20 February 2008

Grab the nearest book

Over at Hot Dogs, Pretzels and Perplexing Questions, Bob has set a task requiring the following information:

1. Grab the nearest book (that is at least 123 pages long).
2. Open to p. 123.
3. Go down to the 5th sentence.
4. Type in the following 3 sentences.
5. Tag five people.

This is actually the second time that I've been tagged by this thing - I last posted on this theme in December 2006.

So what am I reading? Well, next to my desk, someone has left a copy of MBTI® Manual - A Guide to the Development and Use of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® by Isabel Briggs Myers, Mary H. McCauley, Naomi L. Quenk and Allen L. Hammer.

Here's the offending text:

However, about twice as many people who report a J preference fall into the "clear" and "very clear" categories as compared to those who report a P preference (26.4% versus 13.7%), and about three times as many of those reporting an S preference fall into the "very clear" and "clear" categories as compared to those reporting an N preference (28% versus 9%). Two factors must be considered in attempting to interpret these results. First, the data are based on the national sample, which included more Sensing and Judging types than Intuitive and Perceiving types.

Now before you ask, I don't buy into Myers Briggs Testing® at all, no matter how much you put it to me. I work in a department at work that is insistent on using the bloody thing and I cannot for the life of me see any usefulness in it whatsoever.

And thanks Bob. Just when I've got a book with long sentences.

So yeah. There you go.

Tags go out to: Plonka, Romulus Crowe, Tom Sheepandgoats, Huinca and Ordinary Girl. And why not?


Anonymous said...

Arrggh! Not the MBTI! Can't we just cut cards from a tarot deck instead?

I had exactly the same feeling when I arrived at work one morning to find a copy of Marcus Buckingham's Discover Your Strengths on every desk. Mind you, it was worth it for the experience of sitting in a roomful of software engineers (some with an active interest in scepticism) tearing the thing apart in front of both management and the consultant they'd hired. I recall questions like "How is this any different to astrology?" and "What is the r-squared value for the repeatability of this test?" coming up a lot... :)

Dikkii said...

Unfortunately, I can't try this. Every old canard in the book comes out about how it's not meant to be used to predict behaviour or in employment, but you just know that someone's going to do that.

Marcus Buckingham, you say? Holy shit. Why son't they just go for the ridiculous and get Anthony Robbins in?

Nicole said...

laugh - you found a pigeon house!
Thanks for the laugh

Bob said...

I'm an INTJ. That means I'm speshul.

Dikkii said...

Thanks morisetn. I should have tagged you - as I recall you always are reading something interesting. Feel free to respond to the tag, if you like.

Bob: I'm allegedly either an ENTP or an ENTJ, depending on the test being done. Which I guess makes me as speshul as you.

Plonka said...

So why would I choose an N over a J or a P for that matter? I like J's and P's better than N's, but X is my fav.

Thanks Dikkii, it's up...:)

BJD said...

We had to do enneagram tests in my last job. We didn't hold back on the comparisons to astrology either. It didn't go down too well when I called upper management gullible though :-).

Dikkii said...

Good work, Plonka, and I see that you're working your way through the Richard Dawkins back catalogue.

I'm doing the same with Sleater-Kinney's at the moment and it's giving me hours of joy together with an idea for a future Rock Epic of the Month.

I personally prefer Ws and Xs over Js and Ss but I've never been one to mind my Ps and Qs.

Brendan, enneagrams??? Now that is mad. I've read some crap in my time, but enneagrams would take the cake if iridology hadn't beaten them to it.

Don said...

We were having some staffing issues at work a while ago and the boss seriously suggested bringing in the MBTI to screen new hires.

I about snorted in the middle of the meeting.

Dikkii said...

That's interesting, Akusai. The Myers Briggs boys and girls make "practitioners" sign some code of ethics to the extent of not using it to discriminate.

But we all know that this doesn't stop anyone.

tom sheepandgoats said...

Ha! Here is a report linking the Briggs Myer testing to Empedocles, a Greek philosopher, who maintained that all matter is comprised of four "roots" or elements of earth, air, fire and water.


dunc said: "I recall questions like 'How is this any different to astrology?'"

Perhaps it's not.

A fine topic for a diatribe, do you not agree?

Have a report on my desk by Monday.

Anonymous said...

Here is a report linking the Briggs Myer testing to Empedocles

Well, that's why I mentioned the Tarot... The 16 court cards in the Tarot deck represent personality types, using the 16 possible combinations of 2 elements (Fire-in-Earth, Air-in-Water, etc) and bear a striking similarity to the 16 MBTI personality types.

tom sheepandgoats said...

Thank you Dunc. I didn't know that about Tarot cards.

The subject intrigues me the more I think of it.

I may have a report on my own desk by Monday.

Plonka said...

Indeed I am Dikkii. I wanted to learn more about it all and it turned out the woo shop my wife works in had a collection...:)

Dikkii said...

Dunc and Tom - these references to Tarot and astrology are so hilarious I'm going to have to take them into work with me.

I hope that you don't mind.

tom sheepandgoats said...


It's Monday AM where I live and there's no report on my desk!

This is only an admonition. You're not officially in hot water, yet. I realize you live on some tiny island on the far side of the earth, and so perhaps it may still be Sunday there. I don't have my globe in front of me and am not smart enough to figure it out on my own.

Dikkii said...

Actually, it's Tuesday now as I write this and I haven't even started...

Hey, wait a minute - I tagged you didn't I? Where's your page 123?

tom sheepandgoats said...

Um....I'm not really sure what tagging is. Is it a little like a chain letter?

Unfortunately, my wife (Mrs Sheepandgoats) already gives me plenty of grief for the time (which does add up, I admit) I spend blogging. If I add to my basic drivel with stuff even more unnecessary, I will really be in hot water.

BTW, if time permits (and it may not; you seem like a really prolific guy) check out my latest post re Plato and the Governing Body. It represents a new line of attack in the neverending "believer vs atheist" battles. An effective assault? You can be the judge, but I guarantee it is something you've never seen before.

tom sheepandgoats said...

Ah...a new feature. Comment moderation.

You may want to consider what one commenter told me: If you employ comment moderation, then you don't really need the word verification. (unless you really get a ton of spam.)

Dikkii said...

Maybe I will, Tom. Maybe I will.