Cranks My Tractor

Published: Thursday, July 11, 2013 at 09:35 AM.

I’m a mathematician who enjoys writing, but I rarely combine the two outside of the workplace.  Some folks want to talk about work at breakfast, lunch, dinner and on the weekend.  I do not.  The separation is necessary for me to remain functional in both places (at work and away from work).

However, sometimes I will bring math into my thought process for fun and entertainment.

Have you ever heard of a book being written on a subject that no one can really agree on a definition?  In mathematics, “chaos” is not chaos as you often think of it.  As a matter of fact, in mathematics it is easier to define something being chaotic than to define chaos itself.

To put it simply (which you can’t really do), with chaos, we can get random results from things that seem very straightforward which are very sensitive to where they “start.”  Again, do not write me telling me my definition is wrong; you define it as simple or as difficult as you wish.

From my view on chaos we will jump to the present state of things, or the present place we think we are.  This place is different for everyone, but similar in some ways.  Folks are worried about what others can see or find out about them – the type of things that are private or that they want to be private.

Honestly, I understand that.  If you check my closet, things will fall out on you.  Things other than skeletons and probably a lot of things will fall directly on your head.  It happens to me all the time (with my own closet).

Have you ever heard the Jeannie C. Riley song, “Harper Valley PTA?”  It was written by Tom T. Hall who is one of the best country music “storytellers” ever to put his thoughts on paper.  The song was released in 1968 and soared to number one on both the Billboard Pop and Country charts.

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