Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Been There.

I've always been fascinated by logic. The logic classes i took in college were dry and often confusing with everybody and his brother having a theory, but i sort of loved the puzzle search for truth. Puzzle games are fun but working out a long logic problem has a greater reward in that you can say, this is true, and this is why. The extent to which you can find truth in a crossword is a bit less dramatic--This is true because it fits in seven boxes.

Logic problems dealing with probability were of particular interest to me because they dealt with considering possible outcomes. Such is life, right? Weighing actual occurrences to the number of possible ones was an interesting way to look at things. Ideas of randomness and uncertainty-- which i think are two big players in life. Certainty creates the trinity but it's usually not until too late that we establish this one. Sure, Certainty will pop in time and again to remind us that we like Apple Jacks and soft-serve ice cream, but Randomness and Uncertainty tap us on the shoulder on the daily. So personally, my greatest certainty is to know that randomness and uncertainty will be probably be true. But particularly after college, particularly in my parent's house, randomness and uncertainty were always true. It wasn't a question of probability. (It's basically what my entire book is about.)

My little sister is just learning this and I find that hilarious.

Nessa finished school a semester early and packed her life into her mustang to drive it all back to NY. My father, never one to miss a road trip, flew down to florida to help share the drive back with her. I knew in the way that you know it will get dark at nighttime, that this would be a hilarious trip--for me to hear about, not for them to experience.
Setting: Front seats of my sister's over-packed car. Belongings falling on them every time the brakes were used.
Characters: My father (who never stops talking. Ever.)
Vanessa: Hung-over from partying one last time at school, miserable to be returning home.
Stella: Nessa's min pin who whines when her head is not sticking out the window and who now wears a silver bubble jacket with fur trimmed hood. Truly.
Plot Synopsis:The road trip was met with the usual suspects. surpassing the point of exhaustion, being cramped in a car, listening to my father, and hanging Stella out of the window, Vanessa had had it by Virginia.
My two favorite stories from what i could get out of her were my father discovering a leak from the gas tank and going on for 3 states about how they could very likely blow up. "We're going to blow up, and no one will know about it. Give me your phone so i can tell mom to write a letter to Ford." So he calls my mother and says, "Debbie, if we blow up I want you to write to Ford and say it was the gas tank."
And throughout the southern states there were numerous signs that read "Speed enforced by air RADAR." Working on little sleep and not sharing the wheel with Hangover McGee, my father started to crack himself up when a crow flew by the car. "Oh, watch out Ness, here we go! This one's probably got the RADAR gun!" I guess this continued with every bird he saw--for 1200 miles.

They arrived home without blowing up and Ness called me today, her voice coated with concern.
-um, do you have a minute?
-yea, what's up?
-Well, I went out to the family room because i heard dad calling out numbers, and i found him on a scale, holding my bags. He was weighing each bag, subtracting his weight and totaling the amount of stuff i put in the car.
-(pause)
-Before i could get a word out he said, "This bag of shoes weighed 13 pounds!"
-(pause)
-Jess? Hello, did you hear me?
-Yeah. Nessa, what do you want me to say?
-um...
And after a minute i could hear the flicker of recognition that comes when completing a logic proof.

Randomness, Uncertainty. At home with my parents.
This is true, this is why.

1 comment:

juliet said...

i love your family. but you know who else i love? ashley's dad! and i get to spend christmas with them! ps. when are you making a trip back east??