The Office ‘Secretary’s Day’ Q&A with Mindy Kaling

Melissa: What inspired Ryan’s undone bow-tie? Is he still trying to “find himself”?

Mindy: I take a lot of pride in the choice of Ryan’s undone bow-tie, which is the infuriating style of some hipsters and hipster musicians. It has such annoying connotations of “I partied so hard I am this unkempt” or “I don’t even care what anyone thinks of me, I’m an iconoclast,” both of which were perfect for the smug Ryan.

kreidy: When Angela was talking to Erin about her and Andy’s relationship, the camera was positioned so that the audience didn’t know that Toby was there as well. That made the reveal a lot funnier, and I thought that was a great way to shoot the scene. Was that Steve’s idea or yours?

Mindy: This reveal was 100% Steve’s idea. I actually was worried about it, because we revealed Oscar by the fax machine earlier and I thought it might be too many reveals in that location. I was totally wrong though, because people loved this reveal.

(Also, Pam went to fax something too — a big fax day is our really subtle D-plot. Did you all like it?)

diahern: There were so many great one-liners in this episode! Which one are you most proud of?

Mindy: There are a ton of great jokes in this script. I really love one that Danny wrote, about the Taco Bell Express, and my favorites of mine is when Dwight says: “Is that show about the puppets that live in the barrio,” and when Michael tells Andy: “Everyone here knows I can’t and won’t keep a secret.” That was three — what a blowhard I am.

Bertha: I’m wondering why Michael seems to dislike Erin so much? Michael seems like a pretty affable people-person (except in regard to Toby), and Erin seems to genuinely like Michael (when so few people do!), so why is Michael so turned off by her? We saw it in this episode, in Scott’s Tots, and I think a few other times.

Mindy: Michael doesn’t hate Erin, but I think he has that slightly high-schooly attitude of not wanting to be around people who are “uncool.”

Jackie: Whose idea was it to poke fun at the whole “Based on the novel: Push by Sapphire” thing, I thought it was hilarious!

Mindy: I actually loved this movie and it made me laugh thinking of Michael listening to the sad, gruesome tale of Precious and being obsessed with it.

I also like any movie title that is extremely long.

LovesItalianFood: Who is your favorite Sesame Street character and why?

Mindy: LovesItalianFood, this is such a fun question. I happen to love Big Bird the best, which I bet practically no one says. He is the straightest of straight men. However, I have a personal story about him and my parents from when I was kid, which is why I have such an attachment.

When I was 3 years old, we still had a black and white TV in our house, but my aunt and uncle had a color TV, where we’d sometimes watch Sesame Street. One time we were watching Sesame Street in our apartment, and I turned to my dad and happily said: “At Mimi’s house, Big Bird is lello.”

My dad was like, so moved and saddened by this and quickly went out and got us the biggest color TV from Sears. It was an amazing TV and Big Bird was the reason for the upgrade.


  1. Aww, I would’ve gone out and bought a color tv too.

    Great questions, great answers. Thanks Mindy!

  2. Loved the Big Bird story! I can imagine Mindy’s little face saying those words. What father wouldn’t be touched?

    Can’t wait to see everybody’s impressions on the season 6 DVD! They must include those!

    [from tanster: they seriously must include those!]

  3. Um, Yeah, I think I heard something about Mindy’s character also being named Kelly:) Thanks Mindy!

  4. I absolutely love these Q&A’s. Thank you so much Mindy and Tanster! Reading this made what’s been a bad day so much better.

  5. I really enjoy these Q&As. Although I must say I loved Money, I think I’ll find it in my heart to forgive Mindy. :)

  6. As with #4 ontheflippityflop, my bad day was also made much better with this Q & A. Thanks Mindy & Tanster!

  7. I hate to reiterate what everyone else has said, but thank you so much Mindy and Tanster. I really look forward to reading these Q & A’s.

  8. Absolutely, those impressions must be on the DVD! I’m dying to see them.

    Great Q&A, as always! Thank you, Mindy and tanster!

  9. I think Jenna should do a British accent and a Southern accent at the same time like Tina Fey

  10. Thanks Mindy and Tanster, great questions everyone and awesome answers. Secretary’s Day is a great episode with use of all the characters.

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