Thursday, September 24, 2009


Every Thursday at the dinner table, Ariel tells us what she’s learned in Linear Algebra. I listen politely and smile at appropriate intervals. She blathers about three-dimensional vectors and invertible matrices while I eat my pizza and then she says, “Oh, and I know how to do encryption now.”

My ears perk up. “Encryption?”
“Yeah.” She takes a gulp of milk, clearly not realizing the amazing coolness of what she’s just said. “You know, encrypting messages. That sort of thing.”
“Luke,” I say, “did you hear what Ariel said?”
“No,” Luke says, “I don’t listen when she stops speaking English.”
“Ariel knows how to do encryptions,” I say.
“Ohhh!” Luke rubs his hands together. “Now the NSA will be after her.”

Sadly, Ariel misses the opportunity to play sexy Spygirl and instead launches into the mathematical “stuff” that you do to encrypt and unencrypt messages—she doesn’t get that matrices aren’t cool and sexy.

Nonetheless, Matt demands to be taught encryption. Ariel laughs. “It takes a lot of math.” She means you have to be an uber-math nerd. That doesn’t seem to mesh with sexy Spygirl. Although the woman in the movie Sneakers was both. Maybe it’s possible…


  1. Well, in order to be a sexy spy who uses matrix encryption, you'd have to know the math involved. So obviously, uber math nerd and sexy spy-girl must be closely related, right?

    BTW, that lady in Sneakers was not just uber math-nerd and sexy spy-girl; she was also an awesome musician/piano teacher.

  2. Like daughter, like father, eh?

    (I seem to keep referencing the "Mr. Keller Is An International Spy" Post in my comments...)

  3. Hmm, I have a hard time conceiving Ariel in leather but I can imagine her kicking butt. Does that help?

    Its like trying to think of Luke in a tutu, actually, that isnt that hard....

    Graec Dkue

  4. Why don't you just tell me that on the fencing piste?

  5. Hmmm. Ariel could star in the show "Numbers." I've never seen it but I know the premise: fighting crime with math. Yay!

  6. Only if I get an Ironman suit, or an axe, yeah, that would work.

    or a machine gun....

    gRACE duKE