Category Archives: Test

Every time I’m on the road it’s Special Driving Conditions, baby. I AM SPECIAL.

I was thinking today, as I was in traffic on my way home:

How many of these people would pass the New York State Learner’s Permit test, were they to take it today?

Now, in my defense, the drivers today were totally the worst. We had speed-em-up-slow-em-down Harry, who…well, did exactly what his name suggests. He was in front of me and he’d go normal speed, then putter along, then normal speed, then putter along again, and it was MAKING! ME! STABBY!

Then I had the guy who seemed new to town, and would hesitate at every single intersection. Do I want this one? No. How about this one? Nope, not this one. Oooh, this one? No, that one’s someone’s driveway. What about this one? Oh, shit, that’s the greenhouse’s back entrance. TURN OR PULL OVER I HAVE LAUNDRY TO DO!

Then there was the guy who kept coming to panicked stops for no reason. I feel like maybe he had something wrong with his foot. EEERK! Stop. EEEERK! Stop. Why are you DOING that? There’s not even a REASON!

My half-hour drive home became forty minutes and I was super-crabby by the time I got home.

Oh, is THAT what it is? Thanks, helpful graphic!

Oh, is THAT what it is? Thanks, helpful graphic!

So about halfway there, I started thinking. This isn’t the way we were taught to drive back when we were studying for our permits, was it? And we’re like, what, thirty years or something FROM getting those permits, more or less? Shouldn’t we be BETTER at this shit, not worse?

(Side note: I passed my written permit test without a hitch. I think I got one, maybe two questions wrong. I have always tested well. I tend to know, when there are multiple-choice questions, what’s being asked for. Or I can at least narrow it down to the two most likely answers and have a good track record of choosing the right answer. This is also why I would have been very good at that Who Wants to Be a Millionaire show. It was multiple-choice questions. I would have won that. Totally won.

However – this is a very long side-note – I did not pass my driver’s test the first time. The first time, I had a very mean old man who was SUCH A STICKLER. I couldn’t parallel park, but just not being able to parallel park doesn’t fail you. What failed me? I was driving – I am not even kidding – three miles an hour below the speed limit in a 25 or 30 mile-per-hour speed-limit zone. And he was so mean. He actually YELLED at me to speed up. Then said, “Not that it matters. It’s too late to pass this thing now.” I was CRUSHED.

The second time I went back, I wore a very short skirt – I was skinny then, it was my year I was skating the edge of an eating disorder – and a low-cut top and flirted my way to a passing grade with the younger instructor and the only thing he failed me on was parallel parking, because, per the instructor who was looking down my totally jailbaity top the whole time, “Eh, it’s a small town, you’ll never need to know how to parallel park, anyway. About a year later, I moved to Binghamton, New York – which is a city. Where you need to CONSTANTLY parallel park. I still can’t parallel park correctly. I’ve done it once correctly in my whole life. ONCE.

I am not proud of this passing-a-test-with-my-tits thing, but I really wanted that license.

END SIDE NOTE, which was just here to give a personal touch to this post. I did not start life as a very good driver, but I’m passable now. I’ve been in two accidents since I started driving, and wasn’t injured in either of them – just bodywork to the car(s). And the last one was 13 years ago. So I think I’m a decent driver, or at least know how to stay out of people’s way.)

ANYWAY. Where were we?

I thought it might be interesting to see, considering that it’s been 22 years since I took it, how I’d do on the NYS Learner’s Permit test if I were to take it now.

Did you know you could take the test, or at least a practice version, online? You totally can. Ain’t technology wonderful? I had to study from a smeary newsprinty booklet, if I remember correctly.

There are nine sections. Because I love tests, I took ’em ALL. With varying results.

We start with traffic control. Traffic control was a LOT of guessing. Why? Because it had questions like “What does a rectangular sign mean?”

Good grief. I don’t pay attention to the SHAPE of SIGNS! Unless they’re octagonal or triangular. I mean, sincerely. However, I somehow got all of those. (The answer to that rectangle question was “speed limit sign.” Hard, right?)

I actually got a 92% on this part so I was feeling pretty confident. I only got a couple of stupid things wrong because I overthought them (and, in my defense, one was worded oddly.) Also, were you aware if there’s a flashing red light, you’re supposed to stop? I have to wonder if I was on the road, I would know that, and I’m just not knowing that because I’m sitting on my couch, or if I really don’t know that and therefore am just seconds away from a multi-car pileup that kills a billion people.

Next! Intersections and turns! This’ll be good, right?

WRONG. I got a 69% on this. (Heh. 69.) I know, that’s ridiculous. I got 4/13 wrong. Two of them were hand-signals. I knew I was just guessing on those. I have no idea what the hand-signals mean. (I think they mean, “Get your turn signals fixed or take a cab, asshat.”) And again, two of them were oddly-worded, and one had me waiting in the center of an intersection to make a turn, which seems VERY unsafe to me.

Like I'm ever going to remember these. I'll just think you're car-dancing or something.

Like I’m ever going to remember these. I’ll just think you’re car-dancing or something.

Maybe I’m really a terrible driver after all.

Next! PASSING! Oh, I pass a lot of people. Because I am a speed demon. (There was not a section about speeding. If there was, I think I would have won the hell out of that section. Or lost, I suppose, depending on how you view it.) I totally got 100% on this section, which means I am excellent at passing. Get outta my way, yo, I AM PASSING YOU AND I AM VERY GOOD AT IT. I am 100% good at it, actually.

Parallel Parking! What do you think. Did I pass this part?

Noperoonie! I got a 56%. I FAIL AT PARALLEL PARKING. I am the WORST. I have no idea what the rules are; I hate parallel parking, and I will drive around for like half an hour to avoid having to do it. (Oddly, I got the parallel parking questions all right; it was the “no standing/no parking/no stopping” questions I got wrong. I don’t know what the difference is. I just don’t park there. Isn’t that the best way to handle something of that fashion? Just don’t park there?)

