Your tale weaver mission, should you choose to accept it: “This week I’m asking you to consider the notion of what constitutes a genius and how different are they from a person who might be considered an idiot.
Or are they polar opposites? | Are they simply freaks? . . . | Have fun, let your muse take you interesting places.”
Polly was the unexpected, late, last birth into a family of geniuses, the Polyhistors.
Her old sister could dance to perfection in every genre: ballet, new age, stomp, music video, hip hop, pole and more, while singing in one of the 850 languages in which she she was fluent. She was the most sought after judge for shows such as “You Believe You Can Boogie,” “The Shrill-Trill-Thrill,” “And, Ain’t You an Artiste?”
Polly couldn’t walk and chew gum at the same time. Her feet always seemed to be going in different directions, and she spent quite a bit of time ungainly sprawled on the floor. She had been asked to mouth the words during the singing of the national anthem in pre-pre-pre kindergarten class; her voice described as fingernails on chalkboards.
Her brother could play 45 instruments to concert-hall perfection, some of them simultaneously. He would often solve complex math problems while standing on his head due to his exceptional ability at all forms of quantum physics and yoga.
While Polly could passably play the kazoo, she didn’t know a downward-dog from a dying-cow, and managed to twist herself into a pretzel doing the baby-face pose. A position from which she needed assistance untwisting. She didn’t participate in her family’s weekly game of Twister: The Super-Tornado Version.
Her mother received her Ph.d on Complex Therorhythms of the Theremin and Early Childhood Misanthropy from Oxford at age 10 and her PhD on her PhD from Harvard at 12. She was voted best professor on the planet 10 years in a row. At which point, the prize was retired, a banner with her university ID number hanging from the hallowed halls.
Polly got straight B++s at school, even with Fulbright scholar tutors tutoring at her 24/7. Her family felt she might, at best, graduate from high school by age 17.
Her father, by the age of 3, could read and write in 210 ancient lost languages. He discovered over 450 undisturbed royal tombs around the world. The Indianapolis Jones series of movies was based on the billion seller books he authored of his adventures.
Polly was allergic to scrolls, archives, and ancient pollen. She was cavernphobic, and did not look good in a hat and leather bomber jacket.
Her parents met at a think tank for the 100 best minds in the world. Love quickly ensued when both were panelists on a discussion of the role of string theory in the knitted universe. Both managed to keep busy careers and a happy home life; their progeny were prodigies. However, when both had been given their fourth Nobel Prize, a champagne-fuelled evening led to Polly’s spawning.
Poor Polly. She had little self-confidence; felt like she was suffocating in the rarified air in which her family lived. For some reason, in every family photograph, Polly was either absent, transparent, or her figure blurred.
She took to eating under the table. For example, Wednesday night’s dinner conversation revolved around all the brilliant and super-intelligent matters her genius parents and extremely, supremely gifted siblings agreed upon.
Polly didn’t think anyone noticed her empty seat. She shared her supper with Schrödinger, the family’s American Wirehaired cat. He didn’t seem to mind that Polly Polyhistor wasn’t a polymath. Especially as she was feeding him scraps of eco-friendly Amazonian salmon.
Then the next day, while surreptitiously binge watching a mindless American cable program, one of the main brain-eating characters cried, “Ah, though great minds think alike and taste yummy, remember fools seldom differ and their brains taste the same especially if you add mustard.” Considering Wednesday night’s dinner, Polly felt there was hope for her yet!
With tongue in cheek for mlmm tale weaver 194: genius or idiot.