Awesome Mitten features A2 creatives Natalie Burg & Mike Vial

Read on for this very entertaining Q&A featuring one of Concentrate's own, development news editor Natalie Burg. Natalie and her husband share heir backstory and why they chose Ann Arbor as the place to hone their creativity.


"Mike and Natalie had been recommended by my superiors as  Happy Hour's  first group interview because of their success at their interesting jobs: Mike as a full-time singer-songwriter and Natalie as a journalist and author.   They turned out to be excellent subjects, talking at length about their careers, their love of Michigan, and what it's like to be young professionals in creative fields."

Jake:   You have  a book that's coming out  right?

Natalie: Right! Before I met Mike, when I was living here, I had the opportunity to -- and I use the word "opportunity" lightly -- I had the opportunity to go to Sweden as an au pair for a family.   And it was a  total disaster.   The end all, be all is that I ended up being an undocumented domestic servant who was not paid enough…

Natalie:   And the thing was, the real answer to the reason they hired me was, they lived on this farm in the middle of nowhere, and the mom was this free-spirit, metaphysical --

Mike:   Yeah, they had a cult in the barn.

Natalie:   Yeah, she was starting this, like, religious philosophy, and she wanted to really focus on that --

Mike:   She didn't want to do any of the work.

Natalie:   Yeah, she wanted to quit being a mom and a farmhouse wife and focus on that, so she had me come in, as I would find out later, to take over the farmhouse wife and the mother duties, which is not at all what I was expecting.   So I was supposed to be there for a year, but I wasn't there for a whole year.   The book is about that and getting out of that.

Mike:   It's like  Eat, Pray, Love  meets David Sedaris's humor.

Natalie:   Meets Lena Dunham.   And the moral is, never leave Michigan."

Read the rest here.