Mary O'Keeffe on Slow-Cooked Math

Mary O'Keeffe was my Ec 10 teacher back in 1977-1978. She has appeared previously on in “My Ec 10 Teacher Mary O’Keeffe Reviews My Blog” and “Another Reminiscence from My Ec 10 Teacher, Mary O’Keeffe.” She gave me permission to share this Facebook post she made in response to the post “Cathy O'Neill on Slow-Cooked Math”:  

I am also a slow-cook mathematician, for the most part. I find I have to get into a state of flow in order to really think math through. Often I find it takes me a while to really understand exactly what the problem is getting at—but after a while, it just sinks in and becomes blindingly crystal clear and beautiful. I am rather glad that I didn’t experience buzzer-style or any kind of timed math contests as a kid—they might have permanently discouraged me and induced me into giving up on doing anything mathematically related. I think one of the reasons my husband and I were such a good partnership (professionally) was that he was good at blazing fast insights and I was good at thinking things through more rigorously and deeply. (This is somewhat of a stereotype. We didn’t always fit neatly into these separate boxes, but it is a pretty good first approximation description.)