20 Questions For The Stars


Jennifer Mills is the author of the novel The Diamond Anchor, published this year by UQP, a poet, and a widely published and awarded short story writer.

Jennifer also travels as Jen Jen, newmatilda.com‘s resident astrologer. Her home in Alice Springs offers excellent access to the cosmos such that her Down To Earth Starguide For Sceptics And Cynics, published every Monday morning, makes sense of the week in politics. Hu Jintao is a Sagittarian and Barack Obama is a Leo. Jen Jen can tell you why that’s significant and you should listen, because she has big plans for fortunetellers. She blogs here.

1. If you were given $5 million, what would you spend it on?
An army of flying monkeys. Definitely. Actually if I was given $5 million, I would probably have to spend it on changing my identity as it would no doubt be some kind of mistake and they would soon come looking for me asking for it back.

2. Who would you most like to be stuck in a lift with?
The lift repairman.

3. What trivia topic will you beat everyone else in the pub to the buzzer on?
Spelling. They never ask though.

4. The headline you’d most like to see on the front page of a daily newspaper.
News Ltd Seized By Popular Uprising, Corporate Interests Banned

5. Complete this sentence. I’d like to hear Kevin Rudd say "…"
"The Racial Discrimination Act has been reinstated in the Northern Territory. Sorry again for being such a hypocrite."

6. If you could have made one major life move differently, what would it  have been?
That’s easy: I wouldn’t have bothered finishing high school. Waste of good reading time.

7. You’re on a desert island with only a magical television for entertainment. It only broadcasts sports. It can only broadcast one sporting code. You choose the sport.
That’s not a magic television, that’s a broken television. World cup soccer.

8. You’ve been appointed research director for an organisation funded by a hands-off philanthropist. What do you tell your staff to find out?
First we’d figure out a cure for that gross facial thing afflicting the Tasmanian Devils. Then I would make them prove once and for all that astrology works, so we could lobby for a Ministry of Astrology in every world government and return the fortune-tellers to their rightful place, whispering in the ear of power.

9. How often do you check your email?
Whenever my laptop tells me I have mail by hooting like a boobook owl. I also check my postbox every day and my phone when I am trying to escape from the conversation I am having.

10. What annoys you about politicians?
They tell you they’re going to do something, then they don’t do it. Then they either lie and say they’ve done it or they stand around explaining why it didn’t need to be done in the first place. Then they put all the money you gave them toward an inquiry which will justify their inaction. If they were our employees, we’d have fired them all long ago.

Oh wait, they are our employees.

11. Name someone in Australian public life who deserves a promotion.
Tom Calma.

12. Name someone in Australian public life who should be out on their ear.
Peter Garrett. He seemed like such a good idea at the time.

13. Can we fix climate change?
No, we’re all doomed, but fortunately the apocalypse will be very drawn-out and entertaining to watch. Except if you live in Bangladesh.

14. If we were in a karaoke club and not online, what song would you sing?
"Boy Named Sue" is a particular favourite of mine, mostly because it involves very little singing.

15. Have you ever seen a ghost?
Several. But sadly I have never seen Bill Murray.

16. Computers could be improved. How?
Inbuilt solar energy sources and more sustainable construction materials. Also, they could be free and come with a little drinks holder and you could choose their texture. Imagine typing against warm feathers.

17. I’m going to get a coffee? What can I get you?
Thanks! I’ll have a strong long black. It might be cold by the time you get here though.

18. Do you have a hidden talent?
I don’t have enough talents to go about hiding them.

19. What image should hang on the wall of the PM’s office?
The crowd outside Parliament on the day he apologised to the Stolen Generations. Glaring at him impatiently.

20. What question should we ask our next interviewee?
Who’s your power Muppet?

BONUS: This is the question from our last interviewee
If this was the day of your death, how would you spend the day?
Once upon a time I would have offered to walk into Evil Corporation Headquarters with some dynamite, but that idea has lost its charm in recent years. I reckon I’d drive out to Ellery Creek (my local waterhole) with all the loved ones I could muster, where we’d swim and eat and discuss my funeral arrangements, paying particular attention to the eulogy.

Launched in 2004, New Matilda is one of Australia's oldest online independent publications. It's focus is on investigative journalism and analysis, with occasional smart arsery thrown in for reasons of sanity. New Matilda is owned and edited by Walkley Award and Human Rights Award winning journalist Chris Graham.