Yesterday was a day for sadness and being forlornly. It was a day for mourning the loss of our dearest, the end of jobs, marriages, pets — and a shot at the World Series.

Today, because we bounce from word to word with the energy of one of those magic super bouncing balls, we are brilliant.

I am personally brilliant. I know this because at P.S. 35 in Queens, New York, I got a look at my I.Q. score which was so ridiculously high, it made me feel inadequate about the entire rest of my life. Discovering you are supposed to be a genius when you are ten can ruin the rest of your life.

All the other geniuses with whom I went to elementary school and thence Junior High, High School and eventually, college, became doctors and physicists. They studied law, became judges. At the very least, they made oodles of money. A few wrote novels … the kind that get published by actual publishers. A couple became Rabbis and others became Deep Thinkers and got jobs as professors where deep thinking comes with a salary and benefits.

I, on the other hand, messed around. I worked, but work never was my central thing. I wasn’t ambitious in any properly American sense of the word. I never expected to be promoted. I was surprised that I got paid so well. I might not have been ambitious, but I was really good at what I did, which was write the crap out of anything technical or sort of technical. Whether it was an article for publication or a manual for users, I wrote it and made sure anyone with half a brain could understand it. And I got paid to do it, which was nice.

Unfortunately, being the least corporate person on Planet Earth, I never got to work for the big companies where they did cool things like provide a pension. I worked for venture capital companies where someone had pitched a great idea and gotten the money to start a company. The companies inevitably lasted exactly as long as the money. When initial funding ended, they fired everyone who wasn’t a family member.

The owners went bankrupt which didn’t mean they were out of money, but rather that they reorganized and restarted under a new company name while the rest of us went job hunting.

So brilliant? Maybe, but what exactly does brilliant mean? It is no guarantee of success in the world. Brilliant may give you ideas and concepts, but it doesn’t necessarily give you business acumen or the kind of diligence you need to make an organization successful … or even make your own financial life a success. I am proof of how brilliance on an I.Q. test is just that. Great at taking tests … but as for the rest of life? That’s a different game entirely.

Yet — I’m a hell of a Trivial Pursuits player and I can write. I can even take pictures. And I can talk you to death. That’s sort of brilliant … isn’t it?


  1. I was one of four people in my grade school class who was deemed to be “gifted” and entitled…. er, mandated to attend a special class once a week where we did “brilliant” things that geniuses would enjoy doing…. like playing stupid computer games or doing stupid word problems. I’m pretty sure they made a mistake… or the whole process was just random since I’m pretty sure at least one of my fellow geniuses was actually an idiot. But, hey. It got me out of regular class for a couple hours every week…

    Liked by 1 person

    • Squirrel, my genius peaked when I so provoked and enraged Drill instructors during Marine Corps basic training that I became top ranked in latrine and KP duty. BIGLY genius!


      • Well yes. I work for a company that doesn’t have anything for retirement either. I try to put as much away as I can for that while still maintaining a balance of enjoying life. We don’t know how long we’ll actually live after all. I did buy property and have no children so I hope that will be enough for when I retire. But I also live in Canada which is a much more socialist country than America. I guess in many ways America promotes the American dream AKA the corporate greed 😆


        • All the company’s I worked for had no money for anything but salaries and sometimes, not even that. I didn’t worry about it. I never imagined retiring. Turns out, retirement came a lot sooner than I had intended and I was completely unprepared.

          Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: Pencil Sketch – This, That, and The Other

    • It is one of a bunch of Topaz filters. I’m pretty sure this one is called “Simplify.” It does painting, line drawings. I really like it because sometimes, under all the rest of the picture, I SEE a line drawing. this finds it. They also now have an actual studio and it isn’t expensive at all. It comes with all the different filters, but the full filters you can buy as you need them. I use it as an extension of Photoshop — really, PS is just it’s “place to stand” so to speak. I like the way Photoshop (it’s an OLD version, by the way — the kind that came on disc) saves stuff, sizes, things, crops and aligns pictures. But you can use Topaz Studio without another application. Check it out. It’s kind of great.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Brilliance and riches do not go hand in hand. There are plenty of poor geniuses mucking about and quite a few rich people who are dumb as rocks. I point you to our glorious leader.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I’m supposed to be brilliant, too. Not as brilliant as my brother and we know how THAT turned out. In the segregation of the public school system, I was in rooms with people who grew up to be rocket scientists and stuff. I actually thought LIFE would be FILLED with those people, that those people were average people, but whoa was I ever wrong. I didn’t “do anything” with my brilliance, either. 🙂 And I’m glad.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yes, that IS a problem. It’s how I married a stupid man because I didn’t understand that his silence was actual stupidity. I’d never known anyone genuinely dumb. Silence was just … silence. It was when I realized he didn’t understand things, even when carefully explained … couldn’t read the books I read because they didn’t make sense to him that I began to realize how devastating a mistake I’d made.

      It’s one of the little issues of schools that they put all the people who are smart in one group and all the other in another. I’m sure it make teaching easier, but it doesn’t give us a realistic grip on what to expect “out there” in the “real” (real?) world.

      For a very long time, my life WAS filled with mostly brilliant people — and today it is, mostly again. But when I moved away and was just one of a random bunch of people, it was a whole new life experience. Some of those dummies were MUCH more successful than I was. Lacking brilliance, they worked harder on things I found boring. Go figure, right?

      Liked by 2 people

  5. If you ask me, brilliant and brilliance lay in enjoying your life, and life experiences, not being a cog in someone else’s wheel. Your witty, entertaining, a great writer, an exceptional friend. Now THAT is TRUE brilliance.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Of course you are brilliant. Even if you are not a family member, you can still be brilliant. I had to chuckle at that remark. That seems to be international “they fired everyone who wasn’t a family member”.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I tried not to take that personally, but it happened rather frequently and it felt pretty personal. But that is what happens when you work for VERY small companies with limited resources. They take care of their own. I wasn’t their own.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Great and, yes, TIMELY piece. So comforting to know our country is great again, led by a BIGLY genius. We are indeed fortunate. Genius and Madness — lip synching our beloved National Anthem.


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