Mensa Kolkata - please apply
This is where I use the blogsphere to push non-blog matters.
As some of you may know, Mensa, the high-IQ society, has a chapter in
Kolkata. Mensa Kolkata has been around for many years, but has become
active only very recently, in 2000. Since 2000, we have increased our
membership to over 300, which puts us behind Pune and Mumbai in terms
of total membership.
Mensa increased its membership through a number of membership drives.
Initially, we had help from our contacts in various newspapers - TOI
and The Statesman did stories that led to a huge increase in
applications. Later, efforts by individual members brought in large
groups from JU, BE College and IIM-Calcutta.
Our current problem is twofold - firstly, membership has levelled off.
Secondly, Mensa Kolkata has a unique problem because the majority of
our members are Isolted (live in other cities). Also, since almost all
applicants are students, this problem is likely to continue. Since a
number of these students are from IIM, they are rarely able to attend
meetings, and so, remain inactive.
So, right now, Mensa needs more members. Also, we are trying to
convince people above the age of 30 to join as this demographic is
less likely to move away from the city. Unfortunately, older people
are hesitant to give the test, as not getting through can hurt their
reputation - a problem that younger people do not have.
Right now Mensa's activities consist of the monthly meeting at the
Rashbehari Avenue home of our Chapter Head and veteran Mensan, Mr.
Amit Das. These involve adda sessions on pre-decided topics. Sometimes
members with specialised interests give a little talk. Visiting
Mensans from other countries also drop by occasionally, to answer
questions about their home countries.
Its only when the number of active members crosses a critical value
that Mensa Kolkata will be able to kick its activities into gear. A
number of SIG's (Special Interest Groups) are lying dormant because of
insufficient interest. A larger membership will also allow us to hold
activity-specific meetings. Mumbai Mensa, for example, has a trekking
SIG which organises monthly trips. Pune Mensa has a tribal outreach
programme. But such things need manpower, which we lack right now.
How do you get into Mensa? You send an email to Mr. Das at
firstname.lastname@example.org. He gives you a test for which you pay Rs 300. If
you make it, you get your membership packet, and can start attending
Finally, what are the advantages of joining Mensa? Well, there's the
meetings with other people who, like you, are more intelligent than
98% of the world. Then, there are benefits like SIGHT, which allow you
to avail of the hospitality of Mensans in other countries, when you
visit. Finally, it looks good on your CV, if you're into that sort of
So, I'm sending out a request. Bloggers of Calcutta - please apply. If
you're above 30, then most definitely do apply. If not, apply anyway,
but do apply. We need you.