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May 5, 2017

Meet Leandro Mejia

As a Mail Services Coordinator, Facilities, Leandro Mejia makes the rounds at WNET’s offices, delivering and picking up mail and packages for staff three times a day. “I note the arrival of all parcels from USPS, UPS, FedEx, DHL, and the various messenger services, along with sender name and tracking number. I also escort folks from catering, cleaning services, and tape media pick-up to various departments as needed,” Leandro says. Read on to learn about Leandro’s favorite PBS programs, his eclectic reading list, and more.

Leandro Mejia

Leandro Mejia

What is your background, and how did you land at WNET?

“Long ago, in a galaxy far, far away….” Wait, that’s wrong! “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times….” Still wrong! Let me begin anew: I was an English major at CCNY, with a concentration in Creative Writing. Since I’m a major bibliophile, I began working at the Housing Works Bookstore in SoHo shortly after graduation. I handled shipping for their Internet Sales until late last year. During my time there, I amassed a plethora of books in my attempt to rival the storied Library of Alexandria!

I also temporarily worked as an intern at the JASA West Side Senior Center, doing clerical duties and postal runs, petty cash, and helping out at their beautiful ballroom during lunch time. Since I’m a lifelong “Viewer Like You”, when I saw the job opening in WNET’s Mailroom, I jumped at the chance to apply.

For our Media with Impact campaign, we’ve been asking viewers to share stories describing how THIRTEEN has influenced their life. How has THIRTEEN (or the PBS station of your childhood) inspired you?

PBS programs have had a life-long influence on me. Some examples include an episode of Ghost Writer, where a character communicated through writing what he could not through the spoken word. Although I didn’t catch Firing Line until its antepenultimate season, it had an indelible impact on me and sparked my fascination with etymology and diction. Wide Angle — a program I sorely miss! — informed my youth, while Frontline continues to inform my adulthood.

My appreciation and wonder about nature continues thanks to our very own Nature series and began with Marty Stouffer’s Wild America. As for the sciences, the line of succession from Newton’s Apple, to Bill Nye the Science Guy to NOVA has made this great enterprise of Man a centerpiece of my understanding of the natural world. Finally, both American Experience and American Masters — which I’ve dubbed “The Wonder Twins” — act as two vital tributaries that feed the great river of knowledge, which empties into the ocean of historical understanding. While the former educates me as to the vicissitudes our republic has endured, the latter teaches me about the life and legacies of great American luminaries, such as the late, great Dr. Maya Angelou and living legend Norman Lear.

Which three shows airing on our stations this month are you most likely to watch, stream, or record?

Wow, this question is akin to a genie restricting someone to the proverbial three wishes! Well, let’s see: The Open Mind because I always need my weekly “thoughtful excursion into the world of ideas.” The second program is Frontline: Bannon’s War. (All the Frontline films on the recent election cycle are award winners!) Thirdly, I’m looking forward to National Bird, the Independent Lens film on drone warfare.

Where do you live, and what are some of your favorite places in your neighborhood?

I currently reside in Washington Heights. However, I am quite shy and sometimes just stay put in my Renaissance Man cave, which is filled with books on an eclectic range of subjects.

What book are you currently reading?

At the moment, nothing particular, per se. I read around anything and everything that piques my interest: the classics, Scientific Frontier, The Bible, National Geographic, Scientific American Nature, The Economist, The Federalist Papers, Nature (the science journal), biology texts, psychology texts, Snapple bottle caps….

Do you have a special interest or hobby outside of work? If so, tell us about it!

I enjoy reading and writing. I’ve written some poems, short stories observations on life, and essays. My other special interest is clubbing. There is nothing like terpsichore, the delight of the dance. There is a joie de vivre and jouissance in synchronizing oneself with the beats, harmony, melody,  tone, and timbre of a track. When I am unable to make it outside, I’ll simply dance in my room.

 

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