Sherman Ave Homecoming Court Interviews: Diego Henriquez-Garcia
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 roots, the band The Roots, and the movie Taken, among other things.
In this interview we talk with last year's DM emcee Diego Henriquez-Garcia about pining for lost middle school love, whether everyone in Florida is an alligator in a person costume, and his plan to turn his life into a romantic comedy.
Walter Klondike™: So tell us a little about yourself -- what do you do on campus, what are you studying?
Diego Henriquez-Garcia: I am Diego Henriquez-Garcia, I’m a senior, I am studying Political Science and International Studies. As far as things I do on campus, I am the Co-Director for the Global Engagement Summit, I was DM emcee last year, I’m a tour guide, I do research, I’m in Sigma Chi and I think.. yeah that sounds like what I do. I think.
Rich Homie Gina: You’re hardly involved
DHG: Naw, well I’m only in two classes this quarter which is awesome
WK: So. Where are you from?
DHG: Oh that’s a long answer. so, I was born in Venezuela, and then I lived there until I was 8 and moved to Florida. And then when I moved here, my family moved to Houston, so I’ve never been in a place for more than like 8 years. So I guess here? Florida? Let’s say Florida. Fort Lauderdale. Almost Miami, but not as cool.
Jenny Talia: Do you have a secret talent?
DHG: I can move my forehead without my like - well I have a very mobile face. So, I can move my nose, I can move my right ear but not my left - sometimes I can move it - yeah.
(Note: DHG is doing all of these awesome movements with his malleable face as the interviewers “ooh” and “ahh”)
JT: Oh there it goes!
DHG: I can move my eyebrows a lot. And then, this is the kicker (DHG continues to move his hair back in forth in such a way one believed to only be achievable by Donald Trump)
DHG: Yeahhh. Yeahhhhh. I also have two toes that are stuck together. (DHG shows the interviewer his siamese twin toes) That’s not really a talent, it’s more of a thing.
WK: It’s an identifier.
DHG: yeah, if we’re going with body stuff.
JT: It’s good all of this is very visual. Perfect for a written interview.
DHG: Oh I’ll think of another one!
WK: It’s fine we’ll put in some crazy editors notes later. [Editor’s Note: Wazoo! Blooie!]
JT: “his ear looked like it was going to fall off…!” [Editor’s Note: It did not, yellow journalism is not tolerated at Sherman Ave]
RHG: His toes that are stuck together were actually just one. giant. toe.
WK: What is your best memory from freshman year?
DHG: (Pause) There’s a large lack of memories from freshman year.
DHG: (laughing) Ummm let’s see. There’s gotta be some… right?
JT: Or the entire year was a blur.
DHG: I guess Catalyst doesn’t count, but, honestly the best memories were between all the parties and stuff. When everyone was exhausted at 3:00 am, just hanging out. Those are the best times. There was actually one time, before a party, it was my friend, Jess Ziniel’s birthday, and she was like, “Oh, no one realized it was my birthday, it doesn't matter, it’s okay.” So we got really dressed up and we went downtown. It was completely unplanned, we didn’t know anything about downtown and we found a random restaurant that turned out to be super expensive. But we were just like, “go for it!”. So we went to that and then we took pictures at the bean and then came back. AND THEN we went to frat parties. But all the guys were in suits and the girls were wearing nice dresses. And we were in the Pike basement.
RHG: The best place to be dressed up
DHG: Ya know? Dress for the job you want not for the job you have.
RHG: Cleaning the Pike house!
DHG: With my tie (laughs). So that was really really fun.
WK: The Northwestern dream job. So you’re a tour guide. What is your favorite lie to tell tour groups about Northwestern?
DHG: Ahhh you’re gonna get me fired. Hmm I’m not sure. Ok but actually our boss reads these.
JT: Ah ok. Well then kind of on the same stream but less “get-you-firedy”, where would you say the best place to bang on campus is?
DHG: OOOoooo Ok. I would never say this on a tour... #tellmybossthat (he actually said that). But, it all depends on your vibe, right? Like, what are you trying to do? If you’re trying to be really risque.. like.. library… after hours. You know, empty but not that empty where you could maybe get your rocks off by someone maybe walking in on you. Um, Shakespeare’s Garden is outdoorsy and very spacious and you can get lost in it. But then there’s also this little cove, by Deering, you know? The really creepy secret garden with the gates on it. You could lock those. Like, safety first. There’s the classic rocks on the lakefill I feel like every freshman has done.
