Sherman Ave Homecoming Court Interviews: Danny Callison
In the past two weeks Sherman Ave has interviewed the 12 members of Northwestern’s 2015 Homecoming Court to have them reflect on their Northwestern experience, their imaginary Princeton experience, the smell of Folger's in your cup, and the downsides of getting a Samsung Galaxy S6. Samsung: Design the Future.
In this installment we talk with Danny Callison about why philanthropy is a sham, which member of the Wu-Tang Clan is better than Cappadonna (hint, it's all of them), and his forbidden crush on Carla Bruni.
Clint Taurus: To start it off, what are you involved with on campus?
Danny Callison: I am involved with ASB, and I have led some trips on that. I also just led one for incoming freshmen. It was a good time. It is a good organization. I am in Sigma Nu and I like that a lot. I was the philanthropy chair for a long time. You guys may remember the best philanthropic event ever held on the Northwestern University campus, the Trick-or-Trot 5K. I think we got about 5 people, so it was good.
Scurvy Jacobson: Legendary
DC: And then I was on WNUR for a bit and probably some other stuff, too, but those are the main things.
CT: What on WNUR did you host? Were you on the Rock Show?
DC: I was on the the Rock Show, yeah.
DC: I also had a free-form show at 3:00AM fall quarter freshman year.
CT: Oh, my roommate has one of those. I have a lot of friends involved with the Rock Show.
SJ: What did you do on the free show?
DC: I just did whatever I wanted. You have to apprentice for two quarters, so I wanted a show immediately, and there was some weird dude who was just there every night, and he was fifty, and really loved WNUR, and was just there.
CT: That’s the thing. I used to do this show on WNUR, a talk show, and there’s a lot of weirdos who call in.
DC: Yeah, you definitely get some interesting people who call in and request stuff.
SJ: So you talk to people in the Chicagoland area?
DC: Not really. At 3:00AM, it was just this dude who was like a community DJ and had a show at 5:00AM and he just stayed all night. And then during the day it was just pizza guys, and people listening to WNUR.
CT: We got called by, during my show, this guy named Rick Goldstein, who kept calling himself an American Hero. He kept saying that his writings were read on the floor of congress. I have no way to fact-check that. I mean, I do have a way, I just didn’t fact-check it. I took his word for it.
DC: I mean, yeah. People don’t lie to people.
SJ: Never. So, you aren’t doing WNUR anymore?
DC: I’m not, dude. I did it freshman and sophomore year, but I just…Once I went abroad, I didn’t go back to it.
CT: And you hate music now.
DC: I do. I hate music. I think if there’s anything you need to know about me, it’s that I really hate music.
CT: Scurvy tells me you’re a really big Wu Tang Clan fan even though you hate music.
DC: I’m not a fan of their music, just them.
CT: So are you more of a Ghostface or a Cappadonna
DC: It’d have to be Ghostface. Who on earth is more of a Cappadonna fan than a Ghostface?
CT: Me, probably.
DC: That’s really interesting.
CT: Root for the underdog.
SJ: Ghostface is kind of a douchebag.
DC: Oh, he definitely is. Did you see his Action Bronson thing? That was hilarious. I would say, I think definitely the best member is Inspectah Deck because--
CT: I originally was going to ask you if you were more of a Ghostface or an Inspectah Deck.
DC: Inspectah Deck by a longshot. I mean that guy--
CT: Ladysmith is more of a U-God type of dude
Ladysmith Black Tar Heroin M’baso: Yeah...him.
DC: I think he’s underrated. He only had two verses on “Enter the Wu-Tang,” and his was on “Da Mystery of Chessboxin,” and he had the best one.
SJ: Do you have a favorite classic Wu-Tang Album? And then also a solo album from one of the members?
DC: Yeah. “Enter the Wu-Tang” I think is pretty untouchable. It will always be the best. I mean. “Wu-Tang Forever” was pretty decent, too. The new one wasn’t that bad. I can’t remember what it’s called now, which probably isn’t a good sign. It wasn’t that bad.
LBTHM: As long as you hate music now, you don’t really need it.
DC: Yeah. That’s true. I just listened to it once, and I was like “alright, that was fine.”
CT: But you hate music!
DC: I don’t know why I did it to myself. And then, “Liquid Swords”, I think, is probably my favorite solo album. I think that you can make a very solid case for “Only Built 4 Cuban Linx.”
CT: I like “Only Built 4 Cuban Linx,” too.
DC: Yeah, I’ve just, I’m definitely more of a GZA guy than a Raekwon. I like Raekwon.
SJ: I know very little about Wu-Tang. I was faking it.
LBTHM: You were doing better than I was.
DC: Ghostface has a pretty consistent record, too. I’d say he hasn’t had the high-highs that some of the other guys have, but he’s in the very consistent realm. I don’t think he’s put out something great.
