Thursday, November 04, 2004


As you may have surmised from my last entry, I am not taking the election results well. I think as of today, I’ve decided to plunge myself into a state of denial about the state of the world. I’ve simply decided that Hell is truly on Earth and that I am living in a kind of limbo purgatory reserved for all humans because we as a collective body have become complete assholes. So here we are. And so life in other areas continues to plod along on life’s terms and things like work and school and dog poop and sour milk in my coffee are all part of it, along with those greater horrors I can do damn little about at this moment.

So since things are going so well, I should mention that any gloating, glee or good feelings about the 90 on my last math exam have been squashed, nay annihilated, by the FAIL that I got on the exam this evening. That’s righty. FAIL. It’s a bone-head class that is strictly pass/fail that I am required to take in order to get to the math class that will enable me to transfer to UCLA. Anything over 3 wrong is a FAIL. I got 5 wrong. I really FAILED. Now I ask you, since I don’t play fantasy baseball, fantasy football or bet on the horses at Santa Anita, when am I ever going to use Ratios? And if you say “when you’re cooking rice” I will punch you in the neck. And units? Proportions? Unless it’s the proportional changes in the circumference of my thighs measured over a three month period of time whilst jumping back and forth between Weight Watchers and whole foods only, I’m truly not interested. I doubt that I will ever use ratio and proportion when taking on a critical analysis of Hedda Gabler or To Kill a Mockingbird….which DO interest me.

Books were my first drug of choice. I never discovered or gravitated toward finite math (or any other kind of math for that matter) as a means of escape from the realities necessary to escape from that Life had trapped within my troubled brain. I suppose it could be equated with a choice between Alcohol or Xanax. Alcohol requires a certain amount of ritual and takes a certain amount of time. Time to savor. There is an actual beginning, middle and end to the experience of alcohol, from the pouring (prologue) to the first sip (introducing the characters) to the conflict introduced after drink 3 when the personality changes (plot commences). Anything can happen at that point. At that point it becomes either a suspense thriller or a slapstick comedy. The experience progresses to the climax, which is facilitated by the lascivious, sloppy or just plain bad behavior of the protagonist slash villain slash omniscient narrator and ends with passing out. There’s a solid story structure to a good drunk, be it comedy or tragedy.

Xanax on the other hand is the 3 martini pill that takes you on a linear path from point A to point B with about as much excitement in the getting there that one might experience picking lint off one’s blouse. I think there is a solid reason, probably related to brain chemistry or talent genes, that so many writers are fabulous alcoholics and so many people in the math and sciences lean toward the predictable, carefully calculated and crafted formulations that are prescription drugs.

Now how did I arrive at this topic? Oh yeah. I FAILED my math exam.


Blogger R said...

Screw QVC I am completely sold on a Xanax Martini. Where should I send my credit card info, and how soon can you get it to me?!! That sucks about your exam. God. Do you have to do the whole class over?!! Why does everything always come down to NUMBERS?

04 November, 2004 23:51  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So sorry to hear about the math exam. Can you re-take it?

My DD#2 currently has a math teacher that gives an "F" for any test score below 85%. Needless to say, this evil teacher has created a huge amount of math anxiety and test anxiety on DD#2's part. I think the woman should be shot.

Re: uses for ratios. I was thinking about an example that considered the ratio of Democrats to Republicans, but then I started getting suicidal, so that example will just have to wait for a brighter day.

05 November, 2004 11:29  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can't see how a little math problem should be allowed to hold you back. Men are just better than women at math because most of us can count to 21.
A gal I know was once threatened by her daughter-in-law with a fork wielded at her neck. Apparently there is a Russian saying, "Two stabs, eight holes."
Your analysis of the ritualistic nature of imbibing alcohol has me rolling on the floor. Brava, Ms Frastley!

05 November, 2004 17:14  
Blogger I Screw Republicans said...

Hey, I just wanted to thank you for linking my site "I SCREW REPUBLICANS." I think that was awfully swell of you.

Keep writing.

Roland Glasgow

16 November, 2004 02:31  

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