There is no black and white in life, so choose a shade of grey that suits you – Deepti Kat, Co-founder, Lady Baga
(The Proust Questionnaire is a questionnaire about one's personality. It has its origins in a parlour game popularized by Marcel Proust, the French essayist and novelist, who believed that, in answering these questions, an individual reveals his or her true nature.)
Deepti Kat represents the new generation entrepreneurial spirit of the Indian economy. She has an international liberal education and is a product of the London School of Economics. She spent some years working in blue chip corporates and consulting firms before deciding to pursue her entrepreneurial dream. Now 29, she owns a bar and restaurant – Lady Baga in Bengaluru and is currently looking at what’s next for her. Here are her answers to our Proust Questionnaire...
What is your idea of perfect happiness?
A state of mental balance which I believe is achievable when you have your closest family and friends with you to enjoy and wholly share in your experiences.
What is your greatest fear?
Losing a member of my immediate family.
What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?
Being impulsive and naïve at times.
What is the trait you most deplore in others?
Deception and taking pleasure in pulling others down.
Which living person do you most admire?
My dad – for his perseverance and commitment to family. And Elon Musk – for his ambition and grit to make the impossible, possible.
What is your greatest extravagance?
Shopping and travelling! What’s life without the two!
What is your current state of mind?
Emotional and determined.
What do you consider the most overrated virtue?
Frankness to the point of being rude.
On what occasion do you lie?
I guess it is okay to tell a white lie if it helps make someone happy in the moment without having to face dire consequences in the future.
What do you most dislike about your appearance?
I’m happy in my skin but if I had to change one thing, it’ll be my height (my entire family is tall - so I am the anomaly).
Which living person do you most despise?
I’d rather spread love and believe. It’s best not to surround yourself with negativity as far as possible.
What is the quality you most like in a man?
Kindness and I think the way he treats his woman says a lot about a man.
What is the quality you most like in a woman?
Having the strength to stand up for themselves while being compassionate in doing so and being kind to other women.
Which words or phrases do you most overuse?
Are you serious? , Oh god!
What or who is the greatest love of your life?
Undoubtedly my family as a unit which is my biggest support system – my mum, my dad, my brother and more recently my husband.
Which talent would you most like to have?
To be able to act – I think it can be therapeutic to get lost in another world for some time.
If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
Not to care about what people say!
What do you consider your greatest achievement?
I believe I am yet to experience my greatest achievement but it would look something like this – being immensely successful at doing something I love while having a healthy family that is always laughing. If I can achieve this, I will rest knowing I’ve done right by myself.
If you were to die and come back as a person or a thing, what would it be?
Richard Branson – what’s not to like about his life?!
Where would you most like to live?
Where in this aspect is not a location for me. It’s where my family and closest friends are
What is your most treasured possession?
My engagement ring because of the significance it holds in my life and the bond it represents with my best friend/husband.
What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?
Living a lonely but rich life – I think it is the most depressing thing that could happen to someone
What is your favourite occupation?
I can’t seem to find that one thing that ranks above the others as my favourite. Let’s hope I find it soon!
What is your most marked characteristic?
Emotionally I think it is my ability to love very deeply and purely. Physically – my eyes are very expressive.
What do you most value in your friends?
Loyalty, warmth and really being there in one’s hour of need.
Who are your favourite writers?
I unfortunately don’t read much anymore however I used to love getting lost in Jane Austin’s and Charles Dickens’ novels back in the day.
Who is your hero of fiction?
Superman (BUT only when he is played by Henry Cavill).
Which historical figure do you most identify with?
Who are your heroes in real life?
My brother is my hero – he is the kindest, most caring soul I have ever known and I know that as long as he is around, I will be cared for and that’s what makes him my hero.
What is your favourite name?
Deepu – only one friend and close family I’ve grown up with call me that (it reminds me of home).
What is it that you most dislike?
What is your greatest regret?
Not seeing my maternal grand-dad before he passed away.
How would you like to die?
With a smile on my face, dancing to my favourite song, with a drink in hand and surrounded by family, when I’m 80.
What is your favourite journey?
The journey to my maternal grandparents’ home. So nostalgic!
What is your motto?
I’ve learnt that there is no distinct black or white in life. Most of life is comprised of shades of grey and the fun is in determining which shades of grey suit you and make you happy – the world really is my oyster!