Twenty Questions with Jane Etheridge
Welcome To Twenty Questions!
Every week I’ll be sharing a new twenty-something on the blog and their responses to twenty quick-fire, intimate questions about themselves. No one featured on Twenty Questions is a celebrity or public figure, and most of these people I don’t know very well, or at all. My hope is that by taking a peek into someone else’s soul you will realise that, despite our fundamental differences, we still have similar insecurities, make similar mistakes and have fought similar battles to become the people we are today.
What is your full name?
Jane Elizabeth D’Arcy Etheridge.
How old are you?
How old do you feel?
Sometimes 16, often 80.
Where were you born, and where do you live now?
Auckland, currently Auckland, very soon New York or London (can’t decide!).
What do you do for work?
I work in marketing for a New Zealand skincare company, I’m finishing a Masters in Marketing, I work as a researcher at the University of Auckland and I also model a little.
What do you do for fun?
Not much these days with so much on! I’m working on a couple of little businesses at the moment, so whenever I get some free time I love working on them. I’m also trying to build upon my high school French and reach some sort of fluency so I can live in France at some stage in the future. This is proving difficult however and I end up just watching French films and loosely translating with the inevitable help of subtitles. I enjoy going to yoga when I can. Most of all though, I love going for a few drinks with my friends and dancing. LOVES a boogie.
Did you go to university? If so, what did you study? If not, why?
I studied law and arts in Wellington for two years, simply because I didn’t have a clue what I wanted to do or who I wanted to be. My parents always told me I was incredibly argumentative and a bit righteous so it seemed like the logical option. I was then asked to go and model in Miami, which as a 19-year-old seemed the far more exciting option. Four years later after working as a model around the world I came home to transfer from law to commerce and loved it. I was then asked to do a masters and it’s been the best decision I’ve ever made.
What is your favourite movie of all time?
There are SO many. Top 5 would be:
– Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
– Les Intouchables
– Bridget Jones (1&2, not 3!)
– True Romance
What is the biggest risk you have ever taken that has paid off?
Deciding to pursue a pretty unique and unstable career and not return to university in Wellington. There were many times when I thought I’d made the wrong decision, but in the end, it all worked out perfectly.
Hardest moment of your twenties so far?
There have been plenty. Moving to London at twenty and not knowing a single person there. I was consumed by loneliness but it really forced me to shake off my once very shy nature, make an effort and put myself out there. Feeling totally lost with what I wanted to do with myself. Break-ups, make-ups, more break-ups. Saying goodbye to love on the other side of the world.
Best moment of your twenties so far?
Moving to London at twenty and not knowing a single person there! All the travel I’ve been fortunate enough to experience, all the subsequent friendships I’ve made with incredible people from all over the world. All the crazy parties! But most of all reaching a stage where I know who I am and being totally comfortable with that person. As a teenager and in my early twenties I was always so worried about what people thought of me, about where I was in my life in comparison to others. It was crippling and exhausting. Finally reaching a stage where you’re the person you were always meant to be, and being very happy and content with that is totally liberating.
Who do you miss?
My two darling best friends who’ve moved to London, Hannah and Zac. They mean the world to me! They are both so beautiful, fiercely intelligent, and make me laugh more than anything. Two of the coolest people in the world. I immensely miss my big sister who’s also in the U.K. She is the kindest and most genuine soul. Whenever I talk to her I’m reminded of how truly beautiful she is on the inside and out. She would help and do anything for absolutely anyone. She’s an angel!
What do you like the most about yourself?
I’m very loyal to those in my life. Sometimes this has been to my detriment, when I’ve stood up for the wrong person and cannibalized other friendships in the process. But at the end of the day, my friends and family know I would support and defend them no matter what.
What do you like the least about yourself?
I often found it hard to resonate with or comprehend other people’s actions as I couldn’t escape the mind-set of, ‘I would never do that to someone’. I still find myself doing this sometimes. It took me a long time to realise that not everyone thinks like I do (no shit!), everyone is fighting their own battles and everyone is a product of their own unique experiences. Everyone deserves to be heard, and sometimes that’s all they need. I’m also inherently lazy when it comes to exercise. Very eager to experience this runner’s high but I just end up experiencing nausea.
Oh and I’m untidy. Really, really untidy.
If you had to get a tattoo, what would you get and where would you get it? If you already have tattoos, which is your favourite and why?
I don’t have any tattoos and don’t think I ever will. However, if I had to, I’d get this little quote someone special scribbled down on a piece of paper and sent to me when I was about twenty and really upset. It read, “Be still, young heart. Everything will turn out exactly as it’s meant to be. Go and be the person I know you are – a star”. I’ve always found that incredibly comforting and reassuring. I’m not sure if it’s quoted or just from them, but I love it.
How would your friends describe you?
“Loyal, reliable, witty/wicked sense of humour, messy as fuck and sometimes a bit mysterious.” – Hannah
“Brutally honest, incredibly generous and guaranteed to get you into trouble.” – Bella
“The kind of friend who will always be there for you, with support, honest opinions and most commonly with a bottle of Pinot Gris and a pack of Peter Stuyvesant’s.” – Zac
How would your parents describe you?
“Kind-hearted, outgoing, likes a robust discussion [euphemism] and hates housework.” – Mum
“Driven, loyal, a great sense of humour inherited from me, has high expectations and a little impatient.” – Dad
When was the last time you cried?
A couple of weeks ago at the vet with my little dog. She was super unwell and had to stay overnight in an oxygen tank, and before I left the vet asked me, “if she dies would you like us her to resuscitate her?”. Up until that moment I’d held it together rather well, but as soon as he said that I erupted into uncontrollable sobs and the mortified veterinary student had to awkwardly console me and hand me tissues. She’s okay now but I’m not so sure about the traumatised vet student.
What are you afraid of?
Failure. It seems such a common fear but it’s so subjective. What defines failure? I just want to reach old age knowing I worked incredibly hard and made the most of every opportunity. I hope to be a little old lady, sitting with loads of grandchildren, telling them all the things I conquered, how hard I worked, and most importantly all the fun I had and all the crazy and stupid things I did.
If you could start your twenties again, what would you do differently?
I definitely would’ve gotten rid of the plethora of silly boys I dated sooner! I don’t know, I suppose if I could go back and give myself any advice it would be to not worry about what people think, don’t make time for people who don’t treat you well, make time for those who do, work hard and always do what makes you happy. But only by experiencing all those things and by making those mistakes would I have ever learnt. If I’d done it differently, I wouldn’t be who or where I am now.