A complex family calculus

Raymond Chen

I spent the other night at a relative’s house, and I was woken the next morning by my young niece who politely asked me to make her breakfast. (Her technique for waking me up is to come in and call my name. If the door is closed, she pounds on the bedroom door and shouts, “Wake up! Wake up!” If I fail to open the door, she opens it herself. If the door is locked, she jiggles the handle until she forces the door open. I just leave the door open now. Making the best of a bad situation.) Anyway, later that morning, the following conversation took place between my niece and an adult family member (which conversation I have taken the liberty of translating into English): “Why did you wake up Uncle Raymond?” — I wanted cereal for breakfast. “Why didn’t you ask Mommy?”

Mommy was still sleeping.


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