As one of the top swimmers in the county, Kali Kingsley has a lot riding on her shoulders. She has been somewhat of a pioneer for the second-year Sharks, who only had six athletes on the team last year and are slowly growing to add a boys squad and a full-size girls team. The sophomore, who specializes in the butterfly and backstroke, hopes to make a name for the Sharks by placing highly at districts and regionals this season. That's no easy task in a region (Class A-1) that includes 2003 state champion Jacksonville Bolles, a school that "breeds swimmers," as she put it. Then, of course, there's the rest of her life. Kingsley went one on one with staff writer Emily Nipps to discuss her thoughts on plastic surgery, reality TV and being an only child.
Do you like being an only child?
I do. I like that I don't have to share my parents with anyone.
Did you ever wish you had a brother or sister?
Yeah, when I was younger. Like when I was 8 years old and around there, I did. If I had a sibling, I'd probably want an older brother.
I think it's just that whole protection thing. I'd like that overprotective older brother. That probably sounds corny and stupid, but...
What is one thing about you that surprises most people?
A lot of times, people are surprised that I'm only 14. I'm in 10th grade, and my birthday is in November. Also, my GPA was 4.2 (weighted) as of the end of last year.
Have you ever gotten a B on your report card?
I've gotten a B for a quarter, but never for a semester, which is what I guess counts into your GPA.
What do you want to be when you grow up?
A plastic surgeon. I've always wanted to do something in the medical field, but in the past few years, I've narrowed it down to plastic surgery and dermatology.
Why plastic surgery?
I want to do reconstructive surgery to help people who have been through trauma or have birth defects. I don't want to add to people's vanity, like someone who wants (enhancement surgery). But I'd like to help people that really need it.
Do you ever watch The Swan (an extreme makeover reality TV show)?
I watch some shows like that sometimes. I don't like The Swan because they tell people they've made them pretty, but then they put them in a beauty pageant and tell them they're not pretty enough. I think some of those people don't need all that plastic surgery. It comes from the inside.
Why do you think people like to watch it?
It's the whole reality thing in general. Sometimes, I think if you see people who are worse off than you, it might make you feel better.