Understanding: sometimes difficult to achieve

My wife was baking muffins and was out of baking soda and wanted to know what she could use instead. I have no idea, and in fact, have confused baking soda with baking powder. I do know, once upon a time, I used one instead of the other in making pancakes, took one bite of the bitter batter concoction and threw them out.

Found this website, Baking Soda Substitutes, which reads: “For each 1 teaspoon baking soda in the recipe, substitute 4 teaspoons of double acting baking powder.” It worked well!

But I still don’t have a deep understanding of what each of them does. And I suppose I don’t care enough to learn.
Sometimes I use words or phrases people don’t understand.

I wrote to one friend, “I namechecked you in my last blog post.” And I had to explain that namecheck merely meant that I mentioned her. “The Peter, Paul and Mary song I Dig Rock & Roll Music namechecks the Mamas & the Papas and the Beatles and Donovan.”

She, BTW, sent me a link to this Louis CK video, Older People are Smarter. Which they are, BTW, but younger people often don’t understand this. She was concerned I might find it profane. Interestingly, no. I wouldn’t USE the language, but hearing the language didn’t bother me (and it might bother you, or not.).

To another friend, I said something was a PITA, and she asked what THAT meant. I wrote back, “Pain In The Butt.”

There was this third example I can’t remember presently, and they all happened within a 24-hour period. The overriding point is that sometimes I think I’m being clear, yet I feel misunderstood. I suspect all of us feel that way some of the time.

I was telling a friend a story about an incident, and my friend interrupts, “Oh, you told that story.” Except that I hadn’t, because this iteration had a different (and more annoying) twist to it.

I do/do not understand

You know that Bill Cosby story about making a wood shop item with one leg too long, so one trims that leg, and THREE legs are too long? That was me.

A bit ago, Chris wrote What should I expect others to know and understand? It was based, initially, on a comment she made on Facebook, though her article took its own direction, as articles often do. She also mentioned a piece, Psychology of Intelligence Analysis, from the CIA.

“How can you not know that?” How often have you said those words, either out loud, or silently, in your mind? How often have others said that about you?

The struggle is that we have developed a wide range of opinions about what one OUGHT to know.

I know the Speaker of the House’s skin color (orange) but not Snooki’s real name; she’s on some apparently popular show called Jersey Shore. Depending on who you’re asking, X or Y is IMPORTANT to know, and Y or X, not so much.

I had a colleague who used to infuriate me. Ask her for advice, and, almost inevitably, she’d say, “Oh, that’s EASY.” Well, it was obviously NOT easy for me, which why I was asking; at the same time, she diminished her own gift.

It would be immodest, but probably true, to suggest that I happen to know a boatload of factoid type of stuff – though not about astronomy, botany, or cars, e.g. Conversely, I’ve always been lousy about physical stuff.

You know those two-dimensional representations of three-dimensional objects? There would be tests asking which one of the four objects is like the original. Of course, the examples would be turned on their axes. I simply could not “see” it easily at all. Some people look at architects’ drawings or floor plans and can visualize what the finished structure will look like; they are just lines on paper to me.

There were these exams called the Iowa tests that I took in sixth grade. I did really well in math and reading and the like. But on a 100 scale, I got a 13 in mechanical aptitude. You should have seen – or better still, NOT seen – the stuff I made in shop. You know that Bill Cosby story about making a woodshop item with one leg too long, so one trims that leg, and THREE legs are too long? That was me. Honestly, I blew up more ceramic items in the kiln than the rest of the class combined.

One learns to compensate, though. Accepting that one just can’t be good at everything helps a LOT.

Although, I will always remember this: I was in 7th-grade art, and I did some pieces. My father visited the classroom, and he expressed surprise (shock) that I received a grade as high as a B in the marking period. The teacher responded that I had done as well as I could, which was certainly true.

(I will have come back to this. Didn’t go where I was thinking it would, at all…)

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