SJ: There’s one more question about Wu-Tang I wanted to ask you. Imagine this scenario: Method Man walks into this room and says, “Danny Callison, you can join the Wu-Tang Clan, but only if you spell my name backwards, and without messing up.” What do you say in response?
DC: N-A-M… D-O-H-T-E-M?
SJ: You’re in Wu-Tang!
CT: Would you want to be in Wu-Tang?
DC: Yes! Why not?
CT: That seems like a lot of pressure.
LBTHM: And there would be so much music!
CT: And you have such a history.
SJ: Also, if one of them gets in some shit, like, you gotta deal with that.
DC: Right. But the thing with that is that I think it would be worth it. I think that there’s no higher cause on this planet than Wu-Tang.
CT: What about the children?
DC: Well, that’s the thing. Wu-Tang is for the children, you know? You go through Wu-Tang to children.
SJ: Mhm. Okay, so I guess I have one question kind of tangentially related to that. On Facebook, I saw a picture recently that World of Beer in downtown Evanston ordered you a T-Shirt after it seems like you tried 50 beers there.
SJ: If elected, how are you gonna use your platform to help the children?
DC: How am I going to use my platform? How am I gonna use my 50 beers shirt or is that just an entirely--
CT: Your experience
LBTHM: Well, and a world of knowledge
CT: and the World of Beer
DC: I think that though my experience at the World of Beer, really by training hard, just fighting, I mean it was a long journey, and I think that a lot of people go through difficult things in life, but my personal journey, my cross to bear was drinking 50 different beers. I think through that long, difficult journey of about seven months, I think I learned a lot about myself and I think that I now know that the goal of life is to spread joy, and children need joy and I probably would not give them beer. That would not be the way to accomplish it, but I would do my best as Homecoming King to spread joy to everyone at Northwestern.
LBTHM: Would you be willing to share that T-shirt with a child?
CT: Like, if it was really cold
DC: Yeah, absolutely. I think, hey man, I’ve got 50 more beers to drink and I’ll get a new T-shirt. I’ll just keep drinking and getting T-shirts, and then I could clothe at least two children by the end of my Northwestern career.
SJ: How do they keep track of how many beers you’ve had?
DC: You’ve got a loyalty card. They keep track, and you can go on the app, and you can see all of the beers you’ve tried. They have all of these badges that mean nothing. I’m a “hop-head” because I’ve tried twenty IPAs, but that doesn’t mean anything. I thought it meant I’d get a free IPA, but no, it just meant--
LBTHM: --You get a free badge.
SJ: Is WOB your favorite place in Evanston to grab a cool brew on a summer day?
CT: As opposed to where, Buffalo Joe’s?
SJ: There’s that place that opened last year. Bangers and Lace.
DC: I think Bat is probably my favorite in terms of--for some reason beer is infinitely better when in a plastic tube. I think Bat is my favorite, but they just don’t have the same loyalty opportunities. Also, Smiley Brothers Happy Hour. I just found out. I went there the other day with some friends. We got two pizzas and six beers.
CT: Yeah, the pizza’s really good
DC: $30 at happy hour!
CT: I went there and I got a pulled pork sandwich, and I was like “This isn’t very good,” but the pizza is really tasty.
DC: The potato and bacon one is really good. The cheese is cheese curds. They just throw cheese curds on pizza.
CT: You get to sit at the pizza bar
CT: It’s A+. Everything else there is not very good, but the pizza...
DC: The brisket was pretty good.
LBTHM: Does this count as a sponsorship?
CT: It can be one of those things where they read it and we get a free lunch.
DC: My entire Homecoming campaign is just a charade for Smiley Brothers.
LBTHM: What did you think of the Harlem Shake craze a little while back?
DC: Yea, that was a while back. Was that our freshman year?
CT: I was in high school.
SJ: It was our freshman year.
DC: It was kind of a weird trend. I feel like there’s always a weird trend of like, like TV hosts, and kind of nerdy white people taking over things that really don’t need to be taken over, being fascinated with urban trends and it’s kind of weird.
CT: Like the Wu Tang Clan?
DC: Not like the Wu Tang Clan, because you could make that argument if I didn’t also listen to a lot of rap and I’ve spent my time, man.
CT: Ladysmith is really into the Black Panther Party.
LBTHM: It’s my favorite party.
DC: I actually thought that when I walked in the door.
CT: Mine’s birthday.
DC: Oh, well played. But yeah, the Harlem Shake, I don’t know why it lasted so long.
LBTHM: Did you ever participate?
DC: Uh, no. Oh, I actually might’ve for some student group or something…
SJ: Oh, the truth comes out.
