hadn't done much cooking at all. So I started cooking my own dinners … and it turned out that I loved it! It's so creative, meditative and fulfilling. So while I find some self-identifiers can be helpful in understanding who you are, they can also be limiting and need to be periodically re-evaluated.
What’s the favorite item in your workspace and why?
I have a postcard of Laika, the Soviet space dog, who was one of the first animals in space, in my cube. If you know me, you know I love dogs so there's that. I also got it at the Museum of Jurassic Technology in Los Angeles, which is one of my favorite spots in LA. It's a local gem and if you haven't been, go!