SUPERNATURAL

My daughter says that it’s the shoemaker’s elves. My good friend, the school funding expert says that I must have hit a macro. My wife says that I got up in the middle of the night and did it. My son says that it is the genetic trait in our family, mind control. As for me, I am kind of partial to what my son says. He has had some strange experiences in his lifetime. The funny thing is that his son is very interested in this kind of weird stuff.

It all began in a small town in southern Italy. No, that’s Sophia on the Golden Girls. It really started a long time ago in a land far away. I became interested in school funding. I was curious about how money was distributed to school districts. It also puzzled me how certain school districts got more money than others, even when all the variables were the same. I have worked on the horrors of the real estate tax system, tax effort and new ways of distributing money more fairly.

Every so often, I get on my computer, go onto the Department of Education website, grab the newest numbers and try and figure out what it going on. Since I don’t do it all the time, I usually call someone to help me with formulas that I have forgotten. Excel is easy for some, but not for someone who doesn’t use it but a few times a year for research.

So, I called my daughter in law and she was kind enough to spend some time with me and lead me to the land of the enlightened (Excel enlightened that is). I had 6 columns of numbers and a column of school district names and counties that they were in. I did all of my figuring and retreated to the TV. to see a favorite program. All the while I planned to go back to the figures the next day and put them in a more logical and comprehensible order.

I went to sleep that night not giving a thought to what I had to do the next morning. I normally get up at about 7:00 a.m., unless I am lazy and don’t have any meetings that day. This morning I got up and fed the cats, ate a bowl of horrible gluten free cold cereals, scooped some cat poop and headed upstairs to complete my task of the night before.

I sat down at the computer as I am doing right now and opened the icon for the excel file that I was working on the night before. As I opened it, I became aware that it did not look like what I had left the night before. The columns somehow had changed their positions. Actually the positions they were now in were what I planned on doing. Even the font and size of the font were different. How did I know that? I remembered that I had to adjust the width of some of the columns the night before. These columns needed to adjustment.

So there you have it. I do not have any idea of how it was done. Even if I had hit a macro, it would not have done it to my plan. Did I really get up in middle of the night and do the work? I certainly don’t remember doing it. For a while, I thought that Carol had played a trick on me, except for one thing, she does not know how to operate Excel. Was it the shoemaker’s elves? Or, was it some part of the brain that has the capacity to do such things.

As of now, there are no answers that would be acceptable to normal people. I leave the mystery to be solved by someone like Sherlock Holmes.

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