Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Shit! I'm Schizophrenic! How About You?

The other day I was reading We Can Build You by Philip K Dick, and there's a passage where one of the characters undergoes the "James Benjamin Proverb Test" to check for mental illness. He is asked to explain several proverbs, including "A rolling stone gathers no moss" and... well, before reading further perhaps you should figure out what you think it means?

Anyway, the character tries to give an explanation:

"That means a man who is always active and keeps growing in mental and moral stature won't grow stale.
I mean, a man who's active and doesn't let grass grow under his feet, he'll get ahead in life."

And I'm thinking, well, that sounds about right. But then:

And I knew that I had revealed, for the purposes of legal diagnosis, a schizophrenic thinking disorder.

"The generally accepted meaning", says the doctor, is quite the opposite. And actually, it appears that the doctor and the book is correct:

This proverb now has two meanings: people pay a price for being always on the move, in that they have no roots in a specific place (the original meaning); or people who keep moving avoid picking up responsibilities and cares.

Which must mean I'm schizo, which doesn't really surprise me. The voices in my head were a dead giveaway. But what about you? Are you sane?

If you want a slightly more convincing assessment of your mental health, perhaps you could try these personality tests!

Various tests show me to be neurotic, melancholic and remarkably openminded. I'm also 50% friendly and 50% aggressive, which sounds pretty accurate. I'm somewhat screwed-up (though neither antisocial, nor narcissistic), with particularly high scores in the following category:

Schizotypal Personality Disorder - individual is uncomfortable in close relationships, has thought or perceptual distortions, and peculiarities of behavior.

On the other hand, that doesn't seem to jar with this. Or this. (That's comparisons to famous leaders and classic movies, respectively.

I guess it points to the fact that I want people to like me without having to like them. Also, this is me:

INTP - "Architect". Greatest precision in thought and language. Can readily discern contradictions and inconsistencies. The world exists primarily to be understood. 3.3% of total population.

Intuitive (N) 83.33% Sensing (S) 16.67%

I seem to be pretty good at visual pattern recognition (although not as good as I like to imagine I am... I want to take the test again, but that's cheating!!):

Your overall percentile is 87% which means you scored higher than 87% of the people who have taken this test. The internet population tends to be more intelligent so your percentile might be higher if the test taking sample was perfectly random.

And I'm downright brilliant at number patterns:

Your overall percentile is 94% which means you scored higher than 94% of the people who have taken this test. The internet population tends to be more intelligent so your percentile might be higher if the test taking sample was perfectly random.

Congratulations, you obtained a very high score. I am researching intelligence and personality so I would greatly appreciate if you would use the comment form below to answer the following questions.

What was your childhood IQ measured at? SAT score? GRE score?

IQ: Dunno, maybe 100-200?
SAT: A billion!
GRE: Huh?

What is your career or what career do you plan on pursuing?

I'm an unemployed academic. My life is a mess.

How has your intelligence affected your life?

Probably negatively.

Did you have any problems with any of the questions on this test, was it challenging, easy?

Me had to use brain to think so head hurt.

Now you know virtually everything there is to know about me. And I know nothing about you. Is that fair?

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