Square Root Game


(artwork by Luna Simic)

When I was 9, my oldest and math-obsessed brother taught me how to figure out the square root of any whole number between 100 and 10,000 (try me).  We “played” the square root game all throughout my childhood, between him bench-pressing me as part of his workouts and me beating him at 1-on-1 on the basketball court.

We had some pretty high square-root-game standards: if it took any longer than 4 seconds to solve, it was considered a failure.  Uttering an incorrect answer caused pure shame.

It’s a fairly good party trick that I’ve used time and time again.  If not to impress people, then at least to demonstrate my odd love of numbers and calculations.  My brother made me promise never to tell a soul. And because I have been sworn to secrecy,  I challenge inquirers to figure it out for themselves.  Some have impressively managed to do so, while some have threatened to stop talking to me out of frustration.

To commemorate my weird definition of “fun” and Simon’s tolerance of said fun when I’m on a roll, the beautiful genius that is Luna made the above artwork as part of our vacation-themed photo book wedding gift.

Happy Saturday, readers!  May your quirks be immortalized by your friends too one day.

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