DEFENSIVE DRIVING! One hundred percent, baby! I apparently am excellent at both passing AND driving defensively. I think these are both important things to be good at. Better than STUPID PARALLEL PARKING.

I was pretty sure I was going to win Alcohol and Other Drugs, But I think I spaced out and missed one of the questions so did NOT get a perfect score. (The questions were hilarious. “Which of these will help you sober up? A., Running around the house, B., Drinking 14 pots of coffee, C., Drinking more alcohol, D., Time.” SO HARD! WHICH SHALL I CHOOSE?)

This is SMRT smart!

This is SMRT smart!

Next we have Special Driving Conditions. Hee! Special. I’m totally special. Will I win this one?

No. But close. 88%. There were a lot of “expressway” questions, and I don’t know what that means. Do we have expressways here? Is that the same as a highway or a freeway or whatever? Or is it like the Autobahn? VERY CONFUSING!

I got 100% on Sharing the Road, so anyone on a bicycle or walking should totally love me.

I also got one wrong on Road Signs, but it’s, again, because I got distracted and forgot to finish one of the questions. I kind of lose at attention-spanning, more than anything.

So I suppose, if this were the real thing, I probably would have passed, overall. (But I think I did better when I was a kid. However, I studied and studied back then; this was taken without any studying.)

As for the driving portion…well, here’s my thought. When you start driving, you’re all alert and paying attention to shit and nervous and you’re on your best behavior. Then you’ve been driving a while and you’re all “HO HUM OLD HAT” and then you stop paying as much attention. You don’t need to know what SHAPE the signs are. You know that’s a speed limit sign, or a railroad crossing sign, or whatever.

So most likely, if I were to take the driving portion of the test today, I’d pass – but I wouldn’t be driving like normal-Amy, I’d be driving like I do when I have a cop behind me. Checking all the signs and the speed limits and such.

However, there’s no hope for the asshats I was driving home behind today. NONE. There is no reason for driving like that. Maybe you people should have to re-take your driving tests once and a while or at least STAY AWAY FROM ME when I am ATTEMPTING TO DRIVE HOME because, as proven, I am very good at both passing and defensive driving so you should probably bow to my greatness and just let me around you because I have laundry to do, yo. And just because I win at sharing the road doesn’t mean I want to share it with YOU.

Go take some driving tests, you guys. I’m curious if you, too, win driving in New York State. (Also, some of the wording is kind of hilarious, I just have to say. And what else are you going to do today, work? PLEASE. Don’t even make me laugh.)

I’d make a doggy-style joke, but I’m MUCH too classy for that. Much.

Howdy, Sunday. How’s your weekend, good? I am currently having brunch with C. and C. at a fancy brunchy place full of brunchiness. Listen, there are very few things I like more than brunch. Because breakfast meats! And eggs! And did I mention the breakfast meats?And look how pretty!

Well, obviously, this is the place at NIGHT, and we’re going to be there during the DAY, but it’s still this pretty, with the river and all. Oooh!

Then we’re off to the fancy play at the fancy, fancy Vassar in the front row with the fancy famous people.

Ooh! Aah! Powerhouse!

Today is going to be a good day. I probably won’t even have time to miss you all, internet. I know, right? That’s INSANE. Don’t worry, I’ll be home before it gets dark.

We have some things to discuss! Some random interesting things!

First, look who’s a winner! Me! I am a winner!

Cat from Cat’s Litter Box has given me the Let Them Eat Cake award. This is nice, because it’s an award she made all by herself, and there are no RULES involved with the award. Like, “do all the linking to all the people” (which, as you all know, is the reason I cannot accept all the awards, because I don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings) and “answer all these way personal questions about yourself” (but, let’s face it, I don’t mind those, I’m kind of an open book, or I just lie, or refuse to answer the question, whatever strikes me as a good idea at the time, I mean, how would you even know?) AND no other things I have to do like sing a song or make a video or email a bunch of people in a chain-letter-like situation or ANYTHING.

Look what I won!

I know, you’re all EW EW EW but it’s actually a CAKE! A delicious cake! That only LOOKS like icky cat litter! That makes me smile. I got this award because, according to Cat, “If I actually wrote on my blog, rather than post pictures of bacon and Star Wars things, it would sound just like Lucy’s football” and “The blogs that I actually read give me a lot of pleasure, information or insight.” WELL! That’s a huge compliment, right? THANK YOU CAT! Cat is awesome, and creative and talented, and I am so pleased she likes my blog because it’s like someone FANCY noticing you and talking to you at a party and politely choosing to ignore the stains on your blouse and the fact that your lipstick is all crooked. HUZZAH!

Next, look, you can all learn all about your personality, and also maybe have a seizure in the process!

Look into the design. Look DEEEEEEEP into the design. Now go buy me some pudding. Good. GOOD.

One of my commenters, Kris, sent me a link to this a while ago and I put it in my file of “whaaa?” things and then today I was like, we should discuss this now please thanks. So here’s a link to this test. But listen! This personality test can cause SEIZURES and also DEATH. Here, from the homepage:

“This diagnostic is contra-indicated for individuals at risk of seizure or otherwise troubled by incongruous noises or strobing lights. This diagnostic tool should be administered (and all results intermediated) by an experienced clinician, so that suggestible individuals or those with a precarious sense of self can avoid feelings of depersonalization, loss of affect, or ego death.”

Oh, wait, not DEATH. EGO death. My mistake.

