Crushable Questionnaire: Dating Guru Andrea Syrtash

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Crushable Questionnaire  Dating Guru Andrea Syrtash andrea 297x445 jpg1. Who are your biggest influences?

My dad’s a Holocaust survivor and always taught me the value of taking risks and being resilient. Growing up, he took me on trips around the world (his fault I’m a travel junkie). My mom is an English teacher and taught me how to write. She’s a strong woman and a wonderful mom.

I know many women would say this, but I’ve also been influenced by Oprah Winfrey. Imagine how much the odds were against her when she started out as a broadcast journalist. I’m inspired by how she keeps building her brand and expanding her reach in every medium imaginable. She doesn’t re-invent herself – she builds on what she’s already created. She knows who she is – a wonderful blend of authenticity and accessibility and authority. That’s hard to pull off. I don’t try to emulate Oprah (that’s impossible!) but I’m inspired by her success and her approach.

2. What’s your backstory?

I haven’t figured out the sound-byte. I’ve had such a non-linear path to where I am now. I’ve lived in 7 cities and had a few jobs in non-profit before I decided to write professionally. I grew up in Toronto and have been on 6 visas since 2000! I have dual citizenship with Budapest. My backstory is rather…varied. But – I’ve always given advice (even as a little girl) and always loved to write and perform. Those who knew me from childhood aren’t surprised with the path I’ve pursued.

3. Everyone also has a karaoke song. Name yours (and don’t be shy).

I got a karaoke machine for my 12th birthday. My poor parents heard me belting out tunes every single day. One of my favorites is “Born to Be Wild.” Fun song to sing. (I can’t take karaoke too seriously).

4. What is it you most dislike?

I dislike the word “should” and the word “can’t.” Both have gotten me into trouble and have prevented me from pursuing dreams and relationships that have brought great fulfillment.

I really dislike people who are disrespectful, insincere and superficial. I think it’s the small stuff that teaches you most about someone. If someone is rude to the bus boy or talks smack behind everyone’s backs, my guard goes up.

5. Whose job would you like to steal?

I love my job so that’s a tough one! If I weren’t doing this job, though, I may want to steal the job of my friend’s friend, who is hired to go try spas around the world and review them. I’m a glutton for massages.

6. What was your best date?

When my husband and I were dating, we went to Central Park one beautiful Sunday afternoon, listened to live music and watched roller skaters dance by. At one point it started to pour and we ran home in the rain holding hands and laughing hysterically… my flip flop broke and he started to carry me. It just like a scene out of a movie. I think when you’re falling in love, you have a lot of those moments. We ate ice cream that we thought was the best we had ever tasted (now we know it’s positively mediocre) When you’re falling in love, you tend to like EVERYTHING more.

7.  What was your worst?

My worst dates have been the best stories.

I went out on a “pity date” because the guy was so nice and I could tell he was so nervous when he asked me out. He ended up being pretty rude to everyone we encountered and I seriously wondered if I was out with someone mentally unstable (this, by the way, is why I always suggest meeting in a public place and taking your own transportation when you first start to date!)

8. When I wake up in the middle of the night its because I’ve had a nightmare that I’m ___ .

Driving a car on the freeway. This is not a symbolic dream (since I love living in the fast lane!) – but one of my biggest fears is driving on the highway. I hate driving and I love to walk….this is another reason I love living in Manhattan….

9. I feel my best when I’m wearing ___ .

Something stylish and comfortable. I have a hard time sacrificing comfort for fashion. Unless I’m going to a fantastic event – then it’s worth a few hours in very high heels and a fabulous dress. I have a lot of bohemian in me, so I also love bright colors and bold prints. I’m being styled by Esprit for my upcoming book tour and their clothes suit me well – comfortable, stylish and trendy (but not too trendy). Love it.

1o. Please settle the debate: New York or LA?

Can’t I be bi-coastal? I lived in California for 5 years and love it but if I have to decide – New York, New York.

11. What’s on your playlist at this very moment?

I have very eclectic taste in music. I love Tribe Called Quest and Chopin. I find I write well to Radiohead and Imogen Heap. I love all kinds of music and have it on all the time.

12. What are you watching on TV?

I’ll never miss 60 Minutes or Oprah. I DVR The Office, 30 Rock and SNL. My guilty pleasure: some reality shows like Real Housewives of NY, Kell on Earth and The Apprentice.

13. If you alone held the power to pick a boyfriend for Jennifer Aniston, who would you pick?

I think Jen Aniston would do better with a guy who is behind the scenes, not in front of the camera. She’s such a huge star that she’d do well with someone who is equally driven and creative, but who didn’t need the spotlight.

14. Given the chance, would you rather hang out with George Clooney or Robert Downey Jr.?

Both seem kind of interesting but I’m not dying to meet either, I suppose.

15. If you were a character on any movie or TV show, past or present, who would you be?

Lately I’ve been feeling like a combination of Carrie on Sex and the City and Liz Lemon on 30 Rock. I write about dating in New York and my book launch and tour is soon. I’ll be going across the country dispensing dating and relationship advice and of course, Carrie and Liz both got a book deal too. Also, both characters embrace their inner spaz – as I do. I can’t take myself too seriously.

16. What is your drug of choice?

I try not to take a lot of drugs but one Tylenol PM is genius when I’m on a cross-country flight and need to sleep.

17. What’s the last thing you think about before falling asleep at night?

I write a to do list before bed so I can clear my thoughts. I usually close my eyes and think about how blessed I am. Sappy, but true.

Andrea Syrtash is a dating and relationship expert, life coach, host and author. Her new book  He’s Just Not Your Type (And That’s A Good Thing) arrives tomorrow.