In this age of blogs, microblogs, status updates, profiles, etc., etc., it seems like everyone is living the writing life to some extent. I wonder if this is what Bulgakov imagined when he wrote "Manuscripts don't burn," long before the internet had begun immortalizing everything.

Anyway, so it occurs to me that, instead of relying on facial tics, body language, etc., to profile individuals, one can easily go by writing samples. Even a small sample can reveal quite a bit.

Refuse to capitalize? You don't have the guts to take yourself seriously enough. Or maybe you have submissive tendencies. (Like to get tied up, do you?) Get some self-esteem. Or else, just turn on auto-capitalize in MS Word.

Overuse exclamation points? You either have an insatiable lust for life, or, more likely, you're a crashing bore who tries to inject excitement into things like "I just bought toilet paper! YAY!" (Very few occasions in writing - or life - merit an exclamation point.) You probably have a secret crush on Zac Efron, too.

Love the ellipsis? You probably have a touch of the ADD. Or else, you just want to sound interesting and mysterious. You don't. You just sound flighty and silly. A rambling run-on sentence with a few ellipses stuck inside it is still a rambling run-on sentence. Stop cultivating your mystique and start cultivating mental organization.

And my favorite, my own personal indulgence - parentheticals. I overuse them CONSTANTLY. I guess I like the idea of having two parallel narratives. Kind of like two parallel lives. (Notice how the stuff inside the parentheses is always just a little more honest than the stuff outside them?)

And so on, and so forth. Feel free to create your own bitchy psychological profiles.

(spend too much time thinking about this sort of thing? . . . then you're probably a former English major! . . .)

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