## Fair Shares

When Von and I sit down to share an eintopfessen (what we call supper that comes in one dish which we divide, I don’t know the English for it, but say for example a bowl of Salad Niçoise, or steamed prawns in noodles) she always has the first helping. It’s only polite.

She will always take precisely 7/19ths of the food in the bowl. This has been verified by careful observation over many years.

This always leaves me in a quandary. If I take the remaining 12/19ths, I am obviously a greedy guts. I must take my fair share. But given that the 12/19ths left over becomes a new integer, were I to attempt to take 7/19ths of that, I would end up with 9/38ths of the original dish. Not fair on me.

So I have to calculate visually what portion of the remainder I can appropriate without causing ructions.

Yes, I get it wrong more often than not. If we both take 7/19ths to start with, that leaves 5/19ths left over for seconds, which should be divided as 5/38ths each. Of the original dish, that is.

But I have no idea how she manages these complex fractions so adroitly in her head. It would be simpler if she doled out my portion.

Then I could Ask For More.