Horrible at math

Christmas 2015 047-A

Bouquet of flowers on my dining table.

I am so glad I am done with college.  I have a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology from the University of Hawaii.  I also pursued a Master’s degree in Music at Columbia University and later pursued a teaching certificate at UH.  If I had focused on one subject and one subject only, instead of spreading myself so thinly, I think I would have been better off in terms of a career.

One horrible subject comes to mind:  Mathematics.  Imagine third grade math at Manoa Elementary School.  Once a month, Miss Hirata would divide the class in half and make us compete at the blackboard, trying to solve math problems quicker than the other team.  Oh, it was just awful.  I could not figure out word problems, requiring reasoning.  If you gave me all day, I probably would have been able to solve each problem.  But, I was under the gun to finish in a few seconds.  It was agonizing!

“Hurry up, Gigi,” my team mates would yell.  “We are losing because of you!”

Aaaargh!  I hated myself, because I was so stupid and slow.  Somehow, I managed to pass third grade and was promoted to fourth grade.

Other than addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division, why is advanced math necessary?  I have no need for algebra and plane geometry in daily life.  Why torture people like me, who choose a job that does not require advanced math?

At any rate, David is a retired accountant and comptroller, so he is the one who does all the shopping.  He retains prices in his head, gets the best value for the dollar, and challenges the cashier when she rings up the wrong price.  He is amazing.

And, of course, we all know that Maria is a high school math teacher and chairman of the math department.

I am sure glad that David and Maria compensate for my numerical disability.  I am so proud and happy to have such a wonderful husband and daughter in my life.


10 Responses to “Horrible at math”

  1. honoluluaunty91 Says:

    I am the opposite of you. I love math, and dislike history, social studies.

    I even majored in math in college, but got poor grades because I skipped out on classes (foolishness of youth and too much freedom). And then, looking around at all those math professors who wore socks with their sandals, I decided that I couldn’t handle being a math teacher. So, I switched to fashion design, and really enjoyed going to college.

    2 of my kids excelled in math. One is a teacher. I believe that those first years of learning math are crucial – teachers are such an influential element in either getting it, or losing it.

  2. anonymousinthemainland!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Says:

    I could not even tell time unless I had my brother near me, we lived in a chaotic home, thrown here and there always wandering with my parents. We eventually settled into a nice huge house in my eyes, then my Mom got cancer and abruptly died only 6 months to prepare..Well I tell you I learned fast to cook, mend, iron, clean and wash constantly wash in a wringer washer! I made my brother help he was 18 months older and mature, he got math, he became a botanist and you need math for that..When kids are younger I endured cruel years of being made fun of since I really hated math, then voila I went to high school and my friends were the math geniuses girls and guys, they helped me navigate algebra and a cruel teacher who threatened me everyday..The last day of the class my sweet friend stood up and said you will never ever be liked or loved you think it funny to cruelly make fun of another..That was it he was sent to the principals office and his dad an attorney came right down and defended his son and me for that matter..I have always adored people who use math, accountants and the nerdy ones, they enabled me to graduate from high school to leave that crappy town and to live in California and attend college and never look back, as far as Math teachers My heart was with the biology teacher and his wife of many years and my home ec teacher by herself wishing me well in californa and a new life and two envelopes with bon viage on them and $20.00 bills as the greyhound station…cheering me on and one made a lunch to boot for me to nibble on..When I lived and went to college in California my friends were the dreamers and beautiful people all the art majors, theater majors and bachelor of arts people, but I still had to take math to graduate..You sure be very proud of your Daughter and your Husband people who do math great are wonderful human beings!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Aloha in paradise!

  3. Christine Says:

    everyone has their unique strengths for sure. But math was always my favourite subject although I liked French and Art.

  4. dkzody Says:

    Math is not my thing either. We can’t all be good at the same things.

  5. DeniseinVA Says:

    Right from the very beginning at an early age, I remember being screamed at by two math teachers in particular, if it took me a few tries to get something right. It was horrible, every time just before math class I would start trembling and be so nervous my mind would go blank, which made them scream at me even more and call me stupid and thick head. Kids would laugh at me which didn’t help. I did well in all other subjects but math was a source of utter torment and writing this I can feel the old angst. I married Gregg and when numbers were mentioned, my mouth would go dry and he could see an invisible wall go up in front of my eyes. He put me in charge of managing our finances when his ship set out to sea, always calm and so patient he explained it all to me, as he definitely could see my phobia was very real. I had a phobia about teachers also, and sadly did not trust too many in my life. But eventually that invisible wall disappeared. I have managed our accounts even into retirement and enjoy it, at my own pace. Thankfully our son had wonderful teachers and seeing him going through the education process also helped me in many ways.

  6. Beatrice Says:

    Math was also not my favorite or best subject and thankfully my exposure ended with high school algebra and geometry and only a basic course in college. That said, I have always balanced a checkbook and can manage to find the best sales and figure the discounts as well…that’s the most useful type of math in my life now.

  7. Olga Says:

    Math was not my favorite although I did not have a phobia about it.

  8. Linda Starr Says:

    I think everyone has their success in life; the achievement which no others can attain.

  9. Kay G. Says:

    I also despised the higher maths. (Interesting, in England, it is always “maths” not “math” and it is “sport” not “sports”!)
    I bet you were a star in the spelling bees, am I right? 🙂

  10. DJan Says:

    I know what you mean. These days some of the people running cash registers cannot add or subtract without help. At least I can do that, even though I too am not good at math. 🙂

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