Proust Club: Margaret Finan

We’re asking the Block Club team a few questions from the famous Proust Questionnaire, popularized by the famous French essayist and novelist. This famous interview style has been interpreted many times over, from Vanity Fair’s popular last-page profile to “Inside the Actor’s Studio.” Today’s questionnaire is with Margaret Finan, founder and CEO of IfThen, from Block Club Labs. Let’s see what Margaret has to say…

What is your greatest fear?
Dying in a plane crash while the “Real Housewives of [Anywhere]” is playing somewhere in my peripheral vision.

What is the trait you most deplore in others?
When someone acts like they’ve already got a read on me, and there’s no real space for me to exist in there.

What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?
When I think I’ve already got a read on someone, and there’s no real space for them to exist in there.

What or who is the greatest love of your life?
My ride-or-die first dog, Bear.

When and where were you happiest?
Sitting on a porch one day last summer, with the sun in my face, thinking, “Shoot. I’m happy.” One of the rare things for me that doesn’t exist on a spectrum, and I somehow forget to stack up against the past.

Where would you most like to live?
In the woods by a lake.

What is your most treasured possession?
No actual “thing” immediately comes to mind that I couldn’t do without, but when if I ask what I’d save in a fire: my dog. If I had time after that: a ring that was my grandmother’s, passed down to my mom and then to me.

What do you most value in your friends?
I read this (or something like it) a while back, and it was perfect: “All of the women I love or loved or nearly loved know how to make silly faces, and they know to do it often.”

Who are your favorite writers?
George Saunders and Alice Munro.

How would you like to die?
Either in the most beautifully tragic/symbolic way, or the absolutely most banal manner. Dying in the woods, looking beautifully tousled, after scratching out my personal equivalent of “happiness only real when shared,” or choking on a pretzel in my underwear at 2 a.m. It can only be one.