Define This

by Marinka on January 12, 2010

Since it’s becoming clear to all of us that I am just a few weeks away from putting a “HELP ME PAY FOR A TUTOR”  Paypal button on my sidebar, I may as well keep talking about my children’s education.

Last night, Young Ladrinka got to work on his English homework.  He had to read 15 pages of Dominic and write down three open-ended questions about what he’d read.  He went to his room and in record time, told me that he was done and now free to play the Wii.

Ever the concerned parent, I asked him what his three questions were.  (Don’t worry, no spoilers!)

How many hats  did Dominic bring with him?

What other stuff did Dominic bring with him?

Now I don’t know who this Dominic person is or why he’s taking hats with him, but I noticed that my son wrote down only two questions. And that they didn’t seem to be open ended.  Otherwise, everything was in order.

“They are open ended!” he defended himself after I read the indictment and sentenced him to his room.  “Open ended means that you don’t know the answer from the book.  How many hats did he take with him? I have no idea!  Open ended!”

“There are only two questions.”

And because I didn’t read him the Miranda warning, he totally incriminated himself.

“My last one is what happens after page 5?

“Did you read past page 5?”

“No, I wanted to keep it open ended.”

I’m pretty sure that Shakespeare’s mother had similar conversations with Bill.

And then my daughter.

A few people left comments on yesterday’s post questioning the whole vocabulary math thing.

Which is probably just code for “yeah, six million Jews were murdered during the Holocaust. Riiight.”

So I got my hands on my daughter’s math vocabulary test.  See how you do.  (My answers in parentheses.)  The real answers at the bottom of the post.  Upside down, to prevent cheater-pantery.  When you’re done, just flip your computer screen upside down and all will be revealed.  Good luck!

1. The numbers 2,5,8,11, … are an example of a(n) _____ (Lotto numbers)

2.  To ___ a number means to multiply that number by itself.  (Clone)

3. A(n) ____is a symbol used to indicate the positive square root of a number. (Hi!)

4. A(n) ____ contains variables, numbers, and at least one operation.  (Health Care Reform)

5.  The numeral factor of a term that contains a variable is called a(n) ______ (Gosh, I hope the euthanasia option didn’t go the way of the public option, the Senate version)

6,  A(n) _______ tells how many times a base is used as a factor.  (Umpire)

7. Mathematicians agreed on a(n) _____ so that numerical expressions would have only one value. (Scam)

8. A(n)  ________ is a mathematical sentence that contains an equal sign. (I hope that this is almost over)

9. A relationship in which each input value results in exactly one output value is called a(n)_______. (Digestion)

10.  The ____ of a function is the set of output values. (Please output me out of my misery)

ǝƃuɐɹ ˙01 uoıʇɔunɟ ˙9 uoıʇɐnbǝ˙8 ƃuıʇɐɹǝdo ɟo ɹǝpɹo ˙7 ɹǝʍod ˙6 ʇuǝıɔıɟɟǝoɔ ˙5 uoıssǝɹdxǝ ɔıɐɹqǝƃןɐ ˙4 uƃıs ןɐɔıpɐɹ ˙3 ǝɹɐnbs ˙2 ǝɔuǝnbǝs ɔıʇǝɯɥʇıɹɐ ˙1

One year ago ...

If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the RSS feed.

{ 29 comments… read them below or add one }

January 12, 2010 at 10:18 pm

That shit was painful. The end.


Masala Chica
January 12, 2010 at 11:51 pm


really? you dealt with math AND upside down characters all in the same post? are you some kind of masochist?

forget that.

You are too busy doing effing math.



Sorry for the Convenience
January 12, 2010 at 11:56 pm

Never mind numerical vocabulary or whatever that is. How the heck do you get upside-down letters in a blog post? THAT is an equation (#8, I think?) for impressing the bejeesus out of your readers.


Marinka January 13, 2010 at 7:05 am

ɯoɔ˙ʇxǝʇuʍopǝpısdn˙ʍʍʍ//:dʇʇɥ :sıɥʇ pǝsn ʇsnɾ I ‘É¥O


Sorry for the Convenience
January 14, 2010 at 12:19 am

Thanks! I’m totally looking for excuses to use upside down text on my blog from now on.


anymommy January 13, 2010 at 12:16 am

Clone. Oh my god. That was funny.


January 13, 2010 at 12:27 am

Fantastic!! Clone was my favorite!!
Tell your daughter not to worry, I just finished college algebra and only answered 2 of those!


Kirsten January 13, 2010 at 12:50 am

That was so funny.

But how did you figure out the upside down text? Marinka, you are the most brilliant blogger I know. I am so impressed.