DC: Well, I’m saying that because I don’t remember. I’m saying that because I wouldn’t be shocked if I had for some student group I was in--I really hope I didn’t because that would be really silly of me.
CT: I was watching some videos the other day, and it actually seems really fun. But I never did it.
LBTHM: Oh, I did one with my temple, and it was as awful as it sounds.
SJ: (to Danny) Did you ever learn how to do the Soulja Boy dance?
SJ: I don’t know, what are other crazes that took over for a few months?
CT: Dougie, Cupid Shuffle…
LBTHM: They taught us how to do that in school, in preparation for bar mitzvahs.
DC: Yeah, I mean in middle school dances I just kinda sat in the corner and waited for them to go by, because I was like, “I don’t know how to do this one…”
SJ: Yeah, you wonder what type of personality it takes to enjoy a middle school dance.
CT: I liked them.
DC: There’s the answer.
CT: I like dancing!
DC: The thing with middle school dances is that if you had even the slightest sliver of confidence you’d be fine. Everyone else has like zero confidence…
CT: So, while we’re talking about 8th grade, we have another question about that. Do you remember your 8th grade crush?
DC: Yeah! This is gonna sound super pretentious, but I actually lived in Paris in 8th grade, because of my dad’s job. So I was in France at this international school…
CT: And it was Carla Bruni!
DC: Yeah, exactly. I met Nicolas Sarkozy and I said to him, “Not a big fan of your politics, but big fan of your wife.”
SJ: So how’s your French?
DC: God awful.
CT: Oh, but who was your crush?
DC: Umm...I think I had a few. From what I remember I think she was French or Belgian--one of the countries that speak French--and yeah, she was kind of cute. And I actually asked her to be my girlfriend at the middle school dance, and she was like, “No.” So I was “Alright.” and I walked away and I didn’t ask a girl out for another four or five years.
CT: It takes time.
DC: Yeah, so it was a good time!
CT: Yeah, and Carla Bruni was married so she had an excuse. What she was doing at that dance I don’t know.
SJ: You studied abroad last year. How was Argentina?
DC: It was a good time. I mean you can vouch for it, too. [Editor’s Note: Scurvy and Danny are best pals because they studied abroad in Argentina, and that’s a bond thicker than blood I’m told]
CT: What’s you guys’ best memory together?
SJ: We made out in a bar once.
DC: That was a good night for you and not so great for me. I really thought we could have been something, but...guess not.
SJ: Do you stay in touch with your host mom?
DC: I’ve wished her a happy birthday on Facebook. Sometimes she likes my stuff on Facebook.
CT: Does your host mom comment on your photos? Because Scurvy’s host mom does that.
DC: Yea, she does that a lot. Not so much, for me the funny thing is what I got, I don’t know if you guys saw, but the ASB Facebook page posted about me being on Homecoming Court--I don’t know why, I was like, alright, cool--but the funny thing is, my host brother from Argentina was like “congrats, King of the North”--
DC: --And then this dude who was like 35, really cool, met him at my host mom’s son’s wedding and he was nice dude, he lived in our apartment building. He was like “congrats,” and I was like “Do you guys even know what that even is?” Like do they have that there? I guess maybe, I just thought it was interesting that they were super into it. Not my host mom, I met like two Argentine people and they comment on stuff.
CT: So, would you like to do a truth or dare?
DC: Yea. Dare.
CT: What’s your favorite sports team?
CT: OK, so I’m going to ask you to call the front office of the Seahawks and ask if they’re refrigerator is running.
CT: OK, Seattle Seahawks customer service is 1-888 635-4295.
DC: So, ask if their refrigerator is running, anything else you want?
LBTHM: You can come up with your own punchline, but I think it’s pretty clear what comes next.
Automated Seahawks Phone: Thanks for calling the Seattle Seahawks ticket office. For single game tickets, please press two. For information on Blue Pride Membership for season ticket packages, please press three.
DC: That seems promising.
Seahawks Phone: If you are a season ticket holder and you have questions about your account, or for any service-related matters, please press four.
(Rip-off of NFL Fox theme plays while on hold.)
Nice Seahawks employee: Seahawks, Karen speaking.
DC: Hi, um, is your refrigerator running?
Karen: Can I help you with something today?
(Stifled laughter at Karen not fucking around)
DC: Yea, uh, you know I just ordered a jersey from the Seahawks a couple days ago and I was actually curious if your guys’ refrigerator was running.
Sad Karen: Can I help you with something today, sir?
(Stifled laughs at Karen not being allowed to hang up)
DC: (Dejected) I guess not, I’m sorry.
(Danny hangs up)
DC: She was very professional. I respect that.
SJ: She had handled that before.
DC: Yeah, she has definitely handled that before. I did order a jersey, I wasn’t lying about that.
CT: Which jersey did you get?
