Something fun: What it is like to be the son of Captain Derivative


Above is a picture of my stepdad, Captain Derivative, doing integration exercises for yet another day in the vector field against his arc enemy, the pathological and degenerate Prime Matrix.

Some people have asked me, “What is it like being the son of a differential operator who can wield power series with such ease?” Well, when I was young and still very near my initial value, I used to oscillate rapidly between believing whether his exponential powers were real or imaginary–often shifting my phase over time with some frequency. But then he removed a discontinuity from a complex surface right before my very eyes, and I saw the proof of his limitless analysis: I converged upon the realization that my own scientific skepticism had been irrational. From that moment on (t=5), I would often help him from his secret power base by relaying coordinates of tangents he could approach in the Cartesian plane so he could do battle against those divergent improper integrals.

Go Captain Derivative, we are with you (or at least, within an epsilon ball of you). May the functions you differentiate always be smooth!

(My stepfather, Fred Reusch, is the calculus teacher at my old high school in Rockford, Michigan.  Today was “Super-hero Day” at the school, and he came dressed as “Captain Derivative.”  I think he would wear this outfit to school everyday if he could! 🙂 )

CHANNEL: That’s News To Me
© 2015 Scott Baldridge

About Scott Baldridge

Distinguished Professor of Mathematics, LSU. Geometric topologist: gauge theory, exotic 4-manifolds, knot theory. Author: Elementary Mathematics for Teachers.
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1 Response to Something fun: What it is like to be the son of Captain Derivative

  1. Pingback: A Portrait of an Inspiring Teacher: Fred Reusch | Scott Baldridge

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