Proust Questionnaire: Julia Reiss


In the second installation of our highbrow Marcel Proust collaboration, we delve into the inner psyche of New York-based writer (& DD contributorJulia Reiss.

Your favorite qualities in yourself: I’m compassionate in both thought and action. My ability to see the humor in just about anything. That, and I’m an excellent cook.

Your favorite qualities in a man: Honesty is, without a doubt, number one. A sense of humor, which inherently belies a certain level of intelligence. And being ambitious, but not in a selfish way. 

Deal-breaker in a man: Someone who can’t apologize or admit when they’re wrong.

Your favorite date activity: Definitely dinner. If neither of you can commit to a meal, good luck with the rest. 

Your favorite date outfit: If I can’t walk in it, I’m not wearing it. A good blowout never hurts, though. I’m also more of lashes than lip girl.

Your favorite date food: I’ll eat almost anything, but he should pick the place. Is it bad that I judge people based on restaurant preference?

Your favorite date experience: I don’t know if this counts as an experience, per se. But I remember waking up the morning after a date to discover he had written me a note in the dust on the rear windshield of my car. It was one of those youthfully romantic gestures made that much sweeter by the fact that neither of us were that young. I’ll never forget that.

Your least favorite date experience: The time my date showed up to dinner loaded on blow and pills. He passed out in the bathroom, as I waited alone for our appetizers. Now I find miso soup triggering.

Your main relationship / dating fault: Falling in love too fast. For better or worse, I’m an all-or-nothing type of person.

Your idea of relationship happiness: Being better together than either of you are apart.

Your idea of relationship misery: Realizing that the person you fell in love with doesn’t actually exist. 

What natural talent you would like your partner to be gifted with? Handiness. There’s nothing sexier than a guy who can hang shit up on a wall.

What fault do you have most tolerance for? Insecurity. And let me tell you, it’s contagious.

What is your greatest relationship regret? I don’t really believe in regret, because I’d like to think I’ve learned something from every one of my relationships. That being said, there are certain relationships I could have walked away from (way) sooner.

If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be? I’d like to give fewer fucks.

If you could change one thing about your partner, what would it be? As soon as you start wanting to change each other, it’s over. 

What is your favorite journey? Paris is always a good idea, but I’m assume you’re referencing journeys of a metaphysical kind. I guess mine would be those moments in life when you feel like you’ve lost everything, and then realizing in hindsight that those are also the moments that made everything possible.

What is your present state of mind? I keep asking myself, “Who do you want to be?”

What is your favorite dating advice / motto? Have fun.


Want more Julia wisdom? Follow her on Twitter and Instagram.

Photos by Caroline Owens.

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