MODERN MATH

This is what they called it about the time the Cardinals won their first World Series of which I was aware.  The “smart” kids were corralled and marched down to the cafeteria in an off hour.  At first it was an honor, and then it became a sickness.  I began to get nauseated as that time of the day came along.

1-BioProj-book-1964Cardinals

I remember the cafeteria being all beige with eight foot long tables rearranged from lunch.  Using graphite on one of those tables made interesting bold marks.  And you could rub them away with your finger.  Even the eraser made great marks if you tracked it through a smudge of graphite.  Of course, I was just interested in the marks; they were not answers to anything.  I had no idea what the answers were.

A year later, Glenn had a similar experience in Catholic school.  They brought in a “lay” teacher to instruct in the new math.  She was all red.  Glenn remembers a redhead, deep red lipstick and a red skirt she sometimes wore.  It is all imagery for Glenn.

1-Joan

In different little worlds, and both of us being in what is now called the “creative class”, neither of us understood what was happening.  We could not figure up and down anymore, we had to go side to side.  We could not use regular numbers anymore, we had to use only ones and zeros.  Why?  They said it was for a switch being turned on or off.  What switch?  Why a switch?  A switch to what?

My mind could not complete the change in longitude and latitude.  And what about cancelling out things on either side of the “equal” sign?  Why?  It was all just a nightmare.

I did not have the confidence to ask an authority about these changes.   All I knew was that everybody else understood it, and I did not.

On NPR some months ago, a man discussed that research has discovered that some learners cannot understand until they are told what the calculations were for.  Well, YEAH.  Wish I had been part of that research: they forgot about the vomiting part.

ST LOUIS BLUES

It is confusing to be a kid.  The past and the present are mashed up and all is new information.  Little minds have to sort the stuff out, and questions are not always answered.  “You think too much”, was an often repeated answer to me.

A holiday visit to Budweiser in St. Louis, which is always a fun thing to do, brings up some of this youthful confusion.

1-outside general busch

Budweiser is not just a brand, or a beer, or a building, it is a community.  Above is a shot of many of the red brick buildings from inside the space of the community.

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Above is the general “public” face of the company.  But there is so much more.

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There are bevo foxes all over these buildings.   See the standing red foxes (three) in this tile frieze?

1-outside bevo fox

There is a gargoyle-like bevo fox on the outside of this building in the complex.

From Wikipedia: ” Labels on the bottles billed it as “Bevo the Beverage”. The name “Bevo” was coined from the word “beverage” and the Slavic language word for beer “pivo”, and was pronounced “Bee-vo”. ”  This was a drink that Budweiser produced during prohibition.

The word “bevo” is a true St. Louis word which others probably would not know.  And to think this strong presence came from only the prohibition years!

bevo mill

Above is the old Bevo Mill in the South Kingshighway, South Gravois neighborhood.  Again, the mill mashed something for NOT making beer during prohibition.

bitter brew

Just read this book by William Knoedelseder.  As in all wealthy families, the Busch family had its ups and downs as far as business, and as far as domestic relations.  As  St. Louisians, we all heard parts of that story.  This book fills a lot of stuff in, within the overview of my (still) confusion.

I think that the main character of the book who is called “Gussie” Busch (most of them were named “August”) is the person we knew as Augie Busch when growing up.  Therein comes my childhood confusion.

Could not figure out the difference between Augie Busch and Augie Doggie (or Doggie Daddy).  This required immense examination on my part.  Of course, the Anheuser Busch Company bought the St. Louis Cardinals during my lifetime.  Yogi Berra was the much beloved, Italian (growing up in the area of the brewery) American catcher who also was the philosopher of the common man; (“deja vu all over again”) was one of his sayings.  Was Yogi Berra different than Yogi Bear?  Head- scratcher.

St. Louis is a total baseball town.  We reveled in it, and much of the time, the Cardinals were good.  Baseball we knew about, which always brought up the conundrum to me:  What was the difference between Babe Ruth and Baby Ruth?

Gawd, think I named this post incorrectly!