James may have had just a little to drink and he was feeling ever so slightly tipsy. That would be fine, but on top of that, he was feeling cheeky and horny which for him was not a good mix. He had picked up a pair of female knickers and was parading around the common room with them on his head. “So whose are these sexy things?”
not to be gay but i literally love ro so much like…………..my heart is so full whenever i even think of them and when we text or call like…even today i was just….caught off guard. blown away by their ethereal beauty and their LAUGH it’s so cute? and that cheeky little smile like i died. anyways ro i love u and i am so so so thankful u’re in my life and i want to hold your hand but no homo
Kerry for DC’s Capitol Magazine, Spring 2007THEY WERE WRONG TO SAY THAT BEAUTY IS ONLY SKIN DEEP. From within her soul, she impresses, intrigues, inspires, and then she suddenly makes you laugh. Spend time with her and you’ll be wishing you could take her home to your mother. She’d even talk politics with your dad. For a mere four years this aspiring actress appeared on the Washington stage, and what formidable years they were, even though her name was not in bright lights. Through her hard work and devotion to the performing arts, she took advantage of everything the nation’s capital could offer her, and then some—and she’s just now beginning to mature. Ladies and gentlemen, may we introduce Kerry Washington. And remember, the best is yet to come.
Capitol File: First and foremost, and while it’s not polite to discuss a lady’s age, a very happy birthday to you—and dare I say, this is a big birthday. How did you celebrate?
Kerry Washington: It’s a huge birthday, it’s 30. It’s pivotal! Actually, I created this wonderful day of personal health care. I did a private yoga session in the morning, and went to a spa in the afternoon, and I just treated myself as lovingly, as gently as I possibly could.
CF: You were born in the Bronx, your father was a successful real estate broker, but otherwise we know little about your family. Describe a normal day in the life of Kerry Washington, growing up an African American in the Bronx during the 1980s.
KW: Oh gosh, I feel like every day of my childhood was so different. And a big part of that was because I had two parents who worked full-time. So literally Monday was gymnastics, Tuesday was ballet, Wednesday was a children’s theatre company. And both my parents loved to travel, and they really valued the theater and museums, so it would be very hard for me to say what a normal day in my childhood was, because I feel that my childhood was very much an adventure.
CF: I’m curious about your parents’ naming you “Kerry,” because my daughter has the same name, which isn’t too common.
KW: Kerry isn’t very common … My mom comes from a very mixed ethnic background, so she was hesitant to go with a very strong, very heavily Afrocentric name. But she read somewhere that in Gaelic “Kerry” means “little dark one.” Because my mother is of European descent as well, she thought it was a neat combination to use a Gaelic word supporting children of color.
CF: Tell me more about your mom.
KW: My mom’s a retired professor of education. She taught at Lehman College, which is part of the City University of New York.
CF: So you remained in New York City, graduated from the famed Spence School in 1994, and then Washington comes to Washington to attend Washington—enrolling in George Washington University. Don’t tell me it was politics that attracted you to the nation’s capital?
KW: (Laughs) No, it wasn’t, actually. I really wanted to attend college in a city setting, a cosmopolitan setting … and I felt DC was a wonderful cultural center. Also, interestingly, GW was the only campus—you know, I visited more than 20 schools when I was looking for a university to attend—other than traditionally African American campuses where my tour guide was a person of color. And I thought the kind of people that volunteer to do those tours are people that really love their school, and the fact that this young Asian American kid was comfortable enough to stand behind a university was a good sign to me of the level of diversity that was empowered by the school. Also, I didn’t even know then that this existed, but GW has a performing arts scholarship, so I was able to go to college partially paid for, just by doing what I love to do.
CF: Speaking of politics, and don’t worry, this is the last political question—
KW: (Interrupts) I don’t mind political questions; I’m a very political person.
CF: Well, I can’t help but notice that you graduated from GW in 1998, the same year the Monica Lewinsky scandal unfolded a few blocks from campus. How did you react to President Clinton and Miss Lewinsky’s escapades?
KW: It was a really neat experience to be living in DC at that time as a student, because I had friends who were interns at various government agencies. There was a very tangible scent of how close we were to national politics, how physically and logistically and culturally embedded we were within the politics of the entire nation, just because of where we went to school. I think it was also a very good preparation for me for Hollywood (laughs), sort of being in DC at a time when there were paparazzi and sex scandals—excellent preparation for all the drama of LA.
