What sort of person are you?

Did you ever read or hear a comment like this?

"You can tell what sort of person someone is by the state of their fingernails."

There are all sorts of judgments and pronouncements about people out there. Things I've heard over the years include:

- you can tell all you need to know about someone by seeing if their shoes are scuffed or polished.

- the mark of the man is in what kind of watch he wears.

- a housewife is slovenly if her kitchen sink is not shiny and clean at all times.

Unfortunately I wouldn't pass any of these people's tests. I bit my nails until I was 24 and even now they go through iffy stages. My shoes are the last thing I look at when I get dressed. Neither my husband nor I wear watches (and we're never late). I'll leave it to you to guess about my kitchen sink. (Suffice to say, I'm not the sort of housewife who irons her sheets...)

For a while, hearing this kind of judgment used to worry me. What kind of person was I really, if I didn't have shiny shoes? Perhaps I was just a pretender in life, waltzing blindly through the fine art of home-making with a dirty sink.

It doesn't worry me so much any more. I'm a little more secure in myself now that I realise that the majority of the world either doesn't own a watch, or bought the mid-range one at Target.

Most of the time I laugh at these sorts of judgments. They are just someone else's silly idea of what makes a person important or worthwhile.

Then I realise that I carry around my own unconscious judgments... which are just as silly. Things like:

Important and worthwhile people all use correct grammar and spelling and have good handwriting, never wear joggers with jeans, always use deodorant and have good spatial and logic skills.

Important and worthwhile people can drive, can keep a budget and read the Sydney Morning Herald.

Important and worthwhile people can always articulate what they mean quickly, don't waste time and leave interesting comments on other people's blogs... (no, the last one is a joke...)

It's just so so so easy to judge.