? and also !

Let me begin this entire post by saying that one of the many pearls of wisdom I have acquired in my many, many years of living is that stereotypes usually exist for a reason.

Oh sure, there are insulting stereotypes that are used to mock and malign people– but I’m not talking about those. I’m talking about the ones like…. oh, I don’t know…  maybe like, “Artistic/creative types are usually not all that great at crunching numbers/anything that involves math..” (Excluding of course, Bill Gaither, but come on– he’s a freak of nature.)

I personally hate this particular stereotype because Russ and I both embody it to the fullest. Also? We have apparently given birth to two little artsy-fartsy daughters who are missing the numbers gene as well. Seriously, you’d think between the four of us there’d be ONE slightly left-brain person, right? (Irony– it’s whats for dinner.)

This truth is especially self-evident these days because we (and by ‘we,’ I resentfully mean ‘I’) have spent most of this lovely spring day simultaneously wading through the bewildering morass of paperwork that is involved with securing Madi Rose’s college scholarship money for another year AND talking endlessly on the phone to try to sort our way through the minefield of documentation that is needed to get prequalified for financing so we can make an offer on a house that I’m really excited about but don’t want to talk about yet because A) I might jinx it and B) if I get all giddy and start squeeeeing all over this blog about how excited I am and then we lose it again like we did the last one I might throw myself in front of a bus.

Ok, not really– apparently we artsy types have a tendency to be just a wee bit over-dramatic as well as math-challenged.

But my point–and I do have one– is that both of these situations today involved filling out a monumental crapload of forms all requiring a crapload of numbers. And here’s the truth: I suck at that. And Russ? EVEN MORE SO. Honestly, when I’m faced with a bunch of blank lines I need to supply answers for, I get kind of panicky, my face freezes and then this happens:

Now before you go putting your armchair diagnostic panties on,  I do realize of course, that I’ve totally psyched myself out about this over the years. Filling out forms may be a pain in the whatsit, but I am not a complete idiot. I do know how to count and make change, I actually manage to be a grown-up functioning member of society most of the time–but  I absolutely have a mental block about this stuff! So there you have it, folks: “Hello, my name is Tori and I have math-anxiety.”

( OK, can’t breathe, get me a paper bag!!!!)

Is it just me, ‘Bloomr nation?

I would invite any of my fellow suffers to leave a comment commiserating with me– you can cyber-high my five. And if any of you are of the math genius persuasion and cannot possibly understand what the big deal is– well, you can leave a comment too, but I may or may not call you an asshat under my breath…

(What can I say? I’m a charmer.)

20 Responses

  1. SFloria

    “suffering” right along with you, Tori. I get panicky when I have to call a business that has sent me a bill when it’s wrong. Or calling the Insurance company to ask why they didn’t cover something that’s supposed to be covered. Okay, I need to stop now, I’m starting to sweat and my BP is rising…

  2. Gramma Jac

    Years ago, I did the family budget–hating every second of it. One day I “gave” it (may have been some door slamming involved–I really can’t remember)to my husband David, who really is good at it. He literally does everything–the checkbook, the bills, the taxes–and we are happy. I “bring home my part of the bacon”-and I will say “I’m going grocery shopping–we have money, right?”. Occasionally, he will feel the need to fill me in on things–and I try to listen as I’m breathing into my paper bag!

    So, highing your five, sister!

    Oh and SFloria–he pretty much handles “those kind” of phone calls too. (Maybe I should rent him out!)

    He’s not perfect tho’–he panics about the bells and whistles on his (very basic) cell phone! (Tho’ he does text me sweet nothings!) And neither of us can figure out the TV/DVD player remotes–our youngest is graduating and then we’ll never be able to watch a movie again!

  3. Bill Strebler

    I just wanted to point out that in the graphic above pi is improperly rounded. 3.14159 would be one more decimal point of accuracy, and so it would round to 3.1416 instead of 3.1415.

    And stereotypes usually exist for a reason? I would expect a blond to say that!

  4. Bill Strebler

    I’ve been informed by another blond that it may not be evident that my above comment was meant in jest. Another blond joke comes to mind, but I’ll refrain.

  5. tori

    SFloria: Oh honey, Those Kind Of Calls is a whole ‘nother category unto itself! And ‘panicky’ is definitely the right word for it!

    Gramma Jac: Dang. Russ and I could sure use a husband like that.

    Bill Strebler: You crazy Strebler, you– I bet you ARE a math genius! But as a favor to me, please tell your tall blonde that I wanted her to make sure to notice that you… spelled BLONDE wrong!

  6. Gramma Jac

    I might hate Bill though I’ve never met him–but “us types” need “his types” too much! (And vice versa or spelling would be out the window!) :-)

    OK, can’t resist–
    Favorite blonde joke (From a dishwater blonde–at least I once was!): Two blonds are driving down the road. The driver says to the other one–“Stick your head out the window and see if my blinker is working.” The passenger does as she’s asked and says “Yes it is. No it isn’t. Yes it is,….”