CF: Where did you live in Washington, and where would we have found Kerry Washington on a Saturday night?
KW: Hmmm. I lived in Foggy Bottom all four years. Probably the most exciting thing for me was freshman year, living on Virginia Avenue and literally doing my grocery shopping at the Safeway in the Watergate building. I was just like, “Oh, my!” It was history for me. I was suddenly thrust into a new understanding of my national history—I had a context to put these words into—so that was really fun for me. And on a typical Saturday night, I was probably in rehearsal for something or other. But my favorite restaurant in Washington is Nora. Yes, that’s my absolute favorite.
CF: So you rose from Foggy Bottom onto the world’s stage. And only a few short years reveal a long and impressive list of credits. Do you feel you’ve arrived at your full potential as an actor, or is that giant, self-fulfilling role still out there?
KW: I don’t think I’m even close to fulfilling my potential. And I think also that, unlike a pianist or a flutist, an actor has an instrument that is constantly changing. My own physical, mental, psychological self is my instrument. Even if I had somehow fulfilled the maximum potential of who Kerry is today, who Kerry is five years from now will pose totally new challenges as an artist.
CF: Who hasn’t been talking about this year’s Oscars, including Forest Whitaker’s incredible portrayal of the cruel but at times jolly Ugandan dictator Idi Amin in The Last King of Scotland? And behind every madman stands a better woman—in this case Idi Amin’s “first lady,” a role you played most impressively, and with an African accent, no less.
KW: I did! (Laughs). I love this film. It’s such a special film, and so fulfilling to be a part of a work that is so smart and provocative and daring and elegant. And I’ll be able to start a new rumor that if you want to win an Oscar for Best Actor, you must hire Kerry Washington to play your wife.
CF: It’s true, you also played the wife of singer Ray Charles in the 2004 film Ray. And you yourself have been nominated for an NAACP Image Award, as well as a 2007 Black Reel Award as best supporting actress for your role in The Last King of Scotland. It’s worth noting that the Black Reels benefit the Foundation for the Advancement of African Americans in Film. What is the state of African Americans in the industry today?
KW: I think it’s like the state of African Americans in every segment of society, it’s constantly evolving. I see that the life I am able to lead as an African American actor today is definitely easier than, let’s say … Lena Horne’s. And yet there is still a lot of distance to travel in order for the industry to reflect true equity.
CF: I see you’re a member of the V-Counsel, an esteemed group of advisors to V-Day, the global movement to end violence against women and girls.
KW: Eve Ensler [creator of V-Day and author of The Vagina Monologues] is a very dear friend of mine, and the work she does is invaluable to the world. Truly, women and mothers are our greatest resource.
CF: I agree with you. And I couldn’t help but peek into your fan site, and I literally lost count of how many ways your devotees describe your beauty—my favorite is “beautiful brown bombshell.”
KW: (Laughs) That’s nice, that’s very nice. Actually, I’ve never considered myself beautiful. Growing up, I wasn’t the pretty one in the group of kids that I hung out with, and I’m actually grateful for that because it allowed me to really nurture other parts of myself. I remember deciding at some point in junior high school that I was going to be the smart one, be the political one; I was going to be the one with the personality. Those other parts of me thrived because I did not have my looks to fall back on. So now to be one of the spokesmodels for L’Oréal cosmetics is just hilarious to me. I’m much more comfortable sitting on the Hill advocating increased funding for the arts than I am doing a hair-color commercial.
CF: Speaking of which, you’re involved with the Creative Coalition, the political advocacy organization for the entertainment industry.
KW: When I look at my life, because I had two parents who worked full- time, when we did have time together we really valued and took advantage of all those rich cultural resources in New York City. So it’s difficult for me to imagine what my childhood would have been like without the National Endowment for the Arts or the National Endowment for the Humanities. Those two organizations were part of the village that raised this child. And I think that’s true for so many of the children in this country.
CF: OK, how about a big finale? Surely an actress of your caliber can hold a tune, so in the spirit of your DC alma mater, let’s sing one of GW’s most cherished songs. I’ve changed one name, but nobody will notice. All together now … Hail Alma Mater, To thy spirit guiding, Knowledge thy closest friend, In its strength abiding, Pledge we fidelity, Ne’er its place resigning, Hail thee Kerry Washington.
KW: (Laughs) That is so funny. That’s totally OK!