Astra Taylor is a Winnipeg-born Georgia-raised writer, documentary filmmaker, and musician. She is the director of 2005’s Zizek! and 2008’s Examined Life. Most recently, she is the author of The People’s Platform: Taking Back Power And Culture in the Digital Age.
1. What are three words you associate with your first relationship?
Alienated precocious adolescence.
2. What’s the worst thing you ever did for money?
Cater big southern weddings at the height of “Macarena” mania.
3. What is your least favourite song?
4. What is your favourite song?
5. What’d you have for breakfast this morning?
Coffee. I don’t eat breakfast, though I know I should.
6. How do you feel about Joni Mitchell?
Love. Admiration. Especially Blue, one of my favorite records of all time. Some of the few songs I can play on the piano though I would never dare try to sing them. Old footage of her playing makes me cry.
7. How did you learn what sex was?
I’ve always known about it. I was raised by counterculture parents, there were no secrets about such stuff growing up.
8. Where do you imagine all our lost T-shirts go?
I only have one T-shirt and I’ve had it for over a decade, so I had no idea lost shirts were a problem.
9. Who do you consider the funniest person in the world—that we would know?
My taste hasn’t evolved past Monty Python. They make jokes about philosophy, and thus are my heroes.
10. What’s the worst insult you’ve ever said?
Worst thing I can say about someone is that they have terrible politics. My friends recently laughed at me for calling someone a cheesedick. For a vegan, being associated with cheese is bad enough, but the term also connotes phoniness, which is almost as horrible as having terrible politics. Obviously being a dick is no compliment.
11. What’s the worst thing you’ve ever been called?
Nothing comes to mind. Maybe I wasn’t around to hear it? I have pretty thick skin. Someone apologized to me the other day for being mean to me online but I couldn’t remember what she said.
12. What’s a deal breaker for someone you’re in a relationship or in love with?
That’s not really how I think about relationships, probably because I’m in a long term deal that’s working extremely well.
13. What’s something you do every night before bed?
Look forward to the next morning’s coffee.
Hazlitt and After School present Astra Taylor at AGO First Thursdays on March 6 at 7:30 p.m.
The Hazlitt Offensive appears every Tuesday