I’ve always known about the Myers–Briggs Personality test and thought it was just a fun little quiz like, “What Your Pasta Preference Says About Your Favorite Sex Position.” Certainly I put zero stock in the reliability or accuracy of it until a recent conversation with Bethany my bossy older sister, (never mind that my mother would name us Stephanie and Bethany!) during which she casually suggested I change the title of this blog to “Once Upon Your Grime” and give housecleaning tips.
BETHANY: Wow. Calm down. You’re so sensitive to constructive criticism. Does “INFP” mean anything to you?
ME: Is that the spin-off of the TV show WKRP in Cincinnati? Is Loni Anderson still blonde and perky?
BETHANY: I have no idea. And no, it’s the initials which I would stake my life on you getting if you were to take that famous online personality test.
ME: Really? INFP?? Lemme guess. That stands for Iconic, Naughty, Friendly, and Perfect? I always wanted to be termed as a little bit “Naughty.”
BETHANY: Err, not quite, Sis. Why don’t you take it yourself and find out. Here’s the link. But I’m absolutely certain I’m correct about you!
So I gave honest answers to all the official nosy questions and sure enough, (much to Know-It-All Bethany’s prediction!) I DID come out with exactly the initials INFP — which I read stood for Introvert (I), Intuition (N), Feeling (F), Perception (P). Only mine had a little dash and another letter too. Like this: INFP-T
Upon further research I found the “T” was for turbulence. Oh c’mon now. I’m not an airplane! So the implication was that I create Turbulence in life? Why don’t Myers and Briggs just come right out and say, “T is for Tasmanian Devil?”
I refused to be labeled as such and so I took the test again, this time choosing all different responses. And once again, within five minutes, my results INFP were emailed to me. But this time followed by another dash and two letters — TM (Test Manipulator!)
I took that darn test eight more times, completely switching out my answers, using different computers, wearing different clothes, and changing my hairstyles, not to mention while eating shiitake mushrooms — and each time my fate was sealed with those same four initials getting emailed back to me. Branded as a permanent INFP, I slowly began to accept my destiny (and order monogrammed towels!) while exploring what career choices were good for me and who my ideal mate should be.
Finding out I would make a superb Horse-Exerciser, a Bingo Caller, and an Elevator Inspector was not the worst of it. Far more upsetting was that I should never have walked down the aisle with the two men I had married. But the most devastating news of all? Apparently an INFP like like myself is biologically incapable of producing children with the different logical, (normal!) initials all my offspring have! So now I must question whether or not I am really their mother, or were all six kids switched at birth?
My obsession didn’t stop there. I wanted to know how the test could know I was someone who made up jokes with no punchlines to test people’s authenticity (if they still laugh at my nonsense, they’re insincere!) and that instead of buying whole bottles of perfume, I rub magazine pages (with samples of Channel #5 embedded in them) on my wrists and neck.
We’re not talking general everyday personality traits like when horoscopes say Pisces people are creative. (Duh!) No, this thing was eerily Twilight Zonish spot-on for me, and so I put in a call to Myers and Briggs immediately, wanting to know how they could figure this all out from questions like, “Do you prefer to stand in the center of a room or close to the walls in a crowded party?” I was told Myers and Briggs were a nice mother/daughter team who had passed away a long time ago. Hmmmm.
Only when the I reread the end of my test results and it said, “Recommendation: Start a blog called, Once Upon Your Grime and offer cleaning hints!” did things start to come clear for me. It was Bethany sending me my results all along.
ME: Hi! I’m sure having fun with the “special” link you gave me. Good thing I don’t take it very seriously though. Just curious, what are your own initials?
HTBW = Hates To Be Wrong. (Naturally!)
Dear Readers, Why don’t you take the test right HERE and see if you agree with the initials you receive and Bethany’s assessment of your personality! Post a comment about it so I can see what my busybody sister has to say about you! (Ps. If you’re an ENFJ male, supposedly you’re my best match.)