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What Matters: The Meal Hrishikesh Hirway Longs to Eat Again

Debbie Millman has started a new project at PRINT titled “What Matters.” This is an ongoing effort to understand the interior life of artists, designers and creative thinkers. This facet of the project is a request of each invited respondent to answer 10 identical questions, and submit a decidedly nonprofessional photograph.



Up next: Hrishikesh Hirway, a musician and host of the podcast and Netflix show “Song Exploder.”



What is the thing you like doing most in the world?

Making things.


What is the first memory you have of being creative?

When I was 5 or 6 years old, I used to draw little cartoon characters that I called my “aliens.” Each one had its own look and attributes and personality. I would draw a horizon line on the page and then fill it with different aliens, on the ground or in the sky (some of the aliens could fly).


What is your biggest regret?

My teachers in elementary school convinced my parents that I should skip kindergarten and go straight to the first grade. I think that was a mistake. I wish I had stayed with kids my own age, rather than spend the rest of my time in school being younger and smaller.


How have you gotten over heartbreak?

With time, and with good friends who dragged me out of the house to create new, happy memories.


What makes you cry?

The self-sacrifice of others. In real life and in fiction, it always moves me profoundly.


How long does the pride and joy of accomplishing something last for you?

About four hours or so.


Do you believe in an afterlife, and if so, what does that look like to you?

No, I don’t.


What do you hate most about yourself?

Most of all: the fact that I have a pretty long list of things I hate about myself.


What do you love most about yourself?

I think I come up with some good ideas. Maybe everybody feels this way, but that’s OK.


What is your absolute favorite meal?

My mom was a great cook who made incredibly delicious Indian food. This was my favorite meal that she’d make for me: batata bhaji (potatoes) and chole (chickpeas) with puri (fried bread). I wish I could taste her cooking again!

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