Wednesday, August 27, 2008


At a faculty retreat today, we had to write down a secret no one in the room knew about us, then everyone else had to guess who "owned" the secret as each was read. I figured no one would guess this: I have to eat my M&Ms in a particular color order. No one guessed, but then they've not known me very long either, what with my being a newbie and all.

When I 'fessed up, people were surprised, and asked if I was really organized and stuff. Nope. The opposite. I'm a mess most of the time (physically and mentally). But for as long as I can remember, I have eaten my M&Ms in color order, even though they all taste exactly the same. That's reasonable behavior.

If it's a big bag, I just sort them for each serving portion. I dump some out, sort them out, and eat them. Simple. Easy. Not at all weird.

It goes like this: Green first, then yellow, orange, red, blue, and brown. That's my order of color preference (least to most), except brown, which only goes last by reason of brown being the color of the chocolate inside. It deserves an honored place for that reason. That's entirely logical.

There are three times when I don't follow the rules: 1) when they are holiday colors, but that generally just jacks up my psyche so I don't like those as much; 2) when I'm eating them while driving (because I don't want to crash), but that is why I rarely buy them when I'm on the road; and 3) when I'm really afraid people will think I'm a giant ass for eating them in order. This last one has a high-threshold, though. Mostly, I don't care what people think--I ate them in color order during class all the time, blissfully careless that my classmates mocked me. In that situation, we were all grad students and therefore all freaks of nature. There was little risk in outing myself as a weirdo in a room full of weirdos.

The same goes for my work colleagues now. Professors are notoriously quirky and weird, so I don't care that they know. They all laughed at me, but it was the laughter of people who kind of understood in some way. In fact, a couple of people approached me after and said they understood. So there. Perfectly. Rational. Behavior.

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