Anyway, I’ve already taken this, but it was a while ago and I forgot to write down what happened so I have to do it again so I can tell you my results. I promise it won’t cause ego death. My ego remains alive and well after taking the test. It DOES strobe a lot, though, so migraine and seizure trigger, I guess. Also, there are noises, and you need them in order to take the test properly, so if you’re at work, wait til you get home. If I get you fired, I’ll feel terrible and I can’t afford to send you any money. Oh, also? It moves REALLY FAST. It’s like a mindfuck video game of PSYCHOLOGY. Be prepared, jellybeans.

Ready? Here we go. Oh, the things I do for love.

OK, all the questions say weird things like “Your hands are covered in blood, WHY” and then you choose a block of color that is “morally correct” in order to win. Also, the background sounds are like what would happen if you were losing your mind in a haunted house.

Like in this basement. The noises in this basement. Gah.

Sample questions also include: “In the dark, a warm liquid flows over your thighs. How can you forget?” and “If you think these words, they will know.” Sometimes things pop up on the screen like “You are not paying attention” or “You are not following instructions.” This is very much like what would happen if you were in the mental institution. I’m quite sure of it.

My “diagnosis”:

You are overly inhibited and unsure of yourself and this likely has lead to a sense of the world closing in on you. You often feel that emotional relationships bring with them responsibilities or limitations that will be damaging to your sense of self. Compromise is seen as a threat to your identity.

A disappointment has lead you to a state of indecision and a pervasive uncertainty about the possibility of the future improving. Stress is the natural result, and you feel rising levels of uncertainty and anxiety, causing you to avoid situations where you will be forced to make a decision. Often this will express itself in a series of meaningless distractions, whether in the form of entertainment, intoxicants or romance.

Hmm. I don’t think I got this result the first time. I remember it being more insightful before. I think it’s mad at me. These results make me seem a LOT crazier than I am. Also, since when is “romance” a meaningless distraction? What would be a meaningFUL distraction, then?

Also, from the results page:

“There is a chance this test could cause a mild case of information poisoning or identity sickness. If symptoms of disassociation or existential dread continue for more than a day, please contact a therapist.”

You can also click and become one of their representatives but it’s all very creepy and you had to enter an email address and I love you all, but I’m not signing up for spam for you just to find out what the hell’s going on here. It’s probably an ad for a video game or something.

Anyway, tell me what your results are, if you take this and don’t get a seizure or “identity sickness,” whatever that is.

Next: in icky true news of Florida, now you know where to go if you want to be orally serviced by your dog.

This dog is shocked. And a little embarrassed for you, frankly.

According to this very, very informational article that I found for you, a man was arrested for both child porn and for bestiality, but will only be charged with the bestiality, because Florida had a heretofore un-thought-of loophole.

I also found this. If you try to molest an alligator, it will eat your whole hand and/or private area. So, please. By all means. Molest ALL the alligators.

Apparently, according to the LETTER OF THE LAW in Florida (yes, yes, it’s the ickiest that there has to be a law, SPELLED OUT, with TECHNICAL TERMS, for different TYPES of bestiality) as long as you don’t PENETRATE your pooch, or your pooch doesn’t penetrate YOU, you’re golden. But AMY! What does that leave all the lonely people? you’re asking.

Apparently, that means your dog (or cat, or ferret, or hamster, I suppose) can lick you. That is TOTALLY FINE. And our good buddy Eric Antunes from above only was doing THAT with “his girlfriend’s three legged dog” (EUPHEMISM? Nah. There’s no need for a euphemism in a story like this one, it’s not hiding NOTHIN’) he’s only in trouble for the child porn. No way around the child porn, Eric the Energetic. You kind of screwed the pooch there. HA! Oh, wait, no, no you didn’t, that’s why you’re not in trouble.

So, if you want to slip in (THAT one’s a euphemism) under the wire before they change that law, run on down to Florida and coat your junk with peanut butter. You’re welcome! (No, actually, you’re really not. You know how I feel about animal abuse, right? This is animal abuse, you assholes. STOP IT.)

This dog HEARTILY disapproves. HEARTILY. As do I.

And, finally, in VERY EXCITING NEWS, it was pointed out to me recently on Twitter that both sj and Ken really should have official titles over here on the old bloggidy blog. I mean, we have:

…and we have:

So, INTRODUCING…drumrollllll drumrollllll drumrolllll….


Please proffer them your MOST GIGANTIC CONGRATULATIONS! It is nice that I am slowly establishing a whole battalion of experts. I have science, fly-nance (that once covers a lot of ground, so that’s good), music, and euphemism. It’s really only a matter of time before I take over the world with all this knowledge at my fingertips, seriously.

Happy Sunday! Can’t wait to tell you all about the play!

Hey, baby, check out my big old sexy amygdala.

Happy Saturday! I’m at work right now. I’m writing to you from the PAAASSSTTTT. Like a GHOST. Aren’t you so scared? Yeah, thought so. I’m fear-inspiring.

It’s going to be a long day – work, then meeting friends at the theater who are coming in from out of town to see the show we’re doing right now (Aaron Sorkin’s The Farnsworth Invention – I saw a rehearsal a couple of weeks ago and it was wonderful, I can’t wait to see it with all the bells and whistles! And, also exciting to see my friends, haven’t seen them since right after Christmas!) then home and I will collapse into bed like a dead person and sleep and sleep and then back to it on Sunday, blogging and blogging and blogging and then ushering for the matinée performance and then coming home and MORE BLOGGING so I can get ahead of the game a little, because next week is a busy one, too. WHOO! Aren’t you exhausted just thinking about it? I am.

OK, so I don’t know how much I have in me, and this is kind of probably bigger than me, but I thought it was interesting, especially in an election year, so let’s see how it goes.

I found this article the other day about our minds, and why we might be predisposed to be either liberal or conservative. I don’t think it’s the best article – it seems lacking in a few things – but it does raise some interesting points.

It wouldn’t surprise you that Dad calls these the elephant and the asshole, right? Probably not.

