Proust Questionnaire.

David Bowie as Nikola Tesla in Christopher Nolan’s The Prestige

For a while now I quote David Bowie from his answers to Marcel Proust’s Vanity Fair questionnaire.

“What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery? Living in fear.”

So I thought in these times, where it seems like everyone is home, a good old questionnaire would be worth it. I’d love to see anyone else’s responses to these questions in the comments.

What is your idea of perfect happiness?
Reading and writing near a view of some water or woods.

What is your most marked characteristic?
Cutting people off by finishing their sentences and intending better but having a totally different impact.

What do you consider your greatest achievement?
Being a morning person and being a dad.

What is your greatest fear?
Becoming a victim to my brain and my all or nothing way of going through life.

What historical figure do you most identify with?
John Hughes.

Which living person do you most admire?
No one.

Who are your heroes in real life?
Writers who publish books and novels and comics. Really all writers.

What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?
Making excuses, blaming others, complaining, and becoming a victim.

What is the trait you most deplore in others?
Know-it-alls.

What is your favorite journey?

The drive to Lake Placid. Especially just before the Glens Falls exit where you can see Six Flags and a mountain I don’t even know the name of, but I’ve always called that part of the road: “The Entrance.”

But really when I pull off Exit 30 and drive through Keene, Keene Valley, Cascade Lake and Mountain, and past the ski jumps into Lake Placid.

What do you consider the most overrated virtue?
Justice.

Which word or phrases do you most overuse?
Seriously, any adverb really.

What is your greatest regret?
Resisting admitting that I’m not neurotypical.

What is your current state of mind?
Creative; apologetic. Always.

If you could change one thing about your family, what would it be?
That we didn’t talk over each other. What can you do? We’re Italian, Jewish, and New Yorkers—that’s like saying no to a bagel—it’s simply not in our DNA.

What is your most treasured possession?
Notebooks and journals.

What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?
I’m going to go with what David Bowie said to this question: “Living in fear,” but adding of letting my family down and being given the pink slip by them and being homeless.

Where would you like to live?
Somewhere that is near the splendor of the Adirondacks but not nearly as far from a major city. Honestly, somewhere like Ellicottville, NY and close to Buffalo.

What is your favorite occupation?
Typing on a typewriter.

What is the quality you most like in a man?
Radical transparency.

What is the quality you most like in a woman?
Not afraid to drink dark beer and bourbon. I found her.

What are your favorite names?
My kids’ names.

What is your motto?
Fatahmaha. (Inside joke.)

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