There’s a saying that “only in Boulder does your waitress have a PhD,” an allusion to the fact that people here are really freaking smart.
I’m sitting outside at Alfalfa’s today, however, and I’ve just seen five people in five minutes try to open this door:
Apparently, none of them were waitresses.
Last night when Mike and I went out to dinner at Pasta Jay’s, I noticed he was staring off into space for a minute.
“What’re you thinking about?” I asked.
To which he responded, “Math” and went on to explain how he’d been working on a single, tremendously involved problem all day, how he’d gone down one rabbit trail searching for an unknown only to realize he should have been focusing on a different aspect of the equation.
I shook my head, amazed at how brilliant this man sitting before me is. And how patient. How anyone can have the fortitude to spend the whole day on a single analysis is beyond me.
When the bill came later on, Mike, like the Southern gentleman that he is, gave the waitress his credit card for her to run it through the machine.
She returned a few moments later with the “merchant copy” for him to sign and a pen. He looked at the numbers and hesitated. Five, 10, 15 seconds … I glanced at the $33.30 sum and said, “Six bucks and 60 cents is 20 percent.”
He smirked at me and began to add. He wrote something down, looked up at the ceiling, looked over at me, back down at the paper, up at me. He scribbled something out and rewrote something different.
“I miscalculated,” he said.
There’s no doubt in my mind that Mike is a genius … most of the time.