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Big Tall People Are Not Stupid - And My MENSA Membership

Sunday, 17 December 2006

One of the constant challenges in my life has been people automatically assuming that because I am big and tall that I am stupid or simple minded.

This is riduculous, so I joined MENSA.... 


.... maybe if I had the classic facial features of down syndrome, or other obvious differences then such an assumption would have some validity, but just because I am tall and muscular?

Though I must admit that working as a Professional Wrestler did not help the image much. But saying that my tag team partner Andy Animal Harpas was 2nd in charge of one of the biggest workers unions in Australia. 

Even now many Westerners when they meet me instantly assume I am stupid, even if they know I am a  Mensa member.

This was exemplified the worst on my first trip to America - I was staying in the Marriot in Conneticut, I had just been downstairs in the gym and admittedly I was not wearing very good clothes and I was coverred in sweat.

The elevator stopped and I got in, the American lady who was already in the lift said to me "Which floor?" I told her "8th floor thanks".

The elevator then stopped at the 4th floor where she got out , she then turned around to me and speaking very slowly and pointing she said "This 4 floor (held up 4 fingers), you go up (points upward) to 8 floor (holds up 8 fingers)... stay"

I must say I was shocked but even then I couldn't keep my mouth shut. "I know, just because I have an Australian accent doesn't mean I'm a F'n retard" 

He mouth dropped so far it nearly hit the floor, a look of absolute surprise upon her face, then the doors slid shut. I laughed - instantly I knew I had a great story to tell.

This type of thing annoyed me so much in Australia that I went and applied to MENSA for membership.

MENSA is a high IQ society, here let me copy from their homepage:

What is Mensa?

Mensa was founded in England in 1946 by Roland Berrill, a barrister, and Dr. Lance Ware, a scientist and lawyer. They had the idea of forming a society for bright people, the only qualification for membership of which was a high IQ. The original aims were, as they are today, to create a society that is non-political and free from all racial or religious distinctions. The society welcomes people from every walk of life whose IQ is in the top 2% of the population, with the objective of enjoying each other's company and participating in a wide range of social and cultural activities.

To join Mensa you need to take a supervised IQ test and place in the top 2%. I applied and waited for about a month for the test.

The day of the Mensa test I turned up at the appointed location, about 5 minutes before the  test started. I remember the day clearly, I had a lunch date straight after and I was dressed all in tight black Versace shirt, black pants and patent leather dress shoes.

I was eating a couple of donuts and a can of coke - for the sugar rush and additional stimulation from the caffeine as I never usually eat these things but I thought it would help with my test to be fully fuelled and slightly on edge.

I walked into the Mensa test room which was full from the backseats all the way up to the empty seats at the front. What is wrong with people that they are afraid to be in front?

So I walk in 7ft tall, massive and well dressed, with my mobile phone (which were still rare at that stage).

Everybody else is your stereotypical NERD (yes, in capitals), glasses, pencil case with 30 different pens, notepads, calculators, bad clothing, styleless haircuts and snotty attitudes.

I could see them snearing at me, oh no my intellectual superiors had judged me too, what was I to do?

I took the test, finished 15 minutes early and excused myself as I had a pressing engagement to attend to, got more snears from these "intellectuals", but the MENSA organisor asked me to wait so as not to disturb the others - so I did. I just sat there and waited.

At the appointed time I left, last to arrive, first to finish and first to leave. I eagerly awaited the results.

The MENSA newsletter came some 2 months later. I had passed, and so had 2 others.

2 of the snearing class room full of my supposed intellectual superiors. Yes, I was pleased.

So now I am officially recognised by Mensa, a large international body, as having an IQ in the top 2% - top 2% intellect qualifies me as a Highly Gifted, Superior or Genius depending upon which definition you use.

Big does not equal stupid. 


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