Maybe kind of smart, but not smart enough


A friend on Facebook posted this link the other day to a website that claims it “might be the best IQ test for 2014!”

After I completed the test’s 20 questions, it gave me a better-than-expected score. Good enough, in fact, to put me on the low end of the scale for moderately gifted. Maybe even kind of smart.

But clearly not smart enough.

For that truly to be the case, I would have to know how to fix my truck when it breaks. Or how to rewire a house. Heck, if I really did have allegedly higher than average intelligence, I even might be able to understand this. It may sound simple enough, but the way it is employed and enforced bewilders me.

My confusion, however, is my problem. There really isn’t anything wrong with this ordinance or how it is enforced. And I do not want anyone to read into this that I am ranting about the snow-emergency ordinance or the city officials — most of whom I’ve come to know pretty well and think of as friends —  who created it.

If anything, I’m trying to turn a deficiency — my failure to understand this ordinance — into a wealth of good health. Wednesday, as I drove around, trying to figure out where I could — and couldn’t — park, several ideas converged in my supposedly somewhat superior brain. Why not, I thought, park at the Muscatine riverfront because:

  • Parking there is free and there are plenty of spaces. This means I might someday drop off the Most Wanted list  compiled by the city’s parking-enforcement officers, who have ticketed my truck too many times already.
  • Worrying about my truck being towed because I had accidentally parked on the wrong side of the street during a snow emergency has grown really old really fast.
  • Walking the not quite three blocks from the riverfront to my office would fit nicely with the city’s status as a Blue Zones demonstration site.

OK, so it was 8 below Thursday morning when I hiked up Iowa Avenue to work. But it really wasn’t that bad. And the walk after work was actually kind of pleasant. Besides, if I do it often enough, I figure two good things might happen:

  • The Mayor and me.
    The Mayor and me.

    Someone might mistakenly think I am an engineer at Stanley Consultants, where many of the employees make pretty much the same walk every morning up Iowa Avenue.

  • I might make it harder for my friend, hizzoner, Mayor DeWayne Hopkins, another fellow of some stature, to comment on my girth when he speaks in front of crowds that sometimes include me. And forcing Hoppi to come up with some new material wouldn’t be all bad — especially if it involves me.

So, anyway, I’m now parking a bit further away and walking a few blocks to work.  And it left with me one final observation Thursday: If smoking meant having to stand outside when it’s 8 below, I’d quit.

And that also would be a Blue Zones kind of thing to do, don’t you know.

Let’s finish with some food porn …

I wrote recently about eating a vegan meal. And I promised to try some of the recipes in a new cookbook by my friend Jill Skeem, a certified macrobiotic health counselor and chef in Idaho. Thursday night, I ate her carrot soup with dill, curry and ginger. As you can see, there were not a lot of leftovers. Yummy. Good stuff.


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