Monday, October 13, 2014

Answer a Question, Tell Us Who You Are

If you notice a lot of questions in these blogs it’s because I like questions.

Questions engage us and make us think; statements simply direct us.

A lot of the question articles you see in newspapers or magazines, or the questioning interviews on TV or the Internet, are take-offs of what is called, “The Proust Questionaire.”

Marcel Proust (1871-1922) was a French novelist considered to be one of the greatest writers of all time. When he was young he answered a series of questions in a confession album, a popular pastime for young people that showed what they thought about various topics of life. For instance, what are your favorite foods, who are your heroes in history, whom do you most admire? The album was supposed to show what type of person you are. (go to Wikipedia and search “The Proust Questionaire”…take it and see what you think)

Today, magazines such as Vanity Fair and Esquire use the questioning technique as a way to let celebrities reveal themselves. James Lipton, creator and interviewer on television's Inside the Actors Studio, asks famous actors questions as a way of teaching students.

Anthony Bourdain, the American foodie, chef and TV personality says he can tell who you are and where you’re from if you answer the question, “What is your favorite meal?”

But, lots of people don’t like questions, especially difficult ones. Why, because questions make them think and thinking is hard work. Most folks want the easy way out, the path of least resistance. Questions may reveal difficult answers; answers that make us uncomfortable.

What is the most difficult question you’ve been asked? Not a question on a test, but a question about you.

(see, that made you think…and you probably don’t have a quick, easy answer…and now you’re thinking, “I don’t have time for this” and you’re ready to move on…or, you’re thinking , “Well, Mr. Question, what’s your most difficult question?”…and I’m thinking, “I’d tell you, but it might get me in trouble.”)


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