Snack Chat: Celeste Tauchar
Talking depression snacks, seasonal sugar cookies, and Flamin' Hot Cheetos with Celeste Tauchar of the bands Talker and Frenship
Upon first listen, it’d be easy to write off Talker’s song “Sad Chick” as parody, or at the very least a tongue-in-cheek response to our society’s romanticization of mental illness.
In the pop song’s earworm of a chorus singer Celeste Tauchar sings, dryly, “You think I'm a bad bitch / Can't you see this baggage? / Don't wanna admit it / Baby, I'm a sad chick.”
Verse after verse Tauchar shares the mess in her head in plain, relatable language. Her depression doesn’t make her interesting or exciting. She’s not a mysterious and misunderstood protagonist of a Hollywood movie. Depression makes her a bad friend. It makes her fall asleep in her bra because it’s “too much to take it off.” It makes her lose her keys, let her car get towed, and leave wet clothes in the washer for days.
I’ve been there. Maybe you’ve been there, too. According to the National Alliance on Mental Health (NAMI), “1 in 5 U.S. adults experience mental illness each year,” meaning nearly 53 million people have probably learned the hard way that that days-old mildew smell on forgotten clothes is harder to get out than you’d think.
“I do think that [mental illness] sometimes is perceived as, like, making an artist edgy,” Tauchar says. “That’s a bit silly because I don't know a single person who hasn't had some form of mental illness or mental health struggle. We should be talking about it.”
“I was just part of this campaign with NAMI for World Mental Health Day,” she adds, “and their whole campaign was trying to push Gavin Newsom, the governor of California, to pass legislation to put mental health education and mental health counseling and resources into schools from a younger age so that they start talking about mental health education in middle school.”
Read on to find out how the song “Sad Chick” came to be, which snack Tauchar always grabs when on tour, and which snack she reaches for when she’s feeling especially blue. She was so excited to talk snacks, she even stocked up before our phone call.
“In the spirit of this interview I went and got myself some snacks,” — a giant bag of Flamin’ Hot Cheetos Limon, she says — “and I was eating some of them before but then I was like, ‘Oh, this can be loud on the phone so I’ll save the rest until after.’”