I recently came across a fascinating personality test. Normally, I give short shrift to such things, because they tend to be devised by airheads drunk on a combination of psychobabble and inanity, but this one delighted me. Unfortunately I canâ€™t reproduce it here. Rarely have I seen a document so thoroughly protected by copyright, threatening extreme measures up to and including the crushing of oneâ€™s skull and the sale into slavery of oneâ€™s descendants, yea unto the fourth generation. Very occasionally I have shown a devil-may-care attitude in the face of such warnings, but I am not an idiot.
Anyway, as far as I can see, there is nothing to stop me paraphrasing a few questions from the test, so thatâ€™s what Iâ€™ll do. Itâ€™s called â€œAre You A Bird Or A Cow?â€. I looked in vain for any indication that these are meant as types of human personality, so I can only assume that we are meant to take it literally. Maybe the test is meant to be conducted on behalf of your bird or cow acquaintances who are confused about their identity. That would make perfect sense.
So, for example, there are questions like Would you say you were flighty or given to rumination? and Do you prefer standing in a field or perching high in a tree? Please remember that I am only paraphrasing. One question asks specifically whether for breakfast you would prefer to eat millet or cud. Oddly, it doesnâ€™t go on to ask about elevenses, lunch, dinner, tea, or supper, and nor is there any mention of snacks. This may indicate a certain laxness in the methodology employed, par for the course with tests such as this, but given the ferocious look on the face of the deviser, whose photograph appears at the top of the first page, I am minded not to level any criticism.
I completed the test for myself, rather than as a proxy for my crow Martin or for a cow I know called Degustibus, and the results were extremely interesting.