Thursday, August 14, 2008


With ref. to this old post about the answers I’d like to see in Q&A columns in newspapers, I got a taste of my own medicine when Elle magazine asked me to answer a series of stock questions for their Contributor’s page. Initially I wondered if they expected dead-serious responses (that would have been very difficult), but the question about a pet octopus seemed to hint that it was okay to be flip. Here are the questions (in the form of sentences to be completed) and my answers:

The only thing that keeps me going in the morning: Knowing there are tax returns to be filed.

My idea of a hero is: Groucho Marx. He had principles. And if you didn't like them, he had others.

A place I could visit countless times: The toilet.

The colours in the surroundings that I cannot live without: Black. (Hard to sleep if it isn’t dark outside. Can’t live without sleep.)

If I had a pet octopus I would name it: Henry the Eight.

The most influential film director of all time is: Hitchcock. He defined paranoia, which is the key emotion in all our lives. (I’m looking over my shoulder as I type this.)

The one thing in the world I would never wish to change: my pet octopus.

The scariest story I have ever read: the annual Budget.

I always plan ahead because: what's the sense in planning for the past?

I would like to be remembered as: a loyal friend, a fearsome swordsman and a man who was kind to his octopus.

My mantra for success is: Fail as often as possible. The stuff that is left over will be success.