Shining a spotlight on celebrities and athletes who love to travel. Created and developed by Stacy Steponate Greenberg.
You take the good. You take the bad. You take them both and there you have. You know the next line. Everybody does. The iconic theme song from the classic sitcom “The Facts of Life” still resonates for millions of people of all ages. Now, imagine being nine years old and then spending nine years growing up in front of all those people. Welcome to the facts of Kim Fields’ life: she played Tootie, the roller-skating breakout star of the legendary show. Amazingly, at nine, Fields was a show business veteran, already recognizable as the adorable little girl in the Mrs. Butterworth syrup commercial alongside Janet Jackson. Fields went on to various shows after “Facts of Life”, acting and directing as well. Most recently she has been seen on the “Real Housewives of Atlanta” and her latest endeavor is the book Blessed Life, a memoir that explores the entirety of her amazing rise to Hollywood fame. The Overhead Compartment laced up the roller skates and went for a spin with the talented Kim Fields to learn the facts about life in the 80’s, and today.
The Overhead Compartment with Kim Fields starts now….
OC: In your book Blessed Life you open up about your life and the various journeys you have had. What made you decide to share those moments now?
KF: I just celebrated 40 years in the entertainment industry, which felt like a milestone and a good time to pause, not stop completely and look back over God’s highlight reel in my life.
OC : What was the most emotional part to revisit?
KF: The challenging moments in my life like my divorce, the tragic car crash and personal struggles, but I’m glad that I have those times because I’m able to share them and learn and grow from them.
OC: What sort of response have you been receiving about being so open?
KF: Fantastic! I’m thrilled with how everyone has received the book. People are saying they’ve gotten to know me better and themselves. They say they have received lessons from the book for their own relationships and or pressing on their own journeys. They’re also loving all the pop culture memories from my 40 year career in entertainment.
OC: What is one thing you hope anyone who reads the book will take away from it?
KF: The gems of wisdom that have been dropped on me that I share from my mother, husband and dear friends.
OC: For nine years you played the iconic Tootie on the hit show Facts of Life. What was it like growing up in front of the camera?
KF: Very surreal quite honestly. It was incredible doing my love and passion and growing in my craft. Going through puberty on camera was not fun. Doing it in a fishbowl can be challenging. I’m grateful for the village that raised me, so I still had a healthy childhood and transition from child to young woman.
OC: Is there a day that goes by that someone doesn’t call you “Tootie”?
KF: Plenty! Because I’m blessed to have a body of work with many memorable characters and they’ve seen me in the media for so long, people call Kim or Kim Fields.
OC: What is the relationship like between the five stars of that show today?
KF: We’re still very close and keep in touch with each other on a regular basis.
OC: I need one good George Clooney story.
KF: He was great at impersonations. I talk about a few of them in the book.
OC: You recently spent time on Real Housewives of Atlanta. What was that experience like?
KF: The chapter in my book #truetomyself really sums up my social adventure, as I call it, in reality TV. My biggest take away was the realization that I needed me time. I love my life, so I didn’t feel that anything was missing, but after talking with a cast member I realized you do have to take a little time to yourself. Which was a great revelation to have just prior to discovering dancing.
OC: What is your favorite city to visit for work?
KF: LA and Vancouver
OC: What do you do if you have down time in that city?
KF: If I’m working, sleeping. But in LA I visit family and friends. In Vancouver I like taking long walks on the waterfront trails.
OC: Favorite place for leisure travel?
KF: Internationally I’m a Caribbean baby and I love St. Lucia. Domestically, New York is my first love, but I enjoy Chicago very much.
OC: First thing you do when arriving at a hotel in your room?
KF: Change the furniture around. I put the desk by the window for the view and move the seating arrangement to face the window. If I’m there for a long time I add my favorite framed photograph and I love candles and fragrances.
OC: Complete the following sentence: I never leave home without:
KF: Lip-gloss, coffee and sunglasses.
Kim Fields, please use care upon departure as items may have shifted in The Overhead Compartment during our journey. Thanks for choosing us for your travel tips! Have a wonderful day!