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Friday, January 29, 2016

"Smart"

I have the perfect post for "smart", but I can't show it until April.  Such a shame.  You see, I've been doing illustrations for the magazine "Mensa Bulletin" for their 50th anniversary edition.  This isn't making me rich, but I'm enjoying doing it, and I am getting paid.  Well, they said I'd get paid.  I haven't actually seen any money yet.

Mensa is a group for people who score in the top 2% of IQ tests.  I don't like to admit it very often, but I'm a card-carrying member.  I find this embarrassing, I suppose like someone in AA would feel.  If you're an alcoholic around other alcoholics, it's perfectly fine to admit you're a drunk.  If you're smart, it's okay to admit you're a geek to other geeks.  They're my people.  I love them.  We have great conversations over bagels. 

I learned cool stuff about mercury from a respected chemist this month, and he seemed tickled to find someone interested in learning about it.  I have no plans to do anything with mercury, and he won't repair his mercury clock because filling it with mercury would be too heavy and toxic.  I know, nobody else cares.  That's why there's a group for people who like to learn completely useless stuff, where nobody rolls their eyes at us.

I've spent a lot of my life hiding my brains because it's so uncool.  Being "too smart" can get you beat up on the playground, though luckily I never had that problem.  I suppose some people feel intimidated by Mensans, but I've found most of them to be open and helpful in explaining anything and everything that anyone else wants to know.  They're like Labrador retriever mutts.  Stick!  Cool!  Let me get that for you!  Do you want another stick?  Squirrel?  Sock?  Ball!!!

My original plan in joining in my 20s was to find someone interesting to date.  That accomplished, I let my membership lapse.  It wasn't until a lot of years later, and the breakup of another relationship, that I decided that I just wanted to hang out with my kind.  I discovered my brain was really, really rusty.  I felt intimidated and didn't say much until I discovered that Mensans are just like everyone else.  They've got opinions and biases.  They're nice or not.  The only thing you know they've got in common is that they're good at taking tests.

Many of the members are scientists and engineers, though there are a splattering of artists mixed in.  I think plenty of artists would qualify if they believed they could because artists often have that same kind of interest in everything.  Artists devote a lot of time to reading and studying all sorts of things.  There's a young lady in my group who loves Harry Potter as much as I do.  It's not all about molecular chemistry.  We spent an afternoon coloring together recently.

Sometimes the young daughter of a member comes to our group.  She colored with us too, and she blends as well as the grandparents in our group.  Age, sex, color, etc. doesn't matter, and I really enjoy diversity.

I can't show you my illustrations until after the magazine comes out, but this hand is a teaser.  It's about 1" x 1 1/2" of a full-page.  The art editor likes my efforts and gave me another full page to do.  Yay!  I expect to fully enjoy my weekend :)

26 comments:

  1. I'm delighted to find out you're officially a brainy person, Linda! It confirms my intuition that you (like me, but not card-carrying here) are one of those persons who asks WAY too many questions for the average person, and one who REALLY wants to know the answers! Perhaps we are all mensa-types when we are two, and that's where the "Terrible Twos" expression came from--kids who just will not stop asking "Why?" Curiosity seems to have become labeled as an annoying quality in humans, instead of the asset (and maybe even a survival skill?) that I suspect it was meant to be...

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    1. I think you've nailed it Susan, I never grew up. I'm not sorry either. Why not stay curiously two forever? Here's to kindred spirits!

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  2. Always knew it! Your posts are so varied and full of curiosity and life. And sooo glad you have a job you're enjoying. Can I join you and Susan, please :)

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    1. Absolutely Terri! The more the merrier!

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  3. Very nice way of explaining Mensa. And, as usual, I enjoyed the insights into 'Linda'. Thanks!

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    1. Thanks Korki! I was hoping I wouldn't offend any Mensans :)

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  4. How cool to be a Mensan Linda. I love the way you look at the world. Looking forward to seeing the illustration you are doing for them....I think today's is pretty smart anyway. Enjoy your weekend xx

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    1. Thanks Jane. I hope you have a great weekend too!

