Last night I dreamed my kids were little again,and I was driving them to school. Naturally, I was driving backwards, and when I tried to stop to drop the kids off, my brakes wouldn’t work and we just kept on going right past the school backwards.
You’d think panic would have been in order. But no, instead, I thought, gee, our house is a lot closer to the school when you drive backwards. It’s much farther when you drive frontwards (if a word). How much farther? My brain, Peanuts, didn’t specify. You see, my brain, Peanuts, is not very good with numbers and either am I.
Oh, I know how to add, subtract, multiply and divide just fine unless you’re one of those perfectionists who expect the right answer every time — exactly. I say what’s wrong with eventually?
It’s not that I don’t like numbers. Individually they’re fine. In first grade, I remember enjoying the process of learning how to write numbers. My teacher said when you write a 5, you make the bottom part first and then add the flag on top.
So number 5 had a flag, eh? I rubbed my first grade hands together; finally, we were getting a glimpse into the personal lives of numbers!
On a scale of 1 to 10, the number 5 quickly became my number 1 number. And the confusion didn’t end there.
Soon we were having numbers interact, but not in a fun way. Maybe because you can never please numbers. They are very set in their ways. Everything has to be just so. It was all just a little too cut and dried for my tastes.
Later, they tried to trick us into liking numbers by making up story problems.
Megan’s school is 4 blocks away. Megan’s Mother is driving Megan to school backwards. Her brakes are out. How long will it take Megan to eat the 5 peanut butter and jelly sandwiches in her lunch box and how much will she weigh when her mother comes to pick her up driving frontwards (god willing) when school is out at 5:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time.
Anyway, by the time I got to ninth grade algebra at Fisher Junior High School, I was officially the dumbest student in the class. Mr. Van Curen tried to teach me algebra, but I was a hopeless case.
He’d say A = 12 and I’d say why don’t you just leave out the A altogether and just say 12? To which Mr. Van Curen would furrow his dandruff sprinkled brow and say again, Yes, but A = 12.
I hate you Mr. Van Curen.
Until next time . . . I love you – unless you’re Mr. Van Curen