My roommate got into Penelope Trunk's blog months ago, which led to me starting to read her a few weeks ago. (Yes, I usually am behind). Trunk has Asperger syndrome. She announced her miscarriage via Twitter (By announced, I mean she didn't think the miscarriage was a bad thing. It saved her the trouble of a planned abortion.) And she claims to write career advice but actually organizes funny personal anecdotes into lists and calls it a blog.

I kinda think I like her blog, but I haven't really decided yet.

Anyway, last week, she posted a quiz she developed to determine if individuals value being interesting or being happy more in their decision processes. Here's how I did:

1. Did you relocate away from family for a better job or another more interesting experience? (Yes = One point)

Um, I don't know how to answer that. I moved to Hoopeston, and I guess you could call that a better job, because I didn't have a job before that. But then I lived with my parents when I started at the paper in Anderson, Ind. Uh, and then I moved back to Hoopeston after Joey and I got engaged. Which technically was farther away from my family than I had been. And I did expect it to be an interesting experience.

OH! During that engagement time period, I wrote an article about a Hoopeston man smacking another Hoopeston man in the forehead with a machete that he pulled out of his pants. I think they were arguing over allegations that one of them had stolen a lawn ornament from the other's parent's house. And I totally forgot about this until I found this trial article by another reporter: THE GUY ESCAPED HANDCUFFED FROM THE POLICE OFFICER. For reals. He was found a few days later by citizens (vigilantes?) who "helped" him end up in a neck brace.

I believe I asked the police chief how the escape happened in the first place, and he said it was under investigation. I don't remember if I asked whether the man was placed in the squad car or not. I do remember fretting about whether or not to call the victim's family for at least 30 minutes before I did it. (I did just now discover that the guy was convicted and sentenced to 30 years, which is half the 60-year maximum the prosecutor requested.)

Enough thinking about this question. The answer is yes. Minus one.

2. Did you relocate to be near family? (Yes = Plus one)

Uh, actually, my family moved away from me away from me to North Carolina.

3. Are you nationally recognized as being great at doing something or do you have nationally-recognized expert knowledge in something? Or are you reorganizing your life in order to achieve this end? (Yes = Minus one)

Well, I'm presently trying to convince people to join my Susan G. Komen 3-Day for the Cure team and attempting to lose weight. I'd be mortified if I were nationally recognized for losing weight. And really, the team has five members, so I think national recognition is a long way off. So, no.

4. Were you a happy child? (Yes = Plus one)

Well, I'm not sure I would particularly describe myself as a child as happy. I wasn't miserable, but I wasn't Pollyana. I didn't glow.

5. Do your friends pray? (Yes = Plus one)

Some do and some don't. I'll just give myself .25 points, because I think the non-prayers out-number the prayers.

6. Do you need your kids to go to a school that is recognized as excellent in national rankings? (Yes = Minus one.)

Nope. I don't have any kids, but when that day comes, I'm sure if they end up at a nationally ranked school, it will be a complete fluke.

7. Do you have fat friends? (Yes = Plus one)

Hate to say it, but I AM the fat friend. (See answer to No. 3)

8. Do you have an opinion on Picasso? (Yes = Minus one).

Yes, I visited a museum of just his work in Paris when I went over Christmas Break in college. And he was discussed at length in my Culture of Modernism literature in class in college. I considered that class a life-changing experience. I love Picasso's fragmentation of perspectives. And his color selection. And his mishapen hands. I'll subtract a point.

9. Do you have three friends who are a Jew, a Muslim and a born-again Christian? (Yes = Minus one)

If I do, they haven't told me.

10. Are you a Republican? (Yes = Plus one)

HA! No. No points for me! And what the heckles? REPUBLICANS ARE GENERALLY MORE HAPPY?!? I don't believe it.

11. Do you think Christmas is a national holiday? (Yes = Plus one)

Well, they don't deliver mail that day. So it's a holiday for government employees nationwide. Trick question. I'm taking .4 points.

12. Have you been to a therapist? (Yes = Minus One)

Nope, but I laughed at what Penelope wrote: "People who are interesting but not happy have a point where they need to make sure they are okay. Also, they are interested in finding out about themselves even if they are fine." Can't wait to hear what my mother has to say about that.

13. Do you know the difference between $70 eyebrows and $20 eyebrows?(Yes = Plus one.)

Please, show me someone who spent $70 on their eyebrows. If electrolysis was not involved, I will give them a list a better uses for that money. And kindly explain that $20 is too much to spend to have eyebrows waxed/threaded/etc. People are starving in Haiti. And trying to raise $2,300 so they can walk 60 miles in 3 days.

14. Can you tell the difference between real diamonds and fake diamonds? (Yes =Minus one.)

No. That's part of the reason I haven't tried to sell off the diamond earrings my ex-husband gave me for Christmas one year. I can't tell which earrings are the real diamonds and which earrings I bought at Claire's for $3. Just picking a pair and hoping for the best could cause embarrassment at the jewelry store.

15. Have you tried on a pair of $200 jeans? (Yes = Minus one)


16. Do you think this test is BS? (Yes = Plus one.)

Yes. She lost me at the eyebrows question.

To explain this question, Penelope wrote: "People with interesting lives do not get offended that they cannot be happy. Happy people are offended that they cannot have interesting lives." Yes, yes. I was beginning to believe I cannot have an interesting life. I was offended. And considering lying to make myself more interesting.

So, my final score is 0.65. Which means, according to Penelope, "You are suspiciously well balanced. Or lacking a self-identity. I'm not sure which."

Hmm ... not sure what to say to that. Which, I suppose, also could be a sign of being suspiciously well balanced. Or lacking self-identity.

2 Responses
  1. Average Jane Says:

    Jewelry stores have diamond testers - little electronic devices that can tell the difference between real and fake - so don't be embarrassed to take all your potential diamonds in and let them figure out which ones are real. They're used to it.