Amy-Kristina Herbert, 31
W 110th St between Broadway and Riverside Dr
Thu Dec 6 2007
"People who saw the show were like, 'There were no black Pilgrims!' But they actually did have black people in New England back then, and they weren't slaves."
Photograph: Jay Muhlin
Where are you headed?
To class. I'm getting my degree in dentistry.
Is it unwieldy having two names?
A bit. When I went to theater grad school there was another Amy, so I started going by both names.
Wait—theater and dentistry?
Yep. I have an M.F.A. in classical theater.
So you plan to speak to your dental patients in Shakespearean English?
[Laughs] Not really. But dentistry and acting are related. The condition of people's teeth affects how they carry themselves. And on TV, people with missing teeth are always sinister or stupid.
Do you do TV?
I was on this PBS show called Colonial House. It put modern-day Americans in 1628 to see what life would have been like.
That's so hard-core. Did you have to grow your own food?
Yeah, corn. I milked six goats every morning. And I dealt with the chickens. I'd beat down the rooster and collect eggs.
[Laughs] You had to beat him with a stick or else you couldn't get to the eggs.
Other than beating helpless animals, what did you do for fun? Were there a lot of hookups?
No, people got so gross so quickly.
Did they have toothbrushes in 1628?
Nope! They gave us licorice root to chew, but when our teeth started getting black spots they gave us baking soda, which wasn't actually invented till the 1700s.
Cheaters! Just kidding. So do you ever miss the good ol' days of 1628?
Well, it calmed me down. I was so chill afterward, my mom thought I was on drugs. One thing I miss is being able to go to the bathroom whenever you need to. [Laughs] Then, you could just pop behind a bush."