Our digital editor Francesca Ohlert asks Volume 2: Metropolis contributor Annabel Brady-Brown about her story, I Hit a Panda With My Taxi.
In your short story ‘I Hit a Panda With My Taxi’ an escaped panda is struck down on the streets of Berlin by an innocent taxi driver. Out of all the animals in the world, why a Panda?
When I wrote this story, I was a bit mad on zoos and the idea of things in places they don’t belong. Maybe it’s just the panda’s cuddly white fur, the dreamy slowness of their movements, or simply that they are endangered creatures and that zoos find it notoriously difficult to get them to reproduce, but pandas have an elusive, mystic quality—like a mythic creature we’ve nabbed and caged. I wanted to look at this (literal) collision of the sublime and the grit of everyday Berlin.
Master procrastinator? Obsessive? Reclusive? How would you describe yourself when you’re writing?
When it’s bad, I’m moody, over-caffeinated and probably on YouTube. If it feels good, the room I’m writing in could burn down and I wouldn’t notice.
You’ve spent a lot of time in Berlin. What memory of that city stays with you the most?
Too many to pick, but it was on my first May Day celebration (May 1) that I (momentarily) decided I would live in Berlin forever: spring sun; so many thousands of Berliners in the park picnicking and boozing that phones stopped working; anarchist protestors and all of Germany’s beefy riot police at it only a few blocks away; and open air raves, with an elderly, purple-robed hippie looking like Merlin on crack on stage, acting as our cheerleader into the night.
You can pick up a copy of Volume 2: Metropolis here.