Jonny Sun is an architect, designer, engineer, artist, playwright, and comedy writer who originally calls Toronto home. Sun is currently a doctoral student at MIT, a fellow at the Berkman Klein Centre for Internet and Society at Harvard, and a creative researcher at the Harvard metaLAB, where he studies social media and online community. He’s a graduate of the Yale School of Architecture where he was awarded many prizes and fellowships and is an honours graduate of the Infrastructure program in Engineering Science at the University of Toronto. As impressive as all of those credentials are, for almost 500,000 of his followers on twitter, Jonny Sun mans a clever account and is at the forefront of new forms of sparse, effective communication, language, and terminology. His new, bestselling graphic novel is something of a meditation on the social media landscape. It’s called everyone’s a aliebn when ur a aliebn too and is available now via Harper Perennial. Jonny and I met in a streetside park in downtown Toronto to discuss his relationship with the city he once called home, the importance of Second City and improv and sketch comedy to his outlook on life and his academic pursuits, his comedic influences, the state of social media and communication, his book, and much more. Sponsored by Pizza Trokadero, the Bookshelf, Planet Bean Coffee, and Grandad’s Donuts.
Jesse Ruddock is a talented writer, photographer, and musician currently based in Brooklyn, New York. Originally from Guelph, Ontario, Ruddock graduated from Harvard cum laude, after attending the university on an ice hockey scholarship. She was a hotshot goalie who got into hip-hop and underground rock thanks to Jim Guthrie and pals like Noah23 and Livestock. She’s made her own music under monikers like Koko Bonaparte and Koko Blue and her writing and photography has appeared in The New Yorker, BOMB Magazine, and Vice. In February 2017, Coach House Books published her debut novel; it’s called Shot-Blue and has received raves from the New York Times, Publisher’s Weekly, and Kirkus Reviews among others. Jesse and I caught up at the CFRU studios recently when she was home in Guelph and she surprised me with stories about her past life as a hockey goalie, her writing influences, the power of her peers in Guelph, her remarkably talented family, and where her novel Shot-Blue may have came from. Sponsored by Pizza Trokadero, the Bookshelf, and Planet Bean Coffee.