So, if you have seen the AWESOME film, “Little Miss Sunshine” you have heard of Marcel Proust. Actually I am hoping that you have heard of him even if you have not seen the film. Anyway, after seeing that film, I found a cool book that had famous folks all answering the “Proust Questionaire”. I had heard of this from the back of Vaniety Fair Magazine, but never really read it or knew anything about it. It seems the young Marcel was asked to fill out questionnaires at two social events: one when he was 13, another when he was 20. Proust did not invent this party game; he is simply the most extraordinary person to respond to them.
So, here are my answers to the Proust Questionaire:
What is your idea of perfect happiness?
To live near those I love, with the beauties of nature, with a fat stack of books and music and a movie theatre where they serve fresh popcorn with real butter and I always have the seat I want. And to have, within easy distance, a London theater and restaurant that serves great eats
What is your greatest fear?
Regret. Wait, regret and having to live out the “is it safe” scene from “The Marathon Man”.
Which living person do you most admire?
Oprah. She gives back to the world. She helps people. She likes books. She rocks.
What is the trait you most deplore in others?
What is your greatest extravagance?
The tickets I just bought to London and Prague.
What is your favorite journey?
I’m on it.
On what occasion do you lie?
When asked, “How are you doing?” I always say “Fine” even when I’m not.
Which living person do you most despise?
Anyone who drives an SUV and parks in a COMPACT space, or takes up two spaces or is named George W. Bush.
Which words or phrases do you most overuse?
“Sweet” “That’s hot”
What is your greatest regret?
Not having the courage to stand up for what I wanted.
When and where were you happiest?
Easter, Reno, Nevada somewhere on the 8th floor of a hotel.
What is your current state of mind?
Lazy, anxious, and distracted.
If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
I’d want a new nose. Not in a “nose job” kind of way, but I’m always getting sinus infections. So, I’d like to change that.
What do you consider your greatest achievement?
BA degree and leaving a bad situation before it became worse.
If you were to die and come back as a person or thing, what do you think it would be?
An ant. That would prove karma.
If you could choose what to come back as, what would it be?
What is your most treasured possession?
What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?
The loss of hope.
Where would you like to live?
In a tree house in Bali. Or Prague. Or…any place I have yet to explore.
What is your favorite occupation?
Loving, reading, dreaming, writing, singing and sleeping.
What is your most marked characteristic?
What is the quality you most like in a man?
What is the quality you most like in a woman?
Who are your favorite writers?
Tom Robbins, Haruki Murakami, Margaret Atwood, John Irving, Joyce Carol Oates
Who is your favorite hero of fiction?
Hamlet, Mr. Nakata, Pi, Princess Leigh Cherri, Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Who are your heroes in real life?
I don’t know how to define hero.
What is it that you most dislike?
My own worst qualities, and my failure to see them.
How would you like to die?
A better person than I am now, and adored – of course.
What is your motto?
I don’t have one, but this is pretty good: “Nolite te bastardes carborundorum.”
Who are your favorite painters?
Chegall, Michael Sowa, Ernst