Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Proust questionnaire

To ease myself back into the habit of blogging regularly, I’m resorting to the Proust questionnaire, questions posed to a young thirteen-year-old Marcel Proust.  Of course, I've filled out my own responses.  If you want to check out what Proust said, click here.

Your most marked characteristic? People often comment on my gentleness, which leads them to trust me with their confidences.

The quality you most like in a man? The ability to console by just being there and listening, without judgment.

The quality you most like in a woman? Strength and poise enough to look people unflinchingly in the eye and dare the world to accept her for who she is.

What do you most value in your friends? The small gestures that mean so much: a much-needed hug, a kind word, a timely yummy treat.

What is your principle defect? Being too harsh to myself, and too fearful to try my best.

What is your favourite occupation? Dissecting literature and fleshing out my own meaning from words on the page.

What is your dream of happiness? A house by the ocean, someone to love and be loved by, work that is challenging and fulfilling.

What to your mind would be the greatest of misfortunes? To regret, or not to love whole-heartedly.

What would you like to be? Content in my choices and confident in my abilities.

In what country would you like to live? Of all the countries I have visited, I adore Germany. I would love to live in Berlin, to walk the wide avenues under the linden trees. I would love to feel a sense of belonging there.

What is your favourite colour? The blue of the sky, the brown of the earth, the peach of soft kitten fur, the orange of a brilliant sunset.

What is your favourite flower? The lily of the valley, which reminds me of fairy bells.

What is your favourite bird? The magical, mystical raven of the North.

Who are your favourite prose writers? Michael Cunningham, Charles Dickens, Charlotte Bronte, Margaret Laurence, Jeanette Winterson.

Who are your favourite poets? Rainer Maria Rilke, E. E. Cummings, T. S. Eliot, Sylvia Plath.

Who is your favourite hero of fiction? Pip of Great Expectations.

Who are your favourite heroines of fiction? All the women in The Hours, Jane Eyre, Tess of the D’Urbervilles.

Who are your favourite composers? Chopin, Beethoven, and Debussy.

Who are your favourite painters? I’ve always been partial to the impressionists. I love the soft radiance in Renoir’s portraits, and the dreamy reflective quality in Monet’s landscapes.

Who are your heroes in real life? Teachers who taught me what it meant to be passionate about life. And, people who face the greatest adversities and use them as opportunities to educate others.

What is it you most dislike? Insincerity.

What natural gift would you most like to possess? To be able to paint the images in my mind, to write the voices I hear, to compose the music that’s in my soul.

How would you like to die? Quietly, in the early hours of morning, with my loved ones in my presence.

What is your present state of mind? At peace and relaxed.

To what faults do you feel most indulgent? To wallow in my own self-pity.

What is your motto? I don’t have a motto, but if I must choose one, it would be “The world owes us nothing if we don’t try.” Or, alternately, “Laugh if all else fails.”

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