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GOT BRAINS?
Category: Personal
Monday, August 15th, 2005 @ 10:57 am
Posted By Brent

During my entire childhood I was told I was a "gifted" child. I consistently scored above my class on placement tests, had a healthy appetite for reading, and I picked up things like memorizing the Gettysburg Address and learning my multiplication tables rather quickly. I spent so much time as a kid hearing about how eff'ing smart I was that it naturally became part of my self image. It didn't matter that I was a chronic underachiever who never got higher than a C average, I was a fucking prodigy, and I had the test scores to prove it.

The problem with being a child prodigy is that once you are no longer a child, you're no longer a prodigy either. You're just some dipshit with an over inflated self image. You've grown into your smarts like a pair of your brother's hand-me-down jeans and having the problem solving skills of a High School Senior, while amazing at 10, is considerably less amazing when you're a High School Senior.

By the age of nineteen this was a lesson I had yet to learn. I was young, virile, and in my opinion, possessing an immeasurable intellect. Looking back I imagine I wasn't too far off from how intelligent and invulnerable just about everyone thought they were at that age, but it didn't help coming from the background I just described. The icing on the cake was that I more or less a "goth" around this time period, which only added to my belief that I was a horribly misunderstood genius.

It was around this time that my friend Matt's band was playing one night and after the show he suggested that a bunch of us go have drinks at his place which happened to only be a few blocks from the venue. It was not an unusual night, a group of around eight of us sat around chain smoking and marathon drinking, talking up the great ideas we have for the bands we're in or the importance of some irrelevant factoid that we thought would make us seem deep if we waxed philosophical about it, usual nineteen-year-old bullshit.

Anyway, one of Matt's friends Clint was there. Clint was a few years older than us and I had only met him once or twice before, but he seem pretty agreeable. He was thumbing through a Beavis and Butthead book Matt had lying around, and reciting various funny things that he came across. After about ten minutes of him reading and us discussing which Beavis and Butthead moment was the most hilarious, he tossed the book onto the coffee table and said, "You know, this is sad. We can sit here and hold a ten minute long conversation about Beavis and Butthead, but I bet not one of us could say what started World War I."

I was pretty offended. I mean, here I was, a fucking genius for Christ sakes, and he thinks so little of me to try and stump me with such retarded trivia. I was just about to shut him down by giving him an extremely long winded and exhaustive history of World War I when I realized I was thinking about World War II. I sat there and tried to dredge up any memory I could possibly find that had anything to do with World War I and kept coming up empty handed. Who the fuck was even in World War I? At this point my brain was just spasming:

There were Germans in both I think, but the second one was about Jews. Or something. What did the Germans do in the first one? Were they all about killing Jews in both? Wasn't there a treaty called the Treaty of Ver-something? Did that end the First or Second one? I know Japan was in the second one, but were they in the first one too? What did they even want in the second one? Did the French surrender in both? Didn't I learn anything in school?

I was floored. How could I expect to be a misunderstood genius when I was a complete moron? Without the genius part, I'm just misunderstood, which is another way of saying retarded. This did not bode well for my self image.

Of course, while I was going through this inner turmoil, Scott was busy supplying Clint with the actual answers involving the assassination of Franz Ferdinand, Archduke of Austria, by the Serbs.

And that's when I discovered that you actually need to learn things in order to appear intelligent, it's not something that just happens out of force of will. I'd spent the majority of my formative years having everything come to me so easily that I never really learned how much went into actually learning things. Since then I've made myself extremely familiar with the events surrounding the major conflicts of the twentieth century and will be prepared if such a situation presents itself again.




Comments

NAME: Feasty
Wednesday, August 17th, 2005 @ 09:15 pm
I can't believe you fell for that shit!

we all knew you were mildly retarted, we were just trying to help you get thru those early years. fake tests, hired actors as teachers, we paid the chess coach to let you on the team.

It was around 13 when we finally took you off the medication. All those ass beatings I gave you were to try to somehow shell shock you into a semi awake state of mind. To make you think you were of the more intelligent breed just being victimized because you were smarter.

I could go on for hours...


good times


NAME: mc
Tuesday, August 16th, 2005 @ 01:14 pm
deez!


NAME: scott
Tuesday, August 16th, 2005 @ 07:21 am
a seer of...
these nuts!


NAME: mc
Monday, August 15th, 2005 @ 11:50 pm
Funny thing about this post is I just spoke with Clint Saturday evening for the first time in about 16 months!
Not only are you a genius but a seer of sorts too..


NAME: scott
Monday, August 15th, 2005 @ 07:52 pm
excellent piece of writing.

you remember me cooler than i do.


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