The Vanity Fair Proust Questionnaire

22 Jun

I’m pinching an idea from my sister. She did this questionnaire not too long ago, so I thought I would too.

It is the Vanity Fair Proust Questionnaire.

Here goes:

What is your idea of perfect happiness?
Sitting in a quiet café with good friends, laughing over something absurd. That or absorbing the colour and beauty of foreign lands. I’d love to go travelling again.

What is your current state of mind?
Frustrated perhaps. Or panicked. I’ve been looking at my books and study notes for an exam and have this awful feeling I’m screwed.

What is your greatest fear?
Rejection, failure, disappointing people.

Which living person do you most admire?
Is it bad that I don’t have a person I most admire? I don’t think I ever have..

What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?
Procrastination and fear.

What is the trait you most deplore in others?
Ignorance, piousness, two-facedness.

What is your greatest extravagance?
Café coffees and a good pair of shoes.

What do you consider the most overrated virtue?
People-pleasing and perfectionism, to a degree.

What is it that you most dislike?
Work. Not in the “I just want to do nothing” kind of way, but the whole ideal that we’re somehow meant to spend the majority of our lives doing something out of necessity rather than want because we can’t function in this society without doing so.

On what occasion do you lie?
When people ask, “Are you angry/upset with me?”.

What do you dislike most about your appearance?
I have a long, thin face. I call it a horse face but then get shut down by anyone I mention it to. I also have a love-hate relationship with my hair. It doesn’t matter if I brush it or not, it still ends up looking the same – unruly and fluffy.

What is the quality you most like in a man?
Can I steal some of my sister’s answers? Sense of humour, intelligence (please), tenderness, humbleness. Must also love animals.

What is the quality you most like in a woman?
I don’t know what the word is for it, but the attitude that you don’t have to be perfect all the time and you’re alright with that. To be comfortable in one’s skin.

Which words or phrases do you most overuse?
I’ve found myself saying, “no worries” a lot lately. Usually to students saying thanks after I’ve (hopefully) answered their query.

What or who is the greatest love of your life?
My closest friends and my family. Without them I wouldn’t survive.

When and where were you happiest?
I would say it would be the five years my family was in Papua New Guinea. I do not remember being sad or angry then.

Which talent would you most like to have?
I wish I could be one of those people that could hear a tune and then be able to play and embellish it on the piano. I would love to have that kind of musicality.

What do you consider your greatest achievement?
Travelling to Turkey and spending three days there by myself was pretty tough. After that I decided to never travel by myself again. Also, I survived working at two places with pretty terrible environments without going completely insane.

If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
My inability to cope with confrontation of any sort. It makes me feel seriously uncomfortable if I can sense aggression in the air. I also cannot tell people what I really think or feel for fear that they will get angry or upset with me.

If you were to die and come back as a person or a thing, what do you think it would be?
A cat, probably.

What is your most treasured possession?
Gosh. It would probably be my computer. I also love my animals, even though they are not living with me.

What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?
To be or feel completely isolated.

What is your most marked characteristic?
Maybe my dimples. They’re kind of hard to miss. Also my uncontrollable hair.

What do you most value in your friends?
Listening ears, understanding and humour.

Who are your favorite writers?
Georgette Heyer, Dick Francis, Mary Stewart and M.M. Kaye.

Who is your favorite hero of fiction?
Probably Arabella or Mary from The Devil’s Cub. They’re both Georgette Heyer books and completely frivolous, as I’m not really one for having heroes.

What are your favorite names?
The trouble with names is that someone will always have bad associations with them. I have liked the names Mark and Georgia for a long time, but I tend to be a bit changey. So, in a few years I’ll probably like a different name or two.

How would you like to die?
Peacefully and painlessly. In my sleep, preferably.

What is your motto?
If I didn’t laugh, I’d cry.


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