DC: Richard Sherman, man.
CT: Nice, yea. I’m a really big fan of their secondary. It’s perfection.
SJ: You like the Seahawks secondary?
CT: Yea, with Chancellor and Sherman and their cornerbacks, very rarely do you see a unit of football that great.
DC: I totally knew that.
SJ: It just seemed like a really specific category to like.
CT: Well it’s like how you like someone’s quarterback.
SJ: The quarterbacks are the studs and the stars, though.
DC: Russell Wilson is kind of annoying though. I’m convinced that he has to have something going on that he’s hiding from the public.
CT: Like what?
DC: He’s just too...you know, he’s kind of like the Macklemore of football to me. He’s good at what he does, I think Macklemore is a good rapper, I just think he’s way too corny.
CT: Woah, let’s put that on the record.
DC: I think that Russell Wilson is too preachy, “I’m a good Christian boy and I don’t have sex with my wife.”
LBTHM: Yea, was it like a confession?
DC: No, it wasn’t a confession, it was a thing of pride. They were like, “we don’t think it’s necessary for our relationship so we don’t do it.” I was like why not just keep that to yourselves and move on with your lives?
LBTHM: But don’t you feel better being in the loop?
DC: Kind of. I mean, now that I know it, I’m happy I know it. It does give me something to talk about, I guess.
CT: So you said he’s the Macklemore of football. Who’s his Ryan Lewis?
DC: That’s a good question. I think that Ryan Lewis has a lot of potential and he’s not being used well. I mean, dude’s won a grammy so I guess that’s a stupid thing to say.
CT: So has Corinne Bailey-Ray.
DC: I don’t know man. Now you’re catching me off-guard because I don’t really know enough about the Seahawks so I’m just going to say Marshawn Lynch because he’s a valuable player and he always just does his thing.
SJ: Better question than what Clint asked--no offense Clint--who’s his Azaelia Banks, or his biggest critic, or his nemesis?
DC: Is there an Azaelia Banks-Macklemore beef?
SJ: She talked trash about Macklemore on Hot 97.
DC: That’s weird. I think Macklemore generally is respected by people. The Kendrick Lamar [Grammy] thing was stupid, like why post that stupid text? Just text him about and be like ‘sorry man, you deserved to win and chill.
SJ: Or just take the W, you know?
DC: That also is a valid point. I think he clearly won, and I guess, he probably should have just chilled and gone with it. Who’s his Azaelia Banks? I don’t know.
CT: Kam Chancellor.
DC: Yea, sure. Somebody.
LBTHM: I’m learning a lot about football.
DC: Oh, dude, Golden Tate! When did Russell Wilson and Ciara start, are they married our going out?
CT: I think they’re going out.
DC: When did they start doing that? Because before that Russell Wilson had a girlfriend or wife, because I heard rumors that that person was cheating on him with Golden Tate.
DC: So I would say Golden Tate.
SJ: That’s a good answer.
DC: ...who stole a donut from a donut store near where I lived in Seattle.
SJ: Have you been to that donut store?
DC: I have been, many times.
CT: Is it good? What’s it called? While we’re plugging a lot of places.
DC: I think it’s Top Pot but I’m not sure. But yea, he stole a Maple Bar and they used it as a marketing opportunity. Like, ‘The Seahawks’ favorite donut!’ or something like that.
SJ: Did he just eat it in the store and not pay for it?
DC: He lived in the same apartment complex, it was like in the lobby of his complex, I think he was drunk or something in the middle of the night, and took a donut.
CT: So we’ll try to wrap this up with one final question. What advice would you give to the freshman?
DC: The biggest advice I would give, I think, I personally really enjoyed my time here at Northwestern, and I think that is because I was open to doing things. I feel like there were times I caved to pressure, you know everybody’s so intense and wants to join all the clubs and take all the hard classes, and I think I kind of did that at the beginning of freshman year. And then I just started doing what I wanted to do, things that interested me like Rock Show, Sigma Nu--I never expected I would like to be in a frat--I checked it out and I was open to it. So I would just say be open to things and really invest your time in things you think are valuable to you and that you actually enjoy. Because otherwise, you’re not wasting your time, but if you’re not doing something valuable to you, it’s probably not the best use of time.
SJ: What do you think is going to happen in your election?
DC: That’s a good question. I honestly don’t know the other people, they seem like they are probably cooler people than me, and probably deserve it more, so I’m going to go out on a limb and say that they will probably win. But, I have a lot of heart, and I got a lot of big plans here, so keep your eye out for the Danny Callison Homecoming King 2015 Campaign.
CT: The Reign of Terror.
DC: Yea, the Reign of Terror. I’ve got some good ideas for some posters and stuff I’ve got to get my campaign committee together, and we’ll see how it goes.
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