JT: For sure.
DHG: Every time I’m there past eleven [Editor’s Note: PM we can ONLY assume], I see two people coming out of the rocks holding hands and I’m like “k.”
WK: Oh yeah that’s definitely a thing.
DHG: But then I know they read on those during the day so it’s just kinda of like, “what’s happened here?” Oh. Roof of Ford is also a good one.
WK: I’ve heard of roof of Swift too… (trying to act like he’s in the know)
DHG: So they closed it off though. So before you had to take the fire escape from the back and then there’d be a dumpster there you could climb on to get on the fire escape. But they took that away so there’s no way to get the fire escape down. Unless you go from the inside and try different doors, but you never know which of those have an alarm…
DHG: Ford, you literally just take an elevator.
JT: Good to know…
DHG: Yeah just in case you’re ever banging on campus. Always be prepared! Safety first! Consent is Sexy! Always have a backup spot… and there’s solar panels on the roof of Ford.
RHG: Oh that’s good.
DHG: That’s an aphrodisiac in many spheres. Like, aren’t you turned on by the energy efficiency?
WK: Yeah you don’t really even need another person there.
DHG: Nope, just me!
WK: Just you and the solar panels.
RHG: So this is a question about your sweet, sort of hometown, Fort Lauderdale. So, you’re from Florida. Is everyone in Florida actually just an alligator in a human suit?
DHG: Oh. Ok, so I think that depends again on who you ask, right? Taking the liberal arts part of me, like, what is an alligator? So it’s mostly old people with really dried up, tan skin, that’s almost scaly… So, I would go with yes. I would go with yes. And they can be kind of mean. Like, they’re docile if you don’t poke at them too much. But if you do they’ll bite at you.
WK: They’re faster than you would think
DHG: They’re WAY faster than you think! You think they wouldn’t be, with their short limbs you’d think they’d be somewhat inhibited, but wave a raw chicken and they’ll go for it. You know? Yeah.
WK: To get away from old people you just run zig zags. That’s what I do.
DHG: Pretty much. Or really slowly so they can’t really tell if that blurry thing in front of them is a tree or a human.
WK: There you go. (Pause) So, imagine I’m Morty, and you have 10 seconds to make me cry. Go.
DHG: Oh. Um. I only have 10 seconds? What would hit his core? What would hit his core. Your poodles are ugly and we know you only wear purple everyday because you were also the dean of Williams and they had the same color.
WK: He reused his wardrobe! That’s the most specific answer we’ve ever gotten.
DHG: I’m sorry Morty, I’m sorry.
JT: That was one was personal, that’s good.
DHG: Was that below the belt? I’m sorry.
JT: No, it was his exterior, so it was above the belt...unless it’s purple.
JT: So...you’re in a fraternity, do you think humans should play god?
DHG: Oh my god, ohhh, in general no. I’ve watched plenty of movies and that’s never worked out well. However, I think we all try to and that’s why you end up, I can’t think of a good...no. No, but we will all probably try. These are hitting deep. I was trying to think of things you might ask me but it’s like, “Nope, that was a waste of my time.”
WK: So are you familiar with the movie Taken?
DHG: Oh, I have a lot of thoughts on the movie Taken.
WK: Ok, imagine you are taken. Who on the homecoming court would you want to be your Liam Neeson?
DHG: Nevil George. Because first of all, genius man. He like codes and does a bunch of things I don’t understand but it would be a good action montage, you know like puts some Hans Zimmer music behind him and put him a dark room with some laptops and he’d just code me out of whatever weird prostitution ring I’m in. Dark horse, right? No one would expect him to be threatening but like he’ll cut you if he needs to. He’s also a brother of Sigma Chi, so he’d get so much shit if he didn’t save me. Even if he didn’t want to save me, he’d get a lot of shit for not doing it. So that’s like insurance, you know? It’s like reputational insurance. He’d get blown up on the listserv if he let me die.
WK: That’d be like so not cool.
