Like most people, I believe that life without introspection, imagination and dreams is tedious and uninspired. The ability to think and share ideas are powerful attributes that set us apart from other mammals. As human beings, we are fortunate to be able to envision and create the world we want…a truly remarkable gift.
Recently, my sister-in-law gave me the entertaining book titled “If… (Questions for the Game of Life).” The book, originally published in 1995, was written by Evelyn McFarlane and James Saywell. I suspect she gave me the book because she knew I enjoyed reading the celebrity responses to Vanity Fair Magazine’s Proust Questionnaire. The “Proust Questionnaire” is a series of probing interview questions found in the very back of the trendy monthly publication and gives its readers insight to a celeb’s personality and motivations. (The “Proust “name comes from the responses given by the French writer Marcel Proust in 1890.)
As with the Vanity Fair interview, the authors, in an engaging game-like fashion, also inspire us to ponder their questions. In the book’s introduction, they write: “How many times a day do we say, “If only…?” If we could create the perfect life, the perfect city, the perfect home, the perfect job, the perfect mate. We all fantasize, and we all dream…” Similar to the Proust interview, the “If” questions are on the surface, innocuous, but in reality they are provocative and thought-provoking, usually leading to lively conversations.
So, perhaps, the following questions will spark your imagination. Moreover, I am curious and interested about your answers to the questions. While McFarlane and Saywell’s book is filled with 129 pages of questions, I only chose a few. I am fascinated to see your answers. Please answer the ones you like, and if so inclined, add your reason “why?”
- If you could compose any single piece of music that already exists, which would you choose?
- If you had to choose the best advertising campaign ever created, which one would it be?
- If you could host a dinner party inviting any four people from history, who would you invite and where would the party be held?
- If you could wake up tomorrow to learn that the major breaking news story were about you, what would you want it to say?
- If you could go back in time, as yourself, to observe any single event from history, what would you want to witness?
- If you were to receive a letter today from anyone you have known in your lifetime, who would it be from and what would it say?
- If you were elected to be the president of the United States tomorrow, what would be your first act?
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