Wednesday, June 23, 2010

An Earful on Narcissism

It’s not everyday the Doc looks inside your left ear and says, “Wow!”
Wow? Wow what, Doc? I’m here for my RIGHT ear.
Your ear drum is really inflamed! says Doc. It’s really red!
And that’s exciting news…. why? I know: It’s exciting because I’m feeling the pain in my RIGHT ear, right? You’ve never seen that happen, right, Doc?
He hardly glanced in my right ear. It must be dull in there.

So, after learning the new diagnostic terminology of “Wow!” I received antibiotics to treat the phenomenon of pain zooming through my brain to be felt in the opposite ear. Maybe Doc will write me up for a medical journal. I will become the famous Patient C, studied by medical students for decades to come.

And I spent the night ooing and ahing over my amazing ear. No, I guess I really spent the night groaning and moaning, wishing there were an opium den next door. Alas, there is not, which is a good thing for an alcoholic like moi.

To self-treat the annoying situation of deafness in my left ear and pain in my right ear, I opened my email. I found a curious missive there, from a psychology researcher. She’s doing a project on the phenomenon of pain transferred through the brain from one ear to the other!

Not really. Her name is Katy, and she addressed me as “Dear Blogger.” I’m a random contact for a research project about the personality of bloggers.
Katy says, “I am a doctoral student in the psychology department at the University of Texas at Arlington. I am completing my dissertation research on the topic of the personality characteristics of bloggers. One of my goals for this study is to contact actual bloggers and record their self-reported personality traits, and view information posted to their blogs.”

Well, I figure if I can’t be the famous Patient C, I might as well be the famous Blogger A. As a lifelong journalist, I love to research topics, and I thought, why not do a favor for a fellow researcher? So I checked out Katy’s credentials and then participated in her study questionnaire.

It consisted of the expected stuff like “Do you agree or disagree with the following statements: I feel more alive online than I do in real life. I like to look at myself in the mirror. People view me as the It Girl of blogging.” And so on. It was easy to choose my answers (nope, nope, nope).

Then I came to this one: I am more capable than others. Wow! as my Doc would say. In certain useless situations, like knowing what’s what with English grammar, I am more capable than the average bear. But in other situations, like diagnosing my ear trouble, I am a complete dolt. After much back and forthing, I said I agree, but I thought: This one is going to mess up my whole personality profile.

And at the end of the questionnaire, I learned my qualms were justified. One of the things the study was going to discover was whether or not I have “Narcissistic Personality Disorder, a condition in which there is an inflated sense of self-importance and an extreme preoccupation with one's self.” Uh-oh.

These are some symptoms (which I googled to find): Has feelings of self-importance; Exaggerates achievements and talents; Is preoccupied with fantasies of success, power, beauty, intelligence, or ideal love; Has obsessive self-interest; Pursues mainly selfish goals…

Now, not only do I have a weird ear thing going on, but I am also doomed to being Blogger A who suffers an acute case of Narcissistic Personality Disorder, and I’m going to skew Katy’s research study and make a bad name for bloggers everywhere.
As my Doc would say, “Wow!”

If you’d like to do your part for bloggers everywhere, you can take part in Katy’s questionnaire here: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/L7M59GV or contact her here: Katy Rollings at rollings.research@gmail.com.

But you have to forget everything I just said, and please eat this post, because we don't want it to get out to the general public. Or to the specific public either. I promised Katy we wouldn't cheat, okay?

*****

21 comments:

Brian Miller said...

haha. thats why you told us about the ear first...its all about you...smiles. i got the same email, but did not follow through. i might be glad now...but there might be some medication thaty can give me...smiles.

The Bug said...

I got that same email! And being a suspicious sort (who just spent a good bit of time trying to get rid of a computer virus) I promptly deleted it. I'll bet I'd be narcissistic too. But, see, that's just my ONLINE persona. Heh.

Hope your ear feels better!

Beth Niquette said...

Oh, you had me in stitches! You are such a gifted writer!

Teri and the cats of Furrydance said...

Anything for science, lol. I completed the questionaire.

Titus said...

Get well soon. I SAID, "GET WELL SOON".

Think I'll steer clear of the survey. Sometimes it's best not to know...

Syd said...

I smiled at this. I think that each of us has a little bit of narcissism. I like looking at myself in the mirror. And I think that I'm capable about many things. But there are other areas where I am not narcissistic at all. Maybe I am borderline??

Birdie said...

lmao! great great post Chris :-) ps: wishing you to get well soon!!(even though for blogging you don't need to hear ;-)

e said...

Hi Chris,

I hope your ear feels better. What is the verdict from Ms. Rolling's survey???

I don't think you are in any danger of developing Narcissism. I've known some individuals with that disorder and you aren't even close.

lakeviewer said...

I took the same survey, a bit disenchated by the way the questions were arranged. Sorry about your ear; good that the doctor is taking care of you.

Argent said...

Heh! I've heard of referred pain before but not in such a specific way as yours - maybe they'll write you up after all. I also did the personality profile thing and am now wondering if I'm a complete waster or some kind of neurotic, self-absorbed loner.

Dianne said...

Awww, good thing you forwarded her info, because I think she should have contacted me, and looked at my blog, and will need much more information for a long long time to come, I am famous beautiful attractive and the ideal blogger...
Ha
Di

Georgina Dollface said...

Hmmm, I've already resigned myself to thinking that all bloggers (especially ME), were naturally narcissistic navel gazers anyways. LOL. Hope your earache feels better soon. - G

Karen said...

Huh? What'd you say? You grow narcissus? Lovely flower, don't you think? ;-)

Hope your infection clears up soon!

Magpie said...

You're such a talented writer...so very funny! I hope your ear(s) is feeling better soon. :)

Alan Burnett said...

A doctor once looked into my ear and eventually told me I had Burnett's Syndrome. How's that for self-importance!

Akannie said...

LOL...you slay me, Chris. Good to "see" you again, I've been overrun with my life these days!!

Think of you often...

xoxoxox

PS--LOL--My word verification is "rhear"

Monkey Man said...

Wow?!? That's a diagnosis? Dr. Ent must have missed that class on bedside manner. Might looking into that survey.

Peggy G said...

Great post, learned something and laughed a lot! Thanks for sharing.

Nana Jo said...

Perhaps the very act of blogging is a wee exercise in narcissism, but that's perfectly lovely in my opinion. I think Katy will discover that bloggers are as diverse as humanity ... every possible nuance of the spectrum. That is, except those on my blog roll ... they, of course, are the Salt of the Earth ... and really are beautiful, powerful, intelligent and perfect in every way!

RNSANE said...

Hope your ear, whichever one is actually hurting, is on the mend. I think ( hope ) we're all a little
bit narcissistic!

I was just in the hospital for five days - cellulitis of my right lower leg. Not exactly sure what caused it. I've had several bouts over the years, in both legs. This didn't respond to ten days of oral antibiotics so I had to go in for mega doses of IV stuff - three different things. Gross.

Carrie Burtt said...

I am new to your blog, and I apsolutely love it and your writing! Your recovery story is inspirational, and I am so glad that you shared it. Keep on planting your words here...I look forward to more. :-)

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