DHG: So not cool. Like there’d be GIFs and pictures. Not cool. He also wears cargo shorts, so lots of room for gadgets. Gadgets are important in Taken.
WK: So he’d kill for you?
DHG: Yeah, he’d definitely find a corporate sponsor. He’s good at that. So like now it’s Pepsi and Sigma Chi.
WK: That’s a key part of that movie.
DHG: Yeah, everyone drank Orangina and everyone drove an Audi. Don’t think I didn’t notice that.
WK: Is that true?
DHG: Yeah! It’s like there’s no way!
WK: I would like to hear your other thoughts on the movie.
DHG: Ok, ok, first of all, how long do you have? First off, sponsors, too obvious. There’s no way that every weird mobster drives an Audi, unless it’s some sort of fetish that I’m not aware of. Like furries, Audis, I don’t know. Second, not everyone likes Orangina. Third, that girl that got taken, she’s like what? 20? 19? She’s going to college. She wears like a bedazzled with a unicorn jean jacket! Don’t send somebody that wears bedazzled unicorn jean jackets abroad alone! Like, really? Really? Red flag, Liam! Red flag! In the end, when there’s that final action sequence on the boat and he literally shoots everyone, everyone’s dead, and they just hug and chill and drive off into the sunset, who the fuck is driving the boat? Like is there someone that they left alive that is totally chill with all the gunshots behind them and he’s like, “I don’t get paid enough for this, I’m just gonna keep driving the boat.” Or like is the boat going to crash at some point?
WK: He’s like, “It’s probably fine.”
DHG: Well there’s a Taken 2 and 3, which I refuse to see because
RHG: Because you never knew who was driving the boat!
DHG: Right! They died! They died because Liam Neeson didn’t shoot that person or the boat crashed. Those are my thoughts.
JT: So many holes
DHG: Besides that, it’s a great movie
WK/RHG: It’s a great movie
JT: I’ve never seen it.
DHG: Well I just ruined the ending for you, but you knew there is a 2 and 3, so you knew she lives.
RHG: So besides Taken, what’s your least favorite movie?
DHG: Shit, um, I love movies. Shit. So I forgot the title but it was a Julia Robert’s movie, I think it’s like the Stepmother or something? But it’s not funny.
RHG: Oh, Stepmom with Susan Sarandon?
DHG: Yeah and the mom has cancer. It’s either that or that new Amy Adams movie Big Eyes. So here’s the plot: She’s a painter who paints people with really big eyes and its super kitschy and stuff and her husband takes credit for it and that’s it. That’s the plot. And at the end she’s sad and angry and leaves.
TW: That’s the movie that wants to be a Wes Anderson movie? Right?
DHG: Yeah except it didn’t even try to. There’s no climax. It’s like “He stole it!” and we’re like “We know, it was in the trailer!” and she’s like “I’m sick of this!” and she leaves and we’re like “What now?” and she leaves and the credits roll and we’re like “What the fuck? That was 10 bucks.” Like come on, Amy Adams! You were in The Muppets and that had a better plot!
TW: That was a good movie though.
DHG: The Muppets? That was great. And Stepmom, maybe I just don’t have the soul but everyone was crying and I was like, “We all knew she was gonna die, why are y’all shocked about this?” Like I’m just saying, emotionally prepare yourself. And then my whole family was like, “You’re soulless” and I was like “You just have shitty taste in movies.” Wow, I’m surprised I could come up with answer for that.
JT: Yeah and you had two!
WK: So... truth or dare?
DHG: I’m trying to look around and think what you’d make me do. I’m gonna go with truth.
WK: Oh, damn.
DHG: What was going to be the dare?
WK: So we were playing off the fact that you’re from Houston and we were going to have you call NASA customer service and tell them that your spaceship is broken.
DHG: Oh my god, hell yeah, let’s do it. Do you have the number?
JT: Of course we do.
DHG: Can I *67 NASA? I don’t want to get put on some list. So, I’m not a citizen yet, I’m working on it. So I’m trying to not get deported right now, but I’m down to like push the boundaries a little bit.
(We give DHG the number, which you freaks can look up for yourselves, who do you think we are? Yellowpages.com?)
