Monday, March 20, 2006

Nerd Camp

So Offspring #1 won't be going to chess camp this summer. She's found something even nerdier: Math Camp! This odd Korean math test she took earlier this year (where they are apparently more interested in the reasoning processes you write down than in the answers you give; most kids don't get any right answers on this test--Offspring #1 got one right) resulted in a letter of invitation to attend a math camp at the 7th-8th grade "problem solving" level. She was very unhappy to discover that, being quite young, her cruel parents won't allow her the sleepaway option, and will instead drive her an hour each way (!) every day of camp. "But there's a special problem-solving competition every evening!" she wailed. "I won't get to do that!" Poor baby. I'm going to make sure to sign her up for a regular summer camp, too, one with swimming and horseback riding and all the usual Texas ranch stuff you're supposed to do at summer camp. Just so her skin doesn't turn completely pasty from lack of light.

Anyway she had to write a paragraph explaining why she wanted to attend Math Camp. It seems to me that the bare fact that a kid is applying to spend a whole week of summer solving advanced math problems is a classic res ipsa loquitur, but anyway. Here's her paragraph:

"I cannot remember the time when I did not love math better than anything else. I love it simply because I cannot see any reason why anyone wouldn’t. I would rather spend a Saturday at a minor math competition than an expensive art gallery. There is nothing that could make me stop doing math, and this summer camp is one of the ways I want to continue it."

She left out how she used to toddle over to our bed at five a.m. and wake up Eudoxus with "Daddy! It's morning! Let's do math!" I felt no pity, since it's his genes that are clearly responsible for all this.


Anonymous yahmdallah said...

Well, just as long as she doesn't lose sight of the fact that the quadratic equation and imaginary numbers are not all there are to life.

10:57 AM  

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