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So you're Rowlf the Dog? Now what?

Of course, I don't need the results of an online personality quiz to know that I'm a sexual titan and a genius, but sometimes it's nice to hear it anyway.

Internet quizzes are insanely popular among those who use social media such as Facebook and MySpace. I get them sent to me nearly every day.

For a while, I ignored them until one day an old friend sent me one titled, "Which Literary Period Are You?"

The quiz presented various questions and a finite number of possible answers.

For example, I was given scenarios and asked what my reaction to them would be.

"What would you do if you found yourself suddenly alone in a room?" The possible answers were: freak out, call a friend, start reading a book, etc.

My answers were then compiled and placed on a graph that charts traits relating to a literary time period.

It turns out, I'm the Romantic Period.

For an old English major, I found this very, very interesting.

So I took the next quiz.

Then I took another.

And another.

And another.

The more I took the weirder they got.

"Which Muppet Are You?"

Hmm. I'm Rowlf the Dog, it seems, based on my answers to questions such as, "What do you like to do in your free time?" (Answer: Read a book, take a walk, low-key relaxation) and "Which personality best suits you?' (Answer: Forward/Direct). After you get the result, the quiz blesses you with a brief explanation as to why you would have been Rowlf if Muppet reincarnation were a universal law.

Rowlf's traits: "You are calm and quiet, a laid-back and easy going person. Talented at whatever you put your mind to. You are never one to brag or boast about your skills..."

I was pleased with being Rowlf. He's among the less manic Muppets and not crazily judgmental like Statler and Waldorf.

Another apt result was from the "Which Completely Ineffectual and/or Useless Movie Character Are You?"

The Albino, from "The Princess Bride."

How completely random, and honestly, awesome.

I love "The Princess Bride" and the Albino is one of the most underrated bit players in film history.

The explanation from the quiz master: "Oh... hi. It's you, with the wheelbarrow. Just a person in the background with an unexpectedly handsome voice. You may be overlooked as 'just that old Albino,' you may not be the best-looking fella in town, or the most popular, but once people get to know you, they just can't overlook your awesomeness. Just because you're a side character doesn't mean you can't be completely cool."

I can dig that.

Even better was the "How Sexy Is Your Zodiac Sign?" test.

I started that one with diminished expectations. I'm a Virgo, the coldest and most distant of all the signs.

Imagine my surprise when I got this result: "Dominant in relationships. Sexy. Freak in bed. Always wants the last word. Caring. Smart. Intellectual. Attractive. Loud. Loyal. Easy to talk to. Hard to forget. Everything you ever wanted. Easy to please. The one and only. Ultimate sexiness."

Dominant? Ultimate sexiness?

All true, but I wonder how the machine knows me so well.

Some of the tests are a blow to the ego.

"What Beer Are You?"

Bud Light? Because I'm a "good beer for a good price."

Please.

"What Sexy Cartoon Female Are You?"

I couldn't help it. I just had to know.

Turns out, I'm Poison Ivy, the Batman villain played so horribly by Uma Thurman in the eye-gouge-inducing "Batman & Robin."

To get to that result I had to answer questions such as, "If you could be one person for a day (past or present), who would you be?" Out of a long list, I chose Babe Ruth.

This was followed by, "You are going out on the town, what do you wear?"

Black leather. Without hesitation.

Sure, these tests are further proof that the Internet has squandered its potential to expand the way humans gather meaningful knowledge.

I realized that war was lost long ago and felt nary a hint of guilt wasting an hour taking online quizzes that grouped me into Muppet categories.

Reach reporter Chris Conrad at 776-4471; or e-mail cconrad@mailtribune.com.