This exam is to be completed on your own sweet time. Use a pencil, No. 2 or otherwise, or a pen or charcoal stub or your blood. Convenience is king. Paint brushes work too, especially for those with a taste for color. Answer truthfully and answer correctly if you so choose. No peeking, please.
- Your grandma, the last hippie in the Midwest, is dreaming. What does she see?
a. Her foot permanently planted in the muck of the Niobrara.
b. Herself, seated by a silent phone.
c. Her friend who died in an iron lung in 1957.
d. Her lips and eyelids fluttering like moths because she has trouble sleeping.
- What is the proper way to pronounce “Sardegna”?
a. I don’t know.
c. This question is pointless.
- Identify, from the following, Caligula’s greatest mistake:
a. The length of his fingernails.
b. His unhealthy love of horses.
c. The children he never took responsibility for.
d. The lead in his wine.
e. My grandma always claimed we were descended from Caligula, and I never understood why she seemed proud of this.
- When is the proper time to harvest rhubarb?
a. When the stems are red.
b. When the stems are enticingly red.
c. When the stems are seductively red.
d. My parents never picked rhubarb with me.
- Where is the family’s secret monster hiding?
a. He’s still behind you. He reeks of smoke.
b. He’s the priest my grandma remembers. He’s dead now. She seemed very happy when she found out he died.
c. In the Christmas cards.
d. You aren’t supposed to ask those kinds of questions—someone might get hurt.
- Where is Ossabaw Island?
a. In the Gulf of Mexico.
b. In Georgia.
c. Where your secret uncle lives.
d. Geography means nothing here.
- True or False: To be happy, you must forget what your family has done.
- At the root of every family tree, you will discover:
a. Another tree, inverted.
b. A family of stowaways.
c. A murderer fleeing Prague.
d. A teenage girl fleeing Italy.
- What is silence?
a. It’s not freedom, but it’s close.
b. It keeps the peace.
c. I can’t answer that question.
d. It’s what you’re supposed to maintain at Thanksgiving, even when you know you should say something.
- Draw your family tree below. Which fruit are you?