Looking over some family pictures with Happy Jack Haynes last week, I heard a new story/character trait about his dad, Harry Raymond (Roy) Haynes. Jack said that his dad loved math and was talented at figuring in his head. (I wonder if he would have been a math major if he had gone to college? Maybe not, maybe business... Jack has also said that Harry loved selling.) Anyway, every time Harry went to the grocery store he liked to keep an exact running total in his head of everything they were buying. This blows my mind! It was a little game of his to see if he had made an accurate count when the clerk rang everything up. I wonder how he would do with my full cart of groceries, including price-matched items at WalMart? Jack said that one time Harry took my Dad, Scott, shopping with him when Scott was a schoolboy. Harry challenged Scott to keep track of the total. He did it! (Maybe there weren't many things in the cart, Dad?...just kidding.) Perhaps we don't push our own children enough with real life math skills.
Jack also said (years ago on a video) that Harry would always carry around a little "indelible pencil". I imagine this was his math accessory.