The author, Chris Mooney, wrote a book that really doesn’t hide his feelings about whether he rides a donkey or an elephant to work – The Republican Brain: The Science of Why They Deny Science – and Reality – thinks that we are more apt to be liberal or conservative based on where we fall on the Big Five Personality Test. I think we’re discussed this test before – it measures extroversion, agreeableness, conscientiousness, neuroticism, and openness.

(Before I get going, here, this isn’t a conservative-bashing post. I promise. I may not be a conservative, but I know at least one good one. So I’m not insulting them here. Totally not. Read! You’ll see!)

According to Mooney, four of the traits tend slightly to measure your tendency to lean left or right, but one is the most telling of all – openness. How open you are to new experiences versus how concrete and black and white you see things. The more open you are to new experiences apparently means you’re more apt to be a liberal, while the more black and white you see things, you’re more apt to be a conservative.

(A couple of other interesting things – conservatives tend to be more extroverted than liberals and have more friends, apparently, and liberals tend to be more neurotic. Heh. No, no, not ME. ARE YOU MAKING FUN OF ME RIGHT NOW?!?!?!?)

There’s a test at the bottom of the link where you can see where you fall – five questions, I got two that made me tend more toward conservatism, one that didn’t matter, one that made me more liberal, and one (the big, important “open to new experiences one” that’s supposed to be the only real one that matters) that says ZOMG AMY YOU ARE A LIBERAL.

Interesting, right?

There’s also this article, which says (and it’s also hinted at in the Mooney piece) that conservatives have larger amygdalas than liberals. NO THAT’S NOT DIRTY. It’s a part of our brain that controls fear and primitive emotions. They also tend to have smaller anterior cingulates, which are the parts of the brain that control courage and optimism.

Look how sciency this is. Don’t you feel so impressed? I know I do.

So this article is saying that conservatives tend to be more fearful and less optimistic, which I guess would be why they want more structure in government, which is what conservative politicians tend to offer. And liberals, alternately, see things a little rosier, so are a little more apt to go for less governmental control. Right?

Aw, beagle with rose-colored glasses! This is a liberal beagle.

Both that article and this one hint at the fact that this is why fearmongering works in politics, and tends to work more efficiently with conservatives. (And that it’s a shitty tactic to use, no matter who it’s used on.)

Now, I find this all fascinating, but I think it leaves some things out. Sure, our brains might come into play – genetics, maybe, how we’re made. I like that idea, that even in the womb, we’re little liberals or conservatives just waiting to make our mark on the world. But I don’t think that’s all there is.

See, when I was young, I was around all conservatives all the time. I don’t think I knew a single liberal. I know you probably think of New York as a hotbed of liberalism, but upstate? They’re as conservative as they come up there. Gun-totin’, camo-wearin’, tobacco-spittin’ conservatives. I was brought up to believe that liberals were bad. Want to guess what Dad thinks about liberals? Yep. Dirty hippies, all. Lazy, dirty, hippies.

So I went off to college. In a big city. Downstate. You know what downstate means, right? LIBERALS LIBERALS DIRTY LIBERALS! And it just so happened that the first year I went to college was the first year I could vote, and ALSO an election year. The first Bill Clinton election year, actually. Bill Clinton, George H.W. Bush, and Ross Perot. Aw, remember little Ross Perot, all spitfirey and wee? And weird. Also kind of weird.

Seriously, just on looks alone, look at your options. (Also, Bill Clinton? I have such a crush on the man. Even now. Sigh.)

Now, Bush was the incumbent. The incumbent usually wins, right? But Clinton. Do you guys remember how he was kind of cool and magical and, well, shit, hip? (Let’s be frank, Perot wasn’t winning that election. It was cute he was trying, though.)

I was 18, I was in college (I had escaped from my horrifying small town and wasn’t being bullied anymore – I had never felt so free in my life), and I started what I would do every single election year up until now, and will undoubtedly continue to do for the rest of my life – I researched the shit out of those two candidates. (I researched Perot a little, too, but kind of gave up. He was a weirdo. I didn’t want a weirdo running my country, and it felt like throwing my first real vote away.)

I looked at where the candidates stood on the issues. I thought about where I stood on the issues. And I realized – shit. I need to vote for Clinton.

Then – shit. Dad was going to FLIP. DIRTY DIRTY HIPPIES YOU GUYS.

I voted for Clinton. And man, did my dorm celebrate when he won. It felt good. It felt like we were a part of something big. Have I mentioned enough how much I love voting? Probably not enough. Probably not ever enough. Voting is my favorite thing. I’d vote daily if I could. On anything, really.

Oh, and Dad? FURIOUS. SO EFFING FURIOUS. “I didn’t raise a liberal” and “How could you do this to me” and “DIRTY LAZY HIPPIES WHO PLAY SAXOPHONES ARE RUNNING THE WORLD NOW BECAUSE OF YOU.” (He still blames college for “ruining” me. Not even kidding. Because I was SO WHOLE BEFORE I LEFT FOR COLLEGE. Gack.)

Anyway, this has been a really long tangent. What I’m trying to say is, I don’t think it’s all genetics. I think it’s also the people you surround yourself with; it’s what you read; it’s what you watch (listen, don’t even tell me that Tina Fey’s take on Sarah Palin didn’t have an effect on the 2008 elections – yes, Obama probably would have won anyway, but people were pretty fired up about Palin for a while until she started…well…talking, and then Tina Fey came on and, well, were you going to vote for the candidate who could “see Russia from her houuuuse?” No, didn’t think so); it’s the social issues you think are important. I go down the list of where the candidates stand on the issues and I weigh it against where I stand on the issues and I vote for the person that most closely aligns with me.

Seriously, even one of the news channels accidentally used a photo of Tina Fey instead of Sarah Palin around that time. People couldn’t tell the difference. In other news: people are not bright.

