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Proust Questionnaire

As the author of Thread of Truth, it’s no surprise that Jedo’s most distinct characteristic is his radical approach to honesty. Here, the Mandaluyong native ruminates on his greatest fear, when he lies, naturalistic observation, what he likes in a woman, what he would change about his family, playing the piano, and how he would like to die.

What is your idea of perfect happiness?

Having an entire day without being asked to do anything, by anyone—especially your superiors; drinking homemade coffee while reading a book in absolute peace-silence-solitude; having a conversation without filters.

What is your greatest fear?

Going blind or deaf, or—heaven forbid—both.

Which living person do you most admire?

My parents.

What is the trait you most deplore in others?


What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?


What is your greatest extravagance?

My ever-growing book and DVD collection.

What is your idea of a perfect journey?

Wandering aimlessly—alone, or with a friend or two—in a picturesque place where I know absolutely no one.

On what occasion do you lie?

For fun, to prove a point, to get out of a boring conversation, to protect someone who made an unfortunate mistake, when kids ask me about sex, or as a last resort when things go horribly wrong.

What is your favorite occupation?

People watching. Or as they call it in the academe, naturalistic observation.

What is your current state of mind?

Mentally exhausted, but otherwise relaxed and quite happy.

What do you consider the most overrated virtue?

Chastity, hands down.

What is the quality you most like in a man?

Sense and sensibility. Ten bucks says you just thought of the Jane Austen novel—or the Ang Lee movie, whatever.

What is the quality you most like in a woman?

Tact, and grace under pressure—or, as Hemingway put it, guts.

If you could change one thing about your family, what would it be?

It’s a toss-up between increasing height and removing asthma.

What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?

Being imprisoned by poverty and/or violence.

Where would you like to live?

Somewhere peaceful (meaning, miles away from traffic and the hubbub of the big city) that’s near a beach, a forest, and a mountain.

Which talent would you most like to have?

To be able to play the piano like second nature.

What is your greatest regret?

I fell in love with someone but never worked up the nerve to tell her about it, even as she pushed me out of her life.

What or who is the greatest love of your life?

What: pasta, pizza, and sinigang na baboy (pork and vegetables in tamarind broth) / Who: my family—Mama, Papa, Josh, and Ann.

If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

My food allergies.

What do you consider your greatest achievement?

Earning the respect of my parents and their parents.

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

According to The Reincarnation Station, I’d come back as a tiger. Silly, I know. I’ll probably come back as a hamster.

If you could choose what to come back as, what would it be?

Michael Jordan in a Bulls uniform.

What is your most treasured possession?

It’s a three-way tie between my books, my DVD collection, and my laptop.

What do you most value in your friends?

Humor, transparency, and truthfulness.

Who are your favorite composers?

Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, Mitsuda, Uematsu.

What is it that you most dislike?

False sense of entitlement.

How would you like to die?

Quickly and alone, or saving someone’s life.

What is your motto?

“Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood.” — Marie Curie

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