This Friday I’m featuring one of my dear friends, Naomi Shapiro of Superdumb Supervillain. I love Naomi’s sense of humor – she is one of the smartest people I know yet she is known online as “Superdumb,” and she is always helping others yet she combined Superdumb with Supervillain when naming her blog. Read how she came up with the controversial name, and how Naomi inspires us all to have guts to go against the flow, stick to your guns, and look for inspiration everywhere. Be inspired by Naomi and think what’s your conversation starter and how you can stand out.
Interview with Naomi Shapiro of Superdumb Supervillain
Katja: How did you get started with your blog Superdumb Supervillain? And what’s up with the name – you are one of the smartest people I know :) – how did you come up with the name?
Naomi: Everyone always wants to know where the name came from! I feel like I should come up with a great origin story because the real one is a little anticlimactic… I got my first email account a zillion years ago and even though it was the early days of the internet, every single username I tried was already taken. After a dozen or so, I got frustrated and thought “this is just super dumb!” So that’s what my first email was and since the majority of my friends and family already knew it, when I set up my blog years later (as a way to keep myself connected with friends and family while pregnant with Jasper), I wanted to use it. Of course, it wasn’t available, so I tacked on “supervillain” since I have always been a bit of a comic geek. And archnemesis. No, not really.
It confuses a lot of people in the blogosphere, especially in the education and entrepreneurship fields. I have to explain that I don’t actually think that I am superdumb, that I don’t suffer from any kind of self esteem issues. It’s definitely a conversation starter and seems to stick in people’s minds. Half the people think I should change it, the other half love it.
Katja: I love your self confidence in fact – what a great way to stand out and start a conversation. Speaking of conversations.. How has social media changed your life? Tell how social media is part of your life.
Naomi: Social media has always been a part of my life. I like to connect the dots with people and places and to learn as much as I can about things that interest me. When I was little, I used to play with my dad’s old shortwave radio and tune in exotic locales. I used to DJ in college and broadcast media is definitely social. I grew up writing record reviews and articles for school papers, zines and eventually real magazines and papers. The internet and newfangled social media channels have just exacerbated the experience and made it easier to find cool stuff and likeminded people.
I met you on Twitter as a boutique owner and our paths just kept crossing until we met in real life and became friends. I love that! The English pen pal I had while I was in high school in Hawaii just friended me on Facebook and it’s so amazing to just pick up where we left off, since we met via an ad about his fanzine in the NME almost 30 years ago. Twitter is probably my favorite platform because it’s so concise and prompt. Right now I am loving Pinterest and Instagram for the immediacy of sharing visually. I co-founded a social media group, Digital Wichita, to try and bring what I learn from my blog and social media events back home.
Katja: I love that you share your inspiration and social media knowledge with others. What inspires you?
Naomi: I’ve always been interested in design and the written word, so typography is very important to me. I have a BFA in graphic design and a BA in liberal arts/Japanese and I think both inform my eye equally. I am drawn to color and exuberance but also love very minimal style. Another study in contrasts! My husband is an artist and he’s always making something, so he’s definitely an inspiration, as are the kids and their boundless enthusiasm for everything they do. Music is also a big inspiration. As I mentioned, I used to do a radio show in college and managed bands and put out several singles on my label, Fluffer, including the very first Spoon single. I love to cook and to bake. I love to volunteer, especially for literacy initiatives. I love to thrift shop and collect bakelite jewelry and shoes, in general. I find inspiration everywhere I look.
Katja: Spoon, huh? Wow! You truly have lived Skimbaco lifestyle! What does skimbaco lifestyle mean to you? How do you live life to the fullest in your everyday life?
Naomi: The Skimbaco lifestyle means doing what makes you not only happy but fulfilled. For me, that means learning something new every day, sharing my knowledge where I can and hopefully finding my perfect balance.
Katja: Thank you Naomi for the interview, and thank you for being awesome!
Connect with Naomi
Read Naomi’s blog Superdumb Supervillain, where she shares her life, products she loves, things that inspire her, and her photography.