when did i buy that? and, is it too late to take it back?

I have long declared my hatred of, and incompetence at, math. Lately, though, I have begun to consider this. Granted, I failed to learn subtraction correctly in elementary because of someone’s brilliant idea to play a record that went progressively faster in giving problems.

In 7th grade, I told my algebra teacher, Mrs. Exozedus (apologies for possible mis-spelling) that my father said I would never use algebra in the real world and I did not see why I had to learn it. This won me a trip to the principal’s office, my mother a visit to the school and my father an order not to discuss math with me anymore.

However, in 8th grade, Mr. Evers asked me to participate in the Math Club and go to competitions. The club met once a week and we were taught the required mental arithmetic for competitions. It was forbidden to use paper at these events. I only remember one competition. I won a 10th place ribbon, which I suppose is still roaming around somewhere in my parents’ house.

Tenth place may not sound that wonderful, but you have to consider the size of the competition. Even in the late 1970s, Houston Independent School District had a huge population of junior high students. Only the best went to these competitions. Obviously, at this point, I was good enough at math to hold my own.

So, the question remains, “when did I accept that girls were bad at math?”. Regardless of the timing, I have decided that I want to take my purchase back if I can figure out how. I was good at math once and I was much younger than I am now. Surely, I can be again.


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