So, sure. Maybe it’s genetics. But it’s kind of the old nature vs. nurture thing, isn’t it? Would I still be a liberal if I’d chosen to stay close to home, married someone from there, raised a big old farm family or something (gah gah gah can you even imagine how bad I’d be at that? I mean, sure, there’d be animals, but you’d NEVER get to play with them. You’d have to WORK. And also EAT them. No thanks), was surrounded by all conservatives being all shouty about how the liberals are ruining the country? If I hadn’t moved away, been surrounded by my people, most of whom, yes, were liberals, would I have swum like a salmon upstream and been the one little liberal in a town full of conservatives? I don’t know. I wonder about that. Who you are is made up of not only DNA, but experiences you have. People you meet.

So I’m undecided on this whole thing. I think it’s nice to think it’s hardwired, but I don’t think that’s the whole story. What about you? Think we’re genetically predisposed to be dirty hippies? Or do you think it’s more something we pick up from the people we know and the experiences we have?

This is every liberal ever, when Dad thinks about them. Also, I think he imagines this is all the men I date. HA! Fooled YOU, Dad. I DON’T DATE!

Oh, you probably want to know if Dad’s calmed down about this, right? Well, yes and no. There’s not as much shouting. (About that, anyway.) He’s accepted it. Our joke now is that our votes cancel each other out, so that seems to make him feel a liiiittle better. Oh, and also I found out that (I told you all this, I think?) his mom’s whole side of the family were super-liberals, going back back BACK. So apparently his mom and dad used to squabble about politics all the time. So don’t even tell me, DAD, that I’m the only one EVER with YOUR DNA that voted Democrat, don’t EVEN.

Happy Saturday, all. Have a lovely spring weekend. It’s Tulip Fest here this weekend! Because we’re all Dutch here! Nice, right? Here are some Albany tulips for you. Aren’t you so cheered? Sure you are.

Way to fail me in my time of need, interwebs.

I was talking to a friend the other day about guys. You know, as you do. When you’re an adult. Have the same conversations you had when you were fourteen and bored and passing notes in study hall.

We were talking about how our list of what we want in a guy changed, as we got older.

When I was young, it was all about EXCITING. I wanted a Heathcliff. I wanted the brooding and the romance and the drama.

Ooh, Ralph. Love, love, love, with the broody.

Now I kind of just want someone to watch Game of Thrones with who’d help me bring in the groceries. And also liked Dumbcat, and of course sex. And who knows how to use a semicolon, and doesn’t live in his mom’s basement. And who makes me laugh. And who I make laugh. Because I’m funny as hell, no joke.

Someone who agrees that Joffrey needs all the bitchslappery would be JUST PEACHY WITH ME.

The friend was all, “I think you need to know more of what you’re looking for than that,” and I said, “Really? I won’t just know when I meet him?” and she said she didn’t think so. I don’t know if I 100% agree with that but you can’t really say that to people because you look like a douchenozzle.

So I went to the interwebs because I thought, the interwebs will be a nice way to find out what I’m looking for, because apparently that’s something that normal people know and I don’t. I know, total surprise, right? Also, have I mentioned I have a very, very stupid heart? I have a very intelligent brain and a very stupid heart. It wants what’s bad for it. It wants all the Cheetos, this heart of mine, and none of the salad. It’s not a smart heart. Not at all.

First I found this quiz, and it seemed promising (because it said it was FOR GIRLS and I am totally A GIRL) until there were 47 billion popups. Don’t click on this quiz unless you like 47 million popups.

But it told me this is what I wanted in a guy:

You like The Populars! You have a love for those who are oh-so-smooth around you! You also love them because they know how to talk and make your heart melt! They’re perfect for you, because they also love to be cool, like you! You’re a sweet gal, so stepping up and talking to them shouldn’t be hard for you!

Um. No. No, I don’t think I do. I think that’s the opposite of what I like. Bad job, popuppy quiz.

Then I found this one, and there were a lot of typos. Listen, I’m starting to despair for the state of the interwebs. HOW ARE PEOPLE SUPPOSED TO FIND OUT WHAT THEY WANT IN A GUY IF THERE ARE ALL THE POPUPS AND TYPOS.

But it was totally smarter, yo.

YOU WANT TO DATE A GEEK! You love geeks! Not to say that you ARE one, but… I’m just saying. Anyways this is the perfect guy for you. You like school, plaid, and your family. So go ahead and don’t care what anyone says: DATE A GEEK!

“Anyways” makes me want to commit kitten-murder.

I DO like school and my family. I’m kind of meh on plaid, though.

Ooh, now THIS ONE is for GROWNUP LADIES because it is from a site with GROWNUP things on it. So this is more promising. Listen, we’re going to crack this code sooner than later, I’m promising you this right now. This one’s going to tell us what type of man I attract. I’m going to predict right now it’s homeless people who want to borrow money.

One of these questions asked where I like to go for a date. My options for answers? A dance hall (that’s still a thing? Are we also time-traveling?), a strip club (um…is it s first date, or…let’s just say no, for now), the theater for a Broadway show, or “I don’t care.” You think I answered the theater, but you’d be wrong. I said I don’t care. Because the last thing I want to do is drag some date to the theater when he doesn’t want to be there. That’d be awkward, and ruin it for everyone.

This quiz sucks and won’t give me my results unless I sign up for some spammy email shit. NO WAY CHARLIE. I guess we’ll never know what kind of men I attract. However, while taking this quiz, I stumbled upon an article called “14 Embarrassing Sex Questions” which you KNOW I had to read, I mean, you would have, too, and found out the following information:

  • Farting during sex is NORMAL and NOT FUNNY (come on, that wouldn’t make you laugh? That would make ME laugh. And if the guy I was schtupping DIDN’T laugh, that’s a sign I’m with the WRONG GUY.)
  • Having gay sex dreams doesn’t mean you ARE gay (um…someone asked this? I dreamed my finger fell off once, does that make me leprous?)
  • Cybersex does not count as cheating (really? I think I know a LOT of people who’d beg to differ on that point. I am one of them.)
  • Playboy airbrushes their centerfolds’ coochal areas (hee, what a job for someone)

These questions were less “embarrassing” than they were “stupid.” I don’t care for this website. BACK TO SOLVING MY LOVE LIFE DILEMMAS.

