In defense of “Safe Spaces” (of a type)

Ok, let me make it clear what I am not defending: while I understand male/female bathrooms and locker rooms, I do not approve of having a university sanctioned area where only men, or women, or someone of a specific race are allowed.

What I am talking about: voluntarily limiting one’s social circle when it comes to certain things.

Here is one instance: usually, I make it a point to never discuss mathematics except with other mathematically inclined people (mathematicians or experienced STEM field people).

Reason: I teach for a living, and correcting someone’s elementary error is not a pleasant exercise for me, especially when they try to insist that they are right.

This is not how I want to spend my “off work” time.

I broke my rule of thumb, and paid a small price. Here it is:

Prove: 1 = 2.

x^2 - x^2 = x^2 - x^2 Ok, true enough.

x(x-x) = (x+x)(x-x) Yes, this is true: (x+x)(x-x) = (x(x-x) + x(x-x)) = x^2 -x^2 +x^2 - x^2 = x^2 - x^2 . Yes, this also equals 2x^2 - 2 x^2 .

Now that we have x(x-x) = (x+x)(x-x) Cancel an x-x factor on each side.

This gives x = 2x which leads to 1=2 after cancelling the x.

Of course, this is wrong; we were not allowed to divide both sides by x-x as that is zero.

But someone tried to tell me that iwas ok to divide by zero even if the numerator did NOT go to zero…Oh boy.


February 27, 2017 Posted by | mathematics, social/political | , | Leave a comment

Start horribly, finish ok? What is going on?

How my body reacts continues to surprise me.

This morning I decided to try for a 3 hour walk; no biggie, right? I got one mile into it and was already tired..said “the hell with it” and turned around to go home. That’s it; 2 miles of 16 minute per mile walking?

But I got a drink and went to the gym to lift; the lifting workout went fine:
rotator cuff
pull ups (6 sets of 10; I miscounted sets)
bench press: 10 x 135, 5 x 185, 8 x 170
incline press (plant those hips) 10 x 135
military; 10 x 50, 7 x 50 standing dumbbell, 10 x 80 (each arm) machine, strict.
rows: 3 x 110 machine
squats: several sets including 4 x 5 with 45.
leg presses: 3 sets of 10 x 250 (maybe not deep enough knee bend?)
abs: 2 sets each of 12 twist crunch, 10 yoga leg lifts, 6 moving “half bridges)
headstand (ok) and side planks.

Then I walked 4 more miles (Cornstalk course) with the watch turned off; THAT went fine; much better than the original 2 miles????

My body acts strangely at times.

February 27, 2017 Posted by | walking, weight training | Leave a comment