DHG: I gotta plan this out a little bit...ok…Houston I got a problem. Do you know where Tech? I’ll just keep asking them where Tech is.
(We get an answering machine)
DHG (commenting on the voice message): This is not Buzz Aldrin
(The message is f o r e v e r. We hang up because it was NOT Buzz Aldrin).
DHG: I’ll answer the truth then. At least we tried.
JT: We tried. Ok so the truth was: what was the name of your 8th grade crush and why did you like them?
DHG: Oooh, who was it? Oh I had an 8th grade girlfriend for roughly 15 minutes, literally started and ended on AIM. It was real
DHG: Yeah, it was a whirlwind romance that really set me up for the world of dating.
JT : What was this girl’s name?
WK: Did you play the game like “well, who do you like?”
DHG: Yeah, totally. We did the whole “I’ll tell you if you tell me.” And then I found out in high school, she said “yeah, I hated every moment of it.” It was so awkward. And I was like, “Great. I feel great about myself.” It’s funny how an 8th grade thing will come back to you junior year of high school and you’ll be like, “I still feel bad about that.” Like, “this still makes me feel like a fat 8th grader.” I’d lost a solid 15 pounds by then. Damn it, Marissa.
JT: What was her last name, by the way?
DHG: We’re not looking her up on Facebook. No no no no no.
JT: No, I’m not. Just what was her last name.
DHG: Nope, I don’t know, line drawn. I just called a government agency for you, you’re not getting a last name.
WK: So, you were last year’s DM emcee. Can you try as hard as you can to pump us up right now?
DHG: Oh, god. That’s like the interview.
RHG: Oh, for DM?
JT: Oh wow, we were thinking “What a great awkward question we thought of.”
DHG: Well if was really awkward the first time too. So what they do is the first round is normal. And then the second round is they say “give us your schedule for the week and don’t plan anything else,” and they wake you up at 3 AM and say, “Be in Norris in 30 minutes.” And so one of the things they do is they pretend to fall asleep and say, “Pump us up, right now.”
JT: Oh my god, that’s actually so cool.
RHG: Who was your other emcee?
DHG: Christina Garcia-Montes
JT: Oh, I didn’t receive the save the date for your wedding.
DHG: Well there’s a couple of problems. First of all, she has a great boyfriend, Jacob. Umm, I’m working on that though. I’m working on it.
WK: You could be in a romantic comedy.
DHG: Yeah, I’ve been thinking about that a lot. First of all, he’s a consultant--way smarter than me, but doesn’t have friends. I’m gonna do the insidious route. Like, come from behind, he’ll never expect it until it’s way too late. Right? And I’m a pretty good cook. Christina loves her some home cooking. Right? Ok, what else? Better dancer. My hip thrusts? On point. She already likes them, she already knows them. Oh, during DM our poop schedules even got aligned. What more bonding do you need? Like, I will always have that over Jacob. Right? You can be like, “Oh we’re in love,” but we poop at the same time.
WK: Issue if you live together though.
DHG: Two bathrooms. Or, or extreme bonding. The amount of boundaries that broke down--like personal, hygienic, emotional boundaries that broke down during winter quarter…
WK: So, I’m sure you’re aware there was a pretty strong protest trying to keep you off Homecoming Court. What is your message for the haters.
DHG: Oh really?
WK: Yeah, there were people marching down Sheridan chanting “No, Diego, no!”
DHG: Oh my god, I thought that was a Donald Trump rally.
JT: I think the two things got intertwined at one point, there was a lot of confusion.
DHG: Umm, I would say...no, that’s trite. Umm...I may be aggressively mediocre, however, I look good in purple. That’s pretty much all I’ve got. Like literally no qualifications. I can’t be like, “I’m good at accounting,” cause I’m not.
RHG: Could you please make up a slogan for Homecoming Week?
DHG: (Pause) This is more advice than a slogan, but “Homecoming Week: If you wear a tie you can get into any alumni reception, open bar.” I hope that doesn’t let the Homecoming committee know so they beef up security.
WK: So, I think this is the last one we have time for, but what is your advice to new freshmen?
DHG: There are few mistakes that you really can’t fix, so just go for it.
Hey, cutie. While you’re here, you should apply for Sherman Ave.