I finally steeled myself in taking a stab at the much renowned, revered and referred “Proust Questionnaire”. Suffice it to say the experience was extremely enervating while simultaneously lending an electric sense of excitement. I have attempted to be as candid and transparent as my conscience would permit. So here goes!
1.What is your idea of perfect happiness?
A book in hand, sipping exquisitely brewed Whiskey and listening to “Stairway to Heaven” by Led Zeppelin, all the while thinking about the woman who was never meant to be!
2.What is your greatest fear?
3.What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?
A very thin degree of tolerance to hurt and a sensitivity that tends to accentuate feelings, emotions and failures.
4.What is the trait you most deplore in others?
5.Which living person do you most admire?
6.What is your greatest extravagance?
Spending indiscreetly, indiscriminately and inordinately on books!
7.What is your current state of mind?
Melancholic; Mediocre; Macabre; and an overflowing bucket of raw emotions.
8.What do you consider the most overrated virtue?
Humility to the extent that it becomes pretentious to the extent of condescension.
9.On what occasion do you lie?
The occasion manifests itself as an inevitability. Cannot place a finger on any specific or recurring time frame. But yes, I do lie about my personal state of affairs so as to bind myself in a self-constructed cocoon of privacy.
10.What do you most dislike about your appearance?
My height (or the lack of it)!
11.Which living person do you most despise?
Hmmm. Lets just say Donald Trump to hide the truth that at this particular moment it is M Ci!
12.What is the quality you most like in a man?
13.What is the quality you most like in a woman?
Humour. A wicked sense at that!
14.Which words or phrases do you most overuse?
Bereft, “For what joy”; “Canary in the coal mine”; “Hell or high water”; “there is no hope in hell”.
15.What or who is the greatest love of your life?
- Inanimate objects: Books;
- Living person: Let’s just move on!
16.When and where were you happiest?
Between the years 1990 – 1995 when I was oblivious to the pressures of life and living.
17.Which talent would you most like to have?
Playing the guitar like Jimmy Page/Jimi Hendrix/Eric Claption/Keith Richards/Jeff Beck.
18.If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
My entire outlook.
19.What do you consider your greatest achievement?
Taking care of my parents and being a good son (I would love to think I am one).
20.If you were to die and come back as a person or a thing, what would it be?
Myself. I would not like to lose my identity and lead a fake/superficial existence.
21.Where would you most like to live?
Svalbard or Reykjavik amidst snows, the Aurora Borealis and the very womb of Mother Nature.
22.What is your most treasured possession?
23.What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?
Being poor in the heart in spite of wallowing in material wealth.
24.What is your favorite occupation?
25.What is your most marked characteristic?
Sensitivity and the inability to forget any and every kind of suffering. Humour is also a contrarian characteristic
26.What do you most value in your friends?
Trust; Love; Honesty; Camaraderie and Belongingness
27.Who are your favorite writers?
Ernest Hemingway; John Steinbeck; George Orwell; William Golding; Aldous Huxley; Evelyn Waugh; Jorge Luis Borges; Scott Fitzgerald; J.D.Salinger; Henry David Thoreau; R.K.Narayan and Feodor Dostoyevsky.
28.Who is your hero of fiction?
Batman. Even bereft of superhuman powers, he takes it upon himself to change the world and make it a better place in the face of seemingly insurmountable obstacles and unsurpassable hurdles.
29.Which historical figure do you most identify with?
I would think Dante because there have been a couple of Beatrices in my life who have taken me to the brink of hell and back! But I am rendered utterly incapable of writing either a “Divine Comedy” or an “Inferno”! So the pain is exacerbated due to failings in both love and literature!
30.Who are your heroes in real life?
Undoubtedly my father. If I can even be a fraction of the person that he is my existence would be justified.
31.What are your favorite names?
Julius; Adithya; Ajinkya; Dhananjaya; Julia; Varsha; Eva; Adrianna; Jean; Anjali; Priya; Juan
32.What is it that you most dislike?
Fish (dead and cooked ones).
33.What is your greatest regret?
Lack of courage to seize moments of opportunity as and when they arise and an inhibition that has reigned my life inwards into a realm of solitude and sobriety.
34.How would you like to die?
I would prefer a death that is spontaneous, uneventful, and not tied to any prescience. Preferably I would wish to fall asleep and never wake up when it’s time for the gong to sound.
35.What is your motto?
“If a man loses pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured, or far away.” – Henry David Thoreau