By Jack Sparacino
There’s a fun to read questionnaire, answered by celebrities, that appears in the back of Vanity Fair magazine. It’s named for the famous French writer, Marcel Proust, who made his mark in the literary world about a hundred years ago. I took the liberty of tilting it slightly toward us Lowcountry types and answered the questions myself. It was interesting and I thought others might want to give it a try!
What is your idea of perfect Lowcountry happiness?
Realizing that if I had the choice of doing anything, anywhere in the world, I’d be doing exactly what I’m doing right here.
What is your greatest fear living in the Lowcountry?
Hurricanes that might threaten when I’m not feeling my best. Followed by missing my favorite tide when the trout are around. Followed by never learning how to throw a cast net properly for shrimp.
Which historical figure do you most identify with?
Teddy Roosevelt. Except for the jungle adventures including leeches and malaria.
Which living person do you most admire?
Any national politician who is far more interested in doing the right thing than in getting re-elected. Maybe there are two of them.
What is the trait that you most deplore in yourself?
Being slow to embrace new technology and new ideas.
What is the trait that you most deplore in others?
Ignorance, even when the facts are right there in front of them.
What is your greatest extravagance?
Avoiding all physical work that hurts my back. Trying, anyway.
What is your favorite local journey?
Driving to Hunting Island or to Charleston.
On what occasion do you bend the truth?
Sometimes when someone asks me how I’m feeling.
What do you dislike most about your appearance?
I wouldn’t mind having a full head of hair again.
Which words or phrases do you most overuse?
What is your greatest regret?
Not having given more thought to a possible career in medicine.
What or who is the greatest love of your life?
Easy one. Ever since I’ve known her, 30 years now, my wife.
When and where in the Lowcountry were you happiest? How about elsewhere?
Kayaking with my wife. Vacationing on Nantucket.
What is your current state of mind?
Relaxed. And skeptical.
If you could change one thing about your family, what would it be?
Getting our son more free time to come down here more often from Boston.
What do you consider your greatest achievement?
Helping to raise our son, a very wonderful young man.
What is your most treasured possession?
My sanity and ability to have fun. Also my crab trap.
What do you consider the lowest depth of misery?
Feeling like there is no way out.
What is your favorite endeavor when you are in Beaufort County?
Harvesting enough fresh seafood to have friends over.
What is your most marked characteristic?
What do you most value in your friends?
The ability to make me look at things differently and laugh.
Who are your favorite writers? Painters?
Mark Twain. Renoir.
Who are your heroes?
My dad, Lincoln, FDR, Churchill.
What do you like most in the Lowcountry? How about dislike?
The fabulous views. The insects, especially fire ants.
How would you prefer to die?
Extremely quickly and by surprise.
If you could chose what to come back as after you die, what would it be?
A dolphin. They look like they have a lot of fun and I like seafood.
What is your motto? Did you have one before you saw this question?
Keep it simple. Yes!
By Jack Sparacino