Desert Island Discs is one of my favourite BBC Radio 4 programmes. Like an awful lot of the Radio 4 schedule, it's been there for ever. Like over sixty years. There's a story that Herbert Morrison, 1940s Labour cabinet minister and leader of the old London County Council so longed to be chosen to appear on it that he used to carry around a list of the eight records he'd selected, just in case he got the call. He never did.
What has been your worst blogging experience?
What philosophical thesis do you think it most important to disseminate?
The best is definitely yet to come. That's Jewish optimism for you. I think the problems of global warming will be solved, and the forms of terrorism that blight our world today will be eliminated by changes in technology. I realise this is very much a minority opinion.
I'm still thinking about who might be cultural heroes for me. And then I've run out of time for the moment. I'll be back to do some more later today.
Who are your cultural heroes?
Daffy Duck, Bugs Bunny, Elvis Presley, Superman, Lord Snooty, Rabbi Levi Yitzchak of Berditchev, Sunny (my aerobics trainer at LA Fitness--she has a huge following), Princess Diana.
Do you have any prejudices
you're willing to acknowledge?
Mmmm. I'm prejudiced against pretty much any variant of English blokeishness, especially the shouty outdoor drinking, upperclass braying and football fan types, but ditto for macho cultural wannabees of every nation.
So I'm now thinking about:
If you could choose anyone, from any walk of life, to be Prime Minister (President etc), who would you choose?
Given the present incumbent, tempting to say almost anyone, but it's not quite true. The obvious choice is Tony Blair. I liked Lord Desai's comment that Gordon Brown was put on earth to show how good Tony Blair really was.
What is your favourite proverb?
Many waters cannot quench love
What, if anything, do you worry about?
Like Imshin said, if you're a Jewish mother, you worry about just about everything. On a personal basis, how to provide for an old age which could well include years of dementia; on my daughter and son in law's behalf, what will they live on, and how will they be able to afford a house; in the wider world, how will we be able to keep the rogue states and terrorist groups from blighting our lives and theirs before we find the technologies that will totter them.
If you were to relive your life to this point, is there anything you'd do differently?
I can think of some people I should have walked right by.
What would you call your autobiography?
Getting the Lightbulb to Want to Change
Who would play you in the movie about your life?
Imshin wrote after she met me that I reminded her of Judy Davis. I don't look like her, but I'm flattered by the comparison, so I'll opt for her.
What is your most treasured possession?
My grandmother's brass candlesticks and my grandmother's silver betrothal spoon, both of which came from Galicia in Poland
What talent would you most like to have?
I'd love to be a brilliant street dancer
Which English Premiership football (soccer) team do you support (or which baseball and/or basketball team)?
See my comments above on commonly enjoyed activities which I regard as a waste of time.
If you could have one (more or less realistic) wish come true, what would you wish for?
To be able to give up paid working and devote my energies to all the other things I don't get enough time for
How, if at all, would you change your life were you suddenly to win or inherit an enormously large sum of money?
Firstly, set up a charitable fund of ten percent of it, and devote a part of my life to using the income anonymously to help individuals and causes I like. Secondly, buy my daughter and son in law a fabulous home and everything needed to make it into whatever kind of place they dream of. Thirdly, use the opportunities to travel to spend time with family and friends across the world, plus attend some fancy workshops run by top people in their trade--like Linda Weinman's Photoshop and Susie Fishbein's cookery workshop. Fourthly, sponsor groups of young Jewish families to get housing near synagogues so they could become long term communities. Finally I think I'd get plastic surgery to do some pin and tuck work on the saggy bits that you get when you're my age.
What animal would you most like to be?
A much loved and indulged Abyssinian cat.