If you linked from Facebook to this post, allow me to apologize. I’ve teased you into a digital shaming. There will be no quiz that determines what character you most resemble from What’s Happening. Rerun has not been chosen as my sitcom twin. Neither will Raj, Dwyane Wayne, Mama, Dee or Shirley be chosen as my, or your, doppelgänger. And for that, I’m grateful (and, frankly, a little relieved that I’m not Shirley).
If your feed is anything like mine, it’s amazing how quickly Facebook has been taken over by these “personality quizzes”. It seems like over the last two months, I’ve learned everything from what city a good friend should have moved to after college, what celebrity boyfriend an ex-coworker should have been dating, what U.S. President a college buddy most resembles, and on and on and on. I’ve clicked through a few of these, which purport to make crucial life definers out of a series of inane questions. “Which of these cats looks most appealing to you” is somehow supposed to help lead the algorithm towards a declaration of the ’80s pop star I most resemble (Michael Jackson, if you’re curious). Sure, they’re harmless fun, and a chance for most of the women I connect with to put images of Ryan Gosling on their Facebook timelines without their husband’s objection. And I’ll cop to chuckling at the “What would John Travolta have called you at the Oscar’s” gag that went viral (for the record, I’m Marcel Whayte, which is actually a huge improvement on my real name. From now on, I’m Marcel Whayte, the one who knocks).
But I think I’ve reached the limit on my tolerance of these. We’ve all had those friends who spent their first year on social media over-posting with mundane details about weather patterns and the funny thing their 3 year old said in the car and “wheels down at O’Hare” and how delicious that kale salad at Whole Foods was (and yes, the fact that I’ve been guilty of sharing all of these except anything remotely resembling kale worship does not escape me). We’re now at the point of over saturation of quiz results, where hundreds of us continue to post test results that always somehow manage to declare that we deserve better than we have. I should be living in Paris! I should be working with Steven Spielberg! I should be dating Kate Upton (pause for brief daydream and moment of silence)! How about you? I bet your quiz won’t be nearly as impressive! You should be exactly who you are. But not me! I should be a Navy Seal!!!
Well, I’m not a Navy Seal (this should not come as a surprise to any of you). I don’t live in an exotic city filled with romantic idealists. I think I passed an SI Swimsuit model on the street once, but it was cold and I didn’t stop to check. And no, I’m not like Rerun on What’s Happening either.
I’d rather write slightly exaggerated posts about what actually happens in my life, for better or worse. Sure, I’ll take the quizzes now and again, but I think I’ll spare all of you the details on what snack food I most resemble. Even if I’m apparently as delicious as a bag of Cool Ranch Doritos.
Maybe I am Shirley after all…