February 20, 2013

Ten Questions With Taylor Flynn

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Ten Questions Columnist Katie Schubauer caught up with senior Taylor Flynn to chat about food, friends and favorite Christmas sweatshirts.

1. Taylor, you are a senior on the women’s basketball team. What has basketball meant to you over the course of your college career?

I think it’s meant a couple things. First and foremost, it’s obviously been an outlet for me. I’m a student here; I’m an athlete here. It’s been a nice way to work off stress. But at the same time, it has given me my best friends on campus. I spend literally every waking moment with these girls and it’s nice to be able to get along with them so well. We live together, we eat together, we do everything together, so it’s nice that we really enjoy each other’s company. Basketball has provided me with my lifelong friends, and I’m definitely the sentimental one out of the group, so I’m not afraid to say that.

2. Can you describe your love of pizza?(Laughing) Well, I think I enjoy pizza because it has the ability to serve multiple people in one sitting. I enjoy that idea of being able to please people with pizza. I live in a house with a lot of girls and when we all come home and are hanging out, it’s nice to be able to bring home a pie and everyone is happy and merry. That is the best feeling, as I am sure you can imagine. It’s just so nice to have everyone come together over a nice slice of pizza.Is it true that you sometimes eat whole pizza pies alone?Unfortunately, it can get that excessive, yes.

3. Can you describe your cooking skills? I would definitely say they’ve come a long way. My family owns a Mexican restaurant in New York City, so my family’s income survived off of the idea of cooking. But we never cook for ourselves. Our speed dials at home are the Chinese place, the pizzeria, literally every source of takeout. There was no cooking involved. So junior year was the first time I actually cooked. And cooking for me consisted of going to Wegmans and buying frozen food, putting it in the freezer in baggies, throwing it in the microwave and calling it a day. There were times when I would take a frozen steak and just throw it in the oven thinking that was the right thing to do. I think I set the fire alarm off four times in one sitting once. So it has definitely come a long way. I really enjoy cooking now. I like mixing the ingredients and just playing with seasonings or dressings and just trying it out. Sometimes it works and it’s great and it’s awesome. Sometimes it obviously doesn’t — more times than not — but either way, it has come a long way.4. Your friends have commented on your multiple personalities. Can you elaborate on that? I will be the first to admit that I am probably the naïve one of the group and … I’m not the sharpest one … but for whatever reason, when I’m in a business suit or when I had my Blackberry, I strutted it. I owned it. I worked it. I kind of took on this other personality. You know how Beyonce has the Sasha Fierce thing about her? I pretty much have my own Sasha Fierce going on when I put on my business suit. I wish it would come into my normal life because that would really help. I think there are definitely other sides to it. I have a social side and an athletic side as well.

5. Can you explain how you got the nickname Tea by T. Flynn? So during sorority recruitment, you serve drinks to the potential new members and there’s the hot chai and the hot chocolate and it’s nice for them because they’re outside in the cold and their voices are probably sore. But there is nothing really for the girls in the house and they spend the whole day talking and screaming. So I figured, ‘All right, I’m going to make a drink for them.’ I got this big jug and I made a huge thing of tea. I got hot water and 50 tea bags and about a half gallon of honey and 20 lemons. It was pretty much mostly honey. People enjoyed it. I put it in little Dixie cups and I served these little shots of tea to the girls between rounds and it was a big hit. And I can literally count on one hand the number of people who lost their voices this year. I was a key component in preserving everyone’s voices this year. A lot of people call me T. Flynn because it’s Taylor Flynn, but it kind of caught on saying Tea by T. Flynn. Tea shots by T.

6. Is it true you know everyone on campus? (Laughing) OK, not everyone. That is somewhat exaggerated but I tend to be involved. I do enjoy people’s company and I do enjoy getting to know people on campus. I’m on an athletic team, I’m in a social sorority, I’m in a business frat. So I tend to say hi to a lot of people when I’m out and about.Why do you call yourself Johnny Appleseed?(Laughing) Why do I call myself Johnny Appleseed? Point of clarification: I don’t call myself Johnny Appleseed, but I did make that reference once or twice. I guess because I have so many connections to a diverse group of people on campus, so I can plant the seed [by] connecting people that might not know each other otherwise. I did set a few girls up for a date night because I just know so many people. It was helpful.

7. Can you tell us about your “cereal killer” tendencies? So almost every nightlast year, I would just relax and hang out with one of the girls in my house. We would go into the kitchen and have some cereal and I would literally kill a box of cereal in a very short period of time. It was getting bad. So people started calling me a “cereal killer” because it was getting to be a half of a box each night. Portion control is not my forte at all.

8. Can you please describe your Starbucks order? I hear you pay $4 for milk and ice.OK. I used to. I’m definitely getting better now. Like my cooking, it has come a long way. I used to try to think of myself as a coffee drinker. It’s a tall ice coffee with mocha in a grande cup with extra room for ice and milk. I used to have to pour a lot out and I would have to go over the garbage and shield myself from the baristas, because I was so embarrassed that I was wasting it. I just think Starbucks is so good. It’s so much better than any other coffee and I really wanted the Gold Card. I was so gunning for that Gold Card. And once I got it, I Instagrammed it the second it came in the mail.And how does one obtain the “Gold Card”?I’m pretty sure you have to make 30 purchases in a certain amount of time.So 30 purchases of ice and milk.(Laughing) Yeah, thirty purchases of ice and milk and I was a Gold member.

9. Can you please tell us about your favorite Christmas sweatshirt?Oh my God. It is the best sweatshirt you can ever own. It’s a blue crew-neck sweatshirt from Salvo. I don’t know how sanitary it is, but whatever. It’s the perfect lounging sweatshirt. It’s perfect because the sleeves don’t come down to your hands, so your hands are free but you’re still warm. There’s no collar or hood that gets in your way. It’s comfortable and it does the job, but it’s also convenient. It lightens your mood up. I used to wear it to class on somewhat of a regular basis and I’ll admit it was getting a little over the top. But I don’t care what anyone says. It’s the best sweatshirt.

10. Which other Cornell team do you like to hang out with the most?I don’t think there is any one team in particular. I have a bunch of good friends on the lacrosse team, but I live with field hockey girls and I’ve lived with volleyball girls before too. But for my friend Madison, I guess I’ll go with the football managers.

Original Author: Katie Schubauer