I will be the first to admit that I’m probably the wrong judge of what is creepy.
I am a white, urban, college educated SAHM who is squeamish about mice in the house. So the very idea that I would set a high standard of cuddli-ness (which I’m thinkin’ is the most clarifying antonym out there) is pretty bold, if not silly. Nevertheless, in order to make my Social Media More Social, I ‘m willing to step up and put out a Creep-O-Meter for your benefit. This is kind of like a Cosmo quiz for people who have more important things to do than to read the first hundred pages of ads in a Cosmo magazine.
I do not have the technical stats in front of me. I’m not that kind of researcher.
I’m the kind that shows my five children pictures of avatars and says, “Do we want to follow this person?” And if the crowd votes “YAY!” I do. If the crowd screams in terror and runs outside to get a gulp of G-rated fresh air, then frankly, that avatar creeps us out and we can’t follow. The nice thing about having five kids, is that there is that handy-dandy odd number for breaking any ties.
But if you want to step into that brain-sucking realm of self-examination, you can take this test. That way we don’t have to do it for you.
Be honest. No one likes a cheatin’ creep.
Does your avatar have a face on it that isn’t human? +3
Does this face have fur? -2
Is this face have any comic element, like Groucho glasses or a party hat? -2
Does your avatar have any part of a human body that is unclothed? +3
Does this unclothed human body have his/her head mysteriously cropped out? +3
Is this unclothed human body in some sort of position that might suggest to me I should shield my children’s eyes? +2
Is the dominant color in this avatar black? +2
Is the dominant color white, pink or yellow? -2
Is there a flower in this avatar? -5
Is there an animal that is associated in any way with death, Ozzy Osborne or Edgar Allen Poe? +3
Is the face on this avatar wearing dark glasses? +1
Is the face on this avatar wearing dark glasses but smiling/ and or crinkling up his/her nose, as if posing for Tiger Beat magazine? -4
Does the face on this avatar have any visible freckles? -6
Is there any element that might suggest violence, such as a semi-automatic weapon, brass knuckles or a machete? +5
Is the face on the avatar frowning or have eyebrows that are so V-shaped that they look like a ferocious bird of prey? +3
Is the face on the avatar completely hairless? +5
Is the face on the avatar hairless except for the soul patch? +3
Is the face on the avatar bald, but smiling? -2
Is the person in the avatar seated? -1
Is the person in the avatar seated next to a cocker spaniel or golden retriever? -4
Is the person in the avatar seated next to a golden retriever who appears to have a certain kind of leash that might qualify them as an assistance animal? -10
Are there any pictures of babies in this avatar? -6
Are there any of pictures of babies with ducks, daisies, bonnets and parasols? -12
Does this avatar have any reference to American political parties, extreme activism and the word death written in pointy letters? +20
-10 to 0 You are my type of follower! Find me! I will so be your friend! We can exchange recipes for strawberry cupcakes!
0-10 You are slightly creepy. If you can convince me that you are smart, compassionate and do not make a habit of kicking puppies, we’ll probably get along fine.
11-20 You are way out there in the land of creepy. I would suggest either you embrace your inner creepiness (and stay away from my children) or maybe throw in a little Love’s Baby Soft on your avatar. You never know, your numbers might go up.
You can follow me at @10MinNovelists But please, if you scored higher than a 50, um . . . . I’ll find you instead.
Katharine Grubb is a homeschooling mother of five, a novelist, a baker of bread, a comedian wannabe, a former running coward, PTSD survivor, and the author of Write A Novel In 10 Minutes A Day.Besides pursuing her own fiction and nonfiction writing dreams, she also leads 10 Minute Novelists on Facebook, an international group for time-crunched writers that focuses on tips, encouragement and community.