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#87. My Myers-Briggs personality type is INTP.

For those of you unfamiliar with the nomenclature, that stands for Intelligent, Nobel-worthy, Terrific, and... um... Perfect! Yeah, perfect! That's it.

Either that, or it's Ill-tempered, Needy, Terrified, and Pissy. Or Poopyheaded. Or even Pantsless.

I choose to think the truth is somewhere in between those two extremes. And closer to which of them, I'm not going to say. Which probably tells you a lot right there. Dammit.

Anyway, I first took the Myers-Briggs test (and later, the Kiersey 'Temperament Sorter', which uses the same grading system) several years ago. In high school, maybe, or college. I don't remember where I first saw it, but for a few years, I had a blank test that I could re-take whenever I felt like it. And it's always come up INTP.

Well, okay, that's a teeny little lie. It almost always has come up INTP. There was a period of about sixteen months when my now-wife and I were doing the long-distance thing. I'd graduated from college, but she was still stuck there, several hundred miles (and therefore dollars) away. We took turns flying to each other's place, and ended up seeing each other about once a month. I was in a new city, and muddling my way through grad school (which I got booted from after a year). So I have to admit to being not quite myself for a while. Sad. Weepy. Pitiful. I took the test then, and scored myself as an INFP, the only time it's happened. But I think it's just because I was in full-on pining mode, with a side of crying-like-a-baby 'wah!' I eventually recovered. Despite what you might hear.

So, if you're interested -- and even if you're not; how the hell am I supposed to guess what you want to read? -- here are some details on the scoring system. There are four 'axes'. (That's plural of axis, folks, not plural of axe; this is not a postal workers' exam) Each axis has one of two values, and you're scored on the axis based on how you answer exam questions designed to get into your little head and figure out how you like to act. I don't have any of the questions handy just now, but here are the axes: Anyway, even without the questions, most people can guess which way they're more likely to go in most situations. The cool thing -- to me, anyway -- is that people have studied all the different combinations (that's sixteen, if you're having trouble with the math), and discovered (or invented, or just plain made up; I don't really care) traits that each type of person is likely to have. And now, several decades later, whole books have been written to try and help people of each type understand themselves, and look out for stupid shit that they're likely to do, and to find a job that won't make them want to torch the damned office. So that's pretty cool. You know, if you buy into that sort of thing.

And I have to say that I do. I try not to get sucked in by voodoo and pseudo-scientific mumbo-jumbo, generally speaking. And maybe that's what this is; I honestly don't know how rigorous the research behind this system is. But I do know that my type fits me awfully well -- I do just about all the things the books say I might do, and I regret doing just about the whole list of shit that it says I might end up regretting. Or going to jail for. Ick.

But I think it helps me to understand myself, and what I'm doing, and when I'm being a dickhead, and when I need a kick in the ass to get myself moving again. And I'm happy to learn all of that from books and online tests and shit like that. I'm an Introvert, remember? It's not like I want to find out about myself from other people. Gross! Who knows where you people have been?

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