Purveyor of Bollocks to the Crowned Heads of Europe
Monday, 3 July 2017
Never lie to children
There was a radio thing about mathematics and puzzle-solving this morning, and it reminded me that I achieved the grand result of zero marks for my 'O'-Level maths.
I remember turning off from the whole subject. At the end of term at my primary school, the maths teacher wrote a complicated equation on the black board and said, "Next year you will be doing these." One girl said she was giving up, but she didn't mean it. I did.
The next teacher was far from inspiring, and seemed to use the teaching of maths as a punishment. "Right. More maths homework for you."
The only puzzle that I really tried hard at was given to me by a South African lodger we once took in. It was the pictorial one about the three houses which each had to be connected to the three services (gas, electricity and water) without the pipes and lines crossing.
After about three days, I decided that it was impossible and suggested this to him.
"It is possible," he said, "I have done it myself."
He went back to South Africa and I spent several more years on it before I realised he was just a fucking liar. Worse than that, he was a South African fucking liar at a time when white South Africans needed all the friends they could get.