Street: So we hear you like the environment. Have you ever made out with a tree?
Dani Castillo: I think I’ve kissed a tree before, yeah! I wouldn’t say make out, but we had a nice little peck. And hugs of course.
Street: How successful have your green efforts been at Penn?
DC: In terms of larger impact, I think we still have a long way to go, definitely with divestment. I think if that’s something that were to happen at Penn, it would be one of the biggest wins for the environmental community. It would mean a lot having such a large entity like Penn making a stance like that.
Street: So you’re involved in all of that, plus Vag Mons. Can you see yourself going into activism?
DC: Sometimes I forget I’m a student because I’m busy running around doing other things. So I definitely want to keep that alive.
Street: If carriage had a mascot, who or what would it be?
DC: Something like a big glitter explosion.
Street: Tell us something about carriage that we don’t know.
DC: The GroupMe is amazing. The GroupMe is probably the most entertaining thing. It changes subject every 10 seconds, and it’s so hilarious. And the GIF game is so on point.
Street: Tell us about your time in India.
DC: It was perhaps one of the most transformative experiences of my life. I did an internship through CASI [in] the middle of nowhere in the state of Madhya Pradesh where I came to find a project in which I was learning about the lives of producers. It’s all farmland, very rural, and women there aren’t really allowed leave villages or get jobs.
Street: What was the project?
DC: So the brand I was working with, called Kumbaya, allows them to learn how to sew. It brought a lot of questions in for me about how NGOs function abroad. You have to be [on sight] to really feel impact and know the best way for an NGO to function.
Street: What’s your spirit animal?
DC: My dog! Andy Warhol, that’s his name. He’s this little Pomeranian. He’s not a dog, he’s a human. He’s perfect. Look at him, he’s so sassy! He’s like ‘I’m perfect and I know it.’
Street: What’s your favorite thing to photograph?
DC: The non–conventional, beautiful parts of Philly that really show it’s history. Like the Viaduct.
Street: What’s the weirdest piece of art you’ve ever made?
DC: I haven’t done this yet, but it was an idea I just got the other night. I was on this Tumblr about what different vaginas look like! Like labias look so different for so many people—different lengths, different colors. I was like wow, they’re really beautiful in their variety. So I want to do a project that represents their variety in an artistic way.
Street: Tell us about your interest in bees.
DC: Oh I love bees! I want to get a bee tattoo actually. They’re so fascinating! The way that the communicate with each other, they have little dances that they do. And they’re just such team players, and they’re so important to the environment. I think bees need more love.
Street: What’s your favorite word?
DC: “Nubivagant.” It [means] wandering, but through the clouds, moving through the air. And I just love that feeling.
Street: What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?
DC: I was watching Ten Things I Hate About You, and Kat Stratford was talking about having sex with that asshole, Joey. She did it because other people were doing it and then she was like from that moment, I vow to only do things because I want to do them.
Street: Fill in the blank: There are two kinds of people at Penn…
DC: So we have this thing in my house where whenever we see people talking too much about themselves, we call them out and we say “Generation me me me!” GM3. We just call out people for being obsessed with social media. So I’d say there are people who can live in the moment, or those who are just GM3.
Street: That’s gonna become a thing once we print it.
DC: It probably is! And Ben Lerner is gonna be like “I made it up! Give me credit!”
Street: Describe yourself in 3 words.
DC: Never stop questioning.
Street: If you are what you eat, what would you be?
DC: A soy mocha from Hubbub.
Street: Favorite Disney Movie?
DC: Emperor's New Groove.