Now, this one is promising. Because it’s on a site called All The Tests. I like All The Things. so this will probably be very helpful.



You like the academics. Overachievers in school, these guys are intelligent and may edge on geeky. But, when they aren’t busy studying they will make time to adore you! Often enough, these guys are too shy to show they care, so try and be friendly towards them and something might happen.

OK, so we’re two for two on the geek set. I like that. I approve. This imaginary guy will be watching Game of Thrones with me in no time. Although I don’t know if I love that “something might happen” with this guy. That seems kind of up-in-the-air. I don’t have time to wait for him to get his shit together, dammit, I’m pretty old right now.

OK, enough with the teeny bopper bullshit. NOW WE ARE GOING TO USE SCIENCE.

This website is called PSYCH CENTRAL. I’m sure this will be very helpful. And this quiz is going to tell me what my style of romantic attachment is. HELPFUL ALREADY.

OK, this quiz says I am “fearful and shy” about relationships because I don’t want to get hurt.


Also, it wants me to put a badge on my site that says “My relationship style is Fearful and Shy” which I think would be the perfect milkshake to bring all the boys to my yard.

Now I”m just getting bored, let’s see if I have a sexual addiction.

Sigh. ZERO POINTS. UNLIKELY. I apparently am not a deviant.

OK, I have learned NOTHING today. This is just the worst. I am no closer to finding my Game of Thrones grocery-carrier sex-fella than I was when I STARTED this situation.

Oh, I totally met my future husband at work the other day but then I found out he was married with three kids so I was told I was not allowed to lust after him. He was a Doctor without BORDERS, you guys! So adorable! So when I got over him fourteen minutes later I met my NEW OTHER HUSBAND who was irreverent and wacky and looked like he knew how to repair cars. I like a guy who looks like he knows how to repair cars. I mean, I have a car, that’d be a handy skill. Also he used a long word that I’ve already forgotten so I got lustful. AND his dad apparently is a rich person so once we get married and his dad dies we’ll totally be jetting off on my European trip. But I was told that new husband hardly ever comes to my office so if I ever see him again probably it would just be a fluke and I’ve already forgotten what he looks like and also his first name so I wouldn’t even know him if I saw him. So then my coworker who was sad that all my future husbands were falling through told me she would be on the lookout for a musician for me because she thought that would be a good match for me and I said “AGREED, except make sure it’s not an asshat musician, I dated one of those once and it was nightmarish” and so that’s exciting except she’s really flaky and sometimes calls me Marnie even though I’ve known her for like six years so I think this might fall through.


Whatever, imaginary guy would probably just talk during Game of Thrones anyway. Then I’d have to break up with him. NO TALKING DURING TYRION UNLESS YOU WANT TO BE PUNCHED IN THE NECK YO.

*sigh* Yes, yes, Tyrion. Everything you say. Got it.

(Psst, happy birthday to my baby brother. Yes, the one who thinks you all have either one hand or are rapists. He will not be seeing this. HAPPY BIRTHDAY BABY BROTHER. You do not care for the internet and think it is shadytown. I…think otherwise. Genetics are a funny thing, sometimes. ENJOY YOUR DAY!)

Feline Fatal Attraction: Dumbcat is Trying To Kill Me With Brain Parasites

Oh, man, there is totally an issue we have to discuss right now that I found out today and it is MAJOR, you guys, no joke.


No, I’m not EVEN exaggerating, a SCIENTIST said it. A scientist! This guy right HERE!

I think he looks jazzy. It's the sweater. Or the unruly hair. I do like a good head of unruly hair on a man.

Yes, yes. Let’s just get this out of the way: I am aware that the scientist in question, Dr. Jaroslav Flegr, looks like a ginger version of, well…


Great Scott.

But listen! DOC BROWN WAS A GENIUS YOU GUYS. I mean, flux capacitor? Come on, not just any yahoo could invent that. I’m sure some yahoos have tried, too. I mean, who WOULDN’T want to go back…to the future?

I also think Flegr looks a little like this:

But imagine him with unrulier hair. Total face twins.

And the fact that Filch has a cat is VERY MYSTERIOUS.

ANYWAY. So today I was playing around online, you know, as one does, and saw this article, and thought, ha ha, MY CAT TOTALLY MAKES ME CRAY-CRAY, I mean, the minute I walk in the damn house he’s all, “Meow? Meow? Meeee-ow? Mrooow? Meow? Mieuuuuu? Mrooo. Mroooouuu?” like we’re having a little conversation, only I’m not fluent in cat, you see, so it’s kind of one-sided. So mostly it’s him saying those things, and me being all, “Hi, Dumbcat. YES, Dumbcat. I SEE you, Dumbcat. I KNOW, Dumbcat, yes, there you are! There you ARE! Good BOY! Aren’t you a GOOD BOY! Oh, man, was that a totally hard headbutt into my stomach. Ouch, your nails are sharp, digging into my leg like that OW OW OW DUMBCAT now I am BLEEDING, I still love you, don’t be scared, aw, my little sweet potato.” Also, he likes to leap on my head half an hour before the alarm goes off in the morning, or really early on the days I can sleep in, all “HI MOM! Pet me. Want to pet me? YOU TOTES DO MOM. Right NOW you do. I KNOW IT. Pet me pet me pet me AREN’T I SO CUUUUTE purr purr PURR IN YOUR EAR PURR.” My response to this is usually “Mrrphmph Dumbcat stop it so scheepy stop stop ow stop you’re stepping on my eyeball.”

