Kendra Wilkinson showed she was just a "Girl Next Door" when she arrived at the Playboy mansion with Holly Madison and Bridget Marquardt to have her life changed by Hugh Hefner. After moving out and marrying pro football player Hank Baskett, her life was chronicled on a self-titled reality show. With season four beginning, a new second book and a return to Chicago, everything is coming up Kendra these days!
Windy City Times: Hi, Kendra!
Kendra Wilkinson: ?Como estas?
WCT: Muy bien. I didn't know you spoke Spanish.
KW: I didn't either. [Both laugh.]
WCT: Thanks for taking out time to talk to me. By reading your book Being Kendra: Cribs, Cocktails and Getting My Sexy Back, I see how busy you are…
KW: No, no, no: This is a new part of my life. I am just chillin' nowadays.
WCT: When I read the part about you eating in the shower I thought, "Now isn't that interesting?"
KW: I just like to eat in the shower, except my bread will get soggy from the soap and all of that.
WCT: The book is just like you talking on your reality show.
KW: It is. I like to think of this book as a narration of this new season of my show coming out. When you read it you will see a lot of similarities and stories from my show.
WCT: You had a special episode with your gay assistant, Eddie Bochniak, coming out on the show.
KW: He just left, actually. He went to go get me a plunger.
WCT: When you want to get rid of him, like in the book, you just send him to get a plunger!
KW: Yeah. [Laughs] That episode was amazing. It was great to be a part of it. It was so inspirational, not only to everybody that watched it, but inspirational to me. That was real. You don't script something like that. I was so honored to have that on my show.
WCT: You do have a lot of gay fans.
KW: That's awesome!
WCT: I think we love you because you are real.
KW: Thanks. I love to keep it real. I feel like that is why I am here. I think that is why people want to keep me around is because I am real. I don't judge anybody. I love everyone for who they are. That is why I wrote my first book too just to tell that side of my story. I grew up not judging anybody. I always wondered why there wasn't a black Barbie. I just see everybody as one.
WCT: Last night was a big night for you because two shows came out that involved you, Dancing With the Stars and The Playboy Club.
KW: Yeah; I am glad they didn't run together because I would have had a problem. It is funny because I only went one time to see Jerry Rice but other than that I never watched Dancing With the Stars until I was on it. Last night was the first time I watched it without being on it. It was so weird! I knew what those people were going through. They probably thought they were going into something fun but they were going through blood, sweat and tears. It is fun to watch now to see what they go through.
WCT: Did you like anyone in particular?
KW: Carson Kressley—oh my God, he needs to stay on there as long as possible. He was having fun out there. That is what I like to see.
WCT: Some people get stiff on there and worry about what they are going to do.
KW: I was one of those people. I was so nervous. I hated going out in front of millions of people and would shake. I felt like I would pass out every single time.
WCT: Do you still talk to your dance partner, Louis Van Amstel?
KW: Every now and then. It is kind of like me, Holly and Bridget. We had our experiences but we do our own thing. We keep in touch. He made an appearance on my show.
WCT: What did you think of The Playboy Club?
KW: I actually was impressed. I was a little nervous at first. The story was really great. I love a mafia themed show. I am a huge fan of The Sopranos. I love the old type of feel in a show. There were good looking people but they know how to act. I was worried who was going to be in the bunny costumes. Hearing Hef narrate the show was really fun. I could just picture him sipping on a jack and coke reading his lines.
WCT: It was filmed here in Chicago so I went on set to see the whole thing as an extra.
KW: That's awesome. I was really impressed with it.
WCT: What do you want people to get out of your book?
KW: I wrote it because I had more to tell. I wanted to get a lot off of my chest. I wanted to tell what I really dealt with after having the baby and what happened behind the scenes. People watch my show but they only see 30 minutes of me on Sunday nights. I wanted to write what really happens with the cameras off. I wanted to explain things that I couldn't about the tabloids. I string everything together for my fans to understand things and why things happened in the public. It is a clear-it-up kind of book. I had some struggles but everything is good now.
WCT: It seems you have changed and grown up a lot.
KW: I know I have. I know I have grown up a lot. I am definitely more aware and cautious about things. I look at it this way. You have one life to live. Live it the way you want. I am living it the way I want to live. I have no shame. Why have shame? I am here in this business because who I am Being Kendra and I am here to tell the story. People want to read it so I am excited and very honored.