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Interesting. I actually had a similar experience.

The only problem was that I didn’t feel very smart. I still don’t. I’ve been in self-denial about my IQ score for thirty years. A few years ago my wife and I, both very competitive in private, decided to each take a test. We both reckoned we were smarter than each other and the gauntlet was thrown down.

We paid for the testing and she scored one point higher than me, which led to several years of teasing, debate and the occasional Indian wrist burn. I too scored the same as I did way back in grade school.

Now that the smoke has cleared I still refuse to believe I hold even a modicum of intelligence. Aside from being successful in business, I show no clear signs of being a bright guy. In fact, I can honestly say that I consider myself to almost a complete dullard. I work with people who can do complex calculations in their head, while I can barely make change. I’ve been living with that for my entire life. The inability to do math. I’ve worked at it a good bit, and using PEMYAS (Please Excuse My Dear Aunt Sally) I can do basic algebra, but being afraid of numbers has had a negative effect on my confidence since my childhood.

IQ scores are a double edged sword. If I hadn’t known mine, I would think I was a complete and total idiot. By knowing, I believe them flawed.

I find the contrast is disturbing.

R J Keefe

I'm not sure that keeping IQs a secret isn't the broadest game of affirmative action going. It certainly presents intelligence as an embarrassment.


So, is a high test score indicative of high intelligence, or intelligence indicative of a high test score? Some people seem to think a high test score is all that matters. However, if you stop there and never apply that intelligence to your work/personal life; how truly intelligent are you?

Stephen J. Gould wrote a great book titled The Mismeasure of Man about historical efforts to derive intelligence out of everything from testing to physical appearance. Worth a read.


I'd taken an I.Q. test back in 4th or 5th grade. Never found out the score.
Never can.
The school, a small parochial self-contained kingdom of Catholic secracy, burned to the ground when I was in college. When I was curious to see if my inabililty to understand the esoterica of college physics was due to me (low I.Q>?) or my professor (low teaching ability co-mixed with his Chinese version of English?), I had nowhere to go. Apparently, my parents were just as un-informed as I was. That, or they were mum in lieu of my potentially hurt feelings. But wouldn't that have been my E(motional) Q(uotient) not my I. Q.?.
I've taken those on-line I.Q. tests, always wondering if my 4th grade wits were sharper, not having yet suffered two hockey-induced concussions and falls from windows in the college years. And there was that time I used my head to catch a fastball. The only thing I am sure of is I have one incredibly (thankfully) thick skull.
Fries with that?

Ten Mile

IQ tests seem more to measure the potential to learn than any thing else. Regardless of a specific interest.

A dedicated person to a specific interest of smaller IQ numbers could well outstrip a person of little interest in the same field.

Thane Plambeck

What, nothing about Mensa?


You had to go and say the number means something, didn't you?

I didn't actually have a number, given the range of scores generated by the tests we took in school; my closest guess has to be the IQ score listed on tables that correlate pre-1995 SAT and GRE scores with IQ. But, whatever the number is, it hisses,"You are SUCH an UNDERACHIEVER!"

I'll try to go off somewhere and unthink about this now. I have piddly things to do - to earn my piddly living ;->.


hmmm, very interesting, and equally interesting are the responses, and somehow how IQ tests, and the result, all wrap around back to some gnawling little beast of self esteem...

forgive me for a moment if I simplify this idea of IQ, so lets suppose for a moment that the multifaceted amazingly complex soul/intellect/contextualizer of the brain CAN be reduced to a simple number, like, ummmmm, lets say IQ is like a stopwatch measuring someone running, and the IQ test is like seeing how fast someone can simply run one mile.. run it, test it, wham, you have a time/IQ in one hand, and your self esteem in the other.. cool...

what does that number really prove? because even though you might be great at running one mile, there are a lot of different kinds of runners (read: thinkers) in this world, there are those who can blaze like a dragster for 100m, and those who can do marathons, and those who can hike mountains endlessly... and then there are those who can dance...

its all putting one foot in front of the other.. its all motion, so you can run one IQ mile fast, cool... so what...

its a worthwhile thing to play with measures, just as in sports, people obsess about statistics & all that endless etc, but its still just you, and that gnawing little creature of your self esteem is an illogical thing, no matter what numbers you feed it...

of course the numbers matter somehow, but its what we DO with measurements, how hard we work as we run, where we run to, or how much we enjoy the scenery along the way, isn't that what counts??


I think I've made my peace with this business of IQ, but that required so many words and my other efforts have been so comparatively thin of late, that I opted to write a post rather than a comment here by way of response.

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