If you were a car...

2009-09-18 10:46
 ...what car would you be? Are these kinds of questions really that useful?

Let me try. I'm willing to try. Um... right now, I'm a parked car that can touch-type. But I suppose if I could really choose, I'd be a big, dangerous car that could drive over people who asked me stupid questions about cars.

Because I'm constantly confronted with this question in those Career Development courses that labour-law compliant companies send you on when they're feeling bad about not funding career-related training. It always worries me that my honours degree and 11 years of online work experience haven't equipped me to answer such questions satisfactorily. What am I doing wrong? Why can't I remember the result I got on Facebook last night? Am I stupid? Would I fail a Mensa IQ test?

I'm not ready to find out, since I also still can't solve the following commonly-posed riddles: What flower would you be? Which Sex & the City character would you be? What colour would you be? Which book would you be? Which superhero would you be? Which song would you be? Which animal would you be?

Nobody escapes these life-altering debates. I bet even the Super Furry Animals have been asked in a band interview: "Which kind of super furry animal is that, exactly?" I hope they answered: "Stuffed if we know," because then I'd feel less like the class dunce.

On a more serious note, I would like to suggest that if we are going to ask complete strangers such strange questions, we should go with something a little more creative. How about: What kind of terrorist would you be? What swearword would you be? What endangered species would you be? What STD would you be?

Now... I realise... someone who recently paid lots of money to send me on that course is soon going be pissed off with me and call me in to some glass office and demand to know: "Just who the hell do you think you are, Jean Barker?" And there never is a right answer to that question. Just check out the guy with the black eye in the corner of the bar. He's so been there, dude.

Identity is terribly important to people, you see. If you think Coke protects their brand, try the average homophobic hetero for size. And your identity is very important to others, too. People really seem to care whether or not other people choose to be openly gay, wear a veil, dislike Celine Dion, date across the colour line, masturbate over shoes, or question their gender assumptions, even when (which is usually the case) other people's personal preferences have no discernable negative impact on our lives.

And even if you manage to answer all the extremely tricky questions such as "What cocktail would you be?", thereby establishing who the hell you think you are, who you are to others just isn't up to you – not in this hall of mirrors.

People reading this column, for example, often assume that I spend my days and nights dancing with hot guys, flirting with celebrities and throwing expensive tequila down my throat for free.

But sadly they're wrong. Last night I watched half a DVD and got into bed with a book at 9.30pm. The night before... well ok, the night before was a bit more exciting, but naked basejumping with mouse limas is (tragically) beyond the scope of this column.

The good news is I'm secretly developing into a rounded individual, with better-defined ambitions! I'm even very hopeful about my future up-skilling, and optimistic that when the aliens finally arrive they'll need career development workshops from someone who's finally figured out all the answers - just so I can ask them: If you were a human, which human would you be? 

Tick tock, guys, tick tock. Because I can't wait to see what aliens look like when they're really, really confused.

Meanwhile, here's wishing you a great weekend on your planet. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

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