Sunday, December 10, 2006

The Accidental Meme

After my post here about the Vanity Fair Proust Questionnaire, Sheila of “The Sheila Variations” picked it up in her blog here. I didn't actually think I was starting a meme. Thus far, however, I have traced it here, here, here, here and here.

I guess it’s about time I posted my own answers, although I know you will enjoy answering the questions far more than finding out what I have to say about them. I admit, however, that I have enjoyed reading other people's answers.

What is your idea of perfect happiness?

Being without worry, having unlimited time and resources

What is your greatest fear?

That I will not be loved

What historical figure do you most identify with?

Molly Brown

Which living person do you most admire?

Tom Waits

What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?


What trait do you most deplore in others?


What is your greatest extravagance?


On what occasion do you lie?

to prevent unecessary suffering

What do you most dislike about your appearance?

That I’m not a size 4

What is your favorite journey?

Hiking up a mountain on Mount Desert Island in Maine. The juxtaposition of the mountains against the ocean is breathtaking.

Any flight that takes me somewhere new or much loved. I enjoy the anticipation one feels traveling somewhere in the air, eager to arrive and explore a new city. I have always liked airports.

What do you consider the most overrated virtue?


Which living person do you most despise?

the current US president and his administration
(rote, but true)

Which words or phrases do you most overuse?


What is your greatest regret?

the time I have lost

What or who is the greatest love of your life?

It isn’t over yet, so I can't say for certain.

When and where were you happiest?

The first things that come to mind:

10 or 11 at night, Winter of 1993, walking outside in thick fresh snow with my little sister while the whole world seemed still and magical. Our two sets of footprints stretched out behind us and the moon glowed off the snow so everything was lit with a hazy half-light and we felt like the only two people in the world.

September 2000, in a hotel room in Boston, watching someone sleep.

Which talent would you most like to have?

a facility with languages

What is your current state of mind?


If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

I would be more driven and have greater faith in myself.

If you could change one thing about your family, what would it be?


If you were to die and come back as a person or thing, what would it be?

the universe has a sense of humor - I would probably be a man

If you could choose what or who to come back as, what would it be?

a bird

What do your consider your greatest achievement?

the distance I have come from where I began

What is your most treasured possession?

my grandmother’s engagement ring

What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?

abject poverty

What is your most marked characteristic?

my red hair, the manner in which I speak

What is the quality you most like in a man?

lack of pretention
firm belief that I am absolutely wonderful

What is the quality you most admire in a woman?


What do you most value in your friends?

loyalty and willingness to be there ("It's the friends you can call up at 4am that matter." - Marlene Dietrich)

Who are your favourite writers?

Harlan Ellison, Rita Mae Brown (earlier work), Terry Pratchett, Tom Robbins, Jane Austen, Octavia Butler, E.F. Benson

Who is your favourite hero of fiction?

Michael Valentine Smith

Who are your heroes in real life?

Katherine Hepburn

What are your favourite names?

Grace, Anton, Roarke, Gabriel

What is it that you most dislike?


How would you like to die?

No, thank you.

What is your motto?

Live fully so that you have no regret.


  1. The scary part is that i'd have to really think of some of these answers, they didn't come readily...

  2. It must be very reassuring to know that your greatest fear will never be your reality. At any time in your life you'll never know there are at least two people that love you more than their life itself.