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Provocative Questions for Interesting People

by John W. Love, Jr.

October 6, 2016

Interdisciplinary artist, love warrior monk, and mischievous thinker John W. Love, Jr. asserts that the more interesting the question and the person, the more interesting the time in the sandbox. Here’s a flash at how he plays with others.


Person of Interest


Is beauty necessary?

Yes I think so, I don't believe life would be bearable without it. What defines beauty is the variable.

Your mind:

                   It’s the temperature of a red-hot cast iron pan,

                   the texture of bubble gum,  

                   and the speed of Google Fiber.  

Your age:

                   I am older than you would expect,  

                   younger than I feel,

                   and the exact same age as I am now. 

Your body:

                   - My hand is a girl.

                   - My foot is a boy.

                   - My heart is somewhere in between.

What part of your body has been annoying you lately?

My shoulder.

What part of your body NEVER embarrasses you?

My eyes.

What has made you cry?

Thinking about life’s limits of time with my children.

Be they naturally occurring or people-made, name three things that exist as your favorite color.

A perfect pinot noir.

The very first green leaves in Spring.

The sea on an overcast day

If you could wear a piece of music, what would it be?

Ekki Mukk by Sigur Ros, but like most of my wardrobe I’d have to change it at some point!

Is photography male, female, or somewhere else on the spectrum?  Why?

It’s way too fluid to adopt a specific gender.

Don’t name the film. Just describe one detail in the moment that took your breath away.

A small dinosaur approaches another small prehistoric animal, wounded lying in the river bed. It puts it’s foot on it’s head and then walks away, pausing in the river before the scene ends.

If you were to have an affair with a piece of literature, what would it be?

Brave New World.

“Words can be like X-rays if you use them properly— they’ll go through anything. You read and you’re pierced.”

Aldous Huxley, Brave New World

Who’s the designer, design team, or design operation you just love, love, love now?  Why?

Engineered Garments

What material, fabric, substrate, or substance would you like to see used more in design, fashion, art, architecture, etc.?


From where you’re sitting, what’s the most luxurious nature made substance you can reach out and touch?

A beeswax candle.

What font just makes you want to vomit?


What’s the sexiest tool in your arsenal?

You’d have to ask my wife.

That time you went “ham” “slam off” “weren’t having it” and noooobody saw it coming what was…?:

The number of windows in the room: 2.

The time of day: Dusk.

The eye color of the most innocent one present: Green.

The shoe attire of the most offensive one: Barefoot.

Select A, B, C, or D


A. Overrated

B. Underserved

C. Hahaaaaaagh!

D. Huh?



A. Bone

B. Chalky

C. Eggshell  

D. High gloss lacquered



A. Inky

B. Cool

C. Matte

D. Vanta



A. Slate

B. Earl, Fox, or Flannel

C. Charcoal

D. Silver


Favorite sweet thing? Gelato.

Favorite bitter thing? Fernet Branca.

Favorite sour thing? Warheads.

Favorite hot thing? Coffee.

Favorite cold thing? King of Pops.

Favorite hard thing? My iPhone.

Favorite soft thing? My pillow.

What smells better—your own toe cheese or your own ear wax?

Ear wax.

What smells worse—your own morning breath or your afternoon pits?

Morning breath.

What do you have most in the mornings - eye snot or nose snot?

Usually neither.

What time of day has the most beautiful light?


What makes you tired just thinking about it?

Growing up.

Who's the sexiest person you know personally?

This question is trouble. 

What makes a nerd hot?


What makes a physically beautiful person NOT hot at all?

Lack of empathy.

If you could, which way would you go—longer or thicker?

We’re talking about hair here, right?

Stronger or more agile?


Smarter or funnier?


What three spices in the spice rack best describe you?

Cayenne, Cardamom, Sage.

What FRESH herb would you wear as a scent?

Thai basil.

Whose funk smells gooood to you?

Not really any.

What inanimate object are you in love with the most right now?

My cocktail shaker.

Choose one—sleek, smooth, plush, or slick?  Why?

Plush because it sounds so comfortable.

Choose onesalty, hot, crisp, or juicy?  Why?

Salty because I hate under-salted.

Who do you know that is both sleek and salty?


Who's got a mind you’d describe as plush and juicy?

My 9 year old.

Using sleek, smooth, plush, slick, salty, hot, crisp, and juicy, which combination of two would make…

                            …the ideal business partner for you? sleek and slick. 

