So, today's math lesson was extracting square roots by hand. And I was finding it exceedingly frustrating, because I kept getting several of the sample problems wrong, and I could not for the love of little green apples figure out what I was doing wrong. Nor could I figure out what I was doing different in the ones I was getting wrong as opposed to the ones I was getting right.
Well, it turns out, two hours of cursing followed by two hours of internet research later, that I wasn't doing anything wrong. The bloody math book just cleverly salted in a few problems with special case solutions, and then never bothered to explain how to work them.
Anyway, I got the right answers this time.**
I am quite pleased with myself, although it took hours of frustration to get here.*
*for those of you joining us in progress, yes, I am studying math that most normal people learn in junior high.
I am studying it because I am not good at it.
**Even though the web page that explained how to work the special-case solutions is written by somebody who is not a native English speaker, and his sample problems are wrong.
The difference between me at fourteen and me at thirty-five is that me at thirty-five knows how to learn things, which me at fourteen had not yet learned.
And me at thirty-five has that mighty tool, the internets.
And is slightly more stubborn than your average ox.