Bomb Free Day

April 28, 2010
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As two atomic water bombs dropped from my eyes, I could not help but to think of the relationship between the results of the atomic bomb and my geometry quiz; both were devastating. Earlier in class, Mr. Cornelius stood glaring down at us holding in his hands a stack of freshly graded quizzes. Today, frustration colored his face red. Oh God I’m gona get it, I thought. Already, kids seemed to crawl under their desk and head for the open windows of freedom. I was going to hide behind big-Lee, but Janey was already there. It was times like these that the class turned into a battle field and Mr. Cornelius turned into the Boeing B-29 Super fortress. He glided down the rows of “towns.” Each kid hoping that Mr. Cornelius wouldn’t bomb their desk with an F. Since, there was no place to left to hide I kept still, for any sudden movement would give me away. At that moment the Boeing B-29 Super fortress stopped to try to make out our handwriting and for a while the sun came back up. “Aaa-chhoo!” I sneezed. Everyone dove back down to there hiding places, and Mr. Cornelius resumed the attack. He almost seemed to take flight as he approached me, but I didn’t look up. I could already hear his hand building up momentum to create an echo when he smacked my quiz down on my desk. I looked away and put my hand across my eyes; I started to tear. Man I should’ve told him I had diarrhea or something. BOOOMMM!!!!!, the atomic bomb landed and I sat there in utter destruction, shocked by the impact of failure

I have never been the world’s greatest mathematician, especially the kind that uses, according to the American Heritage Dictionary, measurement, and relationships of points, lines, angles, surfaces, and solids; in short geometry. It was my but, meaning I could do everything but. In fact geometry to me was almost like feeding 5 year olds vegetables. You tell them it’s chocolate and they want to know why it isn’t milky brown; and the more you wish to shove the food down their throat, the more reluctant they are to do it. This type of math was another world to me, and a complicated one at that. When I had the failing quiz in hands, I felt like I had let my parents down and I was a failure. There was a lump in the throat and disappointment filled my heart. Everyone in my family was smart and getting good grades in math but me! My older sister was a super genius and my uncle was an architect. It was kind of like an “oh so what happened to you?” kind of deal for me. I was ashamed and embarrassed, because I was such an “educational let down” to my parents.
That day I decided I needed to put the Eye of the Tiger song and workout geometry style. My uncle once told me that math is like a sport; you have to practice again and again until you can’t miss. That was exactly what I did. I “trained” for math as I would train for my swim meet. After school I took my homework home and had my uncle, a math master, tutor me. Also, I started to have more patience. It wasn’t easy considering I was a frustrated athlete who threw the book on the floor every time I didn’t get the problem right. That’s how accidents happen; so I bought myself a stress ball. Reading the whole lesson before I attempted to work out a problem, the theorem soon came together. It was like learning how to swim again. One day you can swim 5 strokes, and little by little, with a gallon of struggle mixed with will, you can swim 100 yards. Every day I spent two hours studying math with him. If I still had any questions I would ask my math teacher. This helped me out enormously. In addition, I had an inspiring friend who was a year ahead of me. He had a similar story of failure at math, changed his ways and worked hard until he became very good at math. During lunch period he would help me with my homework. I was very thankful to him, because he would not give up on me. Also, my swim team became involved in my battle to defeat math. After I told my coach about my math situation, he quickly lent me a hand by asking the girls on the team if they knew the subject. They graciously assisted me. Some shared their math notes, and others helped me out by working out a problem with me. Next I planned my study schedule around my math quizzes. The quizzes were usually given on a Friday, therefore on Thursday I studied math last so that it was fresh in my mind. At 5 A.M, I woke up and studied some more. At 6:00, I stopped to make sure that I had “brain food” so that I could remember all that I had studied. Everyday was training day and everyday I learned to swim further into good habits and success.
The day of my test had arrived and so far my five quizzes were in the B range. That morning I had done my regular routine of getting up early to study. Adrenaline rushed through my body as I stretched out in the morning and I kept jumping around to warm up. “We got this, we got this, there is nothing on the test you don’t know, you own it,” I kept telling myself. I went into the test nervous and came out happy that I did my best and I felt confident in my answers.
A day later the Boeing B-29 Super fortress came out ready to attack. We did the usual routine of running for our lives, but this time, I wasn’t scared. I sat on my seat with my head held high, looking at him having fun passing out the tests. Like always he came to stop, but this time Mr. Cornelius announced that there were two students who got A’s. He turned, with a cheesy smile to me, handed me my test, and said good job! Oh good take a cheap shot at me while I’m down, I thought. On the corner of my test was an A, and that smiley face next to it shared a special bond with me when it made me smile. I felt so accomplished and proud of myself! I must have told everyone about my quiz so that my dad ended up buying me ice cream. That definitely was a treat, but it was more the personal satisfaction of working through those tears and coming up a winner that I loved. That day the heavens opened up and the civilians came out to celebrate a wonderful bomb free day.





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