Jordan Mayne Epps, Senior - Interview Conducted by Araddhya Tibrewall
Tuesday, October 19, 2021: It is midday. The sun is shining directly overhead, and after an elaborate assembly, people snack as they huddle into groups, conversations overflowing from the music lawn to the tables near the science building. As I begin the year’s third interview, I click record. “Welcome, Jordan.” The interview has begun…
Araddhya: What job would you be absolutely terrible at?
Jordan: Oh, my lord. I’m not an organized person. I don’t even know, dude. Like you know in the Simpsons, how Homer has a nuclear plant he’s looking after—if I had to do that job, I wouldn’t be able to do that unless they gave me one big old button that I had to press over and over again. I do not want to be in charge of anything like that.
Araddhya: What future career are you considering and why?
Jordan: I want to feed people. I want to look after agriculture and guarantee that we can keep feeding people as we go into the future. I feel like good food is something that people take for granted.
Araddhya: How has campus life been since the return to in-person school?
Jordan: It has been blissful. I feel like our grade has opened up so much—you can talk to whoever. Everyone’s like “Oh yeah, we have no time to waste.” We can do whatever we want. It’s cool.
Araddhya: What is a quote that has especially resonated with you recently or from your childhood?
Jordan: I can’t remember who said it. It might be Freud or some other whacky 18th century psychologist. I think it was like… “If you find the root of your fear or something you doubt, you destroy it.” For example, suppose you don’t like cats. And if you trace it back, trace it back, trace it back, and find that your cat scratched you when you were 6 years old, well then you just avoid that and make things better.
Araddhya: Recently, you started the South East Asian Alliance, and we as a community had the very first taste of this club (excuse the pun!) when you offered food on banana leaves. What was the motivation behind starting this?
Jordan: So earlier today, at assembly, they had the Filipino Association, a new club, come up. And that’s exactly what I wanted with the South East Asian Association. South East Asian is such a broad label, and there are so many different peoples under that. It’s very diverse and very beautiful. I wanted the example to spread out to people and for people to found their own things off of that: Filipino Association, Indonesian Association, Vietnamese Association—because I feel there is so much representation that is encompassed by the label “Asian” that people don’t appreciate. Getting that culture and experience out there is really a good thing.
Araddhya: Now, as for my favorite part of the interview, here’s a series of quick questions. You’ll be given two things, and you must indicate your preference; if you’re moved, provide a justification.
Oranges or lemons? Lemons, cooking.
Coffee or tea? Coffee by far, come on. Good strong coffee is where it’s at.
Dark chocolate or milk chocolate? Dark chocolate. When I was young, I used to like milk chocolate. But dark chocolate’s big boy.
Percentage? 70%, the sweet spot.
Printer or scanner? Printer (although with hesitation)
Teleportation or telepathy? Telepathy because I feel like… I ride the bus a lot and everyone on the bus looks stone-faced; I look miserable. But in my head, there’s so much stuff going on, and I’m like everybody’s thinking the same thing—everybody else has stuff going on. But if we had telepathy, we could talk about it.
Quantum mechanics or political science? I understand neither. So, indifferent.