But oh, no no, this article was NOT about how your cat, who probably, let’s face it, isn’t named Dumbcat (honestly, mine isn’t either, that’s just his blog-pseudonym, so you don’t kidnap him or open a credit card in his name, because I know if you called him he’d totally be fooled into giving you his social security number, he’s very trusting) is making you a little crazy with the meowing and purring and early-risering. It’s about BRAIN PARASITES and SEX and CAR CRASHES and RAW MEAT and EUROPE and RATS and URINE.

It’s also eleven pages long. And, because I love you (and you, and you, and YOU, oh, wait, no, not you, sorry to be misleading) I printed it, and brought it with me on my lunch break, and read it twice, and wrote my thoughts all over it so we could totally have a serious scientific discussion about how your cats are infecting you with brain parasites. Andreas! Are you totally the most proud of me right now? I thought so.

First, this is from The Atlantic. I don’t think I was aware of this publication. But you guys, it is totally fancy. I am impressed with this. It is well-written, it is easy to peruse online, and according to research I totally just did right now so you don’t think I’m just making shit up, it’s been around since the mid 1800s. And the reason I wasn’t aware of it was because it used to be called The Atlantic Monthly and I WAS aware of The Atlantic Monthly, so now I don’t feel like a heathen.

Anyway. Because the article was ELEVEN PAGES LONG ZOMG, and totally twisty and turny and sciency, I do NOT expect you to click. Well, I bet Andreas will click. He grooves on science. But I totally read this for you so you don’t have to click. Unless you want to. It is interesting and worth a read, if you want to. And I really liked the article, and the author’s style. So, yeah, you go, The Atlantic! You get my stamp of approval. Stamp, stamp, stamp.

Also, any sciency-type mistakes I make here are totally my own and not the fault of the original article. I take full responsibility for science-style mistakes made in the name of tomfoolery and shenanigans.

Here’s the story:

The scientist above, who is NOT Doc Brown but kind of LOOKS like a ginger Doc Brown, Dr. Jaroslav Flegr, has been doing research into the Toxoplasma gondii microbe for some time. This is the microbe that is in cat feces (you know how pregnant women are told to not change cat litter? that’s why, it can cause birth defects) that causes toxoplasmosis. This microbe is also found on unwashed fruits and vegetables and in dirty water and undercooked meat.

Flegr (hee, I love that name, I think if you were to say it, you’d have to say it with a very guttural pronunciation, just for fun) one day realized he was acting strangely. He was not afraid of things that he should be. Like walking into busy streets! And the Communists who ruled his homeland of Czechoslovakia! This made him curious. One day, the university where he worked was running tests for a study they were doing on the T. gondii microbe, and needed test subjects, so he took the test and tested positive.

This led to years and years and YEARS of intense research on this parasitic microbe. He’s been working on this for twelve years exclusively, to be precise. It is his life’s work.

Here is what Flegr has discovered about good old T. gondii:

Healthy adults and children experience brief flu-like symptoms when infected; they quickly fight them off. Then the “protozoan…thereafter lies dormant inside brain cells.” FOREVER. Ugh ZOMG WTF.

Once there, the parasite (according to Flegr’s research) causes changes in our behavior – anything from “changing our response to frightening situations,” to changing our “trust in others, how outgoing we are, and even our preferences for certain scents.”

YES! The insidious microbe, having taken up residence in our BRAINS, “rewire(s) circuits in parts of the brain that deal with such primal emotions such as fear, anxiety, and sexual arousal.” It does this by causing multiple small cysts in various parts of the brain.


Some people consider what Flegr is doing to be “fringe science.” This made me VERY EXCITED because I was hoping that the article would go on to say they called in Joshua Jackson to consult on the matter but that never happened dammit.

*sigh* Peter Bishop, you can investigate my fringe science any old damn time you've got a notion.

How T. gondii works in rats, who are T. gondii’s primary targets, anyway, is that it gets into them, it rewires their brains with all the cysts, and then – no, I’m totally not kidding – it makes cat pee smell GOOD to them. It makes the rats LOVE THE SMELL OF CAT PEE. It also makes the rats GET SEXUALLY AROUSED BY CAT PEE. It ALSO makes the rats more active. So you have rats tantalizingly running around more and hanging out where cats pee. The scientists call this “feline fatal attraction” in what I can only assume is a bit of scientist-humor. HA WELL-PLAYED SCIENTISTS. Well! Who’s going to catch THOSE rats, I wonder? CATS. And once cats catch and eat them, T. gondii’s life cycle is complete – it can mate, because there are (I assume? The article didn’t really go into this) other T. gondii’s hanging out in the cats’ digestive tracts that they want to pump it, pump it real good with.

How it works in HUMANS is a little less easy to explain, because T. gondii doesn’t really want to BE in humans. It’s not MEANT to be in humans. But, good old T. gondii! It adapts!

It makes the following things happen:

Men become “more introverted, suspicious, oblivious to other people’s opinions of them, and inclined to disregard rules”

Women become “more outgoing, trusting, image-conscious, and rule-abiding”

Infected subjects have a slower response time and a lower fear response, so they are more apt to get in car accidents

Men who are infected are perceived as more masculine by members of the opposite sex than uninfected men (presumably because the microbe wants you to mate with its host)

If you have a genetic disposition toward depression or schizophrenia, it may be heightened or precipitated by infection

Men who are infected find the scent of cat urine attractive

Infected subjects have increased levels of dopamine, so their fear, pleasure, and attention signals are all out of whack (most upsetting side effect: it can rewire your fear sensors into your sexual arousal sensors, so when you are afraid, you become sexually aroused)


However, I think we can surmise, based on the above, that I am not infected. OR, if I AM, I am male. Because look up there at the symptoms female subjects experience. Just look. Now look back at me. NOW BACK AT THE SYMPTOMS. I am NONE of those things. However! I am ALL of the things that the MALE subjects experience. So either I’m male (let me check…nope) or I’m parasitic-brain-sucking-microbe-free. WHOO. Didn’t get me YET, Dumbcat!

