Tuesday, September 27, 2011


Excerpted from  Ting and I


My mother has been a brilliant woman. Did I mention that she went through U. Mass. Amherst in three years rather than four and graduated second in her class? An English major, she did some journalism work after the family nest was empty. Before that, though, during a slow period in Rosendale, NY, population 2000, she thought it would be fun to join MENSA and see whom we’d meet.


MENSA is an organization for people in the top 2% of intelligence, as measured by an intelligence-quotient [IQ] test. She took the test, passed easily, and signed up. Somewhat later, she held a little get-together for other MENSA folk in the area. I think we had a half-dozen at our house. All were undoubtedly bright. Except for my mother, they seemed to rank low on the social-skills-quotient [SSQ?] scale. Some were obvious misfits. We got to know one, whom we would see occasionally wandering free from the group home he occupied in Kingston, NY.


A memorable moment occurred when one described how she handled a job interview at a company that specialized in construction materials. She told them, “I love cement.”


A second MENSA meeting we never held.

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