I was very happy when I graduated from the first grade. Yes, I thought, I finally get to leave this unruly and immature phase to join the older, more mature second grade world.
So on the first day of the second grade, I found the classroom that had all of last year’s second-graders. Aaah, my new comrades. I stepped into the classroom, Transformers lunchbox in hand, took a deep breath, and surveyed my new group of peers. This was the erudite elite with whom I now counted myself an associate, a proud member of the highbrow second-grade intelligentsia.
My ascent through the ranks of lower academia was brought to a screeching and teetering halt when the teacher told me I was in the wrong room. This was the third grade classroom, and, as it happened, all of last year’s second graders were now third graders… which meant that all of last year’s first graders (barring one unfortunate soul) were now—gasp—second graders…like me. As it turned out, I was to be inexorably linked with this lot (and they with me) for some time…
I had aspired to infinite slope, but the system held me to an m=1.