Kate Coveny Hood
January 13, 2010 at 4:43 am

And she can even type upside down! What CAN’T you do?

Seriously though – all of this math talk is making me break out in hives. The What do Expect book mentioned nothing about having to relive painful childhood memories through my own children…


Beth January 13, 2010 at 6:04 am

You may as well break it to your daughter. Those math teachers LIE! They tell you that you need to know that stuff for the “real world.” I should totally call my math teachers from junior high and high school because I can now prove them wrong. I didn’t need that stuff and I don’t use it!

I really am impressed with the upside down typage.


traci January 13, 2010 at 6:57 am

show off. You just wanted to use the code for upside down print.


Crys January 13, 2010 at 8:52 am

Tried to answer the math vocab, my right eye started twitching, had flashbacks of middle school and ended up curled in the fetal position sucking my thumb. MATH. SUCKS. ROYAL. EGGS!


Heather, Queen of Shake Shake January 13, 2010 at 9:06 am

˙pǝpoldxǝ ʇsnɾ pɐǝɥ ʎW


Sophie January 13, 2010 at 9:13 am

Holy Sh*t and hot dang!
My migrain just turned into an aneurism.


January 13, 2010 at 9:34 am

So, besides from the fact that I think I got AIDS just by reading your daughter’s test, I decided to crack open a few pages of Dominic and see what Young Ladrinka’s resistance was all about.
and, goddamnit, I got sucked it.

I have so many open-ended question Young Ladrinka can ask:
+Why does the book never specify that Dominic is a Canine-American? Is William Steig some kind of racist?
+Why is Dominic always in such a hurry? Is it because his house is about to get foreclosed on and he doesn’t want to be in it when the repo man comes?
+Why does Lemuel Wallaby not fight the cruel expectations of his family generations and change his name to something more manageable, like Adam Lambert?


I'm Nate's Mom January 13, 2010 at 9:47 am

Well, your eleven year old’s math does make my eleven year old’s math look preschoolish. You New Yorkers are so much more advanced than the rest of us. Still, I would take your eleven year old daughter’s math over my thirteen year old daughter’s hormones any day of the week!


Kirsten January 13, 2010 at 10:25 am

The answer to 9. is wrong/not complete. It is a “monotonic function”. Which does not mean only one gin and tonic.


January 13, 2010 at 10:31 am

It has been a loooonnnnnggggg time since I was in school but I did get a few of them.


Jane January 13, 2010 at 11:23 am

La la la…….when is recess…….


Maddnessofme January 13, 2010 at 12:37 pm

This flipping the screen around is reaking havoc with my iPhone.

If that’s not how you spell reaking, please don’t correct it then send it to me upside down.


Schill January 13, 2010 at 1:09 pm

I’d consider pressing charges against your daughter’s teacher. Perhaps “intentional infliction of emotional distress”? Putting vocab on a math test is akin to expecting the reader of Pride and Prejudice to calculate the square root of all five sisters’ ages divided by the number of proposals Lizzie receives throughout the novel.

Okay, maybe that’s not true at all. But I’d still press charges.



K-Line January 13, 2010 at 2:34 pm

Intriguingly, I’m about 12 minutes away from getting a tutor for M (math, French) – why can’t the person just teach both?? Got me thinking about how I could basically do private school for my kid with tutors. And it’ll only cost me half of what my parents spent on my education! Of course, that’s twice as much as I’ve got to throw at education once my rather high CDN taxes pay for public school.


Andrea's Sweet Life
January 13, 2010 at 2:51 pm

Just today I was asked if I was interested in teaching a college class. After reading this, I sincerely hope they aren’t going to ask me to teach ANY kind of math. Gah.


Maravonda January 13, 2010 at 4:18 pm

Marinka, I have an old, heavy computer and had to sort of stand on my head in the chair to get the answers. I am sort of old, in fact way older and heavier than the computer. I am now calling a chiropracter. Please don’t torment your readers this way.


Ria January 13, 2010 at 6:23 pm

How dumb am I…… Have been trying to read this post on my iPhone!! I can’t read it upside down!!!! I’m a double dumb-ass!


michelle January 13, 2010 at 7:41 pm

I am a middle school teacher. I got 8 right. I only had 2 glasses of wine tonight. Math is some hard shit.


January 14, 2010 at 2:56 pm

I hate you a little. But you made it better with the upside-down text.


January 15, 2010 at 5:34 am

I did not get a single one of those right and now I feel stupid, thanks. Who knew that the C- that I got in high school math would come back to bite me in the behind one day.


January 15, 2010 at 2:48 pm

# 7 of your answers is my favorite. hehe
This shit is hard.
You coming to Blissdom?


Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: