Chick Wit: A test for task tacklers

Posted: January 13, 2014

The other day, somebody asked me if I was "task-oriented."

I replied, "Proudly."

I have no problem being task-oriented.

In fact, I love being task-oriented.

You know why?

It gets things done.

So what if I have a gaping ulcer?

Every bowel needs a little ventilation.

In my opinion, life is full of tasks, and only the task-oriented have the proper orientation to get all the tasks done.

You can take a test to see if you're task-oriented, in the privacy of your own home. In fact, I developed the test myself, and it consists of answering two questions, which are contained in Part I and Part II.

That's not a very hard test, is it?

You don't even have to study.

Here's Part I, and the question assumes that you had a Christmas tree, because that's how I came to the realization that helped me develop this test. If you did not have a Christmas tree, or, in other words, if you are Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist, or an extremely lazy Christian, please accept my apologies and imagine that you did have a Christmas tree so you can take the test anyway.

If you're an agnostic, you need to make up your mind. Stop dithering. Pick a team. Don't wait until the end. You might get caught out. It may not be good to wear a Giants jersey at the Eagles game, but it's better than going naked.

Baby, it's cold outside.

If you're an atheist, you're on your own. After all, that's what you wanted, isn't it? Be careful what you wish.

OK, now to Part I, Question 1.

The question is, When do you take down your Christmas tree?

The answer is multiple-choice, so please pick one of the following:

A. A few days after Christmas.

B. The day after New Year's.

C. When the kids go back to school.

D. When it dies, when I'm sick of my feet getting stuck by pine needles, or when birds begin to nest in it, whichever comes first.

E. None of the above, and if so, please explain. Show your work.

OK, got your answer?

Write it down, but don't tell it to me.

Cover your paper with your hand so nobody cheats off you.

I'll tell you my answer when the test is over.

I don't want you to cheat off me. The task-oriented are always right. Just ask them.

Er, I mean, us.

OK, let's move on to Part II, Question 1.

The question is, Regardless of when you actually took down your Christmas tree, when did you want to take down your Christmas tree?

A. After Christmas dinner, when everybody is comatose on the couch.

B. After Christmas breakfast, when everybody is watching the football game.

C. As soon as the kids turn their backs.

D. As soon as the presents are unwrapped.

E. Before the presents are unwrapped.

F. Christmas Eve.

G. None of the above, because I'm sane.

OK, have you marked your answer?

Pencils down.

Here are the results.

Part I, Question I of the test doesn't matter. It was a trick question, but in a good way. Whatever answer you gave is correct, because if you're a nice person, married, or otherwise live in a family, you might have not have been able to bend them to your task-oriented will.

We're bossy, not tyrannical.

Part II, Question I of the test is the only part that matters, and if your answer was A through F, you're certifiably task-oriented!

Welcome to the club!

Thank God your family has you to rush them through the happiest time of the year so they can get it over with and move on to doing their taxes.

Here's what I'm saying to you.

I realized I was task-oriented when I could not wait to take down the Christmas tree, put all the ornaments away, vacuum up all the stupid needles, and put a check mark in the box next to Christmas on my Things To Do List, so I could get back to work.

Feel the same way?

Got Maalox?


Look for Lisa Scottoline and Francesca Serritella's columns in their newest collection, "Meet Me at Emotional Baggage Claim." Also, look for Lisa's latest Rosato & Associates novel, "Accused," in stores now.

lisa@scottoline.com.

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