Name: Terri Caylor
Occupation: Senior Administrative Assistant, City of Maryville.
Husband: Jeff Caylor; children Brandi Smith, 26, Paige Caylor 20, son-in-law, Rob Smith, and grandson, Titus Smith, 3 months old.
Terri Caylor sees the Foothills Fall Festival from the inside. As senior administrative assistant, she works with the city’s administration and sees how the different parts of the city and its businesses and residents come together to make the event happen.
Caylor says the goal is clear, “It’s for the citizens to have a good time. It brings the community together,” she says. “I enjoy seeing people and visiting people,” she says.
Here is Terri Caylor:
What was your first paying job?
“My first job was at 411 Restaurant. I was a waitress. It teaches you to deal with people. That was the big thing. I was 15 years old.”
If you could do one impulsive thing, unrestricted by cost, what would it be?
“Go to Germany. That’s where my great-grandfather is from. He and two brothers came over on a ship. I’d like to go over and see where they were from.”
What’s your favorite television or movie quote?
“On Andy Griffith, Opie was afraid Andy was ashamed of him. Andy said, ‘You are my son, and I am proud of you just for that. You do the best you can, and that is all I will ever ask of you.’ That’s great advice for any parent to give to a child.”
What are you guilty of
“Doing too much for my children. But sometimes I can’t help myself.”
What is one thing you have always wanted to do but haven’t?
“Go on a cruise. That’s something I’ve always wanted to do. I’d like to go on a cruise to Mexico or Hawaii..”
Do you think there is life on other planets?
What is your favorite material possession?
“My camper. I love to camp. We enjoy the outside. Camping is an environment in itself. Everyone is friendly, and you spend time outside in nature. It’s a ‘get away’ feeling.”
Who has been the most influential person in the 20th century?
“Mother Teresa. I think she did so much for our the whole world. She helped different people. She didn’t just help people of her religion, she helped everybody.”
What was your most embarrassing moment?
“Tripping and falling on my way into the Maryville/Alcoa game. All these people were watching as my husband helped me up. We had had car trouble before the game, and you have to get there at 5 o’clock. We were running late, and the next thing you know, I was laying half-way down the sidewalk.”
What is one word others often use to describe you and why?
“Outgoing and bubbly. I love to talk to people.”
When you were 5 years old, what did you want to be when you grew up?
“A school teacher. I always thought it was fun. We used to play school when I a little, and I wanted to be the teacher and make everyone do what they were supposed to do, but it didn’t always work out. I didn’t grow up to be a school teacher either.”
If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
“Slow down and smell the roses. I tend to always be moving too fast.”
What is your passion?
“Family and football. With my two daughters, we instill in them family is important. Friends are great, too, but family will always be there for you through thick and thin. With football, Jeff and I never miss a Maryville football game. We don’t have anyone who plays. We go to most UT games. It was big to us before Rob came into the family, but we’ve enjoyed it more since he’s been in the family. Fall and football go together.” (Son-in-law Rob was a UT Football player.)
With whom, living or dead, would you most like to have a long lunch?
“Bill Farr, my grandfather on my mother’s side. My grandfather was so special to me. We were so close. I would go down and sit and listen to his stories. He had little education but a lot of knowledge.”
What do you hate?
“Laziness. You go and do your work. You don’t have things handed to you.”
What is your all-time favorite movie?
“ “Christmas Vacation.’ I love Chevy Chase. We watch it every year at Christmas time.”
What is the best book you’ve ever read?
“‘A Time to Kill,’ by John Grisham. It shows you how things were at the time with segregation and how a man loved his daughter so much. It changed my outlook on a lot of things. You thought about that father’s love for that daughter and how he put everything on the line.”
Would you travel in space?
“No, I’m claustrophobic.”
If you could go back in time for a week, what time period or year would you visit?
“The 1950s when life was so much easier. We didn’t have cell phones. When I do tours in the city, I tell kids I remember having phone party lines and we would pick up the phone and hear someone else’s conversation. Television went off at 11 o’clock. In the 1950s, TV was just getting started. People would spend time with family and neighbors, and they didn’t watch TV or talk on the phone. It was a simple life.”
What is the best present you ever received in a box?
“My engagement ring. I’ve gotten lots of gifts over the years. I think you take gifts and open them, and they’re fun at the time. That engagement ring represents the love and bond you have for the rest of your life.”
What is the best advice your mother ever gave you?
“Always be kind to others regardless of their material possessions or social status. We didn’t look at what people had or didn’t have. My dad was a brick mason, and there were four of us kids, and mom didn’t work. We always had the food and clothes we needed. Mom always taught us, ‘Treat everyone the same way.’ ”
Did you ever get paddled in school and if so, why?
“Often, for -- you guessed it -- talking.”
What was your first car?
“A Blue Gremlin. My husband called it a ‘High Top Tennis Shoe on Four Wheels.’”
Is the glass half-full or half-empty?
“Definitely half-full. I always look at life in a positive way and look for the positive things in life. I tell my girls if they are complaining about this or that - look at the positive things.”