The Bitter Old Gen X’er’s Guide to Life

The Bitter Gen-X’er Qualification Exam

Alright, you’ve had enough theory; now it’s time to find out if you have any moxie on the ball (and don’t ask what that means, I don’t know). It’s time to break out your pencils. And then to put them away, because this is an online quiz. If you’re going to have any credibility as a bitter Gen-X’er, you should be able to walk the walk by passing the official competency exam.

Roots and Methods of Advanced Bitterness (Gen-X 201)
Professor J.R. Cormorant
Professional Qualification Examination

Instructions: Please circle the best response to each question, in a circular motion, with a certain flourish of circularity, if possible. We don’t care if you are taking this exam on a computer monitor. Circle the best response, dammit. We don’t care how you do it.

Please do not speak to others during the examination period or you will be taken out and flogged with rusty 8-track tape parts. It is university policy that no one will be permitted into the examination room during the examination.

1. 16,283 represents the number of:
a. dollars the country goes into debt every millisecond.
b. “baby on board” signs still sold daily.
c. songs Bon Jovi has recorded with the same chords.
d. fragments in a bag of chips from a vending machine.

2. 28º Celsius represents:
a. the temperature of drinking fountain water.
b. the summer temperature required for an American car to stall out.
c. how many degrees below zero it is when your building has a fire drill.
d. how much warmer it is in Hawaii right now.

3. A younger peer complains to you, “why do you always have to be such a pessimist about everything?” You should respond by saying:
a. “I suppose it’s you who should really be pessimistic, considering that I probably won’t live to experience the nuclear holocaust you will."
b. “Giddawtamyway!"
c. “In my day we spoke to our elders with respect."
d. “Oh, yeah? So’s your mother."

4. “Eight” represents:
a. the number of potholes per square meter on city roads.
b. how many weeks old a video has to be before MTV considers it a classic hit.
c. how many times Jack Tripper falls over the sofa in a typical Three’s Company episode.
d. the mental age the average television commercial is aimed at.

5. As you walk downtown, a woman holding pamphlets asks you what you’ve done lately “to save the environment". You respond:
a. “While camping, I cleaned up our campsite by burning all our styrofoam plates and cups!"
b. “I smoke Players Lights now!"
c. “en-vi-ron-ment? My, you’re a clever girl. How come you know such big words?"
d. by singing: “Use a paper, use a towel; you can’t wipe your bum with a spotted owl."

6. One month, two weeks represents:
a. the lifespan of your first childhood pet.
b. how long it will take for gas price reductions to “come down the line” after oil prices fall.
c. the lifespan of an Italian government.
d. express delivery for Canada Post.

7. $208.34 represents:
a. average monthly wage of an Arts degree graduate.
b. six candy bars at a movie theatre.
c. what the telephone company claims you owe them for a six-hour call to Madagascar.
d. projected, what an NHL hockey game ticket will cost by 2016.

8. All banks are:
a. out to rob you.
b. out to rob you.
c. out to rob you.
d. out to rob you.

9. 157 ml of water represents:
a. the difference between regular and light beer.
b. the minimum your sunroof will leak during a rainstorm.
c. what’s added to every glass of “non-stop pop."
d. what you swallow while learning to jet-ski.

10. While alone with your girlfriend in the evening, she says, “what a beautiful sunset!” You reply:
a. “Yes, and just think: only three months until winter!"
b. “That reminds me; I have to remove the dead robin that fell in my mailbox."
c. “Isn’t it amazing the colorful glow that cancerous pollution gives off?"
d. “What, do you have something against sunrises? Huh?"

11. “Five” represents:
a. How many more Star Trek movies are still coming until no one is left alive from the original series to sneak in to the plot.
b. Decades it will take to pay off the last of your student loan.
c. The average number of times Bryan Adams shouts “Yeah!” on any of his songs.
d. How many infomercials are airing on television at this moment.

12. You are a true bitter Gen-X’er if:
a. you go to Dairy Queen and ask for a vanilla Blizzard.
b. your wedding song is Mozart’s Requiem.
c. you tour Europe and don’t bother to bring a camera.
d. you don’t actually expect there to be an answer key to this test.


Is Elvis Really Alive?

Going to University

Politics & Government

The Internet: Patience

The Great Authors Contest

Sports & Recreation

The End of Everything

The Care & Feeding of Women

Death: A Lively Discussion

Getting a Job

Canada: The Real Story

My Hair: A Requiem

The Church vs. Wipe-Out

The Language of Attraction

Life Rules

Bitter Gen-X’er Exam