Today, we’re so thrilled to introduce you to Kneece Camp Sasser, whose vulnerability leaves us in awe. Plus, we’re more than a little bit in love with her soft, but sassy Louisiana accent.
The best gift I ever received was my nephew and then the two nephews after him. I always knew I loved my little brother more than almost anyone in the world, but when his first son was born, I was shocked to see that I could love someone even more than I loved his dad. Now I have three wonderful nephews that I love to pieces and am so happy I will get to see them this summer when they come home from Africa for a little visit.
What time period would you live in if you could have live at any time? Why?
If I could live in any time period, I would definitely live as a Native American in about the 1300s, well before the Europeans arrived. I would definitely want to be a California Native, maybe a Modoc or Miwok or Chumash. I know it sounds crazy to live in a time before iPhones, airplanes, wifi, and Thai food were readily available in California, but I know I would have loved it!
Who is the person closest to you? Why?
My sister is definitely the person closest to me. I can tell her literally absolutely everything and anything. If I were to do something so, so, so horrible, the worst thing imaginable, I know that it wouldn’t change her opinion of me at all. It wouldn’t diminish her love for me in the slightest, and she wouldn’t even judge me. She would support me and help me any way she could, even if it meant helping me bury a body.
Where did you live between the ages of 9 and 12? Tell us a bit about it.
During the week of Thanksgiving break in my 5th grade year, we moved from Lake Charles, Louisiana (the city my dad had promised us would become a booming metropolis any minute) to the neighboring smaller town of Sulphur. With its 17,000 inhabitants, Sulphur is bordered by water–marshes, the Intracoastal canal that leads to the Gulf of Mexico, just 15 miles to the south, rivers, canals, bayous, and swamps. Along these many coasts are numerous oil refineries. The sky literally glows a deep orange, hot pink at night. During the day, a slight breeze carries the scent of . . . oil, chemicals, pollution. In the words of my two-year-old sister on our first drive through Sulphur, “It smells like someone forgot to flush the commode.” We literally have alligators that sneak into peoples’ back yards in Sulphur. We eat fried frog legs and blood sausage. It was a very interesting place to grow up. Many natives from Sulphur, consider California to be the land of “Fruits and Nuts,” but they’re not talking about the produce.
If you didn’t have to worry about your job and lack of time, which side project would you start?
If I didn’t have to worry about money or my job, I would probably do exactly what I’m doing now. I would spend my free time writing, reading, cooking, taking long walks with my dog, rock climbing with my husband, doing yoga, watching foreign films, speaking French, hiking, and camping. However, I would also wake up in the mornings to go do my job, only I would be volunteering. I would still spend my days (maybe not quite as many hours) helping low-income immigrant teenagers improve their reading, writing, and math skills. I would still spend my time mentoring them, taking them to San Francisco for the first time and to see Lake Tahoe, to taste brie and nutella with amaretti cookies from Italy. I would still encourage them to try college and to keep reading until they find a book they fall in love with.by