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Friday, August 5, 2011

Me be Mensa genius now

Ever since I read David Sedaris going on about the genius club Mensa in Me Talk Pretty One Day, I've been thinking of taking the IQ test to see if I qualify to join.

IQ re-test
Sedaris and his booooyfriend took the test. Apparently, Sedaris is a Class A Moron but my curiosity was piqued when Sedaris' fella got a letter inviting him to take the test again 'cause he was just on the cusp of genius-ness and there are variables that can affect one's success on test day.

Faint hope clause
This is where I'd need to hang my (faint) hopes of entry.

Raven's Progressive Matrices ExampleHuh? Image via Wikipedia

Working the leeway
In most everyday situations, there is  leeway to bend the rules, but I didn't think this would be the case on a written multiple choice IQ test. I heavily rely on leeway in situations like when you are, say, returning jean shorts to Forever XXI when the receipt has been eaten by the rolling dumpster known as your car. Or when you waltz in to Starbucks, wink at the barista, and ask him what's free today.

Whether you're talking your way out of a speeding ticket or into a free beer, you can sway the outcome by:
  • Dressing like someone who's not homeless
  • Speaking articulately
  • Keeping your manners and swagger in a precarious balance
  • Making puppy dog eyes
  • Caking deodorant from your elbows to your ribcage to cover your natural stench
  • Wearing a full mask of makeup (tip: really work that wood filler into your acne scars).
In most everyday situations, the spew of lies delightfully emanating from your entire being can help to affect the outcome in your favour.

But in a written IQ test, these valuable strategies can't help you.

Sedaris has opened my eyes to the possibility that there are variables that can affect the outcome of an IQ test in your favour. Influencers like levels of caffeine, fatigue, stress, anxiety, sinus congestion (I'm guessing here) can impact your result.

I'm going to play the odds and take my chances. I'll prepare by taking a bunch of practice IQ tests online (real practice tests, not those fakeries on Facebook that tell everyone they have an IQ of 130), just to get my head thinking in the same way as the asinine word puzzles I expect to see on the test.

Betting on perfection
If I can get just the right amount of sleep, the perfect amount of caffeine, the drunkest, most crack-addicted test marker, and if I have the slightest hope of cheating off the legitimate genius sitting next to me, I may have a whiff of a chance of making it into Mensa and then lording it over your head forever.
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