  7. LindaB

    Well, I’m afraid I’m right there with you number challenged folks. I did fine in high school and junior college math classes solving calculus and trig problems——I think it was that I looked at them like puzzles…….games, if you will, and I’m very competitive when it comes to such things. Puzzles are fun to solve! But I cannot balance my checkbook to save my life! Or figure out why my bank account is overdrawn! (That’s boring!) Thank goodness our bank now has “overdraft insurance” or I’d be in a lot of trouble! And Sfloria, I hear ya! Making calls concerning a problem with a bill terrifies me and I can put it off forever! I’m afraid they’re going to find out I’m an idiot somewhere during the conversation and hang up on me…..and send me another even higher bill!!! And I’ll have to call them again! (i.e. Comcast)

    On St. Patrick’s Day this year, my granddaughter and her friend decided to go to a friends house after work—-it was around 10 pm. About 10:30, we got a call from her—-she’d been in an accident. Her car was totaled. A drunk had run her car off the expressway, she lost control going 70 m.p.h. and flew over a ditch and a barbed wire fence, and landed on a service road below. Miraculously (as reported by the police) they lived through it! The drunk driver got away. And I started crying……..not because she and her sweet friend nearly were killed, I’m deeply ashamed to admit, but because all I could think of was now I have to deal with the insurance company, make countless calls, answer countless questions on countless forms, and come up with all kinds of figures that I don’t understand or care about! And then they’re going to unceremoniously drop us and I’ll have to find another insurance company with their pencil-pushing, numbers-and-stats-obsessed evil robots! And it’s gonna make me want to barf. And that’s where I am now……in this nightmare of numbers. Pray for me, Friends! Please!

  8. LindaB

    Love your joke, Gramma Jac!!! LOL

  9. judyellen

    Definitely not an artistic/creative type, but commiserating with you! I was in the National Honor Society in high school and the only F I ever got was in Algebra. I took business classes the rest of high school to get away from math (thus, the NHS). I get palpitations and nauseated when faced with any sort of mathematical challenge (I still count with my fingers), but I can spell just about anything (by remembering what the word looks like) and can spot a spelling error a mile away.

  10. jonny

    Loved the joke as well Gramma Jac, will do Former, and I somehow graduated from high school without ever having to do algebra.

    I’m OK with math and figures, but slow. I should probably have a complex, though. My dad, a math genius by many peoples account, would scream and yell at me and go into detail about how idiotically stupid I was as a kid when helping me with my math homework and I didn’t get something the way he was pointing it out, or get it in time.

  11. blondie

    SFloria, I feel your pain.
    Gramma Jac, I have one of those husbands, too, he’s even a technology whiz – I think he married me because he could see I could not survive in today’s society without him, kind of a mercy marriage.
    Bill, it amazes me you actually took the time to look at those Math problems on that graphic, it never would have occurred to me. :)
    Linda, I laughed out loud at the reason for your tears. SO glad the girls are okay.
    judyellen, strangely enough, I did well in my Math classes in school, even tutored someone in Geometry, but put an insurance form in front of me and my eyes glaze over. It’s not pretty.
    jonny, I’m sorry you had to go through that with your Dad. Maybe in some strange way, he thought he was helping you to cope with the real world – I don’t know. Isn’t it good to know the Heavenly Father loves you unconditionally?
    Tori, I wish you patience and a big calculator. (and maybe a tall, dark, handsome, Math professor) :)

  12. jonny

    ‘Maybe in some strange way, he thought he was helping you to cope with the real world’

    He was. Plus he truly didn’t get me at the time. He only accepted my autism a few years ago. Up til then he often thought I was playing some sort of game with him, and others. as a neuro-typical child/person. My working things out in the head abilities seem to take more time than others as a result of the autism as well.

    And Gramma Jac, ‘sweet nothing’ messages ROCK !!! = )

  13. Gramma Jac

    So with a few exceptions, we’re a math-sorry lot!! May have to add a clause to the title–Baby Bloomr: Warning-No math problems or insurance forms allowed!

    And jonny: I am praying for Maria (forgot to tell you). And “sweet nothing” messages took me by surprise, but I love them!

  14. jonny

    Thanks so much GJ !! She just got back from some pre-tests done today where she lives, and is seriously wiped out. I hope some family member is able to take care of her son for awhile so she can get some much needed rest now.

  15. Bill Strebler

    Tori, we’ve discussed the spelling of ‘blond’ before. I had looked it up and it showed it as an alternate spelling. I took the more conservative and versatile spelling, since ‘blonde’ is only used with females. Now that I’ve had to explain all this I’ve lost all the gains I made in saved keystrokes on that final ‘e.’

    As for my being a math genius- no, not at all. I just notice little details. I have CDO. It’s like OCD, but with the letters in alphabetical order like they should be. And you’d be surprised how many people think I’m absolutely serious when I say that.

    I do tend to notice mathematical oddities that are rarely of any use, and I sometimes pick up on patterns that I can’t figure out. It took me years before I realized that my preference of certain volume settings on the TV over others without regard to the actual sound was due to whether or not it was a prime number.

  16. jonny

    Well, whenever I spell blond ‘blonde’ some spell-checks tell me I’m wrong. I guess Tori just likes to get in as many letters as possible when describing herself = )

  17. delightedabroad

    Hey guys, I feel totally at home with you – at least in terms of maths! It must have been a miracle that I have managed to get my diploma (or A levels for my almost-neighbours). And I also have a certain resentment concerning forms…

  18. meb

    I’m so thankful we adopted a math wiz, because she would have never gotten it from me. :-) Husband is a tech wiz, but has that creative side too. At least he can help her with the math homework, I’m worthless in that area. Give me history or english lit and I’m all about those classes.

  19. Bill Strebler
  20. jonny

    ThT IS SOOO Cool !! And true = )

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