Bernard Pivot Questionnaire - the Noland edition

It's been a while since I've done something like this, and I feel the need for a bit of levity today. So, here's my take on the Bernard Pivot Questionnaire.

1. What is your favorite word? My favorite word is, and has always been, "syzygy", which is the nearly straight-line configuration of three celestial bodies (as the sun, moon, and earth during a solar or lunar eclipse) in a gravitational system. Mmmm, syzygy.

2. What is your least favorite word? There are a lot of words I dislike, but "cunt" is probably at the top of the list. I feel just a bit stupider and less attractive merely for having typed the word.

3. What turns you on creatively, spiritually or emotionally? Helping people. Finding hidden facets of beauty in the mundane. Being appreciated.

4. What turns you off? Having my ability to compose and arrange coherent, compelling sentences referred to as "using the golden shovel."

5. What is your favorite curse word? "Shite". It's so much more interesting than "shit", with the added bonus that, here in the U.S. at least, you can use it in polite company.

6. What sound or noise do you love? Rain, anything from gentle showers to massive, howling thunderstorms.

7. What sound or noise do you hate? Whining. I hate it when other people do it, I hate it when I do it.

8. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? I'd like to work in an urban greenhouse in a big city, perhaps on a rooftop or on brownfield land. I'd grow flowers, decorative plants and fresh fruits and vegetables in trays, pots and hydroponic tanks, then sell them at a farmer's market right in the middle of the city. I'm thinking of something sort of like this.

9. What profession would you not like to do? Telemarketing. I did it for a while. Never again.

10. If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates? "Hey, Tony, good to see you, man. How was the trip? Come on in, I'll show you to your room. Once you're settled in, there are some people I think you'd like to meet. They're in the bar. Come on down, I'll introduce you."

===== Feel free to comment on this or any other post.


  1. Fellow blogfest participant and new follower here. You've got some great answers. I agree about telemarketing. That has to be one of the worst jobs ever! If you get a chance, check out my answers at:

  2. Beth Revis uses the word "shite" throughout her novel ACROSS THE UNIVERSE, and I found it absolutely hysterical. Definitely not something you hear much where I'm from. lol

  3. Oh, I agree, your least favorite word is vile.

    Whining was one of my hated sounds, too. Evil sound.

    Have a happy day,

  4. Hi, I'm a fellow blogfest participant and your newest follower (nice to meet you!)

    Gotta tell my hub about your #10 answer.

  5. @Sylvia: I quit that job when I felt my soul being sucked away. It was like working for dementors. Thanks for following!

    @KM: I once had a boss from Edinburgh - learned LOTS of bizarre swear words from him.

    @Lola: It's about as crude as they come. I'm sure some folks feel differently about it, but I'm glad you agree!

    @Kittie: Thanks for following! Heaven won't be heaven without interesting people, comfy chairs and a decent microbrew on tap. 8-)

  6. What awesome answers! Never heard your favorite word, and I think it's brilliant. And, I hate "that" word too -- so ugly. The urban greenhouse idea is so inspiring. Thanks for linking the before/after on the other blog.

    So glad you signed up and I could discover another wonderful blog. Looking forward to following!

  7. Tony! I think this is what God will tell you at the Pearly Gates: "Geez, Tone, we were totally planning on having you here until you typed the 'C' word during that Bernard Pivot thing."
    (I love shite too.)

  8. You're in this too! :) Yeah, that C word...wash your fingers off after typing.
    I like syzygy although I'm not sure how to pronounce it.

  9. Great answer for #8, and your heaven sounds like a lot of fun.

  10. I've never heard that "golden shovel" phrase. Is there particular backstory for it with you?

  11. @Nicole: This was good fun - thanks!

    @Cathy: I'm hoping God has a sense of humor. Actually, I'm rather counting on it.

    @Laura: "I like syzygy although I'm not sure how to pronounce it." It's pronounced just the way it's spelled: seh-ZIH-gee It's a great word.

    @KO: Thanks!

    @John: When you want to load a document up with utter bullshit, but make it sound like music and look attractive, you use the golden shovel (or "magic" shovel). What irks me is when, by extension, ANY well-crafted, compelling writing is thus dismissed as mere bullshittery.

  12. Hi Tony ~ Ha! your favorite and least favorite sounds are the same as those on my list! Great minds think alike! :)
    ~ Noelle

  13. I'm with Lola on the bad word...but whining sounds good from me, the way I do it anyway, I end up getting jewelry

    BTW Bless you, my word verfi is

    so Bless y'all all

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  15. Growing things are therapeutic. Apart from the backache I get from stooping down to prod and pull, it's all good.

  16. Growing things are therapeutic. Apart from the backache I get from stooping down to prod and pull, it's all good.

  17. Hi, this is my first blogfest and I'm making the rounds to read what others wrote. Great answers. I agree, your least favorite word is an inexcusable one. Your favorite word is intriguing. How often do you get to use it?

  18. Syzygy was also an awesome X-Files episode.
    Thanks for sharing your answers.

  19. I was very pleased to search out this web-site.I wished to thanks in your time for this wonderful learn!! I positively enjoying each little little bit of it and I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff you blog post.


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