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In Person - May | June 2010

Tom Zarrilli
Atlanta, Georgia
Yard sale photographer, librarian

Why did you pick yard sales as a subject?
We are normally a private nation, but on Saturday morning people take their personal belongings and put them in the front yard.

What can you tell about a person or family from what they sell?
Examining a person’s self-help books sometimes tells you more than you care to know.

How do people react to your camera?
If people seem to be having a good time at their sale, it doesn’t bother them. Sometimes people don’t like me shooting their more “questionable” items.

Any particularly crazy items?
I once encountered an envelope marked “mother’s hair.” After divorces, I’ve seen one of the partners selling the other’s belongings with disparaging signs on the merchandise.

Have you run into interesting people?
Yard sales are one of the best ways to know your community. You see other people’s stuff, get to meet the owners, and it’s a great way to recycle.

What else do you photograph? 
I had a solo exhibition of my series on roadside memorials. I recently published a photo essay on this work in a scholarly journal. 

Check out more of Zarrilli’s work at
Ankita Rao

Kristen Ervick
Watertown, Massachusetts
Theater on ice performer, ninth-grade history teacher

Is theater on ice harder than competitive figure skating?
The skating skills are mostly the same, but you have to act at the same time, which can be very difficult if you’re nervous about the skating skills.

Landed any big honors?
This year our team qualified for the first ever Nations Cup in Toulouse, France. And we will be the defending adult champions at the National Theatre on Ice Competition.

Which is the better movie, The Cutting Edge or Blades of Glory?
How dare you make me choose! I love silly comedies, so if you’re going to twist my arm then Blades of Glory it is.

How do you convey the emotion theater requires while whirling around the ice at top speed?
Exaggerated expressions and body language. If you’re not overdoing it, the judges won’t see it. My face sometimes hurts after smiling like a crazy person throughout the long program.

Cynthia McCabe


Ricardo Ramirez
Chula Vista, California
2009 Little League World Series champions coach, fifth-grade teacher

What was it like meeting President Obama at the White House?
It was unreal. It solidified the fact that we had won a championship, not just for Chula Vista Park View, but for the United States of America.

Did being a teacher help you coach this championship team?
Absolutely! Knowing how to scaffold certain skills, give them expectations for certain situations, then motivate them—it’s what I do in class.

What’s your favorite memory of the season?
Hitting the field under the lights at Lamade Stadium [home of the Little League World Series]. So many times I’d watch the games played on that field, and now we were on it.

What did you learn from the kids?
You need to be honest, firm, and fair so that kids can trust you.

Meredith Scaggs

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