A New Direction – Beyond the Barbed Wire Fence
Here is the first blog post for “Who or What Am I, or Was I, or Will I Be?”
I recently embarked on such a journey—the one with the can of worms. In my search for identity or for who I truly am, I chose a highly scientific and impeccably reputable source: those quizzes on Facebook. They pop up on my timeline because my friends share them. I didn’t experience any transcendental or existential epiphanies; just cold, hard and sometimes brutal facts.
Previously, I’d ignored these little waste-of-my-valuable-time quizzes until, finally, one caught my attention: “What type of home should you live in?” The post included an image of a picturesque farmhouse. So I answered the questions and guess what? I got, “Live on a Farm--You are down-to-earth and natural, capable, flexible, and easy to please. More than one person considers you their best friend. Others can rely on you when they are in need and everyone feels comfortable around you.”
I was ecstatic! That’s me, or at least I hoped it was. That experience led to additional highly scientific research from impeccably reputable sources: More quizzes! Here are the results:
- “Who were you in a past life?” Based on my answers, I was Abigail. “Little is known about you, but you are a beautiful woman of strength, courage, intelligence, integrity and wisdom. You understand your place, and act with decisiveness. You are the source of wisdom and reason in your household.” Bingo!
- “What clothing item are you?” I am a T-shirt. “You are casual and laid-back and you tend to take a casual approach to life.” Another bingo!
- “What kind of mind do you have?” I have a creative mind. “Creativity flows through your veins, you’re experimental and love new ideas and spontaneity. You’re loved for your kindness and compassion as well as your originality.” I've never thought of myself as particularly creative, but now that I’m an author, it fits. Not sure about the experimental or spontaneity traits. My tendencies are more “tried and true” and my actions are usually well-thought-out and planned.
- “What color of the rainbow are you?” I got green. Huh?! Green?! My lifelong favorite color is purple. This passion goes back long before I attended Kansas State, even before I attended school in Burlingame, KS, where the colors are purple and white. Family lore has it that when I was three years old, whenever we went to my grandparents’ house for family dinners, I requested the shiny purple aluminum drinking tumbler over the other colors in the set. I have to be purple!
If that revelation wasn’t disappointing enough, another image-busting quiz was about to pop up on my timeline:
- “What color is your aura?” I have an aura? Sometimes I wish I was surrounded by an impenetrable force-field, but never realized I had an aura. OK, what color is this aura, then? I answer the questions and get…green! What is it with this green stuff? “You are a natural child that loves animals and nature, and being out in it brings you peace.” Yes, I like animals and nature and I find peace outside on our farm. So, my aura and I are green. I still love purple best!
Who makes up this stuff, anyway? Sometimes, the questions don’t seem relevant to the subject of the quiz. Or, none of the multiple choice answer selections apply to me.
A few days later, another silly quiz appeared on my timeline:
- “What is your secret talent?” Gullible me! I take the quiz and discover my secret talent is talking to animals. “You are very empathetic and you are able to understand even those who are unable to express their feelings. You are a mind-reader! How cool is that?” It would be really cool if I could read minds. But then, again, maybe not. The quiz was correct about one thing: I do talk to animals. I talk to Cricket quite often and I know she understands me. I talk to the cows and calves, even calling them by the names we’ve given them. They respond by looking up from their grazing or cud-chewing. Bill says they respond to my voice, not their names. But I’m quite sure Proud Mary, Snooze and Creedence know their names
- “What playground game are you?” I got marbles. How appropriate, since the ones I’m losing need to be replenished! But that’s not what the quiz-meisters meant. “People might think you are simple, but they aren’t enjoying the simplicity of life like you are.” I do like to keep my life uncomplicated!
- “What kind of alcohol are you?” I am champagne. “You are glam, sophisticated and live like a celebrity. You take great care with your appearance, and can often be seen in VIP bars across town.” This is so wrong! Most of the question and answer selections didn’t apply to me. I’m probably lucky the composite score didn’t indicate I am rubbing alcohol! My favorite activity is tromping around our land in my gumboots and ratty-looking farm clothes, having them shredded as I climb through barbed wire fences so they’re even rattier-looking. I am long-neck beer and white wine—Sauvignon Blanc, please. I am a rural red-neck gal with a light, crisp, pleasant bouquet followed by just a hint of a sophisticated finish. Yee-haw!
- “What is your Hippie name?” I have a hippie name? No one who knew me in the 1960’s and 70’s would ever associate me with being a hippie. In fact, quite the opposite! But, apparently, I have a hippie name. “You are Tree—You are in tune with nature and love being out on your own at times.” Okay, I can agree with that. I’m waiting for the quiz that takes this concept to the next level and invites me to find out what type of tree I am.
- “What kind of tree are you?” I am a Weeping Willow. “Solemn and flowing, you are the Weeping Willow. Unique and beautiful, you rarely consider yourself these two things. Doubt and uncertainty seem to cloud your otherwise sharp mind. Others see in you what you cannot, which tends to strengthen your bond with family and close friends. You are quiet, reserved, and intelligent.” Whew! That’s a relief! I thought being a Weeping Willow meant I cried a lot, which I don’t. Actually, the description is fairly apt, even the part about rarely considering myself beautiful.
- “Are you left-brained or right-brained?” I am left-brained. “You are a logical and orderly person. You have a system for almost everything in your life. You like to stay busy and it’s important that you stay on task. You prefer to do one thing at a time. You are rational and detail-oriented. You love to analyze and you have a head for numbers. You are also good with words. You love to read, and you've been known to write well.”
My research continues. I hope to evaluate and analyze the data I have collected over the past several months (enough to fill a 12-page Word document, single-spaced, with one-inch margins) and post more results soon. Meanwhile, if you are not familiar with these personality quizzes, you can check out these websites: www.playbuzz.com, www.quizony.com or www.buzzfeed.com.