Monday, July 02, 2007

the original meme

Stole this meme from SK who theorizes that it is the original meme: also known as The Proust Questionnaire, these questions were apparently asked to Marcel Proust when he was a boy and again when he was an adult. I guess Vanity Fair runs on their back page a Proust Questionnaire feature every month and so, here it is. The original meme. Enjoy.

What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?

The lowest depth of misery in my own life would be feeling like I've fucked up somehow and irreperably damaged my life. All the potential big regrets: moving so far away from family, choosing the wrong educational path, not managing my finances better, etc. Regret = misery in my opinion. Regret = a big black hole you can't crawl out of and where you know you'll die alone. The lowest depth of misery in the world is torture, starvation, watching your loved ones die. So... my version more or less pales in comparison.

Where would you like to live?

For now, I'm happy right here in Portland. If I had unlimited resources, I'd like to try living in Europe for awhile and also, possibly, somewhere tropical. I haven't travelled well enough to know where exactly.

What is your idea of earthly happiness?

No regrets, no panic. Lots of love and freedom. Also, a nice long summer with blue skies and warm sun. And lots of water. And trees. And dogs.

To what faults do you feel most indulgent?

I'm not entirely sure I understand the question. But, here we go. I'm most indulgent to my own negativity. I let myself spin on that a little too much. I'm working on it.

Who are your favorite heroes/heroines of fiction?

Atticus Finch from To Kill a Mockingbird. And, of course, Scout Finch too, for different reasons.

Who are your favorite characters in history?

Hmmm. Jane Addams, she was the original social worker. The Sufferagettes and the Second Wave feminists (despite some of the white, middle-class values that followed them) Eleanor Roosevelt.

Who are your favorite heroines in real life?

What's "real life?"

Your favorite painter?

I don't know my painters. I like Van Gogh. I like Matisse. I love Georgia O'Keeffe, but mostly for *her* and less for her work.

Your favorite musician?

Too hard to quanitfy.

The quality you most admire in a man?

Admire? Frankly, a really nice moustache.

The quality you most admire in a woman?

Independence, intelligence, radical-thinking, creativity.

Your favorite virtue?

What's a virtue?

Your favorite occupation?

To occupy my time? Reading. To earn money? I have no idea.

Who would you have liked to be?

Nobody else but me. But if I couldn't have been me, I would like to have been Henry Miller.

Your most marked characteristic?

Sarcasm, wit, vocabulary.

What do you most value in your friends?

Reliability. Depth.

What is your principle defect?

Negativity. A deep feeling that I'm not welcome anywhere.

What is your favorite occupation?

Objection, your honor. Asked and answered.

What is your dream of happiness?

Peace and the freedom to move between worlds.

What to your mind would be the greatest of misfortunes?

To lose love, to regret your actions, to hurt people.

What would you like to be?

A changer, a creator of Big Things.

In what country would you like to live?

I'm happy right here for now.

What is your favorite color?

All shades of blue leaning to purple.

What is your favorite flower?

Crocus. First to come up here in spring, they make me really happy.

What is your favorite bird?

Hummingbirds are incredible and magical. Crows are also pretty magical. Both.

Who are your favorite prose writers?

Hemingway and Dostoevsky for the classics. Harper Lee as the one-hit-wonder. And Jack Keroac, Henry Miller and Philip Roth as the ones that rev me up most.

Who are your favorite poets?

Hands down Adrienne Rich, for whom this blog is named, absolutely favorite. I also love Sharon Olds, Rainer Maria Rilke, Whitman, Blake, Alan Ginsberg, Maxine Kumin and Pablo Neruda.

Who are your heroes in real life?

Anyone who lives outside the mainstream. Change-makers, freedom fighters, radical lovers, artists.

What is it you most dislike?

Willful ignorance.

What natural gift would you most like to possess?

Confidence.

How would you like to die?

Lucidly. In nature.

What is your present state of mind?

Peacefully happy (sun outside, birds chirping, summer bliss).

What is your motto?
Live Free or Die Hard. Just kidding. :-) I have two, a major and a minor, and I've had them since high school. The major one sounds negative and nihilistic, but it's not. It's "Expect Nothing." I won't bother to explain it's more subtle value, you should meditate on it like a koan. The minor one is self-explanatory and comes from a Kurt Vonnegut book, probably Cat's Cradle. It is "Peculiar travel suggestions are dancing lessons from god." And that's why I went kayaking Saturday.

The end.

And guess what, my friends, this time I'm TAGGING people. SK, you're off the hook cuz you've done it already. I'm tagging: South Carolina Girl, Zuhn, witchtrivets, Heather and Melinda. Roro is optional. I look forward to reading the results of your soul-searching ladies.

10 Comments:

Blogger zuhn said...

Foul!! Why is roro optional?

12:22 PM  
Blogger Rosemary said...

Hahahahahaaaa! In your face, zuhn!!

Excellent answers. Love that Proust.

12:24 PM  
Blogger reasonably prudent poet said...

roro is optional BECAUSE I SAID SO. that's why. now shut your hole and get to memeing.

1:39 PM  
Blogger Andygrrl said...

Okay, RPP, hope you don't mind me tagging myself, because I need a reason to procrastinate!

1:52 PM  
Blogger heather said...

crap, not fair you took some of my answers. i'll try to be witty when i come up with alternates tho. you can imagine how shocked i was when there was actual tagging (and again when it included me). =)

2:14 PM  
Blogger reasonably prudent poet said...

andygrrl -- honey, if i realized you were still reading my blog, i would've tagged you myself. :-)

heather -- i'm loyal to regular commenters. i live for feedback.

2:31 PM  
Blogger witchtrivets said...

oh boy. Tagged! whoo hoo!

2:42 PM  
Blogger Melinda Barton said...

Hey, thanks for the mini-vacation from the battles of the mind. It's so draining to be right all the time. haha

12:14 PM  
Blogger Andygrrl said...

Hey RPP--don't worry, I still read, I'm just one of those lousy bloggers who never comments! My bad.

12:20 PM  
Blogger heather said...

ok, i have mememememed. =)

10:35 AM  

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