Dr Rebecca Huntley is a regular commentator on Australian social trends on radio, in print, on television, and online. Her most recent book, Eating Between the Lines: Food and Equality in Australia was published by Black Inc. in 2008. She’s written extensively on Australian eating habits — but she hasn’t eaten a meat pie since 1992. She is the Director of Research at Ipsos and has taken over from Hugh Mackay as the author of the Ipsos Mackay Report. We are quite certain she updates her own Facebook page.
1. What’s the headline you’d most like to see on the front page of a daily newspaper?
"Australian Youth: Smarter And Nicer Than Previous Generations".
2. If you could oblige everyone in Australia to click through to one webpage, which one would it be?
Overheard in New York.
3. What is one thing you’ve always wondered about economics but were too afraid to ask?
I know too many economists to be scared of any of them.
4. When did you last eat a meat pie?
Like the ones you get at the football? 1992: first and last time.
5. What’s the oldest thing in your fridge?
A jar of mayonnaise.
6. Has anyone got a climate change policy you agree with? Who?
Yes. Paul Gilding. I am keenly anticipating his new book The Great Disruption.
7. When was the first time you changed your mind on something important?
Recently, on the issue of smacking. Before I had my child I was totally against it. I still am but I have a two-year-old and I understand why people do it now.
8. What’s the household chore you relish the most?
Cooking — but for me it’s not a chore. I quite like vacuuming after my daughter’s eaten a sandwich.
9. What sort of shoes do you wear to work?
Flip-flops on the way to work, Italian-made high heels at work.
10. What campaigning tactic do you most want to see in this year’s federal election?
Candidates taking online campaigning seriously. Getting lackeys to update your Facebook page isn’t a digital strategy!
11. Nominate a new public holiday.
Small But Essential Chore Day for collating tax receipts, removing mould from bathroom grouting, hand-washing that shirt at the bottom of the laundry basket, etc
12. If you could go tomorrow anywhere in Australia for a holiday, where would you go?
13. What’s your favourite YouTube video?
"A message from Unilever". Who says one consumer can’t make a difference?
14. If you were given $5 million, what would you spend it on?
A family holiday to Italy, a vintage sports car for my husband and a big donation to Stephanie Alexander’s Kitchen Garden Foundation.
15. Who would you most like to sit next to on a long haul flight?
A slender deaf/mute who doesn’t eat his dessert and doesn’t notice when I steal it.
16. What trivia question/topic will you beat everyone else in the pub to the buzzer on?
Anything to do with Pixar films or The Wire. I have watched little else for the past 12 months.
17. Complete this sentence. I’d like to hear Kevin Rudd say "…"
I miss Malcolm.
18. Name someone in Australian public life who deserves a promotion.
Jack Heath, founder of the Inspire Foundation.
19. In 10 words or less, summarise your food philosophy.
Cooking is an essential life skill. Ignore food fads. Don’t count calories. Eat slowly.
20. What question should we ask our next interviewee?
What compulsory subject would you like to see introduced to Australian primary schools?
BONUS QUESTION from our last interviewee:
If Jonathan Holmes fell under a bus, who would you like to see hosting Media Watch?
I would love to see someone like Laura Tingle host Media Watch. Or, dare to dream, Jon Stewart.
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