I realized on the plane to Minneapolis (for this, which is wonderful. At least for the six hours I’ve been here) that I am a mathist. I am biased against people who like math.
The man sitting next to me today had a big bunch of printouts with complicated looking math problems on them. I figured that someone who does math for a living must be boring and unpleasant (because what kind of nutjob would do math if he didn’t have to?) So I decided not to make polite, trivial conversation with the guy. Because obviously math people are losers. See what I mean? I’m mathist. I know there must be nice, charming people who have a job involving algebra and equations and all that boring numbery stuff. It’s just hard for me to believe.
I decided that I needed to stop making silly biased judgements and just talk to the guy who would probably turn out to be lovely.
As I was debating this, I watched the math man out of the corner of my eye. I watched him reach up and pick his ear. And then he looked at whatever he found inside. And then . . . he ate it.
It was hard for me to believe too. But then he did it again. And continued to do it for the next ten minutes.
I will be remaining a mathist.