Since the 1800s, writers, interviewers, and others use the Proust Questionnaire to get to know people. Do the answers provide insight into the answerer’s personality, or are they just for fun? Whatever you believe, here are my answers.
“I don’t know how to tell you this… [your brother] passed away this morning.” I had to read the message several times before I processed it. Then my legs stopped holding me up.
Some writers fear the blank page, the pressure to find words; I’m just afraid of the consequences. It’s not the social stigma, it’s the threat of being sued for defamation. The threat of violence.
It could be worse. I have somewhere safe to stay, I have enough food. Objectively, I’m doing well — it could be worse.
“I hate this,” he said. “I know most of them are just fishing boats, but because I know at least a few of them are pirates, I have to treat them all as if they’re going to attack us. And I can’t stay away from all of them or we’ll never get home.”
Seafarers are pawns in a high-stakes game. For us, our lives and livelihoods are on the line; for you, because without us your supply chains will disappear.
It’s okay to stop fighting. If I can’t breathe, I choose to stop trying. When it's my choice, there’s no need to panic: I’m in control. That pause, that absence of panic, gives me a chance to deal with the problem. That applies to the rest of life as well.
In a worldwide pandemic, the consequences of our prejudice can be dire. If you've never questioned your own beliefs, this is the time.
There’s never a good time to hear that your brother has died. I’m on a ship, but he was in Australia. My crew can't go home because of COVID. Should I go?