Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Flexible Accuracy

Last week, Laura Mays told us she wasn't going to give us numbers anymore.  And then she looked at me, the retired high school math teacher.  I couldn't have been happier, agreeing with her that numbers can be so distracting from the work that needs to be done. Just like outside the wood shop, when I pay too much attention to statistics, especially in public education, or even my age, weight, etc., I end up spinning my wheels....going down paths where I really don't need to go. 

Case in point:  I cut mortises and tenons following a given formula.  I spent a ton of time measuring and laying out my cuts.  First the mortises, then the tenons. The tenons fit snugly and I was a happy woodworker.  Then I stepped back and took a look at my work.  Ugh!  The tenons are too skinny!!  I had my head down the whole time working with that formula and I didn't realize I had miscalculated.  Yes, even this former math teacher.

Skinny to the left and hefty, solid one to the right.  Hmmm....which one would I want my chair to have?

The other day, Laura dug out her old Latin phrase book and came up with the following:

Apta Ad Rem----relevant to reality.  It fits perfectly, I think.

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