Reading, Writing, 'Rithmatic

It's possible that I've written about this before. I have a vague memory of it but, regardless, I think it bares repeating...

I suck at math.

Here's how badly I suck at math:

  • I failed Algebra 2 and Trig - twice.
  • I never went past Geometry in high school math (except to fail Alg2/Trig).
  • I never took a standard college-level math course.
  • The only time I ever came close to being fired from a job was because I didn't understand budgeting.

So the Universe decided to play a wicked joke on me and give me a boss (for NINE YEARS) who is all about numbers. This guy can make numbers do miraculous things. He makes them sing. He's the one that nearly fired me for not being able to budget. But, nice guy that he is, he taught me what he could so I wouldn't face unemployment - and then he gave me a job that didn't require a whole lot of arithmetic.

The funny thing is, even with all this help, I'm still uncomfortable having to do calculations. Beyond basic adding/subtracting/multiplying/dividing, I'm pretty lost. I can do basic percentages but only because I worked in restaurants for years and needed to know the difference between a 10% tip and a 20% tip. Which brings me to my point...

You learn the math you need to in order to live your life and/or do the things you love that require it.

Guess what math I'm enjoying these days... (note the word "enjoying") Knitting math!

Yes, ladies and gents, I'm doing knitting math and I'm kind of loving it! How crazy is that?

Knitting math is a complete necessity when one is designing a pattern. Definitely when you have to size up or size down a pattern but also to simply understand the relationship between rows when you change stitch patterns.

The thing that astounds me most is that, while I'm sure that I'm doing my knitting math in some wonky, back assward way, the fact is... I can figure out what I need and it's RIGHT. WOOT!

So, to all you math teachers who rolled their eyes at me over the years; to my patient boss who still rolls his eyes at me when math is involved; to my grandmother (wherever she may be now) who teased me relentlessly about taking after her in math proficiency; SUCK IT GUYS! I'm doing knitting math and not making mistakes!

I guess you just need to have an application you actually care about in order for it to make sense. Hmmmmm... interesting concept.

- Alex "Just Call Me Archimedes"


  1. Dear Archimedes,
    A good decision is based on knowledge and not on numbers. Well, maybe it's based a little on numbers. BTW, do you have any yet?

  2. Dear Plato,

    As a matter of fact, I do! That's what prompted this post. LOL Check your email. :)