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  5. I don't have the card. I met a few Mensans with the same purpose you had in mind while in my 20s and found those few to be rather pompous and elitist, but like you say, "Mensans are just like everyone else. They've got opinions and biases. They're nice or not. The only thing you know they've got in common is that they're good at taking tests.", so I'm glad you found some good ones!

    And I agree that there are probably plenty of artists who qualify. I look forward to seeing your stuff in April!

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    1. There are some pompous people. I avoid them. In my experience, they're the exception not the rule in Mensa. Somehow I always suspected you might be one of us, and you seem very nice :)

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  6. Nice hand and nice background. Last week I was jealous because you can make things out of wood. This week I'm jealous because you can paint. :) It seems super cool to me that your art is being published in a magazine.

    I read Harry Potter for the first time recently. I had a really, really hard time being a responsible mom and human being in general. I couldn't put the books down--I actually swept my floor with one hand, holding a book with the other. I put the book in a plastic stand while I washed dishes, stopping to dry my hands to turn the pages. It was crazy. I was crazy, but I was glad I got to read it all at once, instead of waiting for the next book to come out like the people who read it when it first published.

    Anyway. I hope your weekend is as fun as you expect.

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    1. It's cool to me too that my work will be published in the magazine. Some day maybe I should make a list of all my unenviable traits? I enjoy your work too.

      I'm glad you enjoyed Harry Potter. Those books are addictive. I hope you have a fun weekend too!

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  7. Congratulations on the magazine work, that's terrific! And it's so wonderful to have a tribe of folk to call your own. I think most people are happier with these kinds of connections and I'm glad you found your way back there. Life is too short not to have some bagels with like-minded people once in a while.

    Also, beautiful hand! I love those earthy colors and shapes.

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    1. You're so right Cindy, life is too short not to have bagels. May we all be so lucky to find like-minded people!

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  8. I'm a fan of the Parade Magazine super IQ woman, Marilyn vos Savant. I enjoy one of her brain exercisers, Numbrix. Your post made me think of her.
    I'm nowhere near Mensa status, but I recognize those who are and find most to be interesting people. So can I be an honorary member? :)
    I've missed visiting here. 2015 was a bit of a bear. Hope to have a blogging flow this year.

    Have fun with the new project and Happy New Year!

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    1. I've missed seeing you Anita. May 2016 be a better year for you!

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  9. I don't suppose you are referring to Freddie Mercury... said the non-Mensa member.

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    1. How do you know Freddie wasn't a Mensan?

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    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  10. Last night on Family Feud, a fast money question was: "We surveyed 100 men - On a scale of 1-10, how smart of a wife would you want?" (Or something like that). My husband was sitting on the couch, shouting out "10!!!" But the guy on the tv said 5. Huh. Interesting. (His partner, a woman, said 10.) The number 1 answer was 8. My husband proceeded to say, "That's ridiculous. Why would anyone want a stupid wife?" And I said, "Well, maybe HE'S stupid, and he doesn't want her to be smarter than he is." My husband thought that was foolish - that a stupid man's life would be a lot easier if he had a smart wife to handle things. I like how he thinks. Probably why I married him....
    We are not Mensa members, although found it amusing when we learned early in our relationship that we both were in special programs in elementary school for the "Gifted and Talented." I remember him bragging about it, and me yelling "I WAS TOO!!!!" So now he says "Well, I was GAT first!" and my response is "only because you are 5 years older." Yeah, we're quite a match! ;)

    But back to the point (a wandering mind just may be evidence of GAT status) - BIG CONGRATULATIONS on the magazine work! I haven't been on blogger much this year thus far, but will make a point of checking back to look for your big reveal!!! :) Happy new year!

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    1. My experience is that most men want a woman somewhat less smart than they are. Good for your husband to understand a smart wife is an asset. Thanks and Happy New Year to you too!

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  11. Your life and posts just gets more interesting! That's a great group to belong to. I'll look forward to your Mensa art. No wonder you can remember every detail of your youth.

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    1. Not every detail, but yeah, a lot of it. Sometimes I think my purpose is to talk about my childhood so other people remember theirs?

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  12. Linda, I will wait patiently for your smart illustration. Meanwhile I enjoy all you post.

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