Three Minute Squiz With… Kerri Sackville

Kerri Sackville is an author and columnist with Fairfax Media. Her area of expertise is the thing that really matters in life our relationships with each other. Romantic, friendships, family. Complex and simple in all its forms. A mother of three and enthusiastic Squizer with a cracking good sense of humour, it’s our honour to have Kerri for this week’s Three Minute Squiz.

How and where do you Squiz?
I podcast on my morning walk and then I newsletter later in the day over a coffee and chewy lolly.

Where were you born?
Melbourne. In a hospital. After a hideously painful labour, apparently.

What was the first album you ever owned?
Tiny Tina and Little John, my favourite Young Talent Time stars. I still desperately wish I had been in the Young Talent Team. It doesn’t seem fair that I didn’t get to live my best life.

What’s your go-to karaoke song?
Eminem’s Lose Yourself. I can rap really well for a middle-aged Jewish woman. (And yes, I know, it’s a low bar.)

What’s your guilty TV-watching secret?
I watch hospital docos on TV and cry. And I watch birth videos on Insta. Dozens of them. Most of them are in Turkish so I don’t understand the words but I still cry.

Name four people – living or dead – you’d kill to sit down to dinner with.
Malcolm Gladwell, because I bloody love his mind. Cheryl Strayed, whose advice columns are moving and magnificent. Maggie Smith, because she is perfection. And my late sister. I would give anything for one more dinner with her.

Your eldest child is heading into adulthood. What’s your advice to them as they make their way into the world?
I am very big on resilience. I think it’s the key to a successful life. I remind my kids that bad things happen, and we need to be able to deal with them, but that good things happen too, so we should also be hopeful and optimistic.

Dating and particularly midlife dating. OMG. Any tips for a single woman who works from home on a news email?
Well, she should buy my book, Out There: A Survival Guide for Dating in Midlife. And also, CALL ME, WOO HOO! WE NEED TO GO OUT DRINKING AND CRYING ABOUT MEN!

What’s changed the most about navigating our closest relationships in the last 20 years do you reckon?
Social media has irrevocably changed the nature of relationships. Texts, pics, DMs, and memes can accelerate, mimic or substitute for intimacy. And missteps in written communication can be far more enduring and damaging than the spoken word.

Your favourite book and writers?
My favourite novel is Brother of the More Famous Jackby Barbara Trapido. But most of my favourite authors write non-fiction: Gladwell, Strayed, David Sedaris, Lily Brett.

What skill or talent do you not have but wish you did?
To be able to rap. Actually, that’s not true. I can rap. What I wish is to be able to rap and not look like an utter fool.

Which historical figure do you most identify with?
Jane Austen. She spent most of her life sitting at her desk thinking about relationships, she was hysterically funny, and she was judgemental as f*ck.

What do you consider the most overrated virtue?
Tidiness. And I walk the talk, trust me.

Which words or phrases do you most overuse?
‘Oh my god!’ I wince when I hear myself say it, but I can’t stop. Life constantly surprises me.

What’s your worst and best habit?
Worst: I eat way, way too many chewy lollies. It’s a proper problem.
Best: I do a really big walk every morning and listen to my podcasts.

What’s your no-fail dinner party recipe/favourite meal at your favourite restaurant?
Me? A ‘no-fail’ recipe? Oh, that’s funny. I can fail any recipe. Ask my kids. (Okay, I just asked my son. He said, ‘It’s true, but that’s okay. You have other skills.’ [He did not specify which skills I actually have.])

What qualities do you most value in a friend?
My best friends are smart, insightful, genuinely caring and present, and funny. I need funny.

What would you say is the most currently overlooked news story we should know about?
A couple of days ago the parent company of Tinder released a dating app that turns dating into a game. A GAME. I think it bodes very ill for the future of dating and relationships.

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