improper fractions and the amazingly tiny pencil

Earlier this week I discovered Adam finishing his homework and I’m not sure what was more staggering to me: The cartoonish tininess of his pencil or that he’s in second grade and plowing nonchalantly through improper fractions and mixed numbers.  During my first year of university academia I sat catatonic through several weeks of a remedial math course as it became rapidly apparent I was the least intelligent person in the room. I tried not to panic as I thought about things like losing my Pell Grant or whether or not I belonged in college.  By a stroke of temporary fortune I found the world’s most patient tutor through the university’s Support Services for Students with Half a Brain and I’ll never forget graduate student Siobhan’s resolve to penetrate my lunkheadedness but after a while I started to feel like her pet hedgehog and so finally I stopped attending class altogether because of the sheer humiliation of it all.

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