Johanna Bleckman and David Bleckley

Recorded May 20, 2020 Archived May 19, 2020 03:17:44
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Id: ddv000004


Johanna Bleckman (39) speaks with her colleague and pretend sibling David Bleckley (40) about their work at the Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research, becoming close friends, Johanna's memory loss challenges from Multiple Sclerosis, and the preservation of data in their work in relation to memory loss.

Subject Log / Time Code

J recalls interviewing D, and remembers his lengthy cover letter. They briefly discuss J having memory loss issues related to seizures, and share the story of the work trip they befriended each other on, which J has little recollection of.
J speaks about living with memory loss, and D reflects on what it is to be a friend and witness to it. They remember going on another trip and "reclaiming" that lost memory.
J reflects on having lived with Multiple Sclerosis for the past 8 years, and remembers borrowing etching tools from a coworker to mark her walking cane "F*** M.S."
J recalls finding the notes from D's original interview while cleaning up the ICPSR archive. They speak about outsider perspectives of the institute, and describe the variety of people they enjoy working with. D speaks about coworkers he feels are family.
D and J speak about J working with data preservation in relation to her experience with memory loss and J speaks about life as collecting experiences, comparing them to data points. D describes J's attitude towards life and her being grounded in the present.
They speak about the different experiences of quarantining for Coronavirus, from the desire for total isolation to the desire for human contact.
They speak about their most meaningful work they've done at ICPSR.
They speak about the Helsinki Bus Station Theory and sticking to your work to carve out a niche.


  • Johanna Bleckman (b. 1980)
  • David Bleckley (b. 1980)

Recording Location

Virtual Recording