Monday, February 5, 2007

Cheat Sheet

"You sure you want this done?"

"Yes. I've gone over the formulas and equations for months, and had others review them as well. I'm certain they're correct."

"And you want it--"

"On my arms, small, but still readable. All the trig functions--"

"The what?"

"This page." The customer shuffles through the pile and pulls out one sheet, writing in black letters at the top: LEFT FOREARM. "--On my left forearm. But I want them correct, exactly as they're written here. If not, well... I was told you were the man for the job. If you're not up to it, I'll thank you for your time and go somewhere else. If you mess one equation up, copy it incorrectly, you'll hear from my lawyer."

The tattoo artist opens his mouth, but the customer continues:

"I understand it's a strange request, and I'll willing to do it over the course of several visits--as many as you need. I see no reason to rush you."

He scratches the goatee on his chin, looking across the desk at the clean cut customer. "Alright, I'll take it, but I have one question."

"I imagine you'll have more before this is over, but go ahead."

"Why?"

"Why the trig functions on my forearm?"

"Why any of this? Wes, 'why' that page in a specific spot, but I can tell you've put a lot of time and effort into this. Why all of it for some equations?"

"The trig on my arm because that's what I have the most trouble with. As for the rest of it, the meaning behind this all," he thumbs through the sheaf of papers between them, "is to get ahead. I love mathematics. I plan on using it for the rest of my life. It's my major and will be my occupation. Some people have great memory for these things, some people need a cheat sheet."

"But you can't use a cheat sheet on exams."

The customer grins. "Exactly." He jumps up and shakes the tattoo artist's hand.

No comments:

Post a Comment