A Math God Walks Among You

Peter will snicker when he reads this. He’s our friend, the Mathematician. When he talks about what he does, even Stephen’s eyes sometimes glaze over. He’s a smart man and I enjoy some personal nerdy one-upmanship simply because I call him my friend. So Peter, this post is for you…

On Wednesday afternoon, Eli and I decided that we would go around the corner to the church that has a pumpkin patch every year. When we hopped out of the car, two teen girls were manning (womaning?) the patch. We found out what the costs were for the various sizes and piles and then set out to spend the $11 I had on as many pumpkins as I could get.

Once our selection process was finished, Eli and I headed over to the girls with our pumpkins. I knew that I was close to the $11 limit but hadn’t yet calculated the exact change. Both girls had their homework spread out all over the card table and one of them had their math calculator. I told them what pumpkin price piles I had grabbed from and as I was doing that, I added up the amount in my head. It came to $10.75. The first girl tried to add it up on the calculator. She couldn’t make it work out correctly. So she handed the calculator off to the second girl. She couldn’t do it either. I said, “Ok, here’s a $4, 2 $2, that’s $8. Here’s 2 75¢ and a 50¢, that’s $2 for a total of $10 and then one more 75¢ is $10.75.”

There was a pause as both girls squinted up at me from their homework. The first one said with a bit of awe in her voice, “You are REALLY good at math.”

So there you are. I am a Math God. I know that it’s a surprise to those of you who thought all this time I was more of an artist type, but who can argue with a couple of teen girls minding a pumpkin patch. I know I felt good about it the rest of the day.

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