Now, the best part of this article, for me, was the testing section, where they talked about the scientific tests they ran to come up with the results above, and other tests they ran. My favorites:

“…a postdoctoral student decided to inspect infected rats’ testicles for signs of cysts. Sure enough, he found them there – as well as in the animals’ semen.”

I LOVE THIS. Is this not the WORST post-doctoral gig EVER? “What’d you do today, honey?” “Oh, nothing much. Manually masturbated rats, checked their semen and testicles for cysts. Typical day. How about you, babe? What’s for dinner? Can I help make it?” “WASH YOUR HANDS YOU ARE DISGUSTING DON’T EVEN TOUCH ME.”


“To test whether they were prone to being suspicious, they were asked, among other things, to drink an unidentified liquid…And when it came to downing the mystery fluid…‘the infected males were much more hesitant than uninfected men.  They wanted to know why they had to do it. Would it harm them?’ In contrast, the infected women were the most trusting of all subjects. ‘They just did what they were told.’”

First, if you’re in a scientific test situation, I’m pretty sure they’re not going to kill you. That’s like being worried on Survivor that you might really die rappelling or something. You won’t, or they can’t air the footage, you know? The test is already flawed. Second, “downing the mystery fluid” is the funniest non-euphemism euphemism I’ve read all day. THIRD, infected girls would TOTALLY be a hit at college frat parties. Gah. Nervous-making. I’m thinking of the friends I had to pull out of “they just did what they were told” situations back in the early-to-mid-nineties and this is making me shudder. I wish I had known that it was the fault of their damn murdery brain-parasite infecting cats.


“…infected men like the smell of cat pee…more favorably than uninfected men do…The sniff test was done blind and also included urine collected from a dog, horse, hyena, and tiger.”

This made me laugh and snort iced coffee out my nose, you guys. “OK, Bachelor #1, your blindfold tied tight? Good, good. Now, sniff, nice and deep. Get a gooood whiff. What’s that bouquet? Explain the notes you detect in this sample. Would you say it’s more or less pleasing than the last sample?” “OH MY GOD THEY ALL SMELL LIKE PISS PLEASE MAKE THIS STOP”

Alright. SO. Does Flegr say to get rid of Dumbcat? NO HE DOES NOT. He actually HAS cats. (Of course he does. He’s already infected, what does HE care?) He says it’s actually more important to wash your fruits and vegetables, make sure you have clean water, and cook your meat well (or at least freeze it before preparing it, if you have to have it done rare, to “kill the cysts.” UGH EW. ALSO! Have I not TOLD you people, ALL ALONG, that beef is DISGUSTING? Yes I HAVE. I’ve TOTALLY been trying to save you from BRAIN PARASITES.)

Also, this sentence, totally full of win: “The so-called cat craze began among ‘poets and left-wing avant-garde Greenwich Village types.’” Hee! YES. All the hippies and rebels and the ones your momma warned you about with their crazy hair and eyes and KITTY CATS FILLED WITH DISEASE!

As you can see, our cats are totally trying to kill us through car accidents and inappropriate sexual behavior due to BRAIN PARASITES. Barring that, they’re trying to get us to fall in love with the scent of their urine, I assume so they can start peeing all over the damn apartment.

SO! Let’s take our new-found knowledge and apply it in the REAL WORLD. Like scientists! Scientists of SCIENCE! Here are some famous people with cats. Let’s diagnose them!

Ian Somerholder! Totally not infected. He is very sweet and very non-scary. Unless this is a photo of Damon, in which case, YES. Damon is TOTALLY infected with cat-poo-borne brain parasites. That would explain why I am so attracted to Damon, as well. Hmm. This one’s iffy.

Michael Jackson before he was scary and filled with plastic surgery and also dead! No, not infected. Michael Jackson was a lot of things, but overly masculine was not one of them.

Holly Golightly! I think half-infected. The fashion-conscious and outgoing half. The other half, the rule-abiding and trusting half, not so much. The asshatty half, TOTALLY all her, though. If you’re mathing for me, that’s three halves.

Bill Clinton! NOT INFECTED. Don’t you even say a WORD. I won’t hear ANYTHING against my Bill Clinton. I LOVE HIM THE MOST. He has NO BRAIN PARASITES. He is PERFECT. Well, he might have a touch of whatever makes me irrationally attracted to him, but not brain parasites.

Dr. Evil! TOTALLY infected. Also, hairless cats creep me out the most. I had a friend with a hairless dog once. It was so icky.

Marilyn Monroe! Candle-in-the-wind poster child for parasitic brain infection. She fits the bill perfectly.

And finally, a young and adorable Michael J. Fox holding Dumbcat’s DOPPELGANGER! (Although with a tail. Dumbcat doesn’t have a tail. He lost it somewhere, I assume, and forgot where he left it and then wandered off and didn’t go back for it. That’s just like Dumbcat, honestly.) Not infected. Marty McFly is totally not infected with brain parasites.

So! In SUMMATION! Dumbcat! I TOTALLY have my eye on you right now, bud. If I start acting all compliant and friendly and wearing “expensive, designer-brand clothing” (HA, like that is EVER going to happen, I’d buy electronics or nail polish with that money first) you KNOW I have been body-snatched by a furry assassin with too many toes and ever-so-slightly crossed eyes. WATCH OUT FOR HIM. He is ONE WILY CAT. Him falling off the back of the couch and get his head stuck in my winter boot last night WAS JUST A RUSE. A cunning, cunning, hysterically clumsy MURDEROUS ruse.

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