October 15, 2002

"Forrest Gump VS Einstein" c.

"Forrest Gump VS Einstein" c. Ryan Rhodes, Oct. 9, 2002

There comes a time in every relationship when you have to ask, "who is smarter." Actually, if you know what's good for you, this question should never come up.

Instead, men should simply say that the woman is always smarter, and then slink away and mutter under his breath that he's actually smarter. From a safe distance of course. Like Siberia.

So it was, when my girlfriend visited recently, armed with a self-scoring I.Q. test for the two of us to take together, I had my reservations. If she should emerge with a higher IQ, I'd be left licking my egotistical wounds for just shy of eternity. If I should emerge with a higher IQ, however, I would run the risk of losing 30 IQ points when she hurls a candle at my noggin.

To protect my girlfriend's identity, and to save her the embarrassment of having to tell people she actually dates me, I shall refer to her simply as Galadriel Gonoril Goodbody, or just Gal for short.

Now, Gal was genuinely excited about taking an IQ test with me, and I guess I can't blame her. After all, right there on the cover, the test said it was "Fun To Take. . .Easy To Score." In retrospect, I think I read a bit too deeply into the "Easy To Score" aspect.

There were early indications that our approach to IQ test taking was probably not ideal. For example, we completed our first two IQ test segments while drinking margaritas at Applebees. This was in direct conflict with the test's suggestion that we "try to work in a comfortable, undisturbed atmosphere."

Eventually, the stress of the tests started to take its toll on me. During the word comprehension test, an exam I should have waltzed through, I found myself arguing with the questions. The test required that I pick out the word that is least like the others in a grouping. For example, in the grouping STAMP, LETTER, ENVELOPE, MAILMAN, mailman was least like the others because it is the only person in the group.

"Well, yes," I thought. "But really, the stamp, letter and envelope aren't going anywhere without the mailman. In fact, the mailman might be so upset about being so cruelly singled out as being ‘different,' he may just choose to lose the stamp, letter and envelope all together."

By the time I had finished arguing with myself over the mailman's rightful place in the grouping, I had precious little time to decide what didn't belong within CLOUDY, SUNNY, HUMID, OVERCAST. In Minnesota, don't they all apply?

One of the more difficult exams had to do with logic, perhaps because I'm such an illogical guy. Whatever the reason, I again found myself asking probing questions about the questions themselves.

For example, one question read, "June lives 3 miles north of Lois. Ann lives 3 miles south of Stacey. Stacey lives 3 miles east of June. Lois lives 3 miles west of Ann. In relationship to June, where does Ann live?"

Now, really, if they have such detailed information about these four women, couldn't they figure it out for themselves? Come to think of it, why are the whereabouts of these four women so well known? What kind of privacy-invading satellite technology is keeping such strict tabs on Lois, Ann, Stacey and June? And how come I don't know more about so many apparently single women living in such close proximity to each other?

By far, the most difficult test was the creativity exam, a devilish brainteaser that required me to think of a word that went with the three words presented on the test page. For the words MINE, DUST, and COIN, for example, the word that would go with all three is GOLD. But, alas, that was an easy one. When confronted by the grouping LEAVES, BAG, PARTY, I was left with no answers save for the mental image of some poor guy leaving a party consisting of people wearing bags.

After the final exam, I tallied up the scores for Gal and myself. I won't say who won, because I want to keep dating Gal, but I will say that I was somewhere between Forrest Gump and Albert Einstein.

I'll leave it up to you to decide where I fit best.

Posted by Ryan at October 15, 2002 11:23 AM
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