In the tradition of the quilting bee and the barn raiser, Mensa is pleased to announce our First Annual Biofuel-Birthing Day. Join Mensa members in biofuel-birthing events scheduled in cities across North America on Saturday, June the 14th. We’ll meet between 1 and 3 p.m., local time, which will allow sufficient time for groups to develop processes for creating cellulosic ethanol, after conducting the traditional puzzle-book swap and roll call (members will be called upon in the order of their Wechsler scores).
Children are welcome. Fair-trade coffee and ginkgo biloba will be served. Members are discouraged from assaying the ginkgo to determine the level of pharmacologically active flavone glycosides.
Some Further Notes
For our left-brained members, let us explain that the above reference to the quilting bee and the barn raiser was solely intended to be a playful homage to those customs. The “bee” and the “raiser” were collaborative product-making events held by the female and male members, respectively, of homogenous religious congregations—picture white-toothed apple eaters such as the Hutterites, the Amish, and the Mickey Mouse Fan Club. What we’re really talking about here is outliers getting together for a common good. And we’re outliers. And that’s what we’re doing. We can make jokes at our own expense, can’t we? But we digress. Returning to the quilting bee and the barn raiser, according to Pinkelstein-Burgdoffer (2001), the purpose of these “normative functions of the collective” was threefold:
(1) to initiate young members into the cultural and ideological precepts of the tribe and to further strengthen the ideological convictions of older members;
(2) to quickly create a quilt or a barn; and
(3) to allow walleyed offspring an opportunity for covert petting.
The purpose of our First Annual Biofuel-Birthing Day is similar, except in item (2) above replace “a quilt or a barn” with “cost-effective biofuel production without substantial greenhouse-gas emissions.”
Finally, members are reminded of section 6.21 of the Mensa charter. Colloquially referred to as the “no nan nan na naw naw” clause, section 6.21 prohibits Monday-morning showboating in front of non-Mensans during office discourse sessions. You know what we’re talking about—those non-work-related conversations that occur when the intellectually average gather around the water cooler / coffeemaker / paper shredder. The typical linguistic marker of such a conversation is that grammatically foul phrase “So what did you get up to on the weekend?,” which is usually followed by non-Mensans chortling over little Johnnie’s triumph during the dribble race or Brittany’s spot-on audition for Who’ll Be the Next Hannah Montana!? Remember, there is no need to rain on their parade or cause the slightly more intelligent among them to question their worth as human beings by replying, “Oh, well, on Saturday, after brunch, we developed a standardized process for creating ethanol with a truly lean carbon content from lignocellulose. It gets quite technical, but ultimately what we did Saturday was solve the imminent energy crisis while eradicating world hunger. The kids really enjoyed it.” It’s just not nice.
An Important Note
to Our Neurotypical Subset
Your continuing tolerance and compassion are appreciated. We are considering your requests for a version of Mensa publications that would be suitable for your unique and beautiful linguistic and cognitive attributes. A decision is forthcoming.