Eb, that is a beautiful piece of writing. Amos, great moment. Have you ever wondered how fast you were thinking? I figure you were processing lots of data simultaneously. Even faster than a Mac. If I correctly picture what you wrote, you had to pull a 180 in heavy seas. Screw up the timing and you'll be turned over by the following wave and maybe sink, in a raging storm. WHAT WERE YOU DOING THERE IN THE FIRST PLACE? You folks that go to sea are crazy as all get outno offence meant. Special moments. One that comes to mind . . . "Daddy, what's GST?" The Canadian 'Goods and Services Tax' was descended on the Canadian people by a government short of longterm cash. The country was in serious debt and Ottawa needed money. As with most Canadians, 7% of the cost of your purchase on most items (excepting food and a few other things) is added to your bill. In provinces that already had a sales tax, well, the scenario was short of a nightmare but flirting with that edge which if you know where it is means you already went over. I was an average Canuck. So, how does one explain the GST to a little girl who's not yet four years old? "Well, let me see. If you buy a chocolate bar which costs a dollar, the government (I made a few remarks about governments that you need not read about) adds 7% to that price. So now the chocolate bar costs you $1.07." I figured I was in for an hour of 'what the hell is seven percent other than the concentration Sherlock Holmes used' kinda questions. She said, "So, if I buy four chocolate bars at a dollar each it will really cost me $4.28, right?" I now understand the British term, gobsmacked. Thanks to that little girl I was 'inspired' to finish something I'd been thinking ofon and offfor about two decades. Take a paper and pencil and across the top of a square with six columns write the following: Number Subtract () Divide (/) Add (+) Multiply (X) STA, the STA standing for Square 10 ahead. If I start with the number 1, the square will have the following, figured this way. (It's a bit complicated, but bear with me.) Under the column marked number, I place the digit 1. Under the column marked subtract I put the number zero because 1  1 = 0. Next under the column marked divide, I place the result of 1/1 which is one. Next I add 1 + 1 and get 2 which I put under the column marked add. Next I multiply 1 x 1 and get 1. That goes under the column marked Multiply. The result then reading left to right is 121. That is the resuly of 11 x 11. I then proceeded to do the number 3. The result was 169. DING. That took 20 years on on and off thinking. It took my daughter to get the brain going. I'll do the number 7 because it presents a problem. 7  7 = 0. 7 / 7 = 1. 7 + 7 = 14. 7 x 7 = 49. the result reading left to right is 0 1 14 49. So how the heck is this gonna predict 17 x 17? I went right to left and did the following (after using pen and paper to multiply 17 x 17. The answer is 289. How to get 289 out of 0 1 14 49. I don't doubt you are ahead of where I was at this point, but just in case. leave the 9 on the number 49. Move the 4 to the left and add it to the four there. That's 8. Move the 1 from 14 to the left and add it to the 1 that's there. Bingo. 289. I eventually did all the number to 101, and certain difficulties present themselves along the way, but they are all solvable (sp?). Many of life's problems are like that. Now, I will spend the next 20 years trying to figure out what it's good for. It's nice to have a hobby.
