Test of Mathematics for Relationship Admission

by | Dec 15, 2022 | Creative Nonfiction


75 minutes


Thank you for your interest in having a romantic relationship with me.

This examination will be used, in conjunction with your full-body photograph, to determine your qualifications.

Answer the questions with a soft pencil. You may use an eraser. Do not be too aggressive when answering or erasing. Paper sheets, like emotions, can be fragile.

If you realize you made a mistake, apologize thoroughly, and try again. You should attempt the questions over and over until you run out of time, which is all anyone can ever ask of you.

Please complete the answer sheet with your candidate number, full name, and current relationship status.

Honesty in providing these details is strongly encouraged.

Good luck!



Sample Question

Your significant other enters the room you are occupying and stands before you, hands in pockets and rocking in their shoes. They ask you question q about their appearance.

Assume that q is “Do I look fat in this outfit?”

Using the formula r(q) = D – (O x (BMI / BMI [norm])), where

O:__________objective attractiveness of outfit that significant other is wearing

BMI:_________body mass index of significant other

BMI [norm]:_____body mass index of significant other’s peer cohort

D:__________.desire to continue relationship with significant other


Solve for r(q):

A) Yes, hahaha

B) No, of course not

C) What do you want to hear

D) Stop being neurotic

E) I promised never to lie to you


Question 1


This figure is not drawn to scale. Do not answer based on the drawing’s appearance.




How would you calculate the moral dimension in this figure? Propose a formula that utilizes the following terms:

Religious belief and/or personal code of conduct, capacity for subterfuge, size of savings, number of previous marriages or committed relationships, other vices and/or alternative outlets for sublimation, number of children and pets, affection for children and pets (if any), age of self, esteem of self (if any), and recklessness quotient.

You may use a calculator and/or phone a lawyer to answer this question. If you are a lawyer, please stop now and turn in your examination paper. There is no point in continuing.


Question 2

Two irresistible forces leave from opposite directions and head toward each other. One is aging, which nominally proceeds at a constant rate of one year per year but seems to accelerate over time. The other is the cumulative effect of societal pressures, which combines systems of status, neo-liberal capitalism, patriarchal arrangements for procreation and child-rearing, anti-intellectualism, advertising, and social media, among others.

Estimate the relative momentum of each force. Draw a diagram that separates them at a distance of three score and ten units of life. Use the diagram to answer the following:

a) At what spot will they meet, and what will be the effect?

b) Suggest a strategy for mitigating that effect. Quantify the relative merits of buying a Porsche, lifting your face, quitting the firm to open a bar in St. John, learning   to pick locks for fun, becoming politically active.

Alternatively, draw a curve that describes a life of quiet desperation. Is it asymptotic, or does the person eventually die? (Prove your answer, showing all work.)


Question 3

The famous English mathematician William Shakespeare once wrote that “nothing will come of nothing.”

Was he referring to:

A) A favorite child’s insufficient expressions of devotion to an aging king, which is a lesson that in matters of __the heart it’s not what they say but what they do?

B) The fact that you shouldn’t try to divide by zero because what does that even mean?

C) How relationships need to stay reciprocal, and while it’s a bad idea to keep score, at some point it can’t be all giving and no receiving?

D) Shy people who need to get over their fears, since faint heart ne’er won significant other? (But remember that unwanted attention is worse than multiplying by zero; you wind up with nothing and the other person with even less.)

E) All of the above?


Question 4

A “normal distribution” describes a set of values in which the median is the largest amount and the extremes get increasingly smaller.

Please refer to the chart above and consult your personal experiences to answer the following questions. If you are too young to have been involved with some of the referenced data types, recollect what you’ve noticed about older people in your life or elsewhere (e.g., parents, teachers, religious leaders, politicians in the news, characters in “literary” fiction).

A) Does this look normal to you?

B) What kind of dog does this seem to be?

C) Estimating the relative heights of the bars in the chart, approximately how many sex workers does it take to equal one trophy spouse?

D) What is the probability that one’s college love is divorced and available after all this time?


Question 5

Imagine sets of interlocking rings. First think of five rings, then four, then three, then two.

a) When you imagined five rings, were you thinking of the Olympics? (Y/N)

b) When you imagined four rings, were you thinking of the Audi logo? (Y/N)

c) When you imagined three rings, were you thinking of the sanlianhuan art piece in the Smithsonian, which was created in the 4th to late 3rd century BCE in China during the Eastern Zhou dynasty? (Y/N)

d) When you imagined two rings, what were you thinking of?

i. The classic magician’s puzzle where you must separate two interlocked metal hoops

ii. Two-ring wedding ceremonies as a metaphor for the indissoluble bonds of matrimony

iii. How hard it can be to get keys off a key ring

iv. The double helix of DNA, along with the realization that we are just vessels for the intrinsic drive in all life to reproduce itself, and that thus everything we devote our little spans on Earth to achieving is merely an illusion fostered in our minds by our own selfish genes


Research Questions

These will not be marked; your answers will help prepare future examinations to be administered after our relationship inevitably fails.

  1. What is love? Is it a real number or an imaginary one?
  2. Truth and beauty: they are not the same, they don’t even have the same number of letters. Are they additive or do they cancel out?
  3. Do endings matter? If so, how much?

Photo by RM Images, used and adapted under CC.

About The Author


Michael Fuchs is a septuagenarian with a recent MFA in Creative Nonfiction from Goucher College. He has been a suit on Wall Street, a newspaper reporter, and a professional stage actor. He was born in Cuba and now lives in Philadelphia. His current project is a collection of personal essays entitled Eighty-One Percent Acting.