Your secret avatar

June 28th, 2011

Here’s today’s question, friends: Who is a fictional character with whom you identify, but whom no one else would ever think of as being like you?

I identify hugely with Eliza Doolittle, but anyone who knows my commitment to upward mobility and cute straw hats could call that one. Back when I was a professor, none of my students were particularly surprised when I showed up on Halloween as Minerva MacGonagall, either.

But you know who else? You know who Mr. Improbable and I totally, totally identify with?

April and Andy from “Parks & Recreation.”

Yes, folks, this couple:

… holding flowers and meat, is for all intents and purposes, this couple:

… except with the addition of positive IQs and demonstrable work ethics. My Harvard-educated husband would not be mistaken for a character who, when commissioned to write a song “five thousand times greater than ‘Candle in the Wind,’” wrote a song called “Five Thousand Candles in the Wind.” Nor am I, the Woman of a Thousand Jobs, all that much like April, whose most valuable skill as a receptionist is a complete inability to take a message, therefore sparing her boss the task of returning his calls.

But the relationship? Yeah, that’s actually dead on. His optimism and faith in me. His remarkable ability not to annoy me, when almost everyone else on earth does. Our leap-of-faith wedding. My hatred of the outdoors and love of goth music against his cheerful, softball-playing self. The fact that Mouse Rat — excuse me, Improbable Research — really needs me as a manager.

Who’s your secret avatar?


4 Responses to “Your secret avatar”

  1. sponica on June 28, 2011 11:14 pm

    I have a number of avatars, depending on my mood. I’m not so sure which ones are secret avatars though…I should make that a party game.

    Even though she annoyed me sometimes: Counselor Troi from Star Trek The Next Generation. (I’m not sure if it was she who annoyed me, or the craptastical plot devices used on her). I ended up studying mental health counseling…and if NASA was planning on doing deep space missions, I’d be the first to sign up to provide the psych services.

    I also identified with Nick Carraway from the Great Gatsby when I was in high school. I think my college application essay was about Nick Carraway and how I identified with my personal heroes being different in reality than how I perceived them.

    Last but not least, I’m Temperance “Bones” Brennan. I’m deeply analytical and sometimes don’t know the right thing to say or how to navigate social situations. Which is sort of ironic considering I studied mental health counseling…in the workplace I know the right thing to say to a client. In the real world, it’s like a minefield. My boss was Seely Booth. He was the ex-Marine, ex-Army Ranger whose impulsivity was tempered by my rationality. To this day I believe I worked with him and not for him, and we worked so well together because we thought alike 85% of the time, and the 15% where we differed we complimented each other.

    These are my avatars…as I see them.

  2. Cassie on June 28, 2011 11:48 pm

    Meg Murray (O’Keefe, though I identify with young Meg more) is a shoo-in. Mousy brown hair, glasses, alternately too shy and too loud, always trying to carry the world on my shoulders. She’s the obvious one.

    Maleficent is probably a bit more oblique, though still recognizable. I have her sense of story and a thing for horns. She is still my favorite Disney villain, just because there seems to be so much -there- there and we never get to see it.

    The one that no one would guess is probably Xander Harris. I’m blessed with a bunch of wacky, brilliant friends (and a weird middle name) and feel like the one loser in the bunch a lot of times.

  3. Jerry on June 29, 2011 12:18 pm

    Maybe evil Spock (the one with the beard). Trying to minimize the damage I do even when society pretty much requires me to do some.

    Actually the one that really surprised my girlfriend was when I said I could identify with Christopher Boone from The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. I like playing those kinds of little games (e.g. seeing three red cars = A Very Good Day), and who doesn’t ever want to curl up and groan for a few hours sometimes?

  4. EA Week on June 29, 2011 12:19 pm

    Lisa Simpson. Academically precocious, middle child in an insane family. My older sister IS (or was) Bart Simpson–attention-getting, trouble-prone, and always getting in hot water with Homer. My father WAS Homer, right down to complaining about his weight, all while on his way to the fridge for a snack.

    Willow Rosenberg. The first Buffy episode I ever watched was “Halloween,” where Buffy gets Willow all gussied up in a sexy outfit, and Willow comes down the stairs with a sheet over her head. That was me, circa age 13 or 14–very bright academically, but just hopeless socially. Plus, Oz was the best boyfriend ever. : )

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