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Ayun Halliday takes the Fly Survey

DirtysugarcookiesMy neighborhood pal, goddess of the zine and superfunny international traveler and odd-jobber Ayun Halliday is here to take the FLY SURVEY -- promoting her new book, DIRTY SUGAR COOKIES.

The promo copy:
How does a picky eater morph into a low-budget epicure whose digestive indiscretions are a matter of public record?
Just how far can a pregnant woman stray from the Best Odds Diet until a food-borne bacterial infection lands her in the hospital?
Can a serial monogamist really keep track of every post-coital breakfast she's ever enjoyed?
An omnivorous, rollicking chronicle of culinary awakening, Dirty Sugar Cookies is an oil-splattered, accidentally-dropped-on-the-floor, self-mocking love letter to everything Ayun Halliday has ever eaten — and a few of the things she wishes she hadn't.

I read Ayun's food blog, also of the same title, and if you have ever cooked for children, wished you could make your own Thai Food, cooked in a kitchen the size of your elbow, or wished those cookbook authors didn't always seem to have everything so clean and neat and perfect, the blog is for you, baby. (It's syndicated on LJ here)

Anyway, Ayun is the author of The Big Rumpus (gut-busting East Village motherhood), No Touch Monkey (travels abroad with...well, some monkeys) and Job Hopper (in which she recounts every sucky sucky job she ever had as a struggling actor.) Her books are so so funny, people.
If you're a teenager, No Touch Monkey is the one to start with. If you're another kind of human, Dirty Sugar Cookies.

Here is a preview: "Just a Slice" in which she explains how she became, sort of, a pescatarian.

questions by E. Lockhart
answers by Ayun Halliday

(editorial note: there is a so-called dirty word at the bottom, for those of you who like to keep it clean)

1)    If you could be a fly on the wall somewhere, anywhere – where?
The Doyers Restaurant in Chinatown. Man, I would eat me up so much shrimp paste grilled on sugar cane...I'd be the fattest fly in New York!

2)    If you could have one superpower, what?
The ability to crush walnuts with my powerful rectus abdominus despite my superhuman intake of beer and chocolate chips.

3)    What is your superhero name?
The Delusion.

4)    Who is your favorite superhero?
The Shoveller (left), the character played by William Macy in Mystery Men. I admired his moral rectitude, his totally lame-ass "superpower" (shoveling), his devotion to his family, and the fact that his interracial marriage was presented as something so normal, there was no need to draw attention to that aspect of it.

5)    Favorite non-super hero?
Jan Demczur, a Polish window cleaner who worked in the World Trade Center and used his squeegee to cut through a layer of drywall on September 11, 2001, freeing himself and five other men from the elevator in which they'd been trapped.

6)    Recommend us a superhero movie.
The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys. Jodi Foster in a nun's habit is the supervillain of the animated segments. Don't watch it if you've got a cougar phobia, though. I'm just saying...

7)    If you could turn in to any animal, what? Why?
A cougar! I could have gotten my SAG card!

8) Do you (or have you ever) read comic books? What?
Oh mercy, yes and it just gets worse as I get older. What started as an affection for underground comix like Love & Rockets, Hate, and Weirdo has deteriorated into an obsession with the oeuvre of James Kochalka, most notably Superfuckers, a series about these foul-mouthed teen superheroes who all live together in this retro space age secret hideout.I was reading it during my kids' swimming lesson a couple of months ago, and this Carribbean Nanny who'd been peeking over my shoulder started chuckling, "Ooh, Mommy, dot book's got some "words"." A few weeks later, I bought another copy to give to her. Maybe my superhero name should be The Helper...or, alternatively, Bad Judgment.