Don't know if it's the weather or the war or the buyout of Chicago's parent organization, Tribune Company, but The Closer has suffered from a bit of existential malaise recently. Then I turned on my computer. Residing in every corner of the Internet is a different time-killing quiz, each informing participants of something they desperately need to know about themselves-How smart are you? How happy? What do you believe?-all in mere minutes. So, I took as many quizzes as I could in one 24-hour span. The result: instant identity enlightenment
Quandary 1: What religion should I be?
Quiz: Belief-o-matic personality quiz at beliefnet.com
Sample question: "Why is there terrible wrongdoing in the world?"
My response: I chose "human nature, psychology, sociology, criminology, et cetera."
Upshot: I am best suited to Secular Humanism or Unitarian Universalism, with the ominous caveat that the site "assumes no legal liability for the ultimate fate of your soul."
Quandary 1: Am I a good father?
Quiz: The new-father IQ test at babycenter.com
Sample question: "What's the standard advice on how long after childbirth you should wait until you and your wife can have sex again?"
My response: I clicked "Until your wife says so." Wrong. According to babycenter.com, the correct answer was six weeks.
Upshot: Still scored 11 out of 15 and received an exuberant pat on the back: "You're a prince! Keep up the good work."
Quandary 1: Am I an ethical person?
Quiz: Ethics survey at mbajungle.com
Sample question: "Company policy is not to pay for in-room movies when you're on the road. Nevertheless, you call up a few films on the hotel set, and an $18 charge appears on your bill." Multiple-choice answers follow.
My response: I opt to pay for the movies out of my own pocket. Not because I am ethical, but because I am a coward.
Upshot: I am deemed HIGHLY PRINCIPLED. ("You have a well-developed sense of right and wrong-and the integrity to veer toward the former.")
Quandary 1: What is my political affiliation?
Quiz: World's Smallest Political Quiz at theadvocates.org
Sample question: "[Should the U.S.] end government barriers to international free trade?"
My response: I e-mailed the question to my liberal friend Melissa. She told me that I did not, in fact, support ending barriers to international free trade, but that I supported fair trade.
Quandary 1: Am I a dork?
Quiz: Calculate your nerd quotient at nerdtests.com.
Sample question: "Which calculator brand is your favorite?"
My response: Though I don't currently own a calculator, I went with Casio.
Upshot: Eighty-two percent of participants scored more nerdy than I did, which indicates that I am "Not nerdy, but then again, maybe not all that cool, either," per the site.
Quandary 1: If I were a superhero, which one would I be?
Quiz: Which Superhero Are You? at thesuperheroquiz.com
Sample question: "Do you often hurt people without realizing it?"
My response: No, but how would I know if I had?
Upshot: I am, apparently, Spider-Man. "You are intelligent, witty, a bit geeky, and have great power and responsibility."
Quandary 1: Do I sound like a hick?
Quiz: What American Accent Do You Have? at gotoquiz.com
Sample question: "Our next word is ‘horrible.' How does that first vowel sound?"
My response: It's just like in the word "whore."
Upshot: I have a "Midland" accent, which, according to gotoquiz.com, is just another way of saying I don't have an accent.
Quandary 1: When will I die?
Quiz: The Death Test at okcupid.com
Sample question: "In the last two years, how often have you done something ‘extreme,' in the Mountain Dew–brand sense?"
My response: Zero times.
Upshot: I am slated to die in 2052, probably of cancer. Unsatisfied, I tried the quiz a second time, leaving every question unanswered, and okcupid.com bumped the year to 2054. Still cancer, though.
Photography: (Nerd) Lugo Graphics/Istockphoto; (Hick) Blind Toad Productions/Istockphoto