So I created this Facebook quiz the other day that seems to be a popular meme right now. The premise is simply a multiple choice test that asks your friends questions about you... what was your first dog's name, what's your favorite video game, whatever. In homage to Spinal Tap, I created a test with 11 questions, and tried hard to make reasonable sounding alternatives to the correct answers. For example, my first question:
Where does "Medicine for the sky" come from?
a) Sci-fi short story by Asimov
b) Engrish.com pic of Japanese storefront window
c) Hillbilly slang for bitter coffee
d) Theoretical huge machine to repair ozone layer
e) Comment my kid made about a sunset
I must tell this story a lot, because everyone who has taken the test so far has correctly identified the last answer as the correct one. Either that, or some other psychological thing is going on - it sounds cooler than the others, maybe I wouldn't mention my kid if that wasn't the answer, something like that. For those who haven't actually heard the story, it's over on my CQ blog: Here
What I found most interesting in combing through everyone's answers was *how* they got certain questions wrong. For example, most everyone incorrectly assumed my high-school nickname was Stretch. Predictable, but boring. One person, however, guessed the worst possible answer from my list, "Klepto". Why, I ask, would someone think that? Was it a blind guess? Was it them being funny? Or did they assume I had a reputation as a shoplifter when I was younger? I did, mind you, but it wasn't notable enough to be nickname worthy.
My nickname was Stork, from one particular kick of a soccer ball during an after-school pickup game. I chipped it with my arms extended, and the effect was very stork-like. The following year a fellow classmate, Terry Cook, also tall and occasionally odd-looking when kicking a soccer ball, acquired the nickname "Emu", sort of a derivative of mine.
I don't tell that story a lot, but I have this other blog about how I lost a lot of weight, called Operation Inner Stork, where I recount trying to get fit enough to play soccer like a teenager again. I guess fatblogs aren't really good reading, but I'm still glad I did it. The idea of publicly announcing my changing weight was a fantastic motivator to take it seriously. I didn't want to have to write "Well, I didn't lose any weight again, because I'm lazy and incompetent." (By the way, weight this morning, 168.2, making my BMI 20.47 - I always keep track, a side effect of blogging about it for a year)
But whence "Klepto"? Moving on...
There was a question on the Facebook test that asked what Stacey's nickname as a preschooler was. Everyone who knew me when I was administering auterytech.com got the question right. Everyone who had never heard of the site got it wrong. This tells me that I don't go on at length about Stacey's unbearable cuteness as a preschooler any more, which probably suits Stacey just fine right now (she'll be turning 13 in a few months).
What's interesting about this? The wrong answers people chose were interesting. Most chose "pumpkin", generic and boring, the nickname of millions of kids world-wide, and not something my 20-something pompous self would have called my daughter. Too pedestrian. Not cool enough. Etc. Some of my pompous has ablated over time, but I'm still working on it, as I've obviously still got it in spades.
One person chose "bean", my gag answer. Again, why? Stacey was a huge preschooler, as she is a middle-schooler now (5'8" so far), so "bean" would be the last thing anyone would call her, unless they were being a smartass. But it's something I would do. In fact, I often call her "shorty" these days. So was the "bean" answer a wild guess, the person insightfully thinking I'd have a backwards nickname for her, or were they trying to be funny? Dunno, but it's interesting to speculate.
Fun stuff. This is how people get sucked into the field of cognitive research, or, if you're more like me, yet another method of overanalysis to apply to everything.
In other news, Stacey has pneumonia and an inhaler with which to combat it. She will recover fully and quickly because she's the healthiest 12 year old on the planet. But an inhaler for a 12 year old - spooky.
Lastly, I was stunned this morning at the sheer stealth of the trash-pickers. I was throwing out old keyboards and some miscellaneous items this morning in a small plastic trashcan (Tuesday + Westerville = trash day), and a brown paper Trader-Joe's bag filled with aluminum cans and glass bottles to be recycled. After taking my trash out and going back inside to get my laptop and lunch, I came back out and saw that the trashcan with the keyboards and the Trader Joe's bag were both gone. Damned trash ninjas.
The Last Bridge.
13 hours ago