Learn more about Teddy from his Proust Questionnaire answers below!
What is your greatest extravagance?
I like food. I like to eat. I like to cook. I like it to be fresh and quality. I'm not sure exactly what I mean by quality, it doesn't have to do with the actual materials, as in, this organic kale versus that non organic kale, but it has everything to do with the length of time between the food's preparation and its consumption.
It is a luxury to be able to eat food that isn't reheated, that is made just when you want it, that is made how you like it and I notice that I pour lots of time into this. Even when I'm tired. It's not that the food is extravagant, or that the recipes are special - in fact, I don't even follow recipes - I mostly make variations on the same thing.
But it seems like there's always time, and energy, for me to make food, even if I should be doing something else. So I think it's extravagant the way I pour my time into making food.
If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
Depends on what I'm struggling with at the moment. So I wish that <current struggle> was not the case. So when I am tired, I wish I could sleep better. More regularly. Embrace the morning. When I am unclear I wish I could communicate more clearly. When I am caught in my own thoughts I wish I could see others' perspectives more readily.
If you were to die and come back as a person or a thing, what would it be?
I want to answer this question by saying that I find it so difficult to think of existing in any other form rather than myself that I can't choose. I think being a bird would be very interesting to be able to fly - but I can't imagine being a bird and being me, that is to say, being able to appreciate flying in the way I think of it now. Like, does a bird wish it could be me so it could ask questions of its life in the way I am doing? Could it conceive of it? Sometimes, I wish that if I could go back to an earlier time as myself I 'd do things differently. Like all of school. If I knew then what I know now…. but I think it's so hard to imagine this because, well, did I have to go through that to get to where I am now and be who I am? Does identity have continuity? Who am I and how do I do it?!!! ahh!
What do you most value in your friends?
I value the feeling of being cared for. When people care for me, I appreciate it so much. So dropping the need to prove worthiness of another human being's care and compassion is part of what makes a friendship for me. A consensual sense of entitlement to mutual care and support.
How would you like to die?
I just don't want to think of dying at all. I really love being alive. I'm clinging to it. I know how I don't want to die. I don't want to die in pain. I don't want to die without helping things become better in life, for me and for other people. I don't want to die sad. It's not that I want to be immortal. I think sometimes, and damn is this tough to acknowledge, so much of life has to do with by-passing the realization that you are going to die. And if you bring that truth to the fore, or if I do this, maybe I will live life differently. I appreciate this question because it matters, and in a way, that guaranteed outcome at a non guaranteed time is the source of some important empathetic bridging between humans and all beings and all life. We're going to die, let's help each other. Let's make this life count. It matters. I want to die with dignity and for me that means remembered. I want to die old. I want to die with some sort of expectation of my own end, I don't want my death to be a surprise to me, but not in a painful way. I want to feel loved as I leave this life. I want to be in a good place, mentally and emotionally. I also feel like there's something special about being placed in the earth. I think I'd like to be buried rather than cremated and the idea of decomposing into a skeleton appeals to me. Maybe, and this is getting weird, but maybe a bone of mine could turn into some kind of family heirloom. A rib? a meta tarsal? Please, not a tooth. I'm not opposed to composting coffins but I don't like the idea of being buried in some urban location that is meaningless to me. How early do I have to reserve plots in a cemetery? What's that real estate bubble like and when will it crash?