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You Passed 8th Grade Math

Congratulations, you got 9/10 correct!

What scares me about this is that I am somehow both proud and embrassed that I scored 90% on an 8th grade math test. And how long it took me to think about some of the answers...

Like many artsy young ladies, I never liked math. In part, I stank at it because I missed a lot of school and as a result had some serious gaps in the math foundation. In part, I hated it because at heart I have always been a lazy student and never worked hard at things that didn't interest me. I remember my freshman year of high school I studied for an algebra test by opening the text book, skimming a few pages, then snapping it shut and declaring, "Yep, I'm going to fail" before moving onto reading a book or magazine that captured my attention better. (Granted, it is likely that whatever I was readding was intellectual in its own way. Or Stephen King, who I think is an amazing writer of people. But I digress...)

The crowning glory of my math career was my junior year of high school when my teach er recommended that I take pre-calc in a lower track than I had previously been on. I was so offended at the suggestion that I enroll in a class with average students (who in my mind were imbeciles not on my overall level) and I sneered, "I don't need math. I'm going to be a lawyer."

Fast forward to me sitting in a grad school economic class in the fall of 1998. Yeah, it hurt. That was the first time I relly busted ass in a class that required real math skills. I met with the TA and a group of other students every week for remedial help. At that point in my life, it was easier to admit that I was a fucking idiot when it came to advanced math. I no longer felt a need to prove that I was as good as the richer kids who always got to be in enrichment programs while my parents were told there was not enough room for [little white Jewish trash] me.

Fascinating, also, how a post about my lack of math smarts led to my seething resentment of wealthy people. Anyway, the second semester of econ and the various stats classes I took were easier for me because they were grounded in practical problem solving. The same with all the little financial analysis things that I became adept at doing for work. (Excel is a great love of mine, despite being from the Evil Empire of Malfunctioning Programs that Often Format Your Things for You When You Don't Want It To.) My brain just does not function on the abstract proof level. Abstract, sure. Proof? Fuck that(along with the "I Hate Math" Talking Barbie)!

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