frequently asked questions

Why are you called Betty Scandretti?

What are you, the IRD? My name is Elisabeth, which is why you’ll find me referred to in various ports on the interwebs as Lizzie, or sometimes Nimbus Nose. Scandrett is a family name of Spanish origin, via the Huguenots to Ireland, which is why I like potato bread and tend to stick my neck out in religious discussions. The boy person friend calls me Marshy because of my actual surname, which you’ll find here.

Where do you get your protein?

I absorb it remotely from Tibetan mountain streams, and if I’m feeling low, I just gnash at my own limbs. Honestly…

Pilates, is that like yoga?

I grit my teeth at you.

How do neutrons reproduce, since neither protons nor electrons are attracted to them?

Back in the heady days when I was In Television, I asked this question of a visionary artist who used to come in and use the edit suite. His name was Millennium Twain, and he had (it was rumoured) left a promising career in Silicon Valley or somewhere to move to Hamilton and head the New Zealand space programme, which you haven’t heard of because it doesn’t exist, so that’s why. He had lovely waist-length hair and he used to eat grass jelly such that you couldn’t go into the edit suite for hours afterwards, and he made animations of prototype spacecraft known to us as the Flying Nostril and the Flying Taco. Then he was deported, and these days he’s the messiah of a cult in California. So I asked him, and he turned around very seriously and explained it to me. But I have forgotten.

Jeans or track-pants?

My jeans are a bit faded round the knees, but my track-pants fall down if I don’t hold them up, which would be a bit mortifying, wouldn’t it?

What kind of camera do you use?

A Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ7, and occasionally a Holga and my dad’s* ancient Minolta SLR (*it’s mine now).

I’d like to do Pilates, but there are no teachers on my block. I did this DVD once that said it was advanced, but it was way too easy, and I couldn’t stand up straight for two weeks afterward–I think I might have done it a bit wrong in one of the downward-facing dogs. I should get back into it though, because I have two herniated discs and I seriously don’t even want to get into a bikini until I lose like a dress size. Can you recommend some YouTube videos?

Were you breast-fed?

In a fight between Dr Hauschka and Dr Bronner, who would win?

That is hard to say. I’d bring lamingtons and a gazebo.

Who would you best like to sit next to on a long-distance flight?

The shortlist includes Hermann Zapf, Oliver Sacks, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Elisabeth Elliot, Eloise at the Plaza, and the boy person friend.

John vs the synoptics: who would win at Scrabble?

John, all the way. Imagine if Peter had got stuck on Patmos. He would asplode! Revelation would be one giant fritz and Jude would be left having to wrap up at the last minute, all umming and ahhing and looking dead uncomfortable, the faint fragrance of nepotism drifting about his ankles.

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