Joe Tunney: AQ Features Editor

Photo: Sean McCullum

This week's Campus Celeb is third-year journalism student and features editor of The Aquinian, Joseph Tunney. Her Campus STU stopped to grab a Q&A - read all about it below!

How long have you been involved with The AQ?

This is my second year working with the Aquinian. I didn’t really get involved until my second year. I wrote something in first year about how much I love The Big Lebowski and the pseudo-philosophy of it all but I can’t really count that.

Do you have a favourite feature story that has been published this year?

It’s a tie between "Homeland Insecurity" which my friend Hadeel wrote about growing up in Iraq and being here and the separation she feels, and "From Ukraine with Love," which is the story of a girl (we’re friends now) and her loss of family members and friends in the riots in Ukraine. They’re powerful stories that both remind you about the amazing people around us, and that these global conflicts are our conflicts too.

What’s the best part about working on The AQ editorial team?

I could name a thousand things. We’re all a bunch of goofs in some way and we have a lot of fun, but we’re also very serious about our work. We want this paper to be the best and working together with this united goal has made this experience fantastic. That, and the puns.

Is there a worst/most tedious part?

When things fall through and/or you realize you don't have enough writers and you have to write a thousand stories. It’s something you have to be constantly managing. Also, when you have to grill somebody to get a story good enough to publish. You can feel like a jerk but it needs to be done.

Your humorous take on events has gotten a bit of backlash. Are you at all surprised, or were you expecting it?

Not really, we’re in the age of people being offended. It’s going to happen especially in comedy. My only issue is, people don’t say why they don’t like it. The best I’ve gotten is, ‘you’re not funny.’ I’m fine with that. Comedy is subjective. But I’ve tried to tackle some serious topics with the lens of comedy and gotten things like ‘this is brutal and offensive.” How so? What did I say that was offensive? I’m trying to make some real points here, if you disagree, tell me why. I don’t think comedy discredits me from serious thought.

If you were stranded on a deserted island, what are five items you would want with you?

I’m going to assume any thing that could get me off the island is off the table. My iPod, a solar panel charger thingy, a Gameboy with Pokémon Red in it, a water filer, and a lighter.

Describe your life with a movie title:

Perhaps Whatever Works by Woody Allen. If you ignore that it’s totally just his justification for dating girls too young (most of his films are), it’s a really good movie. It has good writing, monologues, jokes, plot and some beautiful scenes. It gives me a stupid love-struck grin every time I watch it. The one you get with your first romance that never goes away. And I like the sentiment of the film, ‘love isn’t perfect, but whatever works.’

Who would you take in a fight?

Confucius or Socrates. I’d like to see if they’re as good in a scrap as they are in conversation. They’d kick my ass. Everyone in the past must have been ripped. Socrates went around barefoot in the winter, didn’t feel hunger, could drink all night and day without getting drunk, was super poor, walked through wars like it was nothing, and founded Western Philosophy. I get tired from walking up stairs.

If you could nominate one Campus Cutie, who would it be?

Rebecca Ferris, without a doubt: underrated soul and a cutie to boot. Don’t underestimate her; she has depth. That’s what I’ve learned over the last three years.

Do you plan to take your journalism career farther after you graduate?

Yes but we’ll have to see what happens. I like the business. It allows me to reach out into people’s lives in a way I’m not sure I could otherwise. I feel like I have a role in society. I like the idea that I have a voice, and I can give that voice to others.