Re: FW: re Interviews & red flags & MENSA

Subject: Re: FW: re Interviews & red flags & MENSA
From: "Diane Evans" <diane_evans -at- hotmail -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 28 Oct 2004 12:36:43 -0700

> Hey if you join MENSA, what are the benefits? ...
> Will people ask you if you're so smart, why
> aren't you rich?

I joined Mensa and I got the answer to that persistent
question. It seems that if you graph material success
in life against IQ, success rises as IQ mounts to a
hundred twenty-something, and then, before Mensa level,
it begins to drop back; and it declines farther the
higher you go.

I have stayed out of this debate, but decided to join in for a minute or two.

IQ is a strange animal; even Binet (who invented the first IQ test) wasn't quite sure what it was.

IQ follows a bell curve; about 95% of the population will have an IQ between 70 and 130. ( These are the people that the public education system is built to handle.

The problem is with the people on the ends of the bell curve, or those that have IQs below 70 or above 130. For those below 70 -- we often recognize these people within minutes of meeting them for the first time. Schools have set up special programs for them to meet their special educational needs.

The people on the other end, though, are often not recognized. They KNOW that they don't think normally -- they are as abnormal as the people who are on the low end of the scale. They often go through elaborate rituals or hoaxes to try to be accepted by the more "normal" society. With good parents and educational opportunities, they can find their niche in society. Without a good home and these opportunities, it is very difficult for them to conform.

So, just because a person is highly intelligent, they are not necessarily crazy or unsuccessful. As Forest Gump said, "Stupid is as stupid does."

I, for one, was grossly failed by the educational system. Since I was from the poorest family in the poorest neighborhood of the poorest school in a poor school district, I was never offered any type of extra educational resources. In eighth grade, when I scored the highest grade in mechanical reasoning that the school had ever seen on the "Iowa Tests," I was told that girls can't score that high, so there was no program available for me in the high school. (I had only scored 40 percentile in eye/hand coordination, so I certainly could never become a secretary.) I grew up thinking that I would just get married and have children -- just to find out that I wasn't very successful at either one.

I joined MENSA a few years ago, but didn't do much more than read their magazine. Maybe someday I will sign up again, but haven't found a good reason to waste the money.

Diane Evans
Technical Writer/Requirements Analyst with an IQ of 148 who has succeeded in life despite the best efforts of society and education to beat her down...


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