This quiz measures eccentricity compared with the normality of Joe Public. Do not confuse eccentricity with a lack of inhibition. Also eccentricity has no relationship to social class or gender; true eccentrics can come from any social class.
Answer the following questions. You have to be scrupulously honest in your self-assessments. You could even get your partner or friends to score you as a check – or just for fun!
Score one for each YES answer.
- You don’t/won’t/haven’t had children because you’ve deliberately decided not to.
- You don’t have a car/motorbike.
- You can’t drive a car/motorbike.
- You regularly read books; difficult books not pulp fiction.
- You have more than 250 books in the house.
- You decide what you believe regardless of what the media/government says.
- You passionately believe in freedom of speech. (You may not agree with someone else’s view but you will defend to the death their right to hold and express that view however uncomfortable it may be.)
- You do not have a mortgage.
- You do not have a bank loan or overdraft of any sort (and have not had one in the last 3 years).
- You pay off your credit cards in full every month.
- You live in the smallest house that you need, rather than the largest you can afford.
- You grow some of your own fruit and veg.
- You were taught to think for yourself and make up your own mind and you still do.
- You sleep in the nude.
- You regularly walk around your house in the nude. Have an extra point if you regularly go nude in your garden.
- You sleep in the same bed as your partner every night.
- You talk to your partner about meaningful things like history, literature and your beliefs.
- You value your money; you don’t spend money you don’t have; you regularly save a significant part of your income.
- You have no more than two baths or showers a week.
- You don’t take foreign holidays.
- You don’t fly places as a leisure activity.
- You regularly eat food in strange combinations, or a peculiar order, because that’s what you like (eg. celery, strawberry jam and Marmite sandwiches; pudding before main course). Have an extra point if you’ve ever done this in a restaurant rather than at home.
- You do whatever you like/enjoy rather than what you think others expect of you and regardless of what they may think.
- You enjoy this country as our heritage.
- You take an interest in things around you like nature, history, architecture.
- You can name 3 or more breeds of these farm animals: one point for each of cow, pig, sheep, chicken.
- You do as well at University Challenge as the student teams do.
- You know and use unusual words like: antediluvian, peripatetic, antepenultimate, opiate, apiary, verisimilitude, febrile. (If you don’t know what all these mean you don’t score; definitions below.)
- You try to get things repaired before you succumb to buying a new one.
- You don’t have net curtains at your windows.
- You can draw, paint, sculpt or embroider and do it regularly for pleasure.
- You never watch soap operas or game shows on television.
- You don’t play golf.
- You ignore fashion and buy new clothes when you need them, not just because the season’s colours have changed.
- You don’t buy gadgets or boys’ toys.
- You wear a hat as part of your normal street attire. (Baseball caps, motorbike/cycle helmets, turbans and hoodies don’t count.)
- You keep an unusual pet. (Dogs, cats, fish, snakes, rodents, chickens, canaries don’t count. Parrots, llamas, goats, monkeys, Michael Jackson do count.)
- You spend less than £100 on your partner (or if single each of your children, nieces, nephews as appropriate) at Christmas even though you could afford to spend more.
- There is one unusual thing about you which makes you stand out. For instance: you are habitually known by an unusual nickname (Ripples, Binki); you always wear fluorescent green eye shadow; you always carry a gent’s umbrella in your rucksack. (Tattoos, piercings and dyed hair don’t count.)
- You habitually turn down free food, free gifts and “bargains” because they are not things you want/need.
- You have a pre-1960 car which you still use for everyday travel.
- You have retained a childhood/youthful interest long past what is generally deemed an appropriate age (eg. you’re still youth hosteling or camping in your 60s). (Score 2 points if you can honestly say you have more than one.)
- You have an unusual hobby like breeding daffodils, bellringing, playing church organs or learning Cornish. (Score 2 points if you can honestly say you have more than one.)
Score one point for each YES answer; the maximum score is 50.
43-50 A true eccentric’s eccentric. One of the best.
32-42 Definitely eccentric. You’re the sort of person of whom it is said “They’re mad”.
20-31 You have the potential to be eccentric but you need to sharpen your skills,
0-20 Boringly normal.
antediluvian. Occurring or belonging to the era before the Biblical Flood. Extremely old and antiquated.
peripatetic. Walking about or from place to place; traveling on foot. One who does a job which takes them from place to place.
antepenultimate. Coming before the next to the last in a series.
opiate. A sedative narcotic containing opium or one of its derivatives. Something that dulls the senses and induces relaxation or torpor.
apiary. A place where bees and beehives are kept, especially a place where bees are raised for their honey
verisimilitude. The quality of appearing to be true or real.
febrile. Feverish (as in when you have 'flu).
Oh and just for fun I measured 39 on this scale.