I was out of lunch meat, so Garry went to the deli. It was Monday and they were out of everything except (sigh) turkey breast. Not my favorite, but I’m betting today is a delivery day.

Garry asked the newest lady at the counter for 3/4 of a pound of turkey breast.

Like a deer caught in headlights, she was lost. She could probably “do” a pound — or half a pound. But what was 3/4? She obviously didn’t recognize it as 75% of a pound, or even that it’s likely the line between the half pound and full pound markers.

Schools don’t teach math in any way that might be useful to those they have taught. They have gotten into systems so complicated that no one under 40 can do any math in their head. They need a calculator. Even to subtract one number from another. Oh, and they can’t count on their fingers.

Eventually, the boss stopped what he was doing and came over to rescue her.

Garry came home. He commented that there’s a scale and surely the young women (in her 20s) could tell that there was a line between half a pound and one pound and that would be the three-quarter, right?

Wrong. She doesn’t know that 3/4 (of one) = 75% (of one). Have you ever tried to explain to a clerk how to turn 99-cents into a dollar?

“Look, I’ll give you a penny and you can give me a dollar.”

“It says 99-cents.”

“So that means that if I give you a penny, you can give me a dollar.”

“It says 99-cents.”

This is because she doesn’t understand that 100 cents (pennies) equal one dollar. We are worried that our “below age 40” youngsters aren’t going to vote. I’m beginning to worry that they can’t think. Apparently, thinking is no longer taught in any school. So if you don’t get a head start at home with the whole “thinking” thing? You’re doomed.

Vote? If they don’t know that 99-cents plus a penny equal a dollar, how can we expect them to vote? Or have a grip on the issues? Or even know what kind of government we have or want?

Categories: Cooking, Food, mathematics

Tags: , , , , ,

27 replies

  1. I see what they did but how could they think this was easier than just adding up two numbers? Ridiculous.


  2. Do you understand the new math solution you depicted? I have no idea…


  3. In Canada we have both metre and the imperial system. The kids don’t know either one.


  4. Dang. And I thought I was math ‘challenged’. I do know what 3/4 of a pound is though. We really ARE wiser, aren’t we?


  5. Some folks have disabilities that make them freeze in the moment. She was new. Maybe just a bit of coaching and she will get it.


    • And maybe they never bothered to teach fractions. I never learned fractions. They decided the year I was due to learn them that we didn’t need them. I eventually worked them out myself when I DID need them (like when I was trying to calculate how much material I needed for the tepee floor!) … but if they don’t teach them this basic stuff, what do they expect?

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I’m glad I’m old and won’t be around much longer to witness the stupid inherit the world.


  7. It is painful to watch a young person trying to work out change. The cash register tells them what to give you and that’s the only way they know.


  8. When the boys were at school, they got completely stuck with ‘new’ maths. So did I, trying to work out the new system to help them. I taught them the old way and had them memorise multiplication tables as I had learned. They got into trouble at school for doing it wrong, even though the answers were all suddenly right. But they have no problem with mental arithmetic as adults…

    Liked by 1 person

  9. And if they can’t do math, who do you think they would vote for if they did! Obviously what the man on the street is telling them.


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