                            …the ideal lover for you? hot and juicy. 

                            …the ideal enemy that could defeat you? salty and plush.

                            …the ideal assistant for you? crisp and smooth. 

                            …the ideal leader of the free world?smooth and hot. 

                            …the ideal sauce? hot and salty.

                            …the ideal snack food? salty and crisp.


Describe either where you are right now or where you just came from:

-       the terrain: flat. 

-       the weather: overcast. 

-       the smell: industrial. 

-       the vegetation: sparse. 

-       the texture of the air: wet. 

-       the color of the sky: grey.

-       the people: busy. 

-       the bodies: fast. 

-       the clothing or lack thereof: professional. 

-       the spirit, the energy, the vibration: urgent. 

-       the name of this locale: Uptown.

Write an autobiographical sentence using exactly seven words.

I am one sibling out of 10.

Write a five-word novel.

He sure had it coming.


You’re throwing an intimate feast for yourself and 12 others. Very briefly describe who they are without using their names. You’re one of them.


The guy with the nice shirt.


There was a beautiful, hypnotic, breathtaking, and necessary lie you told. It was a shield that nurtured and comforted you. What were you protecting?

My brother.

There is a well-intentioned liar who told you life is not a party. Describe in no less than five details their single most prominent feature.

Soft, full, long, lush blonde hair.


Is the simplicity of a truth real or illusory? What is the simple truths relationship to the complex, baroque, and layered one?

Illusory. It’s the upbeat cousin.

Fill in the blanks.

My imagination is massive. My limits non-existent. My hope is significant and my patience is laughable. While I hate mediocrity I love excellence and to tell the absolute truth all I want to do right now is catch a flight somewhere.

What percentage of your day do you spend alone?

About five.

What percentage of your day would you prefer to be alone?

About 50.

Is quiet more like an old friend or a secret lover?

Secret lover.

What are the five biggest noise-makers in your domain right now?

My phone, my head, my car, my dog, the construction next to my house.

In seven words or less describe your real relationship with clutter.

I despise it to no end.

Do you still write with a pencil?


Favorite writing instrument?


Paper or plastic?


Is paper a pleasure in your life or an annoyance?

Depends on the paper, mostly an annoyance.

Are you a luddite and/or do you find them charming?

For the most part 'no' to both.

What do you take pleasure in ignoring?

My phone.

What pleasure have you given up that you still desperately miss?

I try not to give up pleasure.

What has replaced it?

Probably work.

Was that even intentional?

Not really.

Does not answering your phone give you a low-grade panic attack?

Answering my phone gives me a panic attack!

TV—yes or no?


Tiny screen or large screen?


You eat in bed. True or false?


Books—yes or no?


Radio—yes or no?

Not unless it’s NPR.

What’s been your biggest failure in the last 48 hours?

I lost my cool during a stressful situation.

What is your oldest desire?

To be fed.

How do you feel about other people’s feet?

Pretty indifferent, just keep them off of my pillow!

How do you feel about other people’s hands?

I like hands.

Coffee or tea?


Wine or liquor?

Do I really have to choose? Liquor.

Soda or juice?


Sparkling water or flat?


Hair tugged or pressure applied?

Tug away.

Underwear or commando?


Boxers or briefs?


Panties or thongs?


Furry, fuzzy, bushy, or woolly?


Clean shaven or a thicket?

Clean shaven.

What is your relationship with stubble?

I’ve been known to have it.

Nipple rings or belly rings?


Big ears or big noses?

Big ears.

Person of Interest: James Yoder

At this very moment, if your life were to spontaneously transform into the dream you’ve told no one about what (or who) would the score sound like?

An epic crescendo of rushing water.

What would be the taste in your mouth? 


Highlights:  I’m the co-owner of a Charlotte coffee shop brand so that keeps me busy. People have got to get their beverages! I can’t wait to see what’s next, hopefully going to get some cocktails into the mix.

Bio: James co-founded Not Just Coffee with his wife in 2011, after moving to Charlotte from Italy, where they lived for two and a half years. His interests are great food/bev and people. He has traveled extensively working with various non-profits but now considers Charlotte his home.

More:  Instagram: notjustcoffee

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Tags: James Yoder, Not Just Coffee, Brave New World, Engineered Garments, design, Sigur Ros, Charlotte

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