5!

To infinity and beyond… Not said by Buzz LightYear but my GRE math instructor today when reviewing geometry, lines, angles and their corresponding relationships.

How many different ways can the letters in the word STUDY be ordered? The answer is 5! or 120. 5! is not 5 yelling, but 5 factorial, multiply every integer below it until 1.

If the ratio of chickens to horses to pigs is 5:8:10, and if all the animals have their appropriate number of feet, how many horses are there if there are a total of 410 feet?

A bowling team must consist of either 3 men and 2 women or 3 women and 2 men. If there are 5 men and 6 women available, how many different teams are possible?

My answer is I don’t care. These are actual questions on previous exams. The answer to the question about chickens is between 40 and 49 inclusive and the answer to bowling team is 350. If you were able to answer the questions in 1 minute and 30 seconds, good for you. You would likely ace this test. Unfortunately, relearning or review will not result in a better grade for me. Try as I may, I’m not going to know how to answer the math questions in the time allocated.

My anatomy study partner sent me a message to ask if I could study with her on Monday in addition to Tuesday, even though we met on Friday for an hour and meeting again on Sunday. She said she really likes studying with me because unlike other people she’s tried to study with, I don’t ask questions about her personal life, chat, or go on tangents. She said I’m straightforward and get down to the business of studying. It’s amusing, the truth of her statement. I neither care nor want to discuss personal affairs. I only want people to speak to me if they have something knowledgeable to say about anatomy or chemistry.

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