mental arithmetic

I don't like balancing the checkbook, maybe because I force myself not to use a calculator. I know, most people can do this kind of simple math in their head without going into a tizzy, but I am one of those people that was tortured by mental arithmetic in the early grades. I think it was grade 4 that I remember with particular distaste. I went to school in a former British colony, so, British system of education, where the teacher would randomly call on us to answer random arithmetic questions. I would freeze pretty often. And, it was a big reason I always got Bs in math. Anyway, I got over my fear of doing arithmetic in my head, even majored in physics for a few years of college, but then, I discovered the social sciences, changed majors and now I am math-stupid again. My brain gets no math exercise at all. So, I've been forcing myself to not use a calculator to balance the checkbook ever since. But, its probably about the same in the end, because I wind up balancing the checkbook less often, so its not like I'm getting more math in or anything.

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