David Rhoden

I took the Kuder test

by David Rhoden. Day .

scan of Kuder test results

We all had to take it. I guess it was for people who had no dreams.

It was just one of many "fill-in-the-bubble-with-a-Number-2-pencil" tests we took. People joked that it absolutely defined your future and if you filled it out wrong you'd be written off by society and become a garbageman or something. (I now respect garbagemen and think there are not many more respectable jobs. I couldn't do it. I'd deliver the mail in a heartbeat though; sign me up.) We also joked about the name "Kuder".

Silly as it was, the test is more interesting now that I've made some life choices. The way it worked is you'd answer a bunch of questions, and it told you how you matched with people, male and female, who had chosen these professions. I guess the idea was you would get put on a path to an exciting and fulfilling career, but also you would wonder, "What's wrong with me?"

My top match is with female journalists. Maybe that explains why I miss Molly Ivins.

That I matched pretty strongly with "interior decorator", male or female, probably raised some eyebrows. It makes you wonder what they were testing for, really. My high match with female "Dean of Women" is also a head-scratcher.

Maybe I should have been a "Psych., Clinical", I ranked really high for it. I think it would have either erased my capacity for empathy or wound it up to an unsustainable level. Might be tough in a clinical setting. Or else I would have just eaten all the pills.

I don't know who made the pencil notes, maybe a school advisor. They suggested I major in English or Art, what a surprise. (In college I begged to quit being an English major and switch to Architecture because I just thought I knew enough English; I spoke it every day. I didn't quit English, in the end. I just made terrible grades. I wish I had studied art, actually.)

I ranked lower for "Computer Programr", the job I have, than for "Lawyer", the job I trained for. Maybe I shoulda stuck to the books. I rank lower for "Engineer, Indus." than a lot of things I would never want to do, like "Clothier, Retail" and "YMCA Secretary". I would love to be an Industrial Engineer (if they mean "product designer", and not "sewer plant knob-twister", a job that was presented to me as an option at the time). I do kinda think the YMCA secretaries they surveyed had bigger dreams though.

My match for "Farmer" is so low it's kind of disappointing. I like to think I'm less of an effete city boy and more of a match with those bluesmen who learned to pick a guitar to get out of chopping cotton. Though I guess a lot of people who match with "Lawyer" also feel that way.

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