A reply to: A letter from Dusk
Your letter made me feel sad and happy. Happy because you think I’m a good pen pal! 🙂
And sad because you miss your mom. How come she’s not with you? Does she know where you are? When will you get to go home and see her?
I like the dancing with the lampshade helmet part! You’re funny!
Right now my favorite thing to do is to play chess with Dad. That’s because I am studying to be a mathematician and Dad says mathematicians need to be good at solving problems, which is exactly what chess is.
Sometimes, I can see the stars. It’s hard to see them in the Art District because the buildings are taller than the sky (that’s why they call them “sky-scrapers,” my dad says), and also because it’s really bright here, even at night. The museum has lights on all the time.
But sometimes my dad takes to me to Spice District at night, and we walk out to look at stars.
We see them shining over the bay and over the hills on the other side of the bay.
I told my dad what you said about the stars being one billion and ten billion years old. My dad said, “Yeah.” He knew this. He said they discover new stars all the time, and most of them are so far away that you can’t see them, even with a telescope.
I asked him how they discovered them if they couldn’t see them.
He said, “Mathematics.”
He went on to talk about exploring through mathematics and how it lets you understand everything that is a mystery.
I think now that I want to be a mathematician because that’s the kind of explorer-hero that is in the world now. It’s like this day’s Perseus.
So I’m doing lots of math.
I wonder if math can help to understand the mystery of where you are. I’m not good at math yet, except for additions, multiplication, division, subtraction, and square roots.
I asked my dad how to get good at the math that solves mysteries.
He said, “Start by asking lots of questions.”
Here are some of the questions I’m asking:
What is time?
What does time have to do with a clock?
If I didn’t have a clock, would I still have time?
Do plants have time? (The answer is yes because they know when to have flowers and leaves and when the leaves should fall off and when to let go of new seeds and sprout into new plants.)
Does the ocean have time? (I think maybe yes because waves are like clock ticks, but then I think no because the ocean is endless and has been around forever. But my dad says, no, it hasn’t been around forever. Just a really long time.)
Is the tick-tick of my heart like the tick of a clock? But what about a digital clock that has electricity and not a tick? My mom says that the heart has electricity and it is electro-magnet-something-something that makes it beat. So, is time electric?
What do you think, Dusk?
Oh! I changed the name of our club to “Now!” If you want, we can write it like this: NOW! Do you think that’s a good idea, or is it too shout-y?
I’m glad that even though you’re somewhere else we can still write to each other!
I hope you don’t miss your mom. That’s got to be the worst.
Your buddy in addition-subtraction-multiplication-squareroots-and-questions!