Meme o’ the day: How plebe are you?

I’m not feeling very inspired today, so how about a meme, courtesy of Kevin Drum. The higher you score, the more non-elitist you are.

1. Can you talk about “Mad Men?” No.
2. Can you talk about the “The Sopranos?” No.
3. Do you know who replaced Bob Barker on “The Price Is Right?” No.
4. Have you watched an Oprah show from beginning to end? I don’t think so. If I ever did it was a long time ago.
5. Can you hold forth animatedly about yoga? No.
6. How about pilates? Yes. I just started taking classes about a month ago.
7. How about skiing? Yes. Though this was not considered elitist in Seattle where I grew up.
8. Mountain biking? Yes.
9. Do you know who Jimmie Johnson is? Yes.
10. Does the acronym MMA mean anything to you? No.
11. Can you talk about books endlessly? Not really. I’m a child the internet.
12. Have you ever read a “Left Behind” novel? No.
13. How about a Harlequin romance? No.
14. Do you take interesting vacations? They’re interesting to me!
15. Do you know a great backpacking spot in the Sierra Nevada? No. I think they’re over-rated. But this probably means I should score this one as a “yes.”
16. What about an exquisite B&B overlooking Boothbay Harbor? No.
17. Would you be caught dead in an RV? Sure, why not?
18. Would you be caught dead on a cruise ship? I did go on a cruise with my grandparents back in my college days and I thought it was kind of fun.
19. Have you ever heard of of Branson, Mo? Yes.
20. Have you ever attended a meeting of a Kiwanis Club? No.
21. How about the Rotary Club? No.
22. Have you lived for at least a year in a small town? I’m not sure if Davidson, NC counts. It’s sort of suburban, but it fashions itself as a small town. But it’s a college town, so that probably only qualifies for half a point.
23. Have you lived for a year in an urban neighborhood in which most of your neighbors did not have college degrees? Yep.
24. Have you spent at least a year with a family income less than twice the poverty line? Yep. How about less than the poverty line itself?
25. Do you have a close friend who is an evangelical Christian? No, unless former evangelical Christians count.
26. Have you ever visited a factory floor? No.
27. Have you worked on one? No.

Score: 11.5 out of 27. I’m 43% plebeian. Kevin scored 63 percent. Clearly he’s got his pulse more on the heartbeat of America than I do. But as a liberal journalist who’s married to a liberal-arts professor, I suppose that’s to be expected.

One thing Mr. Murray didn’t provide with his quiz is any sort of scoring guide. What qualifies as sufficiently in touch with “real” America? 50%? 100%? Do all tea-party candidates have to pass the test? What if a liberal passes? Does she have to switch parties?

Update: There has been a twitter query about how to score this thing. I really don’t know — I scored a plebe-y answer as “1” — but note that each question has a different “right” answer. So in my rubric, the higher your score, the more plebeian you are.

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3 Responses to Meme o’ the day: How plebe are you?

  1. Peter Cooper says:

    I got 5. But I’m not sure all of those questions point in the same direction on the elitism scale. Here, the Rotary Club is pretty posh and “elitist” (to a point) and I’d associating skiing, yoga, and pilates with a sort of upper middle class “la de dah.” Yet watching Oprah or The Sopranos drags it back the other way. I think a scoring scheme per question is probably needed..

  2. Mary says:

    After googling Jimmie Johnson (because I didn’t know how to score not knowing who he was until I looked up who he was) I reckon I’m 18/27ths (or 66%) plebian.

    You can tell which answers are supposed to be “elite” from this excerpt of the original article. I wasn’t sure if going on a cruise counted as plebian or elite, but apparently it’s plebian, despite the cost. Same with Kiwanis and Rotary, despite the fact that I personally associate organizations like this with the Junior League and the general “wealthy wives who sponsor lavish balls — for charity” lifestyle.

  3. Murfomurf says:

    Yep, it’s “bogans” in Australia who go on cruises- it includes people who have plenty of money but where the breadwinner works in a trade, like plumbing. I can’t answer most of this meme as the questions are biased towards Americans, but a bogan would know the name of a sporting hero, would watch Oprah (you just had to look at her audience of adoring fans in Sydney last week!), watch “Mad Men” and never go to Pilates as it’s too posh and expensive. They’d go to the local gym and do Zumba! I don’t do anything much as I’m lower on the social scale than a bogan- no job, no income, a pile of “qualifications”!

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