Last night I had the wind taken out of my sails. I took a computer brain test and got the results. What can I say? After all these years of camouflage, smoke-screens and a perfected elusiveness that even fooled me, I've been nailed by a machine!
Ahh yes, my bitter and battered Kasparov, I too have had my deep blue come down. Let me rush to say that my self-delusive function does not extend so far as to place me in the same class with the chess wunderkind; I'm simply drawing on the basic similarities inherent in the man/machine thing. I'm cunning enough to, at least, avoid being branded as grandiose, although the computer had precious few NICE things to say about me.
The test consisted of twenty questions, each having three possible choices. The only thing asked of one at the beginning was to type in one's first name. I should have put in someone else's; that way I wouldn't have taken it so personally. At the end of the questions, a brain graphic appears on the screen with a little moving blip that starts from a mid-point of the two spheres and ominously makes its way to its place of repose indicating the exact location of your cerebral command post.
A box titled "personal evaluation" prompts you to beg the computer to rub in the results. Naturally, you do so.

"Madam, you show a moderate right hemisphere dominance with a strong preference for auditory learning". . . and, so on; so far, so good. However, it soon became apparent that the tone was getting snide. Precious few nice things said notwithstanding, I began to feel pursued and persecuted. Most of the feed-back was accurate; that was the terrible thing. How could the machine be so cruel! As if to end on a conciliatory note, the print-out conceded that,"you're not totally chaotic, but organization, planning and structure do not come naturally to you."
My husband took the test. His evaluation was much better than mine, and I was jealous. It attributed things to him that rightly belonged to me and the overall tone was positive and affirming. Mine, on the other hand, had seemed to be suggesting that I go get help immediately.
Since taking the test, my husband has developed a fat head and has become well nigh impossible to be around--so much does he think of himself.

As for me, I fear leaving the house. The dread "Hawthorne Effect" in full blown operation!
"The Hawthorne Effect," is a documented phenomena that occurs when something or someone is observed and/or studied. The fact of being examined changes the nature of the object.
I drag myself out of bed in the dead of night. I take the test again. This time I use the name "Virginia."
THIS from the great wired wizard at the other end; "Yes Virginia, there IS a Santa Claus."


Copyright 1997 The Courage of Our Confusion. All Rights Reserved. Comments? E-mail
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