The Proust Questionnaire — Book Edition

Todd Oldham Answers The Proust Questionnaire—Book Edition

By Todd Oldham December 10, 2013
Todd Oldham, Product, Interior, and Fashion Designer (New York)
View Todd Oldham’s Book List

This November marked the 100th anniversary of the publication of the first volume of Marcel Proust’s opus, In Search of Lost Time (A la recherche du temps perdu), originally known in English as Remembrance of Things Past. To honor the occasion, we developed the Designers & Books version of the eponymous Proust Questionnaire, which we’ve sent out to various contributors and friends. Rather than including the questions from the original that asked about a wide array of “thoughts and feelings,” our adaptation focuses solely on the respondent’s relationship to books.


View the complete questions asked in The Proust Questionnaire—Book Edition

Here are the answers Todd Oldham sent in response to the Proust Questionnaire—Book Edition:

2. Your favorite childhood book (or favorite childhood author): 
My favorite book as a child was The Golden Book of Biology. I love everything about that book still today, including the out-of-date scientific information. Beautiful paper, brilliant illustrations by my friend Charley Harper, and the prettiest endpapers ever seen.

3. Your favorite book character:
The first two that come to mind are Carrie in Stephen King’s novel of the same name, and Ignatius J. Reilly from Confederacy of Dunces. They are both real to me and a pleasure to visit anytime.

4. Your favorite book title (because you like the sound of it):
The Sex Life of the Foot and Shoe by William A. Rossi. I bought this book because of the title and have still never read it. The title is quite enough.

8. A book you should have read but haven’t:
The Fountainhead (I think I hate Ayn Rand) and The Catcher in the Rye.

9. The best “book as object” you own (how it looks over what it says):
Ford Treasury of Station Wagon Living. I do not want to live in a station wagon, but this book is persuasive—a 16-inch-thick (not kidding) dictionary covered in corduroy from the mid-1800s.

10. Your reading speed: very slow, slow, moderate, fast, very fast:
Depending on the book, all of the above.

12. Your most idiosyncratic reading habit:
Reading in the bathtub for hours at a time.

16. Your favorite writer of the gender opposite yours:
Flannery O’Connor or Dorothy Parker. 

17. The last book you bought:
The Disaster Artist: My Life Inside The Room, The Greatest Bad Film Ever Made, by Greg Sestero—a really funny and well-crafted read.

22. Your favorite format for books: paper or pixels:
Paper, but pixels are growing on me. 

View all Questionnaires.

Also see “Celebrating a Proust Anniversary with The Proust